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Think carefully before you vote on 2 May
- Penny Williamson (15th Apr 2019 @ 14:53:16)

Reading all the reports in the newspapers and on the internet about the “backlash” the Conservatives are going to receive at the Local Elections in May, I feel it might be worthwhile taking a step back to look at the “whole” picture.

I have always felt that national politics should not play a part in local government. The elected representatives should be chosen for their ability and desire to achieve the very best for their local area and its constituents. However this is not the case and we are where we are. Having said that it should be remembered that your local councillors of whatever persuasion are not directly responsible for what is happening in Westminster. Local politics should be kept separately from national politics. Furthermore as this Brexit Saga rolls on it is apparent that it is not just the Conservatives who are to blame, but MP’s of all parties with their self-seeking and intransigent behaviour and none of them apparently caring about what this is doing to our country. To give the Conservatives a good “kicking” in the local elections to make them aware of the votes’ strong feelings is utterly pointless as the MP’s would have to be blind and deaf not to know this already.

If you are not happy with what your local councillor has achieved in the last four years then it is completely understandable if you do not vote for him/her. However if you are happy with what your local councillor has achieved in the last four years then you really would be cutting off your nose to spite your face if you punish him/her for a situation which is not of his/her making. Moreover, you the constituent could well be the loser. You will have lost a good councillor and replaced him/her with someone who is an unknown quantity.

It is true that the replacement may turn out to be as good, but there is a risk. The old saying is very true “If it’s not broke, don’t mend it”.

Re: Think carefully before you vote on 2 May
- gareth rees (15th Apr 2019 @ 16:31:09)

i personally cannot wait to give the tories a clobbering

9 years of cruel policies

shambolic government

i shall be marching down to the polling station in the same way as i did in 1997

Re: Think carefully before you vote on 2 May
- Richard (15th Apr 2019 @ 17:12:41)

Have to disagree with Penny.

Your post comes across to me as saying vote for the Conservatives as it's better than voting for Comrade Corbyn.

Hiding behind 'if it ain't broke, don't fix it'?

Come on Penny, even you'd have to admit it's broken. More than broken. Totally of no functioning use whatsoever would be a better way to put it.

The system we have now shouldn't be 'fixed'. It needs complete destruction and a new model built. Because what we've got is ineffective, illogical and completely screwed.

Re: Think carefully before you vote on 2 May
- Jacob (15th Apr 2019 @ 18:17:40)

Sorry Penny

I definitely wont be putting my cross next to any Conservative, in the local elections

Re: Think carefully before you vote on 2 May
- oldie (15th Apr 2019 @ 18:39:55)

Penny, I would guess 99% of the public have absolutely no idea what their local councillor has done for them in the last year, or what their name is or even what party political ideology drives them to do whatever they do.

So to say : "To give the Conservatives a good “kicking” in the local elections to make them aware of the votes’ strong feelings is utterly pointless as the MP’s would have to be blind and deaf not to know this already." is in my view wrong.

It's just about all we can do, in fact that IS democracy for most of us, our total 100% contribution to the machine!

Oh and I believe that IS one of the few things that they fear, a kicking at the polling booths!

Beyond that most of them do exactly as their 'whips' order on pain of a lashing, who do exactly as the political bosses order, who do as the richest lobbyists demand or donations will be withdrawn, the foolishness of letting our politicians be funded by private donation. Where's my knighthood, I payed me dosh!

Let's all go and kick, it's about all we get to do in our ever less satisfactory 2 party ping pong democracy.

Re: Think carefully before you vote on 2 May
- Claire (15th Apr 2019 @ 19:42:42)

you could put up a donkey wearing a blue rosette and it would get the majority here.

Re: Think carefully before you vote on 2 May
- zoe (15th Apr 2019 @ 19:55:03)

why should we bother even voting.
It's clear the government do not care what the people think.

what would happen if everyone in the country decided not to vote.
A vote of no confidence.
Because from where I'm sitting it's pointless voting as the government will just do as they please and not listen to the people anyway.


Re: Think carefully before you vote on 2 May
- Kate (15th Apr 2019 @ 20:05:06)

Penny's comments going down like a fart in a spacesuit yet again :) encouraged by a few posts your now electing yourself as Liphook's own Bertrand Russell ?

Everyone is entitled to their view, including yourself but like most "selfservatives" you cant keep it low key and will burst out with a load of spit and tosh if your team might lose out.

