Not voting? Get over it.

This was a rant directed at my poor cousin who possibly hadn’t deserved it. But I’m sure you know people that do. Yes politicians have to engage people better. Our democracy can obviously be improved. But that’s a separate issue.

I have NO sympathy for people who choose to not vote out of principle. Having lived under the communist dictatorship in China for several years, and helped fight against the erosion of democracy in Hong Kong, it really boils my blood that people are willing to wash their hands of our own political system. Of course it’s got problems, of course all the party leaders are wankers, of course the policies are often obscure and populist. What do people expect this isn’t utopia. The reason a lot of political campaigning is stupid is because voters behave stupidly. If people choose to vote for grinning, lobotomized leaders that’s what we’ll get. However the fact that our country is still ticking over and for example, most people can get an education, make a living, and not get arrested and tortured without trial, shows the process is still working at least reasonably well.

If you sit around at home waiting for parties to come out and “engage you” then you’re wasting your time. Why should THEY have the responsibility to engage YOU? THEY are run by ordinary individuals like everyone else. Most people who canvass and campaign for parties are randoms with 9-5 jobs who support the party out of their own salary. Sure lots of them are wankers, but lots are nice too, just like most people. And there’s some paid a salary with public funding, but that’s still only one for thousands of people. Or do you expect there to be a party with a message that fits just what you want? Feks sake there are 6 parties and 60 million people in this country. Clearly they are going to have generalized policies. Plus they have to appeal to a cross-section of political IQ’s, since most people have no clue how economic or political affairs actually work, and can’t be arsed to find out.

If you don’t like any of the mainstream parties, vote for a small party. For example I support the greens. (Who most people ignore because they’re like, “oooh it’s just a bunch of middle class hippies who want to chat about organic celery and live in wind-powered cottages” without even bothering to read their economic or social policies). They may not be perfect, but imo they’d be better than the alternatives.

But the greens don’t get elected. Why not? Because they don’t have the resources to buy billboards or adverts, nor the voter base to get taken seriously in the media, nor the cash to buy off business leaders or tabloid papers. And will the greens come out and engage you? No, they won’t. Because they’re run on a shoe-string by a handful of crazily busy people. And they simply don’t have time to stand on the doorstep of every disaffected bugger who will use them as a punchbag to take out their anger about life, the system, and everything. Though they do try.

You’re right though, clearly everyone does have a right to complain. Many people seem to get off on sitting on their ass whining away about “the system”, and how “none of the parties are right for me”. Well the world doesn’t revolve around you sunshine. If you want that individual attention, set up your own party. Screaming lord sutch did, and it was fucking brilliant. In the mean time though, complaining isn’t that much fun. It’s quite repetitive, and people tend to ignore you after a while – yeah I’d say it’s a bit shite. So how about taking a few mins to let the computer tell you which party you apparently want to vote for, and then go and engage with them. Or at the very least, use your fekkin vote. 🙂

Apathy: I thought it was cool when I was 12 too.

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2 Responses to “Not voting? Get over it.”

  1. Ric Says:

    Harsh but fair.
    What did he say?

  2. elliepant Says:

    Nothing.

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