Why you should vote.

Discussion in 'U.K.' started by Midsummersun, Jun 4, 2004.

  1. Midsummersun

    Midsummersun Member

    I was just reading the post on the BNP, and a few other issues came out of it. I know that RESPECT is already widely discussed on this forum, so I might go there next, but it concerns me that people don't vote. I think it was Moominpappa who goes and spoils his vote every election. Others don't vote becuase there are no parties they completely agree with, whilst one person said they would vote Green but it would be wasted.

    By spoiling a vote you're making a protest, but one that only the vote counters are ever aware of.

    By not voting because your favoured party is too small seems ridiculous. How do you ever expect them to grow with that mentality. If all the people that thought that were to vote for their chosen party it would make one hell of a difference, and then maybe more people would sit up next time.

    By not voting because you don't wholly agree with any party, while being the most understandable reason, still doesn't change anything. We must remeber that Marx, for all his socialist writings, was an anarchist, but he recognised that we cannot get to our goal in one step, we must first turn in that direction.

    By not voting, or by voting tactically, you are just playing into the hands of the established order. Remeber the elections in the US last time around. Hundreds of thousands of Nader supporters voted for Gore. What happened? Bush stole the election and Nader was denied funding for this years election because he didn't get the necessary percentage. And so the two party system goes on.

    Here in Northern Ireland we are standing a candidate under the banner Socialist Environmental Alliance. Essentially our policies are the same as RESPECT. We don't expect to win a seat, but the campaign has increased our membership and networks. And if we get our target of 15-20,000 votes then we will show that we are a force in Northern Ireland politics, so next time maybe all those abstainers and tactical voters that otherwise agree with us will actually make their votes count for something.
  2. Paul

    Paul Cheap and Cheerful

    I would argue that the opposite is true
  3. Midsummersun

    Midsummersun Member

    Elections frequently have low turnouts, but this doesn't bother Labour or the Tories because they keep getting voted back in. In the last general election more people abstained than voted for Labour. The BNP whip up support, get people to vote and get elected. Left wing parties politely ask for votes and largely get ignored, yet as history has shown time and time again, most recently in Spain, when the voter turnout goes up the main benefactors are the left wing parties.
  4. butterfly

    butterfly Member

    I'm always going to vote, purely because women died to give it to me, and I have a lot of respect for that.
  5. Alomiakoda

    Alomiakoda Boniface McSporran

    Same here :)
  6. torz

    torz Member

    i'm having trouble deciding who to vote for as i havent seen any of there political broadcasts and dont know who wants what etc. if someone could give me a hand on this matter.
  7. Peace-Phoenix

    Peace-Phoenix Senior Member

    I agree with you wholeheartedly Midsummersun, I couldn't have put it better myself. Torz, I'm voting for RESPECT, if you opposed the war and are generally to the left of New Labour, they're probably the way to go, but then I'm a member and so am bound to say that, so you should probably recognise there's a considerable ammound of bias in my advice. But see for yourself:

  8. kier

    kier I R Baboon

    there is also the green party, i'd try to get whichever candidate has the most chance of getting in, as the more left people in parliment the more even it will get :)
  9. Valis_77

    Valis_77 Member

    The whole system is fucked from the bottom up.

    There are only two real choices. Labour or Conservative. There's no freedom in that. It's basically an ultimatum. It's this or that. And the difference between the two is close to nothing in the long run.

    You could give your vote to the green party as a token gesture, I've done that in the past, but unfortunatly that's all it is, a gesture.

    Take the American situation. The majority of people (according to a lot of different sources) voted for the slightly more liberal option Al Gore, and somehow Bush still got in. So even when the people do make a stand they still get fucked over.

    On the other hand there is a theory that if we lived in a perfect utopia that we'd stop evolving. We'd become stagnant. So maybe we need shitty leaders. They keep us striving for something better. How bored would all the social activists be if there was nothing left to fight for :) They'd lose their identities!! Because that's all some of them are. Issues on legs!!

    Whenever I start worrying about govrnments and issues and shit I just remind myself that the Earth is going to be swallowed by the sun eventually anyway. There is no future for the Earth or the human race. It's a reassuring thought.

