08 July 2009

Do We Get The MPs We Deserve?

Philosophy in Pubs (PiPs) is asking this question at the Park View Pub, Preston Drove, Brighton this Sunday 12th July. All are welcome.

PiPs gets around 50 to 100 people along to its discussions and the Park View is an excellent venue. Hope to see you there.

Actual question being discussed:-

"Does our parliamentary voting system produce the best people for the job? Do we have the leaders we deserve?"

For me, the answer is simple. It is like asking 'should everyone's vote be equal?'. If you don't agree and think that where you live should matter to how important your vote is, then you are probably happy with our present system - first-past-the-post. I don't see how any democrat can support a system where constituency boundaries are more important than votes - but that is first-past-the-post, a feudal system designed for feudal times when only 2 parties could exist and only posh people could stand or vote.

The more proportional the electoral system, the more democracy you have, the more equal the society and arguably the more successful.

PR generally means better public services, more prosperity, a better educated populace, better quality of life for most, better environmental protection, higher political engagement etc etc. It is a no-brainer.

I did a talk on PR for some Labour members in Regency ward a few weeks ago and I had little problem convincing them that fptp was an awful system, undemocratic and unrepresentative. But a few diehards still insisted 'better the devil you know'.

I didn't get to reply to this, but we DO KNOW what PR is like. Virtually every developed nation in Europe has it and it is a success. To talk like the world would end if we had PR is just perverse propaganda. It is time the British people had a choice.


  1. We do not get the MP's we want because of labours habits of parachuting who they want not whom we want.

  2. Robert, we have not had the MPs we deserve for a long time. The Tories in government will have you longing for new Labour to come back, just you wait and see.

  3. "The Tories in government will have you longing for new Labour to come back, just you wait and see."

    They will have to fullfill all your dire predictions, even to the point of the Tory cabinet eating little children in the street before that happens. In fact, scratch that, however bad the Tories are, I never want to see another Labour administration. Labour have taken all the worst aspects of left and right and combined them into an unholy fuck up of a government. I'd sooner vote for the Standing at the Back Dressed Stupidly and Looking Stupid Party.