They're Voting Wrong!
If there's one thing that was more predictable about the aftermath to the Local and London elections than the moaning about the BBC's election coverage, it is the complete bilge that has emanated from large sections of the lefty blogosphere.
Like Neil Harding, for instance:
"Livingstone was the best politician of his generation but in the end it wasn't enough to beat the Tory press lies. This is a sad day for democracy, how this country yearns for a free press and a press that tells the truth as a rule rather than as an exception."
In what way was it a "sad day for democracy", Neil?
Is it because the turnout on May 1 was 45%, higher than either of the two previous Mayoral elections? Uh, guess not. In 2004, when Red Ken was re-elected, the turnout was just 37%. So which was the 'worse day' for democracy? Obviously, it's the one in which the Tory won! Because you're a fucking totalitarian who doesn't actually give a flying fuck about democracy, or for that matter even the most basic of civil liberties. Democracy is when Neil's lot win.
I guess it's possible to write Harding off as a loon. After all, he's put his utter, mind-boggling stupidity on display for all of us to marvel at over and over and over again.
But he's not the only one making this same witless argument. Vivienne Westwood(!) for instance, quoted by Zoe Williams in her deservedly pilloried hatchet-job article published in the Guardian G2 on election day:
"Boris as mayor? Unthinkable. It just exposes democracy as a sham, especially if people don't vote for Ken - he's the best thing in politics. Unthinkable."
Steve Richards, writing in the Independent also on election day, displaying unabashed contempt for the Londoners about to go to the polls:
"The failure of voters to make connections is the only reason why Ken Livingstone might lose today...Today it is the voters, not the political leaders, who face a series of tests. I wonder how many of them will pass."
These are among the worst examples of lefty arrogance I have come across over the past few days - I don't doubt there will be many more as the dust settles over the coming days and weeks. What they demonstrate is a toxic attitude amazingly common among left-wingers.
That is, if the people don't vote the right way, there's something wrong with the voters, not the politicians or their loyal supporters. There's little to no introspection. It's as if they think that if only the media weren't so evil/Brown weren't so incompetent/commentators weren't so negative then everyone would fall in line, trot along to the polling station to vote Labour (for it'd have to be Labour, despite the fact they've shown themselves to be no less corporatist and authoritarian than the Tories), and everyone would be happy ever after. Well, I don't think it requires me or anyone else on this blog to tell you that's bullshit.