When you’re Spoilt for Choice?
Teaching the Oligarchy a Lesson.
Well – here’s the second Jersey Election Special. And as I remarked, I’m going to do a post each day in the build-up to the 15th October.
I promised a while ago that I’d offer a guide to tactical voting – and make my recommendations as to which candidates to vote for.
I also said I’d perhaps be placing a greater emphasis on what candidates I recommend you don’t vote for.
People often suggest that there ought to be a negative vote – whereby you could put your X to cancel out a vote for the candidate you most despise. Whilst I can see the attractions – I’m not sure about the practicalities; just imagine – tallying-up all those tens of thousands of votes against certain establishment people? The counters would be there for days.
But – I’m not sure such a mechanism is actually necessary. And this is why you must drag yourself out to vote – even if you’re an anarchist – even if you wish all politicians to the furthest pit of hell.
In these Senatorial elections, we have 21 candidates contesting for 6 seats. Now let us imagine you have taken sufficient interest to read a little of what each candidates says of themselves – and you think every, single, solitary one of them to be utter clowns.
Now cast your mind across the ranks of the 21 and think of those individuals from amongst their number who you detest with the greatest passionate intensity. Then imagine them being elected.
For that is what will happen if you do not vote.
In our speculation, we’re imaging the entire slate to be a wretched, sorry shower of buffoons and imbeciles; people with the IQ of George Bush and the ethics of a Wall Street short-seller.
But – no matter that it causes you physical pain and palpable revulsion – you must cast your weary eyes down the ballot paper – and vote for those you hate the least.
Because if you don’t do this – those you hate the most may get in instead.
Think of it this way. Voting for the least-bad amongst our hypothetical toxic 21 may well seem a deeply unpleasant prospect – a bit like having to get a gangrenous toe amputated. But if you don’t go through with the unpleasantness – the result will be the rot steadily climbing up your leg.
It’s a question of the lesser of two evils.
So having established why you must vote for the least-bad candidates amongst our fictional slate, let’s turn our attention to the 21 we have before us in reality.
When voting in the Jersey Senatorial elections, you have UP TO 6 votes. A maximum of 6 – but you don’t have to use all 6. Perhaps there are 3 candidates who you quite like. In which case, you might usually cast only three of your 6 votes.
In some circumstances, there are attractions in voting tactically in this manner. For example, if you cast your 3 preferred votes – and then go on and cast your remaining votes for candidates to which you are semi-indifferent – it’s entirely feasible that the candidate you voted for, but only as a 6th choice, could go on to prevent the candidate who is your 1st choice from getting elected.
So sometimes such tactical voting makes sense. But these are interesting times.
So those three votes you, perhaps, wouldn’t normally use? Instead, regard them as 3 ‘negative’ votes – of the kind people often wish they had.
The down-side of only using a few of your 6 votes is that you leave the way open for those candidates who you hate the most, to maybe wriggle into 5th or 6th place.
So my first recommendation for these elections is use all 6 of your votes.
Even if you struggle to identify 6 candidates you like, regard a vote for them as, in effect, a negative vote you can cast against the candidates who you most want to fail.
But – on this occasion, when considering the 21 candidates we have contesting this election – I actually regard it as an unusually strong field. I could quite easily vote for 10 of the 21 candidates. But – we must whittle our choice down to 6.
And we’ll start work on that task with tomorrow’s post.
I’ll finish with my second recommendation for voters.
The States of Jersey needs to be taught a lesson. The fact that sitting members are so rarely thrown out encourages the sense of invulnerability that enables the States to so arrogantly trample over the wishes of the community.
None of the 3 sitting Senators should be returned. All have badly failed the people of the island in one way or another. And it also happens to be the case that the 3 in question are exactly those kinds of members who feel so invulnerable, they only take notice of public opinion during the 5 moths before an election.
Let us get them out – and teach the States that no longer will the community passively accept being treated with contempt by a complacent and haughty establishment.
I hope you found these recommendations helpful.
See you tomorrow.
The man who laughs in the face of defamation actions.