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16 Nov 12 | Re: Those daft PCC elections | Link-U-Post

I was going to spoil my ballot in the police commissioner elections yesterday. Briefly, I thought the whole process was a bit farcical; I’m against political interference in policing, particularly by people who needn’t have the faintest qualification for the job; I see the new roles as likely sinecures for political journeymen; I think it’s an unrealistic imposition to make the electorate vote on too many things; I don’t see how policing in, say, Peterborough, Cambridge and the depths of the Fens can really have the same priorities; and it all feels a bit American. I was going to walk in cool as a cucumber, write LOL AT THIS ELECTION on my ballot, put it in the box, try and look stylish, trip over something and beat a hasty exit out of there.

But then.


But then, when I got in I saw that the system was (FANFARE) Alternative Vote, or at least an approximation of it. I don’t know who’s behind that – Clegg? – but I was delighted, as I’m a firm supporter of Alternative Vote. Perhaps its biggest supporter imaginable – I am far more strongly in favour of AV as a system than almost any stance on any issue that it might be used to decide. Therefore, I decided to show my appreciation by voting properly.

If it even matters, here in Cambridgeshire we were lucky enough to have two independent candidates standing, so I voted for both of them (in alphabetical order). The poor fellows had to put up five grand of their own money, not Lord Ashcroft’s or whoever’s, so I thought they deserved my help in keeping it.

As I’ve now found out, there was no shortage of people who did spoil their votes, as this funny and politically incisive Tumblr blog will show. As could have been predicted. As probably was predicted. Perhaps, in fact, it was a little too predictable. I wonder whether there might be sinister forces at work. Think about it:

Might AV have been chosen deliberately so that all the spoiled ballots can be blamed on the oh-so-confusing AV system in order to discredit it?

If so, the scheme is foiled. We have the above-linked Tumblr to show us that the poor sausages aren’t confused, they’re drawing willies and writing in Batman and Judge Dredd because they think the elections are daft (in almost all cases). As well they might, because they are.


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