Monday, 3 May 2010

St Austell & Newquay - a difficult choice

I was reading the interesting blogpost from Cornish Zetetist about the choice facing voters in St Austell & Newquay on Thursday where it is argued that voters have the chance to vote for something truly different by choosing Mebyon Kernow.

While I agree there is something which I am sure will be in the minds of many voters who are considering putting a cross against Dick Cole for the first time - it would take a very large shift in the vote to give Dick Cole enough to be elected and it would appear to be too large a shift to make it possible.

And that is where the problem lies - for those who may be considering switching their allegiance from Lib Dem or Labour to MK there will be a fear that by doing so they could let the Conservative party in through the back door - something, I'm sure, supporters of Lib Dem, Lab and MK would not want to see.

So there is an argument for those wavering over their decision - who also do not want to see a Tory victory - to support the Lib Dems in this constituency. There is a loyal core of support for the Lib Dems in the St Austell and clay areas thanks to Matthew Taylor's long stint as MP and by ensuring Stephen Gilbert is elected it would mean that the door is closed to the Tories.

Having said all that there has been a surge in support for Dick Cole and MK (see how the odds have been slashed by the bookmakers) and he has always had a good deal of support from a lot of people in the clay areas as well as support from people in both St Austell and Newquay - but in terms of the general election he is still a relative outsider.

There could be a lot of people in this constituency on Thursday who find themselves weighing up a decision from the heart with a decision from the head.

posters, posters, posters

Driving around Cornwall at the moment you'd have to blind not to realise that there's an election going on. Everywhere you look there are orange, blue, red and white posters all over the place. Now other than littering our countryside (particularly the Tory ones which appear to mostly be encouraging sheep to vote) what purpose do they serve?

I mean, does anyone honestly make their decision on who to vote for depending on how many posters there are for that candidate in their particular neighbourhood? I would have hoped that that kind of mentality would be left to the sheep...(maybe the Tories have got the right idea then?!)

No, it would seem that it is just a form of willy-waving for election candidates - who can get the biggest posters up and in the most areas.

I just hope that all the parties are responsible enough to collect them all up afterwards and recycle them....

Broken society and other Cameronisms

So I have just seen the latest election broadcast from the Conservative Party - of interest partly because some of it was filmed in Newquay.

As I watched it I wondered about some of the grand statements that Cameron has been coming out with in this campaign. One of the main things seems to be his "big society" idea and his claims that our society is "broken". Now, I would have thought that for society to be "broken" we would have some kind of chaos and disorder in evidence - the only chaos I can remember in recent memory has been the protests over banks (institutions which are clearly supported by the Tories) and the protests over the war in Iraq (again, something supported by the Tories). So is society really broken? If it is I would like to see the evidence.

Then we have the continued utterances of "change" being possible under the Tories. According to Cameron in that broadcast this "change" can only happen if we all work together - which is funny because I have been reading a lot over the past couple of weeks about Cameron's warnings over the possibility of a hung Parliament, something which would mean that political parties would have to work together.....

As part of Cameron's "big society" he wants more voluntary work, he wants 16-year-olds to carry out national community service - I would be interested to find out just how much voluntary work Mr Cameron and his entire shadow cabinet have ever done in their lives...

It's also interesting that while Mr Cameron is keen to foist this national voluntary service onto the nation's 16-year-olds he is not so keen to lower the age of voting to 16 - funny that.