Image via WikipediaAs the UK begins the run up to the alternative voting referendum, the 'no' campaign has launched a series of posters in support of their point of view which are to be honest, simplistic and insulting at best, and downright offensive at worst.
One poster shows a baby in intensive care with the slogan "She needs a new cardiac facility not an alternative voting system", others have similar slogans drawing a comparison between the cost of the AV voting system and saying the money could be better spent on body armour for soldiers. This is the most ugly and base political campaign , designed only to appeal to people who believe every Daily Mail hate headline. The No campaign treats us all as if we are idiots, pretending that any political expenditure would be automatically swapped to heart wrenching projects like those they have listed is appallingly over simplistic.
"The change to AV will cost up to an additional £250 million. Local councils would have to waste money on costly electronic vote counting machines and expensive voter education campaigns. With ordinary families facing tough times can we really afford to spend a quarter of a billion pounds of taxpayers' money bringing in a new voting system? Schools and hospitals, or the Alternative Vote – that's the choice in this referendum."
This is a quote from the No website, and I can hardly believe that they can write that line and expect
the public to believe it, this is dismally unintelligent political campaigning based on fear and fear alone. There are many other points about the NO campaign that are worrying and insulting, the claim that the UK cannot afford to overhaul its political system is weak, if the UK can't make a change how will much poorer countries like Egypt, Libya and Tunisia fare ? The point that money spent on voter education is wasted is similarly appalling, it is in itself an anti-democratic statement to claim that things have to stay the same because spending money on education is something we cannot afford.
I am not fully in support of AV as the best possible voting system, but the NO campaign's rhetoric is riddled with inaccuracies, shady mistruths and disinformation, it is an immature campaign, insulting to the intelligence of the electorate, founded on the fear of change and shamelessly and untruthfully trying to show that a change in the way we vote would automatically harm the weakest and most vulnerable members of our society.