    It's like the Bloodhound Gang said..."we don't need no water let the motherfucker burn!!"
  10. butterfly

    butterfly Member

    Hey, don't give me all that, I'm not forcing you to vote, I was merely expressing one of my reasons.
    "women died giving birth and women died in both world wars but its always women died for the right to vote that gets bandied about to make people feel guilty for not voting!!!!!! interesting."
    I'm not quite sure what that means. Are you expecting me to say that all women should give birth because some died to give some of us that opportunity? I am by no means guilt tripping people into voting, just because I'M going to vote because of that, doesn't mean that anyone else should. Women dying is really not my whole arguement on the issue.
    "I'm always going to vote, purely because women died to give it to me, and I have a lot of respect for that."
    And how is that whinging? Not only does it sound quite positive to me, it doesn't even appear to be a protest. Maybe it twisted into something bigger in your head....

    You may feel you are making a stand by not voting. But I don't see how government can separate you from all those layabouts who don't vote because they can't be arsed. In this way voting sends a much bigger message than not voting.
    Whilst you're not voting all those wondeful BNP representitives can be sneaking into parliament, and you think they want to give proportional representation? Not enough people are not going to vote for the queen to look into it because some people WANT to vote. I'm always going to vote, even if it's just to tick the box saying I don't want to vote for any of these candidates because they don't represent me blah blah...

    In fact, I'm a little confused. You don't vote why exactly? Because none of the parties represent you? So you hope that the queen will eventually look into it and give proportional representation. And give you a party that represents you? Why not just find or set up a party in the first place?

    But do I believe in the right for you to do whatever you want, so continue to not vote if you feel that's best for our country, I'm not going to argue the point. Just expressing my opinion (and not whinging), as before.
  11. DoktorAtomik

    DoktorAtomik Closed For Business

    I've voted at every election where I've been able, and will continue to do so. Not because I believe in the system (being a bit of an anarchist at heart!), but rather because it's foolish not to exercies what little power we have. I think there's a case to be made for abstention, but I don't think it really achieves anything in the long run. And whether you choose to vote or not certainly has fuck all to do with age - it's simply making a choice about which you believe to be the more constructive option.
  12. mmelody

    mmelody Member

    We should vote...because we can..imagine the uproar if we couldnt!
  13. showmet

    showmet olen tomppeli

    Because that is impossible given the current system. We have the illusion that anyone can set up a party and have a voice, but really you can't. Even the biggest and reasonably well finded "alternative" parties like the Greens or Respect are sidelined and have at best little or more likely no influence. The best they can hope for is that they might possibly get a council seat or two or even an MEP, who might possibly be able to suggest a few minor little tinkerings to the drift of policy, which then get ignored by the mainstream infinitely more powerful parties who actually make the decisions. That's if they get the chance to speak at all - in the European Parliament I'm not sure they even get to participate in that way. More likely they'll just get to be on the losing side of any vote, outweighed and outnumbered by the career politicians who follow the system. The "drift of policy" itself is entirely and exclusively in the hands of politicians who have internalised the principles of free market capitalism and basically represent the interests of big business, where the power really lies.

    So, vote Respect or Green if you want to be a good little citizen, obey the rules, do as you're told and participate in this sham, but really I'd say what's the point? You're fooling yourself if you think you can make a difference that way. Might as well throw a damp sponge at a moving train. They don't speak for me. Screw the lot of them.
  14. showmet

    showmet olen tomppeli

    We're old enough to remember the 18 years of Tory government, we grew up as children of Thatcher. We saw Labour remould itself under Tony Blair during the mid nineties, turning itself into a second conservative party. I didn't vote in 1997 (the first time I was old enough to) because there was clearly no alternative choice to make! Both parties (yes - only two choices) were now parties of conservatism and status quo. I was aware that it made no difference if I gave them my tacit approval by voting for them, if I wasted my vote on a small party with no chance of power, or if I just ignored the whole thing.

