Politics and the common touch

If you say that someone has the common touch you mean that they have the natural ability to have a good relationship with ordinary people and be popular with them.

(Collins Dictionary)

The British people are an interesting lot. They’ll listen to their politicians forever, detailing their policies, wittering on and confirming, or otherwise, their own views and prejudices. They end up voting largely on gut feeling. Will I be better or worse off? Will the country become fairer? Will the Health Service be OK? Are things heading in the right direction? Etcetera etcetera! Ordinary people can’t do the detail, the minutiae of politics and economics. They are too busy getting on with their own lives.

But, if you wish to lead the British people, these days, you must have the common touch. Otherwise, you can be in big trouble, no matter how well thought out your personal political philosophy.

Consider the most successful politicians of modern times.

Harold Wilson changed his accent, used his pipe as a prop.
John Major campaigned in the streets, stood on a soap box.
Tony Blair embraced britpop and smiled as he spoke.
David Cameron, an Etonian, oozed charm.

But what of Margaret Thatcher, you ask? Ah, but, at a time of weakness, she sent forces to save the democracy of British islanders thousands of miles away. She was made of sterner stuff!

So, what is my point? The British wish to be well led and well managed BUT!
They need to see empathy, they need to see emotion, they need to see that their leader has the COMMON TOUCH.

I leave the reader to compare and contrast Theresa May with Jeremy Corbyn.

Thanks for reading.

Oh no! UK result

Good grief! What we needed was clarity and what we have is fog!

Brexit negotiations now look shambolic.

Theresa May is unlikely to see out the year, at most.

Conservatives lack a credible alternative.

Scotland looks to go against indyref2 and will remain in the UK – brilliant! Thanks Ruth!

We need a national government but no-one would compromise.

So, a Conservative-DUP alliance? Yes.

But the UK is limping now.

Lessons to learn?

1. A representative democracy should not hold referenda! Believe in Parliament!

2. UKIP is a one issue party. UKIP voters, outside the Brexit issue, merely revert to type, back to Conservative or Labour.

3. Never think you can second guess the electorate! Ordinary people make up their minds based on simple issues – kids, schools, fees, health , education! It’s not rocket science.

Thanks for reading.

P.S. Vince Cable is back – great!

What is it?

What is it?
About democracy
That you hate so much
The idea of consent by all
The strong the weak the rich the poor
The man the woman the old the young

What is it?
About happiness and freedom
That you hate so much
The joy on a child’s face
The bond between lovers hand in hand
The infinite possibilities in life

I do not understand such hatred
I never will

Are online petitions a good thing?

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I took a look at the online petitions that people are signing up to, Bernie. You know, about Trump coming or not coming to the UK. Seems too easy to me. Getting government to debate an issue is just a hundred thousand barking clicks away. It’s just more facebook twitter generation stuff, hardly a result of serious thought and debate, surely. For me, we have a representative democracy. We elect MPs to think stuff out for us cos we’re too busy living life , raising kids, doing a job and following the football. Online petitions seem too trivial. You know, do you like marmite? Decide in a second and click. What do you think?

Strangely, Mike, I’ve been looking at the petitions online too. You won’t like this, Mike. There’s over two thousand petitions you can sign up to in an instant. Great fun! People’s democracy, no thought needed. So I signed up to loads.

I don’t think we agree on this one, Bernie! What the bleep have you signed up to in your clicking frenzy? 

Thought you might ask. I’ve got a little list.

OK Gilbert, or is it Sullivan, give me some examples.

Huh? Well, I quite liked these five.
1. Prevent Donald Trump from making a State Visit to the UK.
2. Donald Trump should make a State Visit to the UK.
3. Give status to police dogs as ‘Police Officers’.
4. Ban all non-recyclable packaging.
5. Protect grouse moors.

Mmm, bit of logic missing regarding Trump. And interesting about the grouse moors. I don’t think either of us has ever been on one. And no more plastic bags for you then. But regarding the police dogs, I definitely agree, even though it’s obviously the most barking petition!

Note: All petitions above are genuine. The UK – a true democracy!!