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Cutting off your nose to spite your face

Britain has a BNP MEP. This country is screwed...hope the protest voters are happy now. Sigh. From what I've heard, they increase vote rather than their total number of votes, which means that it was people not voting who let them in. No matter how much you're annoyed by the expenses row, the BNP really aren't a better option. Fiddling your expenses isn't quite on the same level as massive racism. (And apparently they can't even try to play the "We're not racist, honest" card - the elected member is a former member of the National Front.

Argh. How depressing.

I'm even more determined that a general election now would be a terrible idea - clearly the British public can't be trusted to have any sort of sense of proportion.

On the other hand, the Apprentice final was good, and it looks like Scotland has kept the same party mix of MEPs (2 Lab, 2 SNP, 1 Con, 1 Lib Dem) even though the vote shares have changed - there was a bit of a worry that UKIP could beat the Lib Dems to a seat. We won't get the final result till tomorrow night for Scotland, though - the Western Isles are refusing to count the votes on a Sunday.

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( 26 comments — Comment )
dermfitz
Jun. 7th, 2009 07:39 pm (UTC)
Did you vote? I went to Hillhead Primary and the only person outside there was a lonely man from the Greens. Where the hell was everyone else?

Also: 90% of Yorkshire didn't vote BNP. It's shit but it's not anything like "the country is screwed".

In Central London the Greens got 2 times that of the BNP. A good thing.

pickwick
Jun. 7th, 2009 07:46 pm (UTC)
Yep - I was the only person in my polling station (that school at the end of Brand St) and there were NO leafleteers. It was 9am, mind you.

I know - the BNP didn't even improve their number of votes, just the proportion. And I'm not blaming Yorkshire! But they're gonna get two MEPs, and UKIP are getting a whole bunch, probably. That's quite screwed.

Yay for London, though.
endless_psych
Jun. 7th, 2009 09:18 pm (UTC)
By that assessment declining voter turnouts and general election apathy would indicate we have been screwed for quite some time.
pickwick
Jun. 7th, 2009 09:39 pm (UTC)
Depends if you're judging by intentions or results, I guess. But yes, the political system is very broken and has been for a long time. The one good thing about the expenses thing is that there's a slight chance we'll get PR out of it.
endless_psych
Jun. 7th, 2009 09:44 pm (UTC)
Well it is the system thats just let the BNP in to Europe remember...

Proporotional representation likely isn't the magic bullet people seem to think it is... At least IMO.
pickwick
Jun. 7th, 2009 10:00 pm (UTC)
Yeah, I know. It's got drawbacks, notably that a lot of people are fascist idiots ;) Still better than FPTP, though.
dibsy
Jun. 8th, 2009 06:06 pm (UTC)
Not as good as Single Transferable Vote, I think. STV does a very close job of approximating the real will of the people but without handing huge amounts of power to toadying party loyalists and fringe parties in coalitions.

Apparently.
pickwick
Jun. 8th, 2009 06:53 pm (UTC)
Yeah, I'm not a huge fan of the list system. I used to know more about all the PR options; must go look them up again...
dave_t_lurker
Jun. 8th, 2009 04:17 am (UTC)
"The BNP didn't even improve their number of votes, just the proportion"

I fear we are going to hear this a lot in the next few weeks, and true as it may be, it is just going to look like sour grapes to anyone that even thought of voting BNP.

I didn't even consider voting for them, but I can see how they will try and spin this with everyone insinuating that it wasn't a real victory and they only won anything because of voter apathy.

I think if we're not careful and try and take a condescending view of what they achieved, it is likely to piss off more people and drive more votes towards them - people like an underdog.


pickwick
Jun. 8th, 2009 04:43 pm (UTC)
I'm not sure if I care enough about how the BNP will spin things to avoid stating facts. In fact, I know that I don't want to be silenced by them.

I know what you're saying about being condescending and so on, but I think people are actually more consoling themselves about the result than trying to put the BNP down. And if anyone is pushed to voting BNP by something as petty as that, then something else was going to push them to it before the next election anyway.
dave_t_lurker
Jun. 9th, 2009 04:11 am (UTC)
I'm definitely not saying anyone should be silenced by them.

