None of the above


This is an article by Emma Lister.
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Politicians never fail to let us down with their unsuccessful policies and promises that never seem to be kept.  The Expenses Scandal proved MPs are dishonest and untrustworthy, leaving us unsure as to how to perceive our government in terms of their control and management. They continue to leave us unconvinced in regards to controlling immigration suggesting their lack of credibility and consistency. Promises are given to us not only from all areas of our current government but from the potential government that might arrive within the next coming months. Each party seems to be as deficient as the other when it comes to earning our trust and ensuring their ‘promises’ are kept.
American president, Barack Obama has plenty of fine attributes: he has elements of ethos and sincerity that appeal to us and allow us to trust in him. Gordon Brown on the other hand seems to only disappoint us. His past record suggests that he has nothing new to offer the government; so does it not seem that if we do not get a change of party, we should at least get a change of Prime Minister?
“I will not let you down” is the phrase Brown used to reassure us in this difficult time.  He continued to say “we will weather the storm together”, attempting to try regain his popularity or recover what popularity he may have lost to other parties.
The fact that more people voted in the Big Brother evictions than in the last General Election just proves the lack of trust and interest we have in today’s politicians and their policies. This popularity in the show may be due to the good publicity that it gained, in comparison with the enormous amount of bad publicity many influential politicians acquire, like Mr Brown himself. Michael McLoughlin, Journalism student believes “Gordon Brown wanted the title of Prime Minister but not the responsibilities that followed with it”.
Brown has on many occasions failed to pursue his parliamentary aims, and it’s not until an election occurs that he begins to try to fix the countries problems. We are told he is to begin plans for producing the new high-speed rail link that will improve train journeys for many. However, this will only impose costs on tax payers for years to come and ignore the other financially realities that come with it. Is Brown enforcing this ‘flawed’ purely because he wants to win labour votes, not because he believes it can mend the nation’s problems? Should we trust someone that only cares about election votes and cares little for the public’s finances?
Being a successful, trustworthy politician is about having character and personality. David Cameron (Tory Party leader) said being a character “is not about telling people what they want to hear but about what they need to know.” He himself claims this is a vital issue that should affect people’s decisions and that with him “what you see is what you get”. A second year English Literature student at Leeds Metropolitan University said she doesn’t trust Conservatism. She said “All I know is the past. I find it hard to believe that the Tories have changed.” She feels that David Cameron comes across as “a sleazy PR man that I find hard to trust.”
Kyle Maglione, a Level 2 PR student said he plans to vote for the Liberal Democrat party, following his family tradition. Yet when asked if he trusted the party leader, he didn’t know who that was; suggesting Nick Clegg hadn’t made much of an impact on him at all.
For some students it becomes a question of ‘will I vote at all?’ Twenty year old, Thomas Doyne doesn’t plan on voting as he feels he doesn’t know enough about contemporary British politics. Does this suggest that politicians don’t target their campaigns at students and consequently they are left out of the voting process? Surely students have as much an opinion as anyone else; so why are they left out of the equation?
Some might say politicians are ‘all talk and no action’ and that no matter what they promise us they’ll do when they come into power, they will still fail to deliver when given the opportunity. If this is so, then we are left baffled as to whom to trust in general elections and need to spend a considerable amount of time reflecting on who we trust and furthermore who deserves our vote. Time needs to be spent reviewing the parties and what each stand for and whether you think each party can deliver.

One thing seems certain. Politicians never fail to let us down with their unsuccessful policies and promises that never seem to be kept.

The expenses scandal showed MPs to be dishonest and untrustworthy, leaving us unsure as to how to perceive our government in terms of its control and management. The government leaves us unconvinced in regards to controlling immigration suggesting their lack of credibility and consistency. Promises are given to us from our current government and also from the potential government that might arrive within the next coming months.

Each party seems to be as deficient as the other when it comes to earning our trust and ensuring their ‘promises’ are kept.

US president Barack Obama has plenty of fine attributes: he has a sincerity that appeals to us and allows us to trust in him. Gordon Brown on the other hand seems to only disappoint us. His past record suggests that he has nothing new to offer the country; so if we aren’t to get a change of party, shouldn’t we at least get a change of Prime Minister?

Westminster

Who deserves to become an MP? Photo: Joe Sharp

“I will not let you down” is the phrase Brown used to reassure us in this difficult time.  He continued to say “we will weather the storm together”, attempting to try regain his popularity or recover what popularity he may have lost to the other parties.

The fact that more people voted in the Big Brother evictions than in the last General Election just proves the lack of trust and interest we have in today’s politicians and their policies. This popularity in the TV show may be due to the good publicity that it gained, in comparison with the enormous amount of bad publicity surrounding our politicians.

