Monday, 7 May 2012

Politics and Targeting Voters

There is a bit of an issue in British politics today, and that is an issue of policies targeting certain groups. Naturally parties wish to gain support for policies which will convert into votes and power, but it seems to me that increasingly the 'greater good' or the moral course is being sacrificed in favour of a few vocal voting groups.

It is no accident that those groups most targeted are also the groups with the highest propensity to vote. This means that groups of people already excluded from politics are excluded further.

All parties are guilty of this. The most recent example if that of 'the squeezed middle', who are gaining sympathy from all angles. I appreciate that many people in the middle are finding things difficult and having their finances squeezed in the current economic climate. However, instead of having policies and sympathy being directed towards this group I feel it is better to appreciate that the 'middle' are doing much better than the bottom of the socio-economic heap and continue to be advantaged in many ways.

It is a very sad state of affairs when the Labour Party, supposedly for the working classes, is more concerned with the people in the middle who are comparatively doing fairly well. This perhaps speaks to the dominance of public sector unions.

As a Conservative I am not about maintaining or reinforcing unequal social structures. I believe in equality of opportunity and gains as a result of hard work. That is why while my party is occasionally drawn in to this regrettable discourse of the squeezed middle, I am proud to support the rising personal allowance which takes many people out of tax, the academy and free schools programs which work towards every child having a good start, and enterprise zones to encourage industry and entrepreneurialism.

It really is time for people in the middle to understand their good fortune, and for policy makers to understand that the 'underclass', which was allowed to deepen under the previous government, is a serious challenge to fairness. The Conservative solution is not an oversized welfare state, but good education, a culture of aspiration, and policies (especially in tax) to facilitate this.

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