There needs to be more engagement from the other parties on the subjects the public want to talk about, immigration being one of them. At the moment it is effectively ignored, or we're told it's for out own good, now stop being racist. We know best.

There was a rather good example of this on the BBC breakfast news this morning. A talking head was brought in to discuss the election results, and an emailed question regarding immigration was put to him. He ducked the question entirely and attacked Nick Griffin.

bopeepsheep
Jun. 8th, 2009 04:25 am (UTC)
90% of Yorkshire didn't vote BNP
~60% of Yorkshire didn't vote. Argh.
pickwick
Jun. 8th, 2009 04:44 pm (UTC)
Which means that about 96% of Yorkshire didn't vote BNP. Hurray?
bopeepsheep
Jun. 8th, 2009 04:51 pm (UTC)
I guess. But the 60+% who didn't vote should sit down and have a long hard think about the consequences of their actions. </end Mummy voice>
pickwick
Jun. 8th, 2009 04:53 pm (UTC)
Yup. I know too many otherwise smart people who didn't vote :S
pmoodie
Jun. 8th, 2009 06:32 am (UTC)
A very depressing result indeed.

Yeah, I dread to think what kind of shit we'd find ourselves in if there was a general election now.
laserboy
Jun. 8th, 2009 09:55 am (UTC)
A brand new Tory dystopia, most likely. :-(
pickwick
Jun. 8th, 2009 04:45 pm (UTC)
It would be nuts. As far as I can tell, about 60% of seats would change hands - it'd be mainly an anti-incumbent vote rather than a positive vote.
dibsy
Jun. 8th, 2009 06:14 pm (UTC)
True, but then going and voting labour or lib-dem, or even conservative just so that the BNP don't get isn't a positive vote either. I think that in this election the only real positive votes were for the Greens, the BNP and UKIP. OK, maybe the bloody tories a bit as well, but not all of it.

The British are disenchanted with politicians but are whining about how the politicians should sort it out. No one has any new ideas, but something new would require people to change,s o who cares anyway, right?
pickwick
Jun. 8th, 2009 06:56 pm (UTC)
I...more or less voted positively for the Lib Dems, I think. Although there was a bit of making sure they kept the 6th seat and it didn't go to UKIP, they are closest to my position on Europe too!

Pretty much. People just seem to want some kind of magic wand waved and Something Done, they don't really care what. Cameron's looking good because he's saying decisive things, which he can get away with because he doesn't have to do them.
bunnyk
Jun. 8th, 2009 01:54 pm (UTC)
Erk, scary. I did the postal vote thing so that I wouldn't forget!
pentane
Jun. 8th, 2009 02:27 pm (UTC)
I'm extraordinarily confused by the whole sense of proportion comment. If the current government is screwing up that badly, they deserve a massive beating, which will become instutional memory to NOT SCREW UP AGAIN.

Someday America will have an opposition party again, and they will have learned from the lessons they are about to be taught.
pickwick
Jun. 8th, 2009 04:52 pm (UTC)
Well, the trouble is it's not just the party in government that's screwing up, it's pretty much all the politicians, so punishing the government is a bit unfair. But more to the point, they've done bad things, but I don't think fiddling expenses is bad enough to justify voting for people who'd "voluntarily repatriate" all black people, either!
pentane
Jun. 8th, 2009 05:06 pm (UTC)
Well, I'm not disagreeing that it's probably excessive, but if all the politicians are the problem, you're going to see fringe people being voted it. One hopes that the message will get across, since it's a strong one.
pickwick
Jun. 8th, 2009 05:08 pm (UTC)
From what I saw on the news tonight, they're reacting by trying to appeal to the people who voted BNP, by talking tough on immigration etc. Which means if it was a protest vote about expenses, it hasn't worked!
arborophile
Jun. 10th, 2009 07:51 pm (UTC)
It really pisses me off that more people didnt vote..its in my region, but only 32.5% of people voted, I should had postal vote as disabled, cocked it up but still got there..it was like a scene where you expect tumbleweed to start blowing across Polling station floor!
32.5%! He got a 10% share of vote..makes me sick! :(
( 26 comments — Comment )

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