Sunday, 31 March 2019

What Do We Want? Representatives That Represent Us! #PRNow

Brexit is an absolute mess. However, this won't be a post demanding any particular solution to that now grave crisis. It is a post dedicated to what is clearly, after the last 3 years, a pressing need to help make our political culture healthier and more responsive.

The paralysis in Parliament right now comes not just because no one has an idea of the way forward. It is also because attempting to balance the, sometimes contradictory, beliefs of different important groups within each party means there's no way to make a decision that pleases anyone. A compromise might cause a split in your party or bring down your Government.

These parties, filled with their warring interest groups, still don't manage to represent the electorate. Votes are wasted as an MP could easily be elected with less than 40% of the vote (i.e. 60% of those turning out to vote, let alone of the electorate as a whole, voted AGAINST them and they still won). Governments can get large majorities and do all sorts of crazy things (like introducing an ill-conceived referendum without considering what needed to be done if a particular side won) despite the majority of people in this country having voted for someone else.

MPs stand on manifestos they don't believe in. Deals are done behind closed doors with very little understanding of what might have been traded to win support for whatever legislation or policy was up for debate.

What we need is proportional representation. We need to ensure more votes matter. We need to ensure MPs can stand on manifestos they actually believe in. We need to break up the not-fit-for-purpose "umbrella" parties and get parties that actually reflect the diverse opinions of our electorate. We need political parties that will know they won't win a majority and be upfront with the electorate about what they will and what they won't compromise on so we all know what we are getting into before the trouble starts.

So sign the petition calling for a fairer voting system. Use your anger righteously and lets finally start digging this country out of the big hole it has gotten itself into.