The very worst thing about AV

One of the reasons I include David Jones on my bloglist is for entertainment value. He can be guaranteed to say something that will make him look a fool.

Today he blogged about AV, telling us about an encounter he had while canvassing:

In Mountain View Avenue, Mynydd Isa, I stopped to chat with a gentleman who was creosoting his fence. How, I asked, did he feel about AV?

“Disastrous,” he replied. “Do you realise that if we’d had AV at the last general election, that [expletive deleted] man Gordon Brown would still be running the country? It doesn’t bear thinking about.”

I must confess that the possibility hadn’t occurred to me, but it is probably the most compelling argument against the Alternative Vote system I have yet heard.

The worst thing about AV – David Jones, 20 April 2011

At this point, it might be worth reminding people about this story from the Telegraph in February:

     David Cameron: Gordon Brown would still be prime minister under AV

Poor David. Caught lying through his teeth. He's hardly the sharpest tool in the box, but not even he could be as dumb as he likes to make out he is.

Now if we read the article, what his leader said at the time was that under AV, Labour could have stayed in power. Sure. And my next door neighbours on both sides could each have won the lottery.

It would be very hard to work out what the results of a previous election would have been if AV had been used. You'd need to know if a person's expressed choice was their first preference or whether s/he was voting tactically; you'd need to know what their other preferences were; and also to know who else might be standing as a candidate, because one advantage of AV is that it would enable a wider range of candidates to stand because there would be no danger of them splitting the vote.

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So then, what is the very worst thing about AV, I hear you ask?

Simple, that the mere mention of it encourages those who have a vested interest in maintaining the current voting system to tell even bigger lies than they normally would.

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5 comments:

Anonymous said...

I was between two stools on AV. If it was a vote for STV then I'd certainly vote for it.

However, when I see Labour tribalists like John Reid coming out against it and mad comments like the above and the frankly patronising attiture taken by FPTP, + stable government (what like Labour 1974-79) or 'stable' as in Thatcher, then I'm opting for AV.

In any case we'll only have 30 MPs post 2015 so who cares what goes on in Westminster?

Cibwr said...

I don't like AV but I dislike FPTP even more. The outrageous lies of the No camp have also hardened my resolve to vote yes. There seems to be a letter writing campaign to say how complex AV is and how even Einstein would not be able to understand it! How stupid do the No campaign think the people are?

Welsh Ramblings said...

Of course, if you are a Welsh nationalist your interests are sometimes better served by not having stable governments at Westminster.

Siônnyn said...

Of course, AV is far too complicated for the common man to understand, isn't it?

Nice little illustration of the fact HERE (unable to embed images here)

I have to say that the only argument that I can come up with against AV is Harriet Harman - 5th out of 7 in the first round of deputy leader of the Labour party, and went on to win it!

It isn't the fact that she went from 5th to 1st that alarms me - it is the fact that it is Harriet Harman! Nobody, I suspect, would have given her a preference vote if they thought she could win!

Having said that, I am reassured that you only have to vote for one candidate (and indeed an X will count) for your vote to be valid, so I won't have to decide whether I prefer UKIP to the BNP or the Christians, which is a relief! So a YES from me.

MH said...

Love the picture, Siônnyn. I've given it a post all of its own.

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