By the way, and on another note, Europe was not broken, sure it might have needed some change's but as you say. "If it’s not broke, don’t mend it”

All parties local and central, leave or remain, left and right need a bloody good hiding in every election going forward. They need to learn that people have the power, if their not taught a horrible lesson then the only thing we will teach them is that they can get away with murder and the people will be too stupid to let them off the hook.

Re: Think carefully before you vote on 2 May
- oldie (15th Apr 2019 @ 21:22:06)

I should add I got me (well known popular bank) AGM voters card through recently. One of the motions from memory went much like this (I've torn my card up so from memory); 'to authorise the company to make political donations up to £25,000 as they choose in the best interest of the company for addressing it's issues and concerns regarding the companies operations in accordance with the Companies Act 2006'.

So I think it's a fair bet they aren't much if at all interested in what the government are doing for you and me (well maybe me as a shareholder) but not you and the political parties are more interested in what they think too.

When do our councillors come to Liphook to address us and ask for our valued votes?

Re: Think carefully before you vote on 2 May
- Richard (15th Apr 2019 @ 21:58:16)

Twenty years ago in Hungarian elections they had on every ballot paper for every election the option 'Dissatisfied with all candidates'.

And if that was the most chosen option they re-ran the election with the parties putting up different candidates - not the ones rejected the first time - and they actually had to have policies people wanted to vote for.

Twenty years ago.

Why can't we have that?

Re: Think carefully before you vote on 2 May
- Aidy (16th Apr 2019 @ 06:28:25)

Richard - we do have that in reality. If you write "None" across all the selection boxes then your vote gets counted, unlike spoiling your paper. Sadly, not nearly enough people in the UK will be brave enough to do that. We need some sort of overhaul in UK politics that I don't believe any of the mainstream parties can, or will, provide. Will a newer or smaller party provide this? Sadly, I doubt that too.

I want politicians to be accountable for their words somehow. May said time and time again that we'd leave the EU at the end of March 2019 and look where we are now. Corbyn said he'd pay back student tuition fees for students, got their vote and 3 months later said "no, we didn't really mean that." They ALL lie for their own benefit with utter impunity and the current system is utterly pointless as a result unless we find a way of holding them to account. Rinsing and repeating the same old thing every 4 or 5 years doesn't work anymore.

Re: Think carefully before you vote on 2 May
- Richard (16th Apr 2019 @ 10:23:02)

Absolutely agree Aidy.

More people should write NONE. It does send a message.

But the current two party system is failing.

And I feel bad saying that because there are people out there that want to make a change.

But they are either lone voices who can't make much impact outside of their immediate circle of acquaintances, or if they have a bigger presence of members they certainly haven't got the financial backers of the Conservatives or Labour.

Perhaps in the digital age - and it may take a few more years yet - online activism will make the changes and - to quote the song - shake the windows and rattle the walls

The times do need a-changing

Re: Think carefully before you vote on 2 May
- Robin (16th Apr 2019 @ 12:19:29)

You must realise that this election is for local councillors. All three have done a lot for our local community, so deserve to be voted in again. They are not MPs!

So do vote to re elect them. Not any of the others.

Re: Think carefully before you vote on 2 May
- Aid (16th Apr 2019 @ 13:10:52)

Robin. They're either political elections or they're not. I don't think you can de-politicise them.

Re: Think carefully before you vote on 2 May
- disillusioned (16th Apr 2019 @ 13:12:26)

I have always exercised my right to vote due to the efforts of a brave few to secure that for us.

However, I have now decided that I will never vote again. Zoe, I'm with you.

The sacrifices made were still worth it. They gave us a voice and I believe that my voice will be just as loud by making a conscious decision to abstain.

Re: Think carefully before you vote on 2 May
- Jane (16th Apr 2019 @ 13:20:46)

I agree with Robin and Penny....these elections are only for district council. I say only but actually the district councillors are vitally important for our community.
The 3 current incumbents - Mouland, Glass and Standish - contribute a huge amount locally and if we're not careful we could end up with the jokers in the pack whose hearts are not in the community at all (one of them not even living here) and who will contribute literally zero to our villages.
I'm absolutely with everyone who wants to send a clear message to the government, but let's not shoot ourselves in the foot at a local level.

Re: Think carefully before you vote on 2 May
- L (16th Apr 2019 @ 13:46:14)

Robin. Can you please let me know what exactly the councillors have done? I am sure they work very hard... But in my ignorance I have no idea what they have worked hard at.

