Wednesday, May 20, 2009

First hustings meeting

We've been invited to a hustings tomorrow, Thursday 21 May, at 6.30 pm in the Stretch Bar, of the Students Union of Goldsmiths University, in Dixon Road, New Cross (near the mainline station). Hopefully, our anomymous friend from Catford will be able to get there easier than to Clapham. Anyone else is welcome too, I imagine. It's organised by the Public and Commercial Services Union, Battersea and Wandsworth Trades Council, and the South West London Anti-Fascist Group.

The message sent to get people to attend says:
Join us to put election candidates on the spot.
Vote for fair pay, quality public services and decent jobs and free education for young people.
Make your vote count and keep the fascist BNP out of Europe.
London EU candidates will be in the student's union Stretch bar at 6:30pm next Thursday 21st May to answer YOUR questions.
Your opportunity to ask the candidates questions about what they would do for you in Europe.
Find out which party to vote for to keep the fascist BNP out of Europe.

Our candidate is going to have to explain that the main issue in this election is not, as this suggests, how to keep the BNP out, but capitalism and its failure to meet human needs properly.

If people really think that the priority is to keep the BNP out then they should vote tactically for one of the parties likely to get an MEP, ie Tory, Labour, Liberal, Green or UKIP. Voting for anyone else (and there are 13 other lists or individual candidates) will increase the BNP's chances. This will include us insofar as we get votes from people who might otherwise have voted, say, Labour or Green. I hope I don't have to explain to the meeting why this is so under the D'Hondt (a famous Belgian) Rule used to apportion the seats. But of course the priority isn't to keep the BNP out, it's to get rid of capitalism.

Anyway, tactical voting is stupid. As Eugene Debs once said, it's better to vote for something you want and not get it rather than voting for something you don't want and get it.

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