I’ve never voted, despite being seriously tempted to in recent years. With the snap general election announced, I’m now considering it more seriously than ever before.
I ‘vote’ with the little money that I have, by consuming as little and as ethically as I can. I try to make life choices which I consider more significant than a ‘vote’ on the establishment’s terms. The party political spectacle is ubiquitous and hypnotic though. It is forced upon us, to maintain the illusion of democracy while dividing and conquering most of us.
Not voting is generally frowned upon by those who do. Voters say things like, “You’re disrespecting the people who died for your right to vote“. Respectfully, the greater disrespect is to ignore the blatant corruption of the institutions which people fought and died for, surely? Participating in ‘elections’ and ‘referendums’ only validates a corrupted structure. Regardless who is ‘in power’ in parliament we are ruled by banks and corporations, as we have ever been. The Tories, their Blairite chums here and the 45th American presidency should by now have made this abundantly clear for all with eyes to see and ears to hear.
Elections and referendums provide the vital illusion of democracy, while restricting the parameters of mainstream debate and consciousness. They are less about democracy and more about sculpting objective reality. We are encouraged to have ‘opinions’ on ‘discussions’ which are controlled to deliver the outcome preferred by corporate overlords. These ‘discussions’ are more often than not divisive, absurdly polarised slagging matches (see Brexit). Meanwhile, debates of actual substance (TTIP, or whatever they’re calling it now, NATO, foreign policy, ‘security’, nuclear ‘deterrents’ etc) are had in private. Prior to the digital age, ‘shadow governance’ was dismissed as a fringe conspiracy theory. Today though, many of these theories have been substantiated, particularly those concerning toxic banking (see ‘too big to fail’).
Are insurrections within the mechanics of power, like those of Bernie Sanders and Jeremy Corbyn staged or genuine? If they are genuine, is it really possible for such insurrections to influence real change within structures which are so demonstrably corrupt, or will they always be quelled?
The only political party that really inspires me to ask this question is the Green Party of England and Wales. I’ve been tracking their activity for some years now. Their rhetoric is not hollow. They talk the talk and walk the walk. Their manifesto is outside the controlled parameters of debate. Their policies are solution based. They are 100% funded by their members and supporters, actively avoiding the toxic investments which have polluted the mainstream political parties. They’re calling for a progressive alliance “giving people the best possible chance of defeating the Conservatives and bringing in a truly democratic voting system”. (as I’m writing this, Corbyn and Farron have rejected these calls, again…). The policies and campaigns the Greens support almost exactly mirror my own (though their methods to promote these policies and campaigns differ somewhat).
For these reasons and many more, I recognise the Greens as the only real opposition serious about reforming parliament. This is why they are so marginalised by the controlled media.
Getting rid of the Tories would be good, but the absence of a truly democratic voting system is the more substantial root which we would do well to properly weed lest they return. This fundamental reform has been one of the main planks of the Green’s manifesto for a long time. Is it a deliverable promise, or the sweetest of false hopes? Am I naive to be even thinking about participating this time? Or could voting really be another platform from which to direct real change?
I’ve got over a month to decide whether I can stomach registering – May 22nd is the deadline. Any and all advice would be gratefully received.
Regardless whether I vote or not, I will certainly be doing whatever else I can to support the Greens’ efforts to unfuck parliament over the next two months and beyond.
Perhaps this election really could be an opportunity to finally direct our consciousness out of the myopic box of nightmares it has been trapped in for so long, towards a fairer, saner future.
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