Election Time

Election Time      5th May 2016

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Time fast approaching when voters must make their choices
All sides in the debate near exhausted by the fray
Arguments finely honed and rehearsed so many times
So that, if prompted, even we might quote their party lines

Politicians seeking comfort from the pollsters
Turn to the pronouncements of psepholigists
[Modern custodians of the Holy Grail]
But interpretation of results they reserve as their own

This great event has shown the power of ‘branding’
With party emblems emblazoned all around
Zealots in each camp show no indecision
As cascading leaflets penetrate the letter boxes

The journalists like ‘war’ correspondents
Have not been afraid to enter in the fray
They have even been the cause of skirmishes
If seen to favour one party o’er the others

So TV political anchors readily bare their fangs
Determined to prove they show no bias, and give no quarter
They attack with vigour, candidates of every hue
Their confrontations grant no favours, make no concessions

But the TV broadcasts of the leaders’ debates have often palled
As participants talk across each other, stifling free speech
Nipping their opponents like ferrets fighting in a sack
Each must display the dominant voice no matter what

Perhaps a pity that the game of politics seems never to concede
Any potential virtue in an opponent’s stance, this might show weakness
But we have been told that politics is ‘the art of the possible’
Meaning a pragmatic approach as to what might reasonably be achieved

But promises of utopia seem to persist despite impossible challenges
And voters are expected to be credulous, no matter how improbable
All that is asked of us is that we trust our future to the party
And in due time we will surely reap the promised reward

But lest all of this seems too cynical, let’s pause for a moment
To consider the politicians’ contribution to democracy
At least we have some choice, and there is real competition
Who among us would be subjected to this gruelling process?

And in Scotland we do have a measure of Proportional Representation
Thus giving each of us two bites at the cherry
One for the constituency candidate, another for the party list
So perhaps by this mystical procedure some balance might yet arise

All that each of us must do now
Is exercise our hard-fought right at the polls
Enjoy the excitement of the night
And somehow accept the result with equanimity!

Ken Fisher

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