In the wake of my recent speech in Detroit, a number of people privately made the point to me that because the UK has a ‘first past the post’ electoral system, a system which disadvantages minor parties, the likelihood of J4MB candidates being elected as MPs in the 2015 general election (or in subsequent elections) is very low.
The history of general elections in the UK certainly bears this point out – very few candidates outside the three main parties have been elected as MPs in my lifetime (I’m 56). The time made available for my speech in Detroit was cut short due to unforeseen circumstances, so I didn’t have the opportunity to explain a key point:
Our success won’t depend on having J4MB candidates elected as MPs.
Our success will depend on raising the public profile of our party and getting the issues we’re campaigning about into the public arena for wider debate. In later general elections, our success will depend on securing enough votes in enough marginal seats of one major party to markedly reduce that party’s prospects of being elected or re-elected. In 2015 we’ll be contesting Conservative marginal seats. At the last general election the margins in the 30 most marginal seats won by the Conservative ranged from 54 to 1,692 votes. Labour was the runner-up in 23 of these seats, while in seven seats it was the Liberal Democrats.
In our campaigning over the next 10 months we’ll be stressing to electors why a vote for J4MB won’t be a wasted vote, and why voting for the three main parties will be a wasted vote – all of them today are relentlessly anti-father, their educational policies disadvantage boys, and they discriminate against men on many fronts. We’ll explain that voting for J4MB will send a clear message to politicians:
The state’s assaults on the human rights of men and boys must end.
Millions of people watch the individual general election results being declared, so millions of people will for the first time learn of the existence of our party when our candidates’ vote counts are declared. After the election we’ll capitalise on the increased public awareness of J4MB to build a stronger, more effective campaigning machine in the years running up to the 2020 general election, and later we’ll be fighting in the 2025 general election.
We anticipate a virtuous circle of increasing public awareness leading to increased funding, which in turn will lead to increased campaigning effectiveness, and even more public awareness. The day is coming when the main parties will have no choice but to engage with J4MB, in a bid to dissuade J4MB from targeting their marginal seats. Now that will be a happy day.
[Note added 21.7.14: We’ve just received an insightful response to this blog piece from Douglas of antimisandry.com, a website we recommend highly. It takes up the remainder of this blog post.
Many years ago, I was involved with the Green Movement, as it then was. Someone came up with the idea of forming a political party to push the agenda, and the Green Party was born.
That the Green Party still exists, and whether one likes their contemporary politics, is not my point. I lived through – and played my small part in – the formation of the Green Party which went from a struggling concept to a political platform within one or two elections. And the big point is that as soon as the big three parties saw votes being taken from them and going to this new Green Party, they ALL suddenly had ‘green’ issues on their agenda. Every one of the major parties started vying for the votes by declaring that they were greener than the others and environmental issues are a fixed part of modern politics.
Yes, the Green Party still exists and still pushes for… well, something… but most of the demands the Green Movement had back in the ‘old days’ have been met and often exceeded by the major political parties who have desperately wanted to appease the environmentalists hidden in most of us.
By making an election issue of men’s and boys’ needs, we can focus the attention of politicians on to male rights and the plight of men and boys. When main-stream politicians know for sure that getting voted in relies on them turning their back on divisive feminist policies and backing genuine equality, they will mandate accordingly and start voting in Parliament to appease the fair-mindedness that is in most of us.
It won’t even matter if the EU and UN keep pushing the feminist bigotry on the country: the politicians in power will reject it because they will know that to do otherwise will mean they will not stay in power. THAT is why every vote for J4MB matters.