Election 2015 comment: Who will have the last word?

david-cameronIf you believed the polls and the papers then you probably expected a slightly different result. Expecting the closest race ever, but got something quite different.
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Yet come polling day that hope of change and potential to shake up our country’s political make-up just never happened. Some may be disappointed, some may be relieved, but I personally feel cheated.

After five years of austerity, the people of Britain wanted a better option. In the run up to the election the Tories claimed disposable incomes per head were 0.2% higher at the end of 2014 than they were in 2010.

I’m not an economic expert but I question the significance of this percentage? According to the Trussell Trust, 1,084,604 people used food banks in 2013-2014, compared to 61,468 in 2010-2011.

In an affluent country, how can we justify the increase in the amount of people unable to put food on the table for their families? I don’t believe in pointing fingers, so unlike the media I’m not going to scapegoat bankers or immigrants as the root of the problem. But to me it appears that the current political system isn’t working.

Source: Trussell Trust These are not all unique users, this is a measure of volume. For more information visit  http://www.trusselltrust.org/stats#our-stats-explained

Source: Trussell Trust
These are not all unique users, this is a measure of volume. For more information visit
http://www.trusselltrust.org/stats#our-stats-explained

This brings me onto the problem of our “democratic” nation. How can we incite change, how can we tell young people that their vote really matters, when our current First Past The Post voting system contradicts this?

When asked students my age who they were voting for many replied Green. This may seem stereotypical for the twenty-something age range but the Green Party is the third largest party in the UK, with more members than UKIP and the Liberal Democrats.

And yet the party only received one seat in parliament. Moreover, the winning party, the Conservatives won a majority when 63% of the public voted for a different party.

This clearly shows that we need an alternative system that fairly reflects the wishes of the public instead of one that breeds apathy over wasted votes.

Photo credits: Reuters / Stefan Wermuth

Surprised and angered at the general election result, hundreds marched against austerity and the Conservative government this weekend. Photo credits: Reuters / Stefan Wermuth

Russell Brand’s politics may be controversial but his core message that we must work towards a society of “compassion, altruism and community” is paramount.

Former Liberal Prime Minister, William E. Gladstone said that, “Conservatism is distrust in the people tempered by fear”.

Do not be fearful, we may have a serious plight under the Conservative government but as Russell Brand states, “all we’ve got left is to be compassionate to one another and get involved in causes we care about.”

Remember that we do not work for politicians we vote for politicians so in theory they can work for us and make our country a better place to live in. If this fails then we must turn to each other and take matters into our own hands.

If, like me, you were surprised at the general election result and perhaps disappointed, do not give up hope. Change will come but it will have to come from us. Just because the voting and counting is over, it doesn’t mean the last word has been said.

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