About Me

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No Fixed Abode, Home Counties, United Kingdom
I’m a 60-year-old Aspergic gardening CAD-Monkey. Sardonic, cynical and with the political leanings of a social reformer, I’m also a toy and model figure collector, particularly interested in the history of plastics and plastic toys. Other interests are history, current affairs, modern art, and architecture, gardening and natural history. I love plain chocolate, fireworks and trees, but I don’t hug them, I do hug kittens. I hate ignorance, when it can be avoided, so I hate the 'educational' establishment and pity the millions they’ve failed with teaching-to-test and rote 'learning' and I hate the short-sighted stupidity of the entire ruling/industrial elite, with their planet destroying fascism and added “buy-one-get-one-free”. Likewise, I also have no time for fools and little time for the false crap we're all supposed to pretend we haven't noticed, or the games we're supposed to play. I will 'bite the hand that feeds', to remind it why it feeds.

Saturday, April 30, 2011

AV - for the last time, but it seems to matter?

Did anyone hear Lord Owen begging for a 'No' vote on the Radio this morning?

This man believes in Proportional Representation (PR) and thinks that a No vote for AV will result in an imminent vote for PR. The same man who ruined the Liberals for a generation and helped contribute to Labour's 20 years in the wilderness, yet - still thinking he has a superior faculty of judgement.

He has done more damage to political life in this country in recent memory than any other citizen bar the other three members of the 'Gang of Four'...one of whom was - if memory serves - a Televisual 'presenter', it says all you need to know about politics and the 'Ruling Class' in Britain for the last 35-odd years! And he got a Peerage!

Vote in the AV referendum, get out, and get your friends and neighbours out, Vote 'Yes' to save us from ourselves!

Or we will get the system we 'deserve'...a complacent, destructive, disinterested system lacking humanity and barely fit for purpose…

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

V is for Vote; for AV please - sorry 'Toy Soldier' people

I am putting this on all my blogs and it will stay here until after the referendum of the 5th May next month. I am one of those people who are always writing letters to a newspaper in their heads, but never actually do anything about it! The war ends, the politician goes to jail, the celebrity gets over their hissy-fit and life goes on, a new letter forms and gets edited in my head...

Indeed, the whole point of the PPE/Rant blog was to get some of those letters out there, but firstly; I rarely write anything on that blog and secondly; I'm the only one who reads them! The moral of the story...stick to toy soldiers! But today, I feel so strongly about something that I will 'Send the letter'...here.

I think it is absolutely vital that we 'The People' in Great Britain vote YES in the AV referendum next month and that to not do so will be to condemn ourselves to another hundred years of hollow promises from self-serving politicians who have grown far too fond of the support they leech from the pockets of a relatively anonymous, venal, moneyed-class.

Why do I think it is so important, when it is only a 'compromise' cooked up between the Conservative and Liberal democrats to get the coalition off the ground? Because it's a step in the right direction, and history is made of small steps. The illiterate Paleolithic tribes of the Serengeti didn't become the modern European democrats of today overnight, they didn't even do so in a series of easily defined moments, they did so in a trillion trillion little steps, with great slides backwards into right-wing, small 'p' protestant, reactionary bloodletting like the Dark Ages, the 'Reformation' and the Juntas of the 20th Century.

There is a lot of vitriolic rubbish, emotive nonsense and general brick-battery being put about by both sides, as far as the lobby groups go, the 'No' campaign is making more noise and of a seemingly more desperate fashion (which is usually a sign of a weak argument/feeling you've already lost the debate), but - while supporting 'Yes' I subscribe to neither camp as all lobbyists have - or think they have! - a secret hidden agenda that usually has nothing to do with the long-term goals of the man or woman in the street to see a greater level of fair play, decent governance, access to justice and advancement of the species, all preferably achieved without destroying the planet for their children.

