A week to go and I am bored of stale election

JPCT 230414 S14171030x Blaise Tapp -photo by Steve Cobb SUS-140423-130729001
JPCT 230414 S14171030x Blaise Tapp -photo by Steve Cobb SUS-140423-130729001

Have you had enough of 21st Century democracy yet? Do you want to put your foot through the television each time an over earnest party leader strides into shot to feed us their recycled policy of the day?

The longest election campaign in living memory is beginning to take its toll on this particular voter, as previously predicted. As much as I enjoy the excitement that usually accompanies any election, but especially a race to Downing Street, I am now suffering a very acute case of Post Manifesto Fatigue.

A once rare disease, PMF is in danger of becoming an epidemic among once sensible people who used to believe that they had a real say in the way the country was run. But after the best part of five of six weeks of the official campaign (although our nation’s policy makers and their political rivals have been working towards May 7 for the past five years) many I speak to are sick to the back teeth of this circus.

The problem with such a long campaign is that sensible people begin to smell a rat within a matter of weeks and the ‘promises’ made by the out-of-touch politicians sound even more hollow than they usually do.

Can it be just eight months since we were told that politics in these islands would change forever following the electrifying Scottish referendum which threatened to act as a lightning rod for the rest of the UK electorate?

The excitement and the energy created by that historic campaign seems to have evaporated quicker than it takes a Tory stylist to quiff David Cameron’s hair.

We were told that the televised debates, which created fevered interest when they debuted in 2010, would empower millions but I don’t know about you, but I would have rather watched the entire box set of the Star Wars prequels twice. So far the televised drear-athons managed to leave me feeling more disconnected from politics than I ever have before.

Although I intend to visit the ballot box next Thursday, this is the first time in two decades that I feel indifferent about the democratic process.

I might be swayed if I felt those who want to lead this country were prepared to properly engage with the electorate rather than spout platitudes to a hand picked audience. Last week Cameron and his supposed secret weapon, the London Mayor Boris Johnson, visited a nursery school where they took part in a painting session with three-year-olds.

Of course the paint was Conservative Blue and I imagine party observers took their own pots just to be on the safe side.

The rest of the major parties also play their part in the most sanitised, stage managed campaign in memory.

We are on the final leg of this marathon and I sincerely hope that I am proved wrong and that we have a record turnout at the polls. If that happens it will have little to do with pulling power of the characterless individuals who want our votes and more to do with the moral fibre of the Great British electorate.