My voting policy

10 Nov

I’m not sure if it totally defensible in terms of logic, but I have a policy when voting. I look at what the right wing nuts want and then vote the other way. It seems to have served me well for several decades. Bearing that in mind I notice that the proposed march on the High Court is to be populated with not just Daily Express readers and UKIP supporters but EDL thugs and BNP troglodites. By their friends you will know them.

At the last general election most politicians were bending over backwards to say that UKIP supporters were not racists. Well, listen, matey, many of them are full on racists. Most are not, but are easily influenced. The least offensive and most amusing of these are Little Englanders.

The populist extreme right feeds on a mixture of discontent and nationalism, and reason has little to offer when arguing with someone who refuses to look at the reflection you hold up to them. You can argue until the cows come home, but they are not listening to logic. They would rather continue in the certainty of their prejudice than consider reason. For example, if some convinced Brexiteer says that they are against all that weight of European law, ask them for an example, and wait for the silence.

Unfounded generalisations based on prejudice, not evidence, is one plank of their beliefs. Then there are the ringing but empty phrases, like ‘Take back control’, and ‘Make America great again’. These are not policies, they are bumper stickers. Trying to define what they mean is like trying to nail jelly to a wall, everyone has their own idea what it means, so it is meaningless. Finally, there is the refusal to look at the evidence. Everyone who has some knowledge which might inform the debate is either shouted down or ignored. But maybe people are really fed up with experts.

I have for decades wanted to see more study of ethics in schools. Now I think we need to teach how to look at evidence and how to interpret information so that the more reliable can be separated from the trash. It seems we are now in a Post Truth world, one where relativism and prejudice have as much to say as informed opinion. There are more than enough examples of where this vice leads. Currently we are going to hell in a handcart.


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