Tuesday, 3 September 2013

Through the Looking Glass

So the UK Parliament apparently voted 'NO' to getting involved in the war in Syria.

Well, a few 'others' plus some Tories and Libdems actually voted 'NO'; the rest voted as sheep, herded into their pens according to whether they had a blue or red mark on their backside. The sheep voted not in conscience, in response to reasoned debate or on a point of principle (as if they even understand what this means) but to 'get one over' on the other side with the UK Parliamentary equivalent of collie dogs snapping at their heels in response to the commands from 'Farmer Dave' and 'Shepherd Ed' to ensure they went in the right pen.

As any farmer or shepherd knows sheep are not the cleverest of animals. They have an amazing capacity for self destruction and get very disorientated when they are brought down from rough grazing for dosing, dipping, sex and reproduction. It is also well known that having two herds of sheep in close proximity is a disaster waiting to happen because as sure as eggs are eggs some of the sheep will decide they fancy being in the other flock. This is the only really clever thing about sheep, some of them appear to be able to dematerialise and then rematerialise on the opposite side of the pen or fence without anyone knowing how they did it, a process which is only detected when it comes time to count the herd.

Even in pretendy parliaments where the sheep are electronically tagged and counted you get the same phenomenon of sheep pressing the wrong button and appearing in the opposite herd's count, as Shepherdess Lamont has found to her cost on a few embarrassing occasions.

Fundamentally this is the problem in any system where Party Politics is dominant and it is a curse on operating a real democracy where 'Government' always has to win rather than the electorate's best interests being put first. 

If we vote 'yes' in 2014, the Scots Electorate has the power to decide whether we fall into the old two politic entrapment of so many failing democracies or we use our constituency and list votes wisely to ensure neither of  those parties likely become the big two in Scotland, with the SNP on the left and Labour on the right, can operate with out reliance on some awkward minority party to keep them in check.

Coalition politics are messy but they are clearly better than the situation where 30% of the vote cast gets you an elected dictatorship, as is the norm at Westminster. We should be looking to encourage the Scottish political wolves in sheep's clothing; anything to upset the herd and keep the shepherds and farmers worried and on their toes.

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