How are repeat offenders still getting back in?

Being involved in politics for some time, one question is often put to me by puzzled citizens:

“Why are so many still willing to vote for the usual dodgy people?”

There is no easy answer. There is no one explanation. What there is however, is a number of answers that are quite understandable when you think about them.
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  1. When people see what they consider no credible alternative, they still tend to go for the devil they know, than the devil they don’t.
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  2. They vote for a representative that worked for them on a local issue – in spite of that person also might have been part and parcel – including their Dail vote – in further instigating on a voter, other money grabbing, rights undermining, exploitative policy initiative.
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    The party they stick by and prop up, gets all too often forgotten. When it comes to politics at ground level, management play the person – not the party name. The latter being often crap – “…But hey, he fixed the streetlights!
    (Meanwhile his party nationally continues to stab you in the back)
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  3. The likes of Fine Gael, Fianna Fail and Labour have their hard-core supporters and community reach – and deliberately maintain that so that they can use a ‘common-touch’ local feeling to maximum effect.
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  4. Opposition simply does not be able to pull itself together better – and not able to be seen to do this.
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  5. Opposition spends too much time just taking pot-shots at what they consider to just be all foes and nothing else. Opposition needs to not just reach out and try be seen to do it – they must doing it and be genuine. Why? See below.
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  6. Where is the pro-active progressive plans they are willing to also put to the public – and not just stuff aired every six months on average (at best)?
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  7. Opposition is not willing to regular address