Thursday, 17 March 2011

Voting Debate in Frome

I attended a meeting in Frome this evening to discuss the referendum on voting change to the Alternative Vote.

It was a good debate with high quality speakers, Ben Bradshaw for AV and Jane Kennedy against change.

I am going to comment on the debate except for one point, Jane Kennedy made one point that was really good, it is not necessarily concerning the AV referendum, but the way individuals and parties do politics.

The point was this, no matter what electoral system we use to elect our representatives, the most corrosive thing in politics is not keeping promises or knowing you can't keep promises when you make them.

My frustration with the current government is just that;

Mr Cameron said no top down re-organisation of the NHS and he is now doing so.
Mr Cameron said no cuts to frontline services, again thousands of Police offices losing their jobs, local authority workers being made redundant and services disappearing.
Mr Cameron said he would not increase VAT, then he did so.
Mr Cameron said he would not cut EMA then he did so etc etc etc
Mr Clegg said he didn't support tutition fees increase and then supported removing government funding increasing fees up to £9000.
Mr Clegg said he supported EMA, then cut it.
Mr Clegg said no to VAT rise then supported it.
Mr Clegg said AV was a shabby compromise and then supports it, etc etc etc

Infact we have a government programme without a public mandate.

In the coming local elections no doubt huge promises will be made again, the electorate will rightly be sceptical of their candidates, yet how many voters will be energised by a simple message of working hard for you, i'll make no promises but will do my best for you, and then lots of attacks on other candidates and don't forget the dodgy bar charts.

Politicans do have a responsibility to tell the truth, and voters have a responsibility too, we need a honest change in politics, let's hope politicians and parties reconise this, this will make politics more healthy and trust in the system more robust.

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