    Maybe at one point voting did make a difference, but certainly not in my lifetime.
  15. DoktorAtomik

    DoktorAtomik Closed For Business

    You haven't got the faintest fucking clue what you're talking about. Where were you in the 80s? Somerset? The prosperous South? Let me tell ya, Thatcher well and truly fucked the North up the arse. We had areas with 90% unemployment. Most council estates were simply no-go areas for the police (in a bad way). People had not one fucking iota of hope. Unions were decimated leaving workers with no rights and no protection. The welfare state was rolled back so far you had to peer over the horizon to see it. People were starving to fucking death out of sheer damn poverty. Liverpool was a fucking third world country. In fact, one of the reasons it's getting so much money at the moment is because the EU recognises it as one of the most deprived cities in Europe - and that's up against some pretty stiff competition.

    Now I ain't naive enough to see Labour as our salvation, but they're still sure as hell better than the tories. And like 'em or hate 'em, they still represent the working class more than the tories ever will. The tories represent everything that's worst about the elitism in this county. They're proof that class politics is alive and well.

    It's always those who never suffered under the worst excesses of the tories who sit there blathering on about how nothing's better under Labour. The eighties were a complete fucking nightmare for anyone who didn't fit into Thatcher's dream.

    What a naive load of crap. You're utterly out of touch with reality! There may very well be a few hippies waiting to lead us towards the light when the system collapses, but there's a damn site more people who'll be queuing up to exploit the situation violently. Most people don't give a shit about creating a better world. They just want to take what they can. Has it never crossed your mind to wonder why nothing like you describe has ever happened before? Don't you think if it was so fucking easy, we'd have had a constructive revolution or two already? Even the bloody left can't agree between themselves, and you seriously think everyone's gonna line up to be led towards the new age by a bunch of lentil munchers? Yeah, whatever.

    You're labouring under the entirely false premise that voting is declining simply out of disillusionment with the system. In reality, the reason that turnout is in free-fall is because the apathy that the politicians have encouraged is spreading like a cancer. People don't vote because they can't be assed and would sooner sit at home watching Eastenders, not because they're trying to make a political statement. And that suits the politicians just fine. What do you think will happen if voter turn-out continues to fall? It ain't gonna be a revolution - it'll just be entrenched apathy! If people can't even get off their asses to vote, what chance do you think there is of them doing anything else remotely constructive? Sod all. Good luck with your revolution. Don't be surprised when you're the only one who turns up for it.

  16. DoktorAtomik

    DoktorAtomik Closed For Business

    Oh yeah, and seeing as you saw fit to take the opportunity to belittle my experiences and opinions (done like a true lightworker!) with no provocation, let's see if I can't take my turn. I was looking at that link you posted, and boy! what a laugh!!!

    Excellent! Buy your way to enlightenment! Purchase yourself an archangel buddy here! Join the queue, part with your cash, become an ascended master in one easy transaction! Wow, how totally fucking spiritual. Even the christians aren't that bad.
  17. chickabean

    chickabean Senior Member

    oi you...such a one track mind ;)
  18. DoktorAtomik

    DoktorAtomik Closed For Business

    Sorry. What I should've said was even the christians (excluding chickabean who has shown herself to be more open-minded and rational than most god-botherers) aren't that bad ;)
  19. DoktorAtomik

    DoktorAtomik Closed For Business

    But half the problem is that most people are actually enjoying the hole! The problems that the system creates seem too remote for them to concern themselves with.

    I'd tell 'em that people shouldn't have leaders, and promptly leave.

    I see. So you'd impose your reality on others on a mass scale?

    Exactly. Works great with 20 or so peeps, doesn't it? What about the other 70 million, huh? Think there's room for all of them to form their own little hippy communities? This is one of the fundamental flaws of the 'back to nature' plan. And what bits of technology are you going to give up? Electricity? Why draw the line there? What about agriculture? That's technology too, and you have to cut down trees to create space to farm. Speaking of which, where do you stand on the issue of tools? Mining and smelting metal? Would you be in favour of that or not?

    This is just hopelessly naive. In fact, it demonstrates really well just why we're in the mess we're in. There's no simple and easy answers. If you don't pay people more for doing certain jobs, then there's no incentive for doing them. Not all the jobs in society are going to be pleasant, and without the incentive of wages, you'd have half the jobs unfilled. I'm not arguing that this makes the current work/wage model ideal, but you can't address the problem with a primary school solution.

