Negative Politics Is Damaging Democracy In The UK

Every single party pushing their negative message of opposite factions people have just ended up being stuck with tags. Take the Tory ‘Nasty Party’. since the 1980s people still hold this against any person who has shown the vaguest interest in conservative ideals due to any cuts that have been made. Then you have the Labour Party branded as spongers with due to their preference for large welfare payments and self funding attitude from Unions. The reality being nothing like for each. However the culture of sound bites and slogans has lead to this. Each side thinking if theirs can be the most popular slogan and widely used that it sticks in the publics mind. Which it does, so now we have the issue that everyone uses them. So all sides are tainted. This has been shown with the UKIP being branded racists due to their penchant for cutting public funding for non jobs highlighting multiculturalism and tougher immigration. It shows that a sound bite can taint to a greater level than the original message was intended by those who introduced it.

The Conservative Party struggles in several ex mining areas, yet if you speak to people they do not agree with Labour policies. It is down to the fact that the unions in the 1980s did so well on pushing a negative message that it has stuck. Most people to this day will still state ‘Maggie Maggie Milk Snatcher’. Ironic really as it is not something Margaret Thatcher she wanted to do and spoke out about it. It had already been started under Labours Harold Wilson for all Secondary School pupils and then finally cut fully under Tony Blair. Yet the branding has always remained. The fierce battle between the Coal Board, Unions and Government over the closure of mines left a bad taste in the mouth of the miners and their families. These families will never vote Conservative for that very reason, not really anything to do with any current Government decisions or policies.

Politicians have become so good at negative PR they struggle to get any positive messages across. The key part of modern UK politics is not to discuss and engage but to just say the opposite of whatever anyone says against your message and then give negative press about these issues. The whole media is full of these politicians stepping forward to have a dig and increase their popularity, look at Nadine Dorries. An MP who rarely says anything that could help, just likes to have a go at the Government as she has been shot down on several occasions. Not that I am saying should happen from MPs, but the reality should be more about the policies than the people. It ends up that everyone looks bad.

The situation in UK Politics is dire and all the time everyone wants to blame someone else so they can look better for their 15 minutes of fame (or 5 years of expenses). The turnouts in elections is appalling compare with other countries. There needs to be a focus on how to actually engage with the general public and stop all the infighting and back stabbing. As the ultimate result from that will be that no one will bother to vote, already we are down to such low turnouts it is only going to get worse. Then what is meant to happen? I am a passionate supporter of democracy and how best to push forward a more open democracy, maybe it is time politicians stepped up and stopped so much negative press and focussed on the good aspects before it gets too late.

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