Saturday 30 April 2011

AV or not AV. That is the Question... Now, What's the Answer?

So, at long last, you might think, Munguin’s Republic is facing the CHOICE that must be made next week.

So, how will Tris vote, and why?

Well first off, considering the enormous cost involved in mounting the referendum across the UK, and taking into consideration that all of us are over 18 years of age, I would have appreciated it if we had been treated like adults and given a proper choice of the options for reform. It wouldn't have cost any more.

I’m insulted that we are only allowed to choose between a bad system and an even worse one. The real choice has been made for us by our “betters”; those educated at top English schools and universities, and clearly in a far better position to make important decisions than we are. So that given, is it worth a vote?

Well, yes. It’s always worth a vote. (If you don’t use it they may take it away.) And although the choice is small; (AV is imperfect, it’s majoritarian, it’s unfair, although marginally LESS unfair than FPTP), a journey of a thousand miles starts with a small step, and if you never take that first step, you’ll certainly never take the last one.

People have argued that if the result is “Yes”, then we’ll not get an opportunity to vote for proper PR for another 25 years. And, if we vote "No", we will? Anway, it's not necessarily true, if we care enough.

People have said that AV is a bad system and that countries which use it want to ditch it. But the Tories and Labour use it to elect their leaders. David Davis would be leader of the Tories if they had used FPTP. Why is it OK for them but not good enough for us ordinary people?

They say it’s too complicated for us to understand. Ranking candidates 1,2,3,4,5.... is too difficult? They apparently use the system on the 'X Factor'. How thick do they think we are for heaven’s sake?

They say it will be the end of strong government. So? Strong government based on as little as 33% of the vote, 22% of the population, is good? In many constituencies most of the people do not want their MP. If you are a Tory living in Dundee, for example, your vote is always wasted. You, literally, don’t count and might as well stay at home. If nothing else AV will mean that votes do count.

They say the small parties will have an unfair representation; the BNP could end up with a seat. Well, it’s unlikely, but, so what? You either ban the BNP and its likes, or you accept that there are people in your country who have this kind of view. Why should they be allowed to HAVE the view, but not have it represented?

It’s the British way? [Tris chuckles, then bursts out laughing hysterically and has to be slapped.]

I suppose that for many it comes down how you feel about the party leaders, who have invested so much in the campaign (despite promising not to). Although I should dislike Clegg for being a turncoat, surprisingly I just feel sorry for him.

I reserve my real anger for Cameron who is unfit to be prime minister. In “these difficult times for hard working British families up and down the country”, he’s just not up to the job. He is incompetent and his government is likewise. He has no perception at all of the misery his determination to pay down the deficit within one 5 year parliament (and go into the history books) is causing, or if he does, he simply doesn’t care.

He’s either very stupid or plain evil. He doesn’t see the misery his policies are causing. I do.

Of course, all the polls suggest that the "No" vote has it, but as I’ve said over other polls recently, we shouldn’t take anything for granted especially in Scotland, which usually votes differently from England.

So, these are my motives for voting "YES" to change.

What about you?


  1. tris

    one lot of lying slags against the other whats to choose Cameron is a lying turd but then so is Clegg.......

    Ed says vote yes as its a bit fairer so what to do its a blinking conundrum so it is Democracy stinks cant we play conkers instead.

    all in all I'll probably vote yes and then throw up

    is that a ringing endorsement for AV

  2. Copyright infringement. :)

    I see Niko is thinking of himself after thursday when pocket billiards wont be in fashion.

  3. Well put. I'll be voting Yes for much the same reasons.

  4. I'm hoping the final result is "yes", but it'll have to happen without my vote - I refuse to take part in a referendum for a pointless little change that would have been far more suited to a parliamentary vote. I would feel like I was legitimising the referendum, which is apparently far more important than the independence referendum which the London parties - and the Lib Dems in particular - refused to back.

    Whatever the result, by the time Westminster changes to use PR, Scotland will have voted for independence (and our superior voting system), so it won't affect us anyway.

  5. LOL Niko... pretty much agree with most of that.

    I'm not sure I'll be throwing up, although, it's enough to make you... but election day will be a busy day.

    It is indeed a ringing endorsement.

  6. Yes. The future is looking a little glum for Niko. But he's our friend so we'll need to do out best to cheer him up...

    Not sure how we'll do that though!!

