There's no getting away from it: I'm definitely on the electoral roll now. The local district council sent me a letter and a form to fill-in last year. I ignored it for a couple of months, hoping that it would go away. Sadly, they sent me another missive, stating that it was a legal requirement to register on the electoral roll. It was simply less bother to fill in the form than it was to take the matter to the European Court of Human Rights, so I filled it in. And now, through the letter box, comes an envelope, with my name and address hand-written upon it, and leaflets inside from two local worthies, Vicki Black and Leslie Phillips, seeking my vote as Independent candidates.
Reading these leaflets, I get no real sense that either candidate has any policies as such. Vicki says that "were there a Common Sense Party, I should be more than willing to join." Leslie, however, does say that "My main interest is Social Housing and I am committed to providing accomodation, training and support for homeless young people." Well, as a Wikipedia entry puts it, "Governments since the early 1990s have...encouraged 'mixed tenure' in regeneration areas and on 'new-build' housing estates, offering a range of ownership and rental options, with a view to engineering social harmony through including 'social housing' and 'affordable housing' options. Recent research by Dr. Rebecca Tunstall has argued that the evidence base for tenure mixing remains thin." The article by Dr Tunstall points out that "It is notable that there is little explicit evidence of the views of housing consumers, whether housebuyers, potential buyers or tenants, on mixed tenure." So I'm not really sure I want to vote for someone who supports a Social Housing policy. And by 'accomodation, training and support for homeless young people,' does that mean that money is taken away from hard-working people, via taxation, and given in the form of hand-outs to alcoholic layabouts? I think it does.
Neither candidate mentions the anti-social effects of the lengthened opening hours of the pubs and clubs in town. I can't sleep on Friday and Saturday nights for the endless train of drunk people yelling their way down my street. It used to finish by 1:15am; now it goes on to 3am, and sometimes 4am. I guess the council generates extra revenue from the pubs and clubs, so this is one policy which isn't about to change.