Friday, 3 April 2015

The Disillusion of Parliament

In the last three days Ian Bell at the Herald, and Andrew, the Lallands Peat Worrier have both expressed their disillusion with politics. Ian Bell, who is a craftsman of a writer, said of the official start of the election campaign: "It was all acted out as though a tattered soap opera script from 20 years back had been mistaken for the latest episode." David Cameron made the ridiculous suggestion that this was a two-horse Con-Lab race - something that we all know to be untrue. Lallands Peat Worrier Andrew, whose writing is full of Gothic elegance, wrote about "...the nonsense and the flesh pressing, wet handshakes, hollow laughter and terrified smiles..."

It is easy to get disillusioned with politicians. As Ian Bell implied, politicians treat us like idiots. Why else would David Cameron stand outside No 10 and say that there was only him or Ed, and that if we voted Ed there would be "chaos." 

There are loads of choices; we might vote Monster Raving Loony , or Green or SNP and eject all the expenses cheats, the yes-men, the non-exec directors who happen to be MPs, the Lords (off with their heads...)

And why does Ed Miliband persist in telling us that only his party can save the NHS? How short are our memories if we have forgotten how the same party privatised hospitals and used PFI to fund hospitals off the books?

So what can we do if we want to reduce child poverty in Scotland, or we want to get rid of Trident or we want to reform land ownership? Can we avoid the politicians?  On child poverty, for example, we can help directly, or help indirectly (for example, by supporting Save the Children Fund's programme in Scotland). This is all good. But amongst the multiple causes of poverty are things that we must get the Government to change - whichever party is in power. We need to change the benefits system, we need to extend free childcare... and so on. Politicians - those same people who treat us like idiots - hold the levers to system change.

So if we want change we must grin and bear the Farrage-farrago and the old-Etonian Mess that we are going to be subjected to until May 7th, and then vote for the party that will push those levers and get the change we want. Which, in the case of this writer, is the SNP.

As the Anarchists said: vote early and vote often.

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