It was said by someone the other day on Radio 4 of AV, that "Instead of the most popular candidate, you’ll end up getting the least unpopular candidate" as if to vote for such a thing would be the end of civilization as we know it! The truth is that with some people in Parliament right now, care of LESS than 1 in 5, 1 in 8 or even 1 in 10 of the adult population in their constituency or ward, it would seem to me (call me a retard if you're in the 'No' camp) that it will be a lot more 'civilized' to be represented by someone who has had at least one vote from over half those who turn out, than the current state where you might be represented by someone with less than a sixth of the votes cast - especially in a three-way marginal with a dozen candidates where one of whom is a 'Big-3' spoiler.

The fact that in a constituency with say 10 candidates, you will get the chance to rate all ten, and know that you have contributed to the final placing of all those you vote for will give you a greater 'vested interest' in whoever gets elected (and you don't have to vote ten times, if you like the old 'First past the Post' system, just cast one vote, and lose your voice if your candidate fails to get elected!), along with the feeling that because you gave the winner one of your ticks, you have more right to expectations of service from them.

Marginal’s will end up with a definite 'winner', 'safe' seats however will become two or three or more-way races, still with a definite winner, but not necessarily the colour who's been winning for the last 70 years! It means however, that all the candidates will have to mean what they say on the hustings, and then spend 4 or 5 years actually 'doing' the job we pay them for instead of filling their duck-pond from the gravy-train, while they line themselves up with a job in the industry they were supposed to be regulating, moderating or policing!

Moreover, if they have to prove themselves BETWEEN elections in order to justify themselves AT election time, there will be far less of the broken-promise politics we've endured for the last 50 years, they will actually have to find a way of legislating against BOTH rogue Landlords and rogue Tenants, instead of passing several score Rent, Property, Landlord & Tenant and Housing Acts, Regulations, Guidance notes and Amendments over half-a-century which achieve very little! After all, they managed to pass two gun laws and a dog law in weeks following Hungerford, Dunblain and the News of The World's various shouty-rag campaigns. Speaking of the Tabloids; If under AV politicians find they need to impress all their constituents most of the time, they might learn to ignore the most of the gobshite brigade all of the time?

And yes, I know the three pieces of legislation mentioned above were flawed, why do you think we don't still win the Shooting medals at the Olympics we used to! But they were enacted under First Past the Post. At the end of the day, History from time to time requires change, that change can come violently, or peacefully, but having been bankrupted by the Thatcher/Ragan-Bush/Blair generation of autocratic paper-money gambling grey-men, and being told we will have to pay, the NHS will have to pay, Social Services, Libraries, local services will have to pay while the grey-men move their bonus money to Nassau using 'Tax-minimization' vehicles, it would seem to me that now is a time for change?

AV offers that change. Whether we feel the need to go on to PR (Proportional Representation), or stick with AV only time and experience will tell, but to not chose change now would be - in my opinion - a terrible failure to our future selves. There are problems with both PR and AV in some of those countries that have already adopted them, but they are not in the same league as our One-party/Three-colours State (What? You mean you can still tell the difference between them!), and none of those countries are contemplating a return to First Past the Post?

Britain has always laid claim to lead the forward march of progress, democratization and tolerance, sometimes - it has to be said - at the barrel of a gun (history is always full of guns), one of the first to move against slavery, building a commercial empire while Napoleon destroyed Europe and the Congress of Vienna solved little. Standing alone against the Generals, Colonels, little chaplinesque-corporal and fat Italian who held so much of Europe in their collective grips from the 1920's until the mid-70's in some cases, paying the bill for that stand by giving up the Empire while America (currently paralyzed by the mad-hatters) payed for Germany and Japan to re-build.

Yet now we seem to be following, if we can't lead we should at least catch-up! Detractors say there will be a low turn-out? Prove them wrong, whichever way you chose to vote, there is still time to register if you've forgotten to do so...

Register, Turn-out, Vote...it’s easy…
I'll be voting YES to AV, yes to change.

I haven’t been payed anything by anybody for this (worst luck!).