I’ve got a fair handle on what I’ve thought about ‘things’ throughout my life, but not, so much, on why. I remember being a Tory voter in 1997, the first election I was eligible to vote in. I was one of few, as Tony Blair swept New Labour into power. Nobody I knew as a friend at the time, nor anyone I’ve met and called a friend since, voted the same way. I wasn’t politically ‘engaged’ in those days – I just didn’t like Tony Blair. I think that the people I argued with at the time would, at least, now concede that point.
When the next general election came in 2001 I still wasn’t particularly interested. I still didn’t like Tony Blair, but I didn’t like any of the Tories either. I liked Paddy Ashdown and I voted Lib Dem. In 2005 we were in the post-Iraq protest mode, and I had started paying attention. Not a lot, however. I voted ‘Respect’.
By the last election, I’d definitely gotten engaged enough to know that I didn’t like any of them. I was a card-carrying member of the Green Party (don’t ask) but voted Lib Dem in the hope that a big enough popular vote for them would hasten electoral reform because, you see, the only thing that all my votes have had in common is that none of them mattered in the slightest.
And so now I sit here, holding on to my mid-30’s for dear life, realising that I don’t know what I believe or believe in.. except for an absolute certainty that it’s not the same as those who rule me.
So I shall try, for my own indulgence, to articulate what I think about things. Or, maybe, note down where other people have thought for me and written it in ways I cannot. Perhaps, then, in 15 years time I will have some idea of how I got to wherever I will be.