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Is it worth Voting at all in 2010?
They come, they don't want to go.
Father Brown and Father Christmas...Bah! Humbug!!
Is it worth Voting at all in 2010?
Well, the sands of time have fallen through the hourglass again, and it will soon be time to vote for a new administration.
This will probably be next May and we have the three boring choices again, I am sure you all know who they are, if not, get an air ticket and get back to where you interests and horizon is filled with camels and desert scenery.
People under the age of, say, 35, can’t remember much about life in Britain under the last Conservative government: yes, they were alive 12 years ago, but hardly aware of much beyond starting their careers, getting regularly legless and pursuing the female/male form divine (forget the last if you come from Essex).
When you acquire my age and patina, you can remember only too well the Tories under Thatcher and Major, as well as the labour before them, and the Tories before that, until it all becomes an uneasy clamour of misery in the mind. But I must say at this juncture - or I might as well - I have never voted for any of them.
Part of the reason for that is I am an ex. pat. - although that’s a misnomer in my case as well, as I have never been a patriot, and if I began to be one, it would probably be in the favour of Mexico, which I like and respect much more than this place these days. Sorry.
My family, which I suppose were “uppah middle clawse,” to use this godless, gormless British grading system, (Gramp was a doc., and a miserable old fart to boot), were staunch Tory. People were more radically divided back then: you were this way or that way and no messing around with indecision. I was born in Broadstairs, a rather genteel hamlet back then, filled with doddering old colonels and their chirping, dotty, wrinkled wives who had bought awful guest houses and were gradually going broke while saluting the queen under her picture in the hallway, meanwhile subjecting their guests to a comfort level like that at Bergen-Belsen and remaining staunchly Tory to the death. (This has improved in 2009 but they are now criminally expensive…you complain about this and they will put you in the “complainers suite“ designed by the mad-hatter).).
No one worried about much after the war except trying to get decent food again and visiting the 90 pubs in the town on a regular basis. It was about then I decided never to vote - I was three I think.
When I think back to some of the leaders I knew, I remember Thatcher as representing everything I hate about this country: she was ruthless - due to lack of true feelings and compassion; she was pretentious - a grocer’s daughter who wanted everyone to think she came from better circumstance; she did untold damage to the poor of the country in destroying single-handedly our wonderful council property system, therefore enriching the few who sold the houses on, at the expense of the many. (but she did win the war of the Falklands, Ha!). Something else I remember under the Tories was anyone under about 100 who wanted to go on the dole, never mind obtain cheap housing, was subject to scrutiny and humiliation by hard-faced civil servants in local unemployment and social services offices. Perhaps by 2009 the pendulum has swung too far the other way, as Cameron appears to think, and it has become all too easy to get on the government titty; but it was an unpleasant experience under the Tories as recently as the 1980’s. Nowadays, I find little rancour amongst people deciding our immediate individual economical future while we are temporarily disfranchised. This is a whole heap better and saner, you only have to look at advanced countries such as Holland and Denmark to see this. Also, the NHS is far better than it was when I used it 20 years ago. Perhaps it is so good and so enormous we can’t afford it any more and it will soon implode into a huge mess.
We actually have a newish party to vote for again in the Lib Dems. This is a coalition formed in 1988 between the Liberal Party and the Social Democrat Party. Few people are alive today who remember the last time the Libs held power in this country, but they are far older than the Labour Party, who took over from the Libs in the early part of the last Century. Before that, it was just Liberals and Conservatives. They would certainly seem more of a viable choice in 2009 than at anytime over the last 20 years and perhaps - as Liberals - for many years before that.
We are in the unhappy position of not being able to reward Labour because of its mismanagement of our financial affairs; it’s greedy nest feathering at our expense, or its refusal to seem to really care about the carnage it has wrought. On the other hand, the Tories don’t somehow ring completely true - yes, maybe Cameron is a nice chap and means well, but what about all the rest? And bearing in mind they didn’t quite have the same opportunity as Labour, they have done a pretty good job of stealing from the public purse, haven‘t they? Some of us have our memories, too.
The sad truth is that probably no political party, no matter how well intentioned are its leaders and cabinet, can make much difference to the woes that beset Britain. In fact, their main thrust will be in keeping us from becoming a failed state. We are a tiny island with a population of over 61,000,000 which is forecast to become greater than Germany’s or France’s within 30 years. Our immigration at around 150,000 per annum is three times higher than is sustainable or acceptable. Factor in birth-rate, our population is growing at a rate three times greater than any time in the 1980’s. We have more than 640 people per square mile, a choking density of humanity. (The USA has 80, Oz 7, NZ 39, Greenland, less than 1). Out of 239 countries studied we are 52nd. in density, and many above us are tiny states or islands. The only so-called first world countries with greater density are the Netherlands, Belgium and Japan, all of which have more rigorous controls on immigration in 2009 and also have far too many people. This government here seems to think the more we cram in, the more taxes they will pay and the more votes they will get in thanks. Dream on! Most immigrants are at best disinterested in us and our woes and just want to take advantage of the few, fading goodies we still have to offer. Not one party spokesman from either of the main parties dare come all- out against immigration for fear of alienating voters already in residence. It’s like walking a tightrope and a slip can cost an election. Same with our burgeoning aged. Both parties say they are going to reward pensioners with a wage they can live in comfort on, but no one believes much will happen once the votes have been counted. If Labour cared, they would have done something significant over the last 12 years when all they seemed concerned with was watching their buddies in the City become trillionaires; believe me, it all rubs off in their favour, one way or another…that would be an interesting expose! And while the journalists are looking into favours, bribes, et all, let them examine the money drain at high levels into foreign institutions, along with enriched bank CEO’s and their ilk, escaping tired old Britain who doesn’t love them any more, to palm-fringed sun spots where the rich play and count their ill-gotten bonuses. And I ain’t talking about Marbella, this is a whole different class of super-crook!
So with Christmas goods already flooding the stores and the BBC getting ready to show Scrooge reruns ad nauseum, let me get in the festive spirit with Christmas and the elections soon to follow.
Ready chaps and chapesses? Bah! Humbug!