London elects its next Mayor today. In reality it will be a choice between Boris or Ken which for those of you unfamiliar with London politics is a choice between left and right, between red or blue, and if you are to believe the media a choice between the newt lover and the buffoon.
I’ve been debating which way to go for a couple of weeks and I’ve flipped between them both and the LIb Dem candidate Brian Paddick. For me there’s no choice of whether to vote, it’s something I feel strongly that everyone should do; even if the expression of the vote is a spoilt ballot. My frustration is that I’ve felt uninspired by the candidates from the 3 main parties, with a sense of deja vu. Strictly speaking I’ve always been a Lib Dem but feel a disconnection with them at a National level and aren’t inclined to vote for a reality TV contestant for London Mayor. So what to do?
Having read about all the candidates – which includes the Greens’ Jenny Jones, the independent Siobahn Benita and the other two (who I really dont feel inclined to discuss) I was a little closer. Benita as with most independents interested me but watching her campaign video doubts crept in. With the words “urban foxes” I mentally crossed her off the list.
I tried the Guardians Mayor Machine which is useful to gauge where you fall on the issues, but I seemed to create a mutant mayor choosing policies pretty equally between the main four candidates; what the Machine branded a Night Mayor.
And then I watched this and instantly my mind was made up. I had been leaning this way but just needed the extra push. It seems that all these years I wasn’t actually Yellow but a closet Green.
Some may say I’ve been swayed by some cool kids and slick marketing or that it’s a wasted first preference vote. How else do we ever move away from a politics of polarisation if we don’t change our habits, vote with our conscience and not our perceived allegiance? I’m stepping off the soapbox and normal service will now resume.