Well, by now even the surliest hermit skulking in the furthest reaches of the planet must have heard what those crazy Yanks have gone and done! The whole planet seems to have convulsed in unison as the banner headlines scrolling across our televisions announced the US election had been called and Trump was now the leader of the free world! It’s hard to fathom what your average American voters had in mind when they made their decisions, but my guess is they weren’t voting for Trump but voting against an apparently corrupt and inward-looking political system that had failed America’s ‘blue collar’ classes.
Our world was rocked when our own electorate adopted a very similar tactic and expressed their contempt for the UK’s political status quo and managed to achieve the impossible and voted for Brexit. Both situations have huge similarities in that people seem to have suddenly woken up to the fact that the world order is changing and the basic laws of economics are starting to wreak havoc with our lives and pensions and futures. Neither the people of the UK nor the Americans can assume we can continue to drift along in a fog of denial and laissez-faire while cheap imports and cheap imported labour undermines the efforts of working people to keep food on plates and a roof over their heads.
These two recent election shocks must ring bells of alarm in the Capitols of both countries as it should have eventually dawned on them that the power of one-man-one-vote has finally delivered a message that smug politicians cannot ignore “We’ve had enough of your way…let’s try another way”.
One thing is certain, whatever the upshot from these seismic shocks to the political swamp our current bunch of MPs and Senators and Ministers inhabit will not change things overnight and none of the existing established parties can adopt the high moral tone at this time. Maybe the time is ripe for the sensible people (like you and me) to seek out a middle way and look for a system where we don’t have to take sides and fight like ferrets in a sack every four years? A system that offers co-operation and consultation! A system that allows individuals to have a say and get involved without the need to pin a red or blue badge on your lapel and take the begging bowl around industry and rich individuals to secure funds for your party’s fighting fund. Imagine that!
Co-operation seems to be the buzzword that’s swirling around the meeting rooms at Norfolk and Suffolk county council HQs as the battle for a final decision on the controversial plan to convert us all into one clod-hopping unitary authority steps up another notch. Maybe its brilliant idea! Certainly a lot of people have been impressed by the offer of massive Government ‘bribes’ if we take that decision. Perhaps it would be acceptable if the new Mayor was a Norfolk man..but what if he came from Ipswich?