Re: Think carefully before you vote on 2 May
- R (16th Apr 2019 @ 17:52:33)

To all those who say they will no longer vote in any elections I would only say that if you don't vote you have [no] real right to complain about who has been elected, and what they do when elected.

Over the centuries 1000s of people have fought hard to get everyone the vote in this country and to not use it is, in my opinion, criminal. In some countries it is actually against the law not to vote and you get fined.
I respect others opinions but would urge everyone to vote, even if it's to say "none of the above" as mentioned in previous posts. Not voting is just a cop out.

Re: Think carefully before you vote on 2 May
- John (16th Apr 2019 @ 23:21:09)

Do not forget that they are dispensing money allocated by central government. They are recompensed quite well at district council level. It is part time work, yet those councillors elected can earn upwards of 20k plus pension rights for the pleasure of representing us. Make no mistake, they are very political at EHDC, they have a political party meeting before the main meeting, to ensure they all toe the Conservate Party line. There are only 2 councillors presently in EHdC who are non conservative out of about 25.
How hard can it be to vote for what they want?

Re: Think carefully before you vote on 2 May
- Me (17th Apr 2019 @ 10:53:58)

Just wondering what percentage on this site voted to stay in the E.U. The way that they are screaming for blood I would think 99% . No different to those over the water. Thank god we are leaving.

Re: Think carefully before you vote on 2 May
- Jack (17th Apr 2019 @ 15:46:49)

Perhaps 'Me' it goes to show the strength of feeling on the subject. After all, East Hampshire voted to Remain and this is a local forum.

What on earth do you mean by "no different to those across the water"?

Re: Think carefully before you vote on 2 May
- Penny Williamson (17th Apr 2019 @ 16:06:33)

Richard, you obviously have either completely missed the point of my post or did not understand it. I said absolutely nothing resembling your quote: “Your post comes across to me as saying vote for the Conservatives as it's better than voting for Comrade Corbyn.” I was trying to emphasise that there is a world of difference between national and local politics and that our current councillors of whatever persuasion are NOT responsible for what the MP’s (all of them whichever party) are doing. I was emphasising that if you are happy with what your current district councillor has been doing for the community then they deserve their constituents’ vote. If, however, you feel that they have not been doing a good job then that is the time to vote for another candidate, not because of what is happening in Westminster.

Oldie I think your post is arrogant and would like to know on what you are basing your sweeping and probably inaccurate statement - quote: “I would guess 99% of the public have absolutely no idea what their local councillor has done for them in the last year, or what their name is or even what party political ideology drives them to do whatever they do.” If it was true, then who fault is that and it begs the question as to whether this mythical 99% should vote anyway as in your opinion they wouldn’t know what or who they were voting for.

L, suggest your read the election addresses or better still take the time to speak to your local district councillor. Their contact details are on the web and they are very approachable.

Aid, you say that they're either political elections or they're not. I don't think you can de-politicise. Yes you can – that is just the point. There is a world of difference between national politics and local politics.

I agree totally with R’s post when he says that if you don’t vote you have no real right to complain about who has been elected.

John, if you are going to quote figures please make sure they portray an accurate picture. It is my understanding that the Leader of the Council does earn in the region of £20,000. This post entails a huge amount of work and is not a part time job -it also carries enormous responsibility and takes up a great deal of time. I think that all councillors receive £4,500 pa and Chairman of Committees earn an amount in the region of £3,000 on top of that. If you were to work out what a dedicated councillor earns per hour on these figures it would probably be lower than the minimum wage. You say that EHDC are political, yes they are but on a local level not national. They have no input as to what is happening in Westminster.

Lastly I think Me’s post has hit the nail on the head.

Re: Think carefully before you vote on 2 May
- Aidy (17th Apr 2019 @ 16:47:03)

Penny, sorry but I totally disagree. We need to send a message from the bottom up and the top down. It is ALL politics whether you like it or not. We're asked to vote for candidates who represent political parties as specified on the forms. That's anything but apolitical. It's different levels of politics, I agree, but it's still politics.

I will be voting "None".

Re: Think carefully before you vote on 2 May
- Jack (17th Apr 2019 @ 16:58:13)

I'm not convinced that local elections and national politics must not be conflated. Yes, local councillors concern themselves with local matters, as do MP's, albeit one hopes they concern themselves with weightier matters too. The point is, these councillors are not standing as independents. Our current councillors put through their electioneering leaflet through my door recently and it was very much branded as Conservative. They are standing on a Conservative ticket and intend to be voted-in on the back of the conservative-leanings of the people of Liphook. On that basis, they are standing for the principles of and trust in the Conservative party and, of course, that trust and confidence is now lost for many of us.

