The Liberal Democrats, when they were a real political party - one with stabilisers on mind - spent all their time declaring that we needed Proportional Representation to produce parliaments in which the number of MPs matched the preferences of the voters.
They agreed to prop up the most malicious Tory government in decades if they were allowed to hold a referendum on the Alternative Vote - a weak version of the voting system which allows us to rank candidates in order of preference and transfer votes until one reaches 50%. It's not proportional but it's better than the First Past The Post system.
So the referendum may or may not be in three months. The Lib Dems didn't want AV. The Tories don't want it. Labour doesn't want it (some want FPTP, some PR). I think it's better than the current system but not good enough. I also think an easily lost referendum on something you don't support is an insultingly cheap thing for which to sell your soul. It's like the Tories have tossed their spare change on a girl's bedside table: they should either pay their prostitutes properly or treat the coalition like a mutual encounter with benefits on both sides. Buying them so cheaply is simply an insult, but clearly one the Lib Dems were happy to take.
So. Do I vote for AV because it's a mild improvement? Or do I vote against it because it might help bring down a disgraceful and damaging government? I have my doubts that it will, actually: the Lib Dems are going to be punished massively at the next election, so won't want to bring down the wrath of the people 4 years earlier than they have to. Their current strategy is to support everything the Tories do - however evil - in the hope that the financial situation will improve by 2015 and claim some of the credit. They're politicians: they crave power above all things.
What are your thoughts?
Don’t hike student loan interest!
4 days ago