Late evening, but I've found the Internet where I can check up on my blog and read about what's been happening in the world - and its all rather depressing. Events in Kenya are deeply worrying for anyone who believes that democracy is the best form of government. It follows the equally shocking events in Pakistan last week . In both countries the violence and death toll could easily grow - and grow hugely. The list of countries where attempts to establish stable democratic governments are in trouble is disappointingly long.
This leads inevitably to contemplation about our own democratic system. Seems to me that even in the UK, democracy is not in the best of health. The proportion of the voting population which has any real interest in what candidates, think or have to say is diminishing - particularly amongst young people. Even though I try quite hard to engage with voters, it is difficult to find people who are open to be influenced by policies or opinion. This is one reason why I enjoy blogging, particularly when the blog attracts comments that challenge my posts - preferably from people who do not resort to abuse!!
A disappointing aspect of British politics is the dishonesty involved in it - and I don't mean criminal dishonesty. I sometimes listen to statements being made that are knowingly untrue or are deliberately designed to deceive. I accept that in a party system, it is sometimes necessary to argue the 'party line' even if you don't agree with it - I've done it myself (but I'm not going to say when). And I often hear quotes used which have the sole purpose of misinterpreting what's been said. I've heard politicians saying one thing to one audience and the opposite to another. This isn't honest. Even worse, it leads to a general disinterest in our democracy.
And then there's the focus on frivolity. I've listened to a lengthy and serious debate in the National Assembly , with the only media report of it being the one totally stupid comment that devalued the whole occasion. And then there is the obsession with celebrity. I've just caught the tail end of Newsnight when it was reported that Mike Huckabee may have won the Iowa Primary because he played the guitar with some noted celebrity. What's to be done I ask myself? Perhaps I'd better go learn how to play the guitar.