To Vote or Not to Vote

Jenny Diski is a highly intelligent woman, but her principled abstention from voting (NS May 21) will send exactly the same message as the inaction of someone too confused to find the polling booth.

I understand her contempt for the successful entryism of New Labour, and her exasperation at the choice offered between three different brands of market-driven neo-liberalism. But she can look beyond these. She can check at to see if there's a Green standing.. If not, she can consider voting Socialist Alliance or Socialist Labour. If none of these are standing, she can vote Lib Dem as the least bad of the three main alternatives (at least they've promised to raise taxes to provide better public services). Or she can deliberateely spoil her ballot paper by writing 'Green Left' across it.

If we don't vote for what we want - and sod the odds - we won't get it If the only serious challenge is from the right, the politicians will keep on moving in that direction.

Letter in New Statesman, May 28 2001
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