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This article was written on 09 Jul 2016, and is filled under Uncategorised.

A farewell to voting

Do you like voting? Do you like going into the polling booth on election day with your little pencil and putting a cross next to the person or people you want to win? Does it give you a thrill that you’re taking part in some great exercise in democracy, in choosing the next government and setting the course for the country to follow? Well, I have some news for you. It’s a waste of time. And if you’re left wing, like me, then it’s an even bigger waste of time. Ready for the reasons?

Most constituencies are pretty safe ones for whoever the incumbent is. Mine is Nicholas Soames, who will carry on getting elected until he dies or goes to the House of Lords, whichever is sooner. He gets vast majorities each time and the Labour candidate gets about twelve votes from people who are too senile to stick a cross next to Soames’ name, or Actually Mad. For the most part, it’s about telling the person who is already there that they can carry on.

When Scotland gains independence and Leadsom is Prime Minister, England will be entirely Tory, with a few token red bits in London and a few northern cities. And it’ll be entirely Tory for the rest of recorded time. It voted right wing in the referendum, which shows where its conscience lies, and since we’re in an age where all you need to do is keep repeating things like ‘family, optimism, markets’ as though you’re a deranged chimp, even when the economy clatters through the floor and lies there twitching, there really is no point anyone else even bothering.

Most people in England are vigorously stupid, and against that tide of shit, your tiny little vote is as much use as a windbreaker the size and consistency of toilet paper. They want Leadsom to be their PM? They can have her. They want to vote Tory in alarming numbers? Let them. They want us all to leave the EU? Fine.  You can’t stop the idiocy, so why delude yourself into thinking that you can try? These people want to see politicians who will destroy them elected to high office and, against that insistence, you can do nothing.

Labour supporters are currently telling themselves that Comrade Corbyn will change all this. Again, that’s an exercise in self-delusion. Their party was popular when there were sizeable chunks of people working in factories, mills and other such places, hence the name – labour. Now they’ve been scattered to the four winds, there’s no such unanimity of opinion. People work in smaller clusters, many people kid themselves that they’re professionals and newspapers like The Sun are there to tell the working class what to think and do, so a reliable source of votes has gone.

Take Scotland away as the SNP have done with remarkable effectiveness, and you’re left with a rump of people who are now instinctive Tories and who will go on being instinctive Tories forever. Clinging on to Corbyn, an essentially decent man who is about as much use in the bear pit of politics as a fart in a bag isn’t going to demonstrate anything other than your charming naivete. He looks like a polytechnic lecturer, he’s easily parodied by the media and is a politically dead man whose sole purpose is to bring out crowds of lefties who think that crowd is the electorate. It isn’t.

The electorate are planning to vote Tory, because they always do. No matter how many members Labour have, no matter how many people they get to cheer on Comrade Corbyn in a public square, he’ll lose because of the simple fact that the great mass of voters don’t like him. The last Labour politician they voted for was Blair, and he was effectively a Tory anyway who started two deranged wars and still got voted back into office, so unless you can find a Labour bloke who is effectively a Tory and who likes killing foreigners, you’re on a hiding to nothing.

I voted at the referendum because the murder of Jo Cox made me think that in doing so I was paying tribute to her memory. That sense of duty has now lapsed and I return, with something close to happiness, to my previous, non-voting state. Not for me the shambling delusion of polling day and the media talking heads trying to pretend it matters, that I have a voice. I know that I don’t, that the world will still turn if I don’t bother and that I can stay at home and have a nice cup of tea while it happens around me.

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