Journalism student Michael McLoughlin says: “Gordon Brown wanted the title of Prime Minister but not the responsibilities that followed with it”.

Brown has on many occasions failed to pursue his parliamentary aims, and it’s not until an election approaches that he begins to try to fix the country’s problems. We are told he is to begin plans for producing the new high-speed rail link that will improve train journeys for many. However, this will impose costs on taxpayers for years to come and ignore the other financial realities that come with it. Is Brown enforcing this ‘flawed’ policy purely because he wants to win Labour votes, not because he believes it can mend the nation’s problems? Should we trust someone who only cares about votes and cares little for the public’s finances?

Being a successful, trustworthy politician is about having character and personality. David Cameron, the Tory leader, said being a character “is not about telling people what they want to hear but about what they need to know.” He himself claims this is a vital issue that should affect people’s decisions and that with him “what you see is what you get”.

A second year English Literature student at Leeds Metropolitan University said she doesn’t trust the Conservatives. “All I know is their past. I find it hard to believe that the Tories have changed.” She feels that David Cameron comes across as “a sleazy PR man that I find hard to trust.”

Kyle Maglione, a second year PR student said he plans to vote for the Liberal Democrats, following his family tradition. Yet when asked if he trusted the party leader, he didn’t know who that was; suggesting Nick Clegg hadn’t made much of an impact on him at all.

For some students it becomes a question of ‘will I vote at all?’ Twenty year old Thomas Doyne doesn’t plan on voting as he feels he doesn’t know enough about contemporary British politics. Does this suggest that politicians don’t target their campaigns at students and consequently they are left out of the voting process? Surely students have as much an opinion as anyone else; so why are they left out of the equation?

Some might say politicians are ‘all talk and no action’ and that no matter what they promise us they’ll do what they want when they come into power. If this is so, then we are left baffled as to whom to trust in general elections and need to spend a considerable amount of time reflecting on who we trust and furthermore who deserves our vote. Time needs to be spent reviewing the parties and what each stand for and whether you think each party can deliver.

Comments

  1. Yes, the big brother / less voters statistic is a sad indictment of our digital corner of the globe and our young peoples apparent lack of interest. It never fails to frustrate me that none of the political parties still really “get” social media engagement. They still don’t get that people want to be engaged not talked at from a soapbox.

    At heart all of the political parties are paying lip service to getting their message out there to where people are congregating. In reality, are any of the political parties taking the bull by the horns? I don’t think so. A big opportunity missed.

  2. No Candidate Deserves My Vote! describes the position I found myself in as the Parliament expenses scandal unveiled itself on our screens. We would not even have known the full extent of the scandal had it not been for a brave ex-serviceman blowing the whistle. He could no longer countenance the behaviour of our politicians whilst our brave soldiers were risking their lives out in Afghanistan and struggling with late and, in many cases, inadequate equipment supply. The average Private in the Army earns less in a year than the amount that some of our politicians have had to pay back in expenses, including mine in Stevenage. Of course, no political party was untouched in the scandal so who do you vote for in the forthcoming UK General Election?

    I am coming across more and more people in Stevenage who are seriously considering not turning out to vote this time in the General Election because they cannot honestly support any of the main parties. The expenses scandal among other issues has rocked their confidence not only in politicians but the whole political process.

    I too would have been one of them, a “couch-dissenter” if you like, but the expenses scandal finally shocked me into action. I joined the “No Candidate Deserves My Vote!” party to provide an alternative to the main parties for the disaffected voter in Stevenage.

    Essentially what the party is trying to do is to provide a “None of the above” option to be automatically added to the bottom of every ballot paper of the future. That way, if you find yourself not able to vote for any of the parties you can use your vote to say so.

    The “No Candidate Deserves My Vote!” party is not just a protest vote. It is a serious bid for electoral reform bringing democracy to the disaffected voter. I believe in the democratic process for government in giving the people the right to vote for what they want but that also comes with a responsibility to turn out to vote. A “None of the above” option gives the disaffected voter a reason to turn out to vote, exercising both their right to vote for no-one and their responsibility to turn out to vote.

    Some people deliberately spoil their ballot paper however, your vote is not counted and there is no way of telling whether it was by accident or by choice. Others will vote for a fringe party on the basis of protest against the big parties rather than the policies of the fringe party. The danger here is that you may be voting in something much worse.

    A MORI poll carried out in 2001 on behalf of the Electoral Commission suggested a favourable interest in non-voters to turn out to vote if they could vote for no-one http://www.ipsos-mori.com/researchpublications/researcharchive/poll.aspx?oItemId=1280 .

    As far as I can tell, I think I am the first person to bring the “None of the above” agenda to a UK General Election. Let’s see what happens…?

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