- Shower - check
- Pot of coffee - check
- Dressed - check
- Stroll down to local polling station - check
- Ass Fuck Labour - check
Which would, on the face if it, appear to be as simple as it gets but I've got an opportunity that's relatively rare and special, compared to that which most of you do. My constituency of Hornsey and Wood Green is on a knife edge between Labour and Liberal Democrats. The local Labour candidate Barbara Roche is a fat-necked Labour witch, not to put too fine a point on it, and pretty much a Blairite-yes-maam going on the responses I received from letters complaining about the net snooping bills they railroaded through a few years back.
However when you're faced with the limited selection of parties and candidates, exactly how you cast your vote is generally more complex than what party you support, isn't it?
My decision was comparitively easy. The local Lib Dem candidate Lynne Featherstone is very active in the region and I've had several conversations with her about issues with the busses and so on, and on my behalf she demanded answers from the operator bosses. Now the national Lib Dem policies themselves, however, I don't really support. It's kind of ill thought-out far left, tax/spend heavy claptrap which is about as far from my natural Conservative inclination as you can get. Forunately, though, I don't have to really worry about them being in power and a letter from that nasty ginger opportunist Charles Kennedy didn't sufficiently annoy me to go for my second option - not voting at all.
It probably ought to be in another blog, but after our marathon blog on the whole Iraq thing, I guess you recall that I supported the government in going to war in Iraq. I trusted Blair. He'd never shown any backbone before but he did on this, so I assumed that he knew things we didn't. His intelligence chiefs were cluing him in and I rested easy in that assumption.
Of course now we know that wasn't true. Blair simply decided he wanted to go to war and told the intelligence chiefs to go rustle up the evidence to support it instead. He also took one look at the legal advice from the attourney general (saying it was probably illegal) and decided not to show that to anyone else and then manages to persuade the attourney general to support the case (!!!).
For that alone, they must go. And yet... I still think they're the best party to lead the country right now. The best of a bad bunch, if you like. No wonder people don't bother to go to the polls. No wonder that this morning at 10AM, I was the only person in the poll station.
Depressing isn't it?
Interestingly, though, Labour have not sent our house of three flats, near as I can tell, a single letter. Earlier in the week the Tory candidate, who I'd never heard of but then that's little surprise when he's a distant third place, sent us a letter. A letter in which he hilariously accused Lynne Featherstone of an American-style electioneering campaign because she is apparently wealthy. I was so amused by this I tracked down his email address (which being a Conservative candidate, he obviously neglected to put on the letter) and sent him a nasty email. One sarcy reply back and the next day I get a spam to 'Mrs Bettinson' which is full of personal attacks on Ms Feathersone. Nice.
Is anyone else involving themselves to this degree in their local battles? What's your take on strategic voting or do you tend to just go with the party you support regardless of the local candidates on offer?