If the councillors wish to now stand as independents, on the back of the work they do, I will be happy to consider voting for them based on their record of service.

Interesting Penny that you think that 'Me's comments are spot-on. They come across as mildly xenophobic, unless he/she was referring to the Isle of Wight. It's a bizarre post and using intemperate language like remainers 'screaming for blood' is part of the the problem we have at the moment. I don't see much evidence above of people baying for blood, merely expressing their opinions. Or is that anti-democratic these days?

I happen to agree that people should vote, or shut-up. Who on earth do you vote for now though?

Re: Think carefully before you vote on 2 May
- Penny Williamson (17th Apr 2019 @ 17:28:26)

Aidy you are perfectly entitled to your views and to disagree with mine, but could you tell me what good it is going to do to put NONE on your voting paper.

Re: Think carefully before you vote on 2 May
- L (17th Apr 2019 @ 17:49:55)

Sorry, but reading election addresses or speaking to"my" local councillor doesn't answer the question I have posed on this forum about what the councillors have already done or how hard they work. No one on this thread who is telling me that I really need to vote for those currently in the role can explain this to me....and I find that very interesting.

Re: Think carefully before you vote on 2 May
- Aidy (17th Apr 2019 @ 18:30:55)

Penny. I think it's clear from earlier in the thread. However, to clarify, voting "none" still counts as a vote. It shows (my) dissatisfaction with all the candidates and the process as a whole. This differs from spoiling a ballot paper which does not get counted. They have to count and report the "none" votes.

Re: Think carefully before you vote on 2 May
- oldie (17th Apr 2019 @ 22:34:07)

Hi Penny, appreciate you taking time to reply to people this debate, but aren't you perhaps putting the cart somewhat before the horse by saying if people don't know what their councillor is doing for them, maybe they shouldn't be voting?

You further appear to go on to agree with R saying if you don't vote you have no real right to complain about the politicians.

Game, set and match that!

In fact R seemed to go further suggesting he feels it's criminal not to vote (I would think forcing people to vote or face a penalty is a bit harsh) although I respect R's opinion and I'm sure 'criminal' was used as an adjective there. This used to be my view I should add, till I lost confidence in the politicians!

Penny, I also (as you would expect) disagree that my comments were arrogant, I also believe you are wrong to suggest I made a 'sweeping and probably inaccurate statement", since I made it very clear that figure was my guess (I would guess 99% of the public have absolutely no idea what their local councillor has done for them in the last year...). A guess like that cannot really be sweeping or inaccurate (ie misleading) if presented simply as a persons guess, a guess can be simply right or wrong. I also set my guess at 99% as this is a figure most people would understand to be a metaphor rather than a sweeping survey of real people!

Although 99% of people are reading these comments may think that my metaphorical guess of 99% wasn't too far out! (and that's just a guess)

I would also add I believe there is currently no 'NONE' box on UK ballot papers and the govt recently turned down a petition to add a None box (ooh wonder what they're scared of?), which probably explains why c. 33% of people don't vote (real figure that) and more people spoil their paper than realise they could (if done appropriately and correctly) add their own written NONE box, but as anyone who knows about magical tricks, suggestion and false choices, or just plain inertia, knows the absence of a NONE box ensures there would be never be a statistically relevant or newsworthy number of NONE votes!

All said and done though, I never said people shouldn't vote, I just disagreed with your suggestion that there was no point punishing our local (Tory) councillors for our disappointment with the Tories. It's a sound course of action if that's what people wish to do and it's no less than they'd expect of us.

Regards.





Re: Think carefully before you vote on 2 May
- oldie (18th Apr 2019 @ 00:32:52)

Hi Penny, one last little thing before I go to bed and finally shut up, just like to add (in addition to my congratulations to Spurs on a staggering win tonihght) (or was that last night now) that if our local councillors in this area are as good as you say they are (and I must admit to knowing very little about them or what they do as I think most people generally) then I agree it would be shooting ourselves in the foot to vote them off. Maybe.

But if the Tories do well acrioss the country in these elections won't they think we're just very pleased with them?

So that's really all i'm saying that I disagree that it would serve no purpose to abstain or vote for other parties, I think it would send shock waves through Downing Street.

