Sunday, 28 March 2010

Shit Creek

A General Election looms. Westminster is already ablaze. But for some out there it's going to be grim: All sound and fury, signifying... disillusion.

Most Brits are too apathetic to vote - or have forgotten how to. A hard core have been loyal to one party all their lives and don't intend to budge. But the aspiring middle classes - men and women of no fixed political abode - are all at sea. These are the floating voters, and this time they don't know where to dock.

Their vote isn't about who they are, but who they want to be. But there's little to aspire to right now. The future's bleak, and neither party's offering a killer narrative. But maybe that's good. People should take a long hard look at politicians and their narratives. Are they just fairy tale manifestos? And the reason democracy's hamstrung?

Politicians know they must win over the 'aspirational classes' if they are to form the next government. In a week or so's time, they'll go into overdrive with spin and hype, offering initiatives, promises - the stuff that tends to constitute narrative. Best bet is to ignore it all. Maybe it's the politicians who should be hamstrung.

And right now there's only one thing for it: A hung parliament. Of course you cannot vote for it. But you can hope for it, as you ignore that spin, those empty promises. Plus you might consider this: How might such an outcome refresh, renew, re-orientate politicians... and make them do what they're supposed to do - that is, work for you?

When it comes to uncertainty, is there an upside?