I try to keep up with politics, but I don’t really understand it. Mostly because I don’t pay enough attention, but also because I’m fairly libertarian-leaning.
One of the reasons I don’t pay enough attention, though, is because many of the people involved are utterly odious. Take the Labour Party leadership kerfuffle: a chap called Jeremy Corbyn is in the running, and is apparently quite popular. Now, I’ve no idea what his policies are or what he stands for, really.
I do know, though, that his opposition – Yvette Cooper, Andy Burnham, and Liz Kendall – seem to hate his guts.
And that’s all I know about the whole thing. Which pisses me off royally.
Because most politicians seem to be back-biting, sniping, shitbags when it comes to elections. There are exceptions, but not many.
They stand for nothing. They’re insignificant, insubstantial, nothings. The reason I can say this confidently is because the only thing I’ve picked up from the news over the past week or so is attacks on Corbyn. Attacks on his personality, on his ideas, on his plans.
As I said, I’ve no idea what his personality, his ideas, or his plans are…
Nor do I know what his opponents’ ideas or plans are. I know their personalities, though: shallow, dishonest, arseholes.
I’m sick and tired of politics being like this. It’s not debate. It’s not sharing ideas. It’s slagging off your opponent. Trying to make him look small, mean, and incompetent. But what it actually does is make them look small, mean, and incompetent.
Politics is nowt more than marketing and business, dressed up. If you want to get elected, you need to convince the electorate you’re the best person for the job. But if all you do is slag each other off, you turn your electorate into price-buyers.
That’s why Corbyn is so popular, I suspect. He stands out like a stripper in a nunnery because he refuses to sink to their mud-slinging level. He’s quietly putting forward his ideas, his plans, and the force of his personality whilethey stand on the sidelines hurling insults and saying nothing of substance.
Instead of picking Corbyn apart, why don’t the rest of them propose their own ideas? Defend them, like intelligent people? Put forward their well-considered arguments and overcome people’s objections honestly and openly?
I suspect they’re not for two reasons: this is the way it’s been done for a long time now, the snide remarks and outright attacks. And they’re afraid. Afraid their ideas and proposals won’t stand up to scrutiny. Which makes them dishonest arseholes. Because if you don’t have the courage of your convictions, WTF are you doing in politics in the first place?
That goes for business, too. If you can’t put forward good reasons as to why someone should buy from you, if you won’t address people’s objections and show them how you can overcome them, you’re screwed. If you don’t believe your product or service will genuinely help someone, you shouldn’t be in business.
Vicky Fraser is a copywriter, author, and entrepreneur. She really did run away with the circus… but when she’s not swinging from a trapeze, she’s showing other copywriters and small business owners how to work with better clients, make more money, and stop missing bathtimes, first words, and dinners with angry partners. In fact, she wrote the book on it. Get your copy here.
PS Elections really are marketing. They’re persuading someone to vote for them. You’re persuading someone to buy from you. It’s the same thing. If you’re thinking of running for an election or you simply want to sell more, find out what people want and give it to them.
To do that, you should go and buy my book if you haven’t already. You can get it here.
Otherwise, what are you doing here?