And perhaps better a wake up call for the Tories now than at the General Election.

Yes it would be unfair on all the good Tory councillors up and down the country, but when was politics fair? Or about the people? It's the parties themselves who made [politics about the parties. The party must do well, that's British politics. Not the country must do well, but the party must do well.

And we've all become the lesser for it.

Goodnight. The people will decide. Anyway I understand this is a safe area so I'm talking more nationally I guess, that's where the Tories will probably feel it.

Re: Think carefully before you vote on 2 May
- Richard (18th Apr 2019 @ 00:34:24)

Genuine quote from government guidelines on voting:

'Counting votes in a UK election. All votes are counted, recorded and announced for each constituency. That includes all ballot papers where the voter has not voted for a candidate.'

-----end quote-----

By writing NONE across the ballot paper and drawing a single line down through the boxes this is not a spoiled ballot but an expression of dissatisfaction with the current system.

And they have to be counted and reported

Re: Think carefully before you vote on 2 May
- K.T. (18th Apr 2019 @ 06:40:45)

Slightly in fear of being shot down in flames here but I think Penny is right. I would not be voting Tory at a general election because I am equally disillusioned and feed up with the disaster that is Brexit.

However, when it comes to district council then that's a whole different ball game to me. You only have to look at the list of nominees to see that there are people there you definitely don't want to represent you mainly because they wouldn't bother anyway.

Jerrard and Trotter - two waste of space trouble makers, one who has been found guilty of bullying by the district council that he is now standing for. Please do not vote for them - Jerrard does nothing for the parish council other than cause trouble and he will do the same at district level without a doubt.

The 3 current district councillors are very actively involved locally and have helped many organisations and lobbied the district council on our behalf on many occasions. They deserve to be re -elected.

Be careful what you wish for would be my advice here!

Re: Think carefully before you vote on 2 May
- John (18th Apr 2019 @ 19:36:20)

Penny is linked to the candidates she is attempting to protect, her post is no different than getting a flyer through the door promoting them..... Swarm of denial incoming

Division be it central government, local, individuals etc is another classic damage limitation tactic. Oh blame that part of the party is not us etc.

Take the whole party down, hook line and sinker, you do that and they know that they will NEVER try to get away with the embarrassment that has occurred.

UK politics needs turned up side down, enough of the same old and stiff upper lip. France’s governing party didn’t even exist a few years ago, now it’s in charge, making changes.

Let’s change from this double tag team of idiots and bin them across the board

Re: Think carefully before you vote on 2 May
- helen (18th Apr 2019 @ 23:06:09)

Penny the leader of the council earns far more than 20k per year. There is a page on the EhDc website stating their recompense. They also get paid an attendance allowance for each meeting. There is more money too the more committees and portfolios councillors have. Some councillors are also District Councillors which is even more money. Some councillors are harder working than others I agree. You cannot measure though the recompense by comparing it to minimum wage, unless they all fill in time sheets.

Re: Think carefully before you vote on 2 May
- john (19th Apr 2019 @ 21:42:50)

I agree that the Tories have had a monopoly in EHDC for years. Is it because voters do not know what the alternatives are? I have heard that Don Jerrard has his manifesto on his Justice and Anti Corruption website. Perhaps it might set people thinking in this area. Even Penny.

Re: Think carefully before you vote on 2 May
- K.T. (20th Apr 2019 @ 07:27:05)

Haha John I had a look at that website. What a pile of trash! Jerrard and Trotter won't be getting my vote based on that load of venomous back biting. I thought a manifesto would tell me what they intend to do and what they will contribute not how much they hate the other candidates.

Re: Think carefully before you vote on 2 May
- Penny Williamson (20th Apr 2019 @ 09:37:42)

John if you knew the truth about Don Jerrard and what he has done in the past you wouldn't joke about it- and if you weren't joking then you must totally unaware of what has happened recently on B&LPC to name but one instance involving Don Jerrard. Justice and Anti-Corruption - it is anything but.

Re: Think carefully before you vote on 2 May
- Penny Williamson (20th Apr 2019 @ 12:01:52)

Helen I don't know what you mean by "Some councillors are also District Councillors which is even more money." We are only talking about district councillors - parish councillors don't receive a salary at all. Incidentally I think that the Leader of EHDC currently earns £22,500 - sorry I was £2,500 out. However that is only the leader and the rest of the District Councillors don't earn anything like that.

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