I turned the telly on to see news about the Moscow bombings and got “Gorgeous” George Osborne saying what he’d do as chancellor.
Well I’ll hand it to the boy George it was definitely conservative in the sense of not changing much. He’s going to tinker with a few things and not increase NI. Vote for change and all that. At the best the Tory promise seems to be along the lines of “We’re going to be 10% less dreadful than the current lot”. I follow a few essentially political blogs (and I write this drivel) so I guess I’m rather more savvy to politics than the average bear who probably has an interesting hobby such as trainspotting but I can’t think of one substantial policy difference between any of the major parties. Perhaps that’s one of the reasons for the rise of the likes of the Greens and the BNP – they at least have something to say. It might be barking mad but it’s not the same old tired nonsense endlessly re-treaded and sold as new. Well, for me the wheel has now definitely come off. It isn’t so much that I disagree with policies anymore – it’s that there just don’t seem to be any. I mean not increasing NI as a headline policy is… Just remembered I’ve got a new promenade deck seating plan I must post to the White Star Line… Well, it’s pathetic isn’t it?
Oh, just thought of one! They’re gonna bribe people tuppence ha’pennny off their tax to get married. Have they thought that one through? Everyone will get married. People in shared flats will be tying the knot. And I mean everyone because this will have to apply to gay and lesbian civil partnerships otherwise the Tatchellites will (with fair justification) throw a conniption fit.
I can’t see the Tories winning outright. They are not getting my vote, they are not getting my wife’s vote (apparently she’s thinking of voting Lib-Dem if she can remember who Nick Clegg is on May 6th) and we are exactly the sort of people they should be getting votes from. I’ll tell ya why they won’t win outright. By not offering anything different they are feeding the troll of apathy. I mean it’s come to a pretty pass when someone like me who has an interest in this sort of thing is going to be reduced to writing, “None of the above” on a ballot paper. From even a tactical point of view I find the Tories dismal especially considering iDave used to work in the media. By merely pissing about on the fringes they have enabled Labour to retain a level of initiative they should have lost years ago. Essentially their campaigning has been deeply negative in the sense that all they are saying is, “We’re not them”. That’s dismal and people know that it’s dismal. That is precisely why the Tory lead keeps shrinking. If you have a choice and no positive reason to go one way or the other then you might as well toss a coin. In essence that’s why I think we’re looking at a hung-parliament.
Of course there are people who still think iDave will win and at the climax of his victory speech will unzip his skin-suit and reveal a cloned Maggie Thatcher but… I feel sorry for these folks ’cause it ain’t gonna happen. As iDave’s leadership has rolled on and he’s said nothing to the purpose the number of such poor misguided people has diminished as they increasingly see iDave as reactive rather than proactive and a complete void of principle. You have to believe in something if you have the vaguest chance of persuading others to believe in you. That of course is another reason for the rise of the fringe parties: they actually believe in things. You can see the same sort of thing happening with our own dear old Church of England whilst various evangelical churches are doing well. In the unlikely event iDave reads this blog what he should have done is… Had some principles, defined a coherent set of policies based upon those principles, figured out how to implement those policies and then communicated all of this clearly. Political science is not rocket science.
A lot of comment I have heard (perhaps even from myself) is that this should be an interesting election because it’s so tight. Maybe overall but seat by seat we are looking at a very dull one. The level of apathy I feel in myself and detect in others is enough to convince me that there will be a very low tun-out amongst those that actually think about who to vote for so it will be determined by tribal-loyalty voting. You know the sort of, “Me Great Grandpappy voted for that nice Mr Disraeli…” sort of thing. Because for the likes of me who thinks about such things if there is no clear distinction between parties then what precisely is the point of it all?
I just hope the aftermath spurs some poltical wonk somewhere to say, “Hang on lads, I’ve got an idea!”