Wednesday, 21 April 2010

Statistically oblivious

The Liberal Democrats are popular at the moment. Whether it's for their policies, or just because the people tire of the Labour/Tory tug-o-war that's being going on for over 6 decades, there's something in the air this election.

Unfortunately a basic grasp of voting seems to still elude the bovine masses. Yougov released an article on the growing popularity of the LibDems. In it, voters intending to vote LibDem are reported to be 33% which is a sizeable amount, but not enough for an absolute majority. The scary part is in the next sentence.
Just under half the country (49%) would vote for the Liberal Democrats if they were seen to have a reasonable chance of winning.

So let me get this straight; people would vote for the LibDems if they thought they were going to win, but against them if not? The wrong-headedness of this behaviour boggles my mind. I honestly cannot fathom this line of thinking at all.

If they like LibDem and want their policies, how on earth is voting against them going to help? And what does it gain you, the voter? The smug knowledge that you voted for the party that "won"?

Politics is not like football. You can't just support the team at the top of the championship and then proudly claim "We won!" when they take home the FA cup. You didn't win anything. It's vicarious success at its worst. And when you apply this reasoning to politics, you lose. And so does everyone else.

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