Friday, November 25, 2011

Please take the time to vote...

My Gran once told me about when her father was very old and sick and living in a rest home, the election came round, and when she went to visit he told her that he'd announced that morning that he wanted to vote, and the Matron had pooh poohed the idea.  But he insisted and made a fuss and after a bit some of the little old ladies that lived there also announced that they'd quite like to vote, too, so my Gran had to go out and arrange a special booth to be set up there so they could have a turn.  Later, after all the fuss was over, my Gran asked my Great Grandad who he'd voted for, and he said: "That's my business!" and went to sleep, and he died later that night. 

Please remember to vote!  It's important and you don't have to deal with an obnoxious Matron or anything - just go down to your local polling birth and take ten minutes out of your Saturday.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

National Party promotes crime, prostitution

Here's another bit for the 'law and order' ticket: make it harder for people with problems to get benefits, specifically people with drug addictions and who are in trouble with the law.  I assume this is intended to be a big club that will magically make everyone who lives on the margin suddenly law abiding, fragrant smelling, and all round wonderful citizens, but I don't think that's how it's actually going to work.  I think people who fit in these categories are mostly going to slide away into the other ways to get money if you've got problems - and those are going to have worse societal effects.

But I'm going to give people who disagree with me a G. K. Chesterton quote, because G. K. Chesterton is cool:

"It is true that there is a thing crudely called charity, which means charity to the deserving poor; but charity to the deserving is not charity at all, but justice.  It is the undeserving who require it, and the ideal either does not exist at all, or exists wholly for them."
-- G. K. Chesterton, Heretics, Rockville, Maryland: Serenity Publishers, 2009.

And a happy election to you, too.

Politics 101

Y'know, I get that people care a lot about politics.  I also get that some of the rhetoric out there right now seems... rather less than honest.  But I'd like to put it out there, that if you live with someone who works for a political party, doing ethically dubious acts like defacing billboards isn't going to help your cause.  In particular, it's going to cause big problems for your loved one/flatmate (I'm including that Young Labour guy with the secret tapes from last election in the doofus category), and make the party you like look bad.  It's even worse when they're trying to build a reputation as being more ethical than the others.

Dude.  Don't do that stuff.  Even more - don't do that stuff and get caught.  The only thing worse than being unethical is being incompetent at it.

For the other bit of scandal that's in the news right now, I think it passes the sniff test of being an accident - no politician should seriously expect a conversation to be private in the middle of an election campaign, in the middle of a crowded cafe in which a large number of reporters were specifically invited to film him drinking a cup of tea.  And for all Our John is posturing about having suddenly acquired principles and making threats of police action, it just makes me more curious about what was actually said.  Just a thought.