  7. Good man OR... We have to agree about some things ;¬)

  8. Hello Julian. Thank you. It's good to know I'm not alone in this thought process. :¬)

  9. Hi Doug:

    I certainly see your point. It's little change for an awful lot of bother. The expense that the "No" campaign go on about is largely being borne by donors; mostly rich people or businesses, so it's actually money going into the economy which perhaps otherwise wouldn't... advertising, posters, travel expenses, hotels etc

    But it's all the bother and time for one not much change.

    I couldn't make up my mind at first, but all the lies from the "no" campaign helped swing it, and it would be great fun to see Cameron's face if he were defeated.

    Another thought is that it seems much more popular in the Celtic countries, three of which actually have other ways of voting...and as such a bit more experience.

    It would be interesting to see what would be made of Scotland, Wales, Cornwall and N. Ireland voting YES while England voted NO...

    Your last paragraph puts more heart in to me though.... Thanks!! ;¬)))

  10. It doesn't seem a very fair system with AV. You can get the majority of the votes yet not get elected.
    An SNP councilor in Angus got the majority of the votes but lost due to the AV system.
    Plus of course it's all window dressing in the national elections.
    We're governed from Brussels and they allow us to play at democracy knowing that they have the final say in what happens in the UK. Despite no one voting for Rumpey Pumpey or Ashton of teeth

  11. I'm with Hugh. AV isn't fairer so I'll be voting no and that's not because we vote differently to England Tris. :)

    Both camps are as bad as each other regarding financing.

  12. Well Hugh, it’s a hard one to call but the way I see it Tony Blair had a strong government with a HUGE majority on about 32% of the vote. Most of his MPs had fewer than 50% of the vote but because there are many parties, and the one with the most votes wins, he was the prime minister who was too frightened of his mad chancellor to stop him wrecking the country.

    I agree there's not a lot of improvement, but it seems fairer to me, and more than anything I want to see Cameron humiliated. We simply have to get rid of this English chosen government. This man and his ministers are mad.

    But of course many want to see Clegg the cretin humiliated. After all he is a liar and a cheat.

    Hard one to decide...

  13. Well SR, in my opinion it's marginally fairer, and as I said to Hugh, it smacks Cameron's coupon, and god knows there is nothing I'd rather do in the world (unless I could hit Brown at the same time).

    Yes, of course the funding is dubious and, based on past experience, probably dodgy on both sides...quite likely imported from the British Virgin Islands.

    My point was that the cost of having a referendum, especially when attached to elections, is almost nil.

    The cost involved is running the campaigns which all parties seem unable to do for less that eye watering amounts. But some MPs have indicated that this is coming out of taxes. It's not. The government isn't or at least shouldn't be funding the campaigns.

  14. FPTP must and shall hold, lest we in the UK shall be ruined by incompetent, foolish, stupid, idiotic zanuliebore and unliberal anti-democrat coalitions.

    But, fair enough for voting yes Tris, I know you'll have chewed this rotten referendum over quite a bit.

  15. This one has been on a knife edge for me. But all things considered I am going to vote “yes” simply because I hope that Scotland, Wales and NI says “yes” and England says “no”, and of course we get “no” because we always get what England wants. Ticks all the boxes! Only thing better would be if the apathetic English who are not having a General Election don’t turn out and England’s “no” is not enough to outweigh Scotland et al’s “yes”. Then the Tories decide to throw the whole bill out. That ticks even more boxes.

  16. Dean. Thanks for the confidence in my cognative abilities LOL. But yes, I've thought through.

    Neither is perfect, but I'm pretty sure that Cameron thanks his lucky stars that the Tory Party use the system.....

    As far as incompetent goernments are concerned....erm, I say the last 20 years and I rest my case.

  17. Agreed Munguin!!

  18. LOL Yes Dean...

    I see a minister "mistakenly" referred to out of work youths as "plebs" yesterday...

    John Heyes allegedly wrote about (yes, he didn't just say it off the cuff) People Lacking Everyday Basic Skills...PLEBS.

    Amongst colleagues, it might be a joke, but he published it in a newsletter about the "Have a Go" scheme.

    But all that will pale into insignificance if Gray wins the Scottish Election...

  19. Agree that "Yes" ticks so many boxes in Scotland that I have gone off my original intention to vote "no".

  20. Great news Anon... every vote for, that was a vote against, counts as two.

    I was at hustings tonight and there were representatives from the 4 main parties. 2 Liberals, 2 Labour, 2 SNP and 1 Tory (the other Tory couldn't make the meeting due to ill health.) Everyone except the Tory said that they would vote "yes".

    I think Scotland may vote differently from England.