    I see. So we're back to politics and elections? You've just described democracy!

    And having just tried to sell us on democracy, you're now moving onto communism! So should all these houses be the same size? Or is it ok for some people to live in bigger houses? And who's enforcing all these rules? Wouldn't be a government, by any chance? How did we get a government? Were they..... ummmmm.... elected?


    Y'know, I've been hearing the same shit since the eighties, and there's still no sign of the system collapsing. It's a stoner dream.

    Precisely why we're in the boat we're in. The trend for people to be greedy and selfish. The trend for people not to care about other people. You can't change these trends of thousands of years by passing round a spliff and hoping everyone will feel like a hug.

    I don't actually disagree with much of your idealism. It's your naivety in believing that the solutions are so simple that I take issue with. The very reason that no single country on this planet has a utopian government is that the solutions are bloody difficult in practice. Sure, utopianism sounds great, but once you start to try and implement it, it soon goes sour.

    Back in the day, I spent some time at a number of communes around the country. Most of those were full of politics, with half the people at each other's throats. If we can't even organise a group of twenty people without the worst side of human nature coming to the fore, what chance do we have of organising 70 million people in Britain alone?

  20. DoktorAtomik

    DoktorAtomik Closed For Business

    Well hey. You certainly made your comments sound derisive. Maybe think next time before you type?

    Oh hell yeah. It's a scouse thing. Don't believe in taking shit.

    Nope. Not at all. But there's a difference between experiencing personal poverty (which indeed exists everywhere) and living in a whole city that's deprived. Nothing grinds down your hope like a whole city of poverty and urban desolation.

    Poverty does indeed hit at any time and in any place. But the severity of its impact varies greatly. Your attitude is typical of Southerners who have no idea what the North of this country suffered under the tories. I don't have any prejudice against people from the south, but without having experienced the eighties in the north, you really can't have a clue.

    Yup. Again though, the difference was that in the eighties, this was whole fucking cities.

    You really are on self-righteous bint, aintcha? Guess that must be the whole indigo child thing coming through again. After all, you are better than the rest of us... more advanced 'n' all. Mustn't forget that!

    Voting does not make anyone a 'good little citizen'. If you drive to the revolution, does that make you a 'good little motorist'? If you can; make your point rationally, then just don't bother. It makes you look like a fool.

    You're just blabbering on irrationally now, to the point where you're hardly making sense. If you recall, it was you who posted a link to that site, presumably promoting it! I can understand why you're getting all shitty though, since you've managed to prove nicely how the whole alternative lifestyle that you promote is riddled to the core with hypocrisy.

    Wrong again, oh great lightworker! I just like being myself, actually. But then of course, people like you always promote individuality until someone crops up who's the kind of individual that they don't like. I'd answer your point in more depth, but it doesn't even make sense.

    Yeah, I'm sure you'll still be smiling when they bolt the door. Strangely enough, I'm the happiest I've ever been in my life at the moment. I can see why that might surprise you though, as clearly I'm not allowed to express an opinion that runs contrary to your own naive world-view without it being perceived as negative. Apologies if your fairy castle doesn't have the strongest of foundations.

    Oh yeah. Pardon me. Doctors who work out of the goodness of their hearts. Not for those £50k pay cheques, obviously.


    You're too far gone to see past your own little bubble anyways. I think you 'n' reality parted company a good few mushrooms back.

    I agree entirely. If you spent a little less time being so obnoxious and attempting to provoke me, you might realise that I'm not a million miles from your point of view. I agree that it's all about perceptions. The only difference I have with you on that level is that I believe that change is going to take an awfully long time. People's perceptual models are too deeply ingrained for them to relinquish at the drop of a (rainbow) hat.

    I adore lentils. They're great! Don't assume that because someone uses a stereotype to illustrate a point, that they actually believe the stereotype. Or in fact, that they aren't the stereotype themselves.

    Oh man, I'm really hurt! Check the last paragraph and you'll see that you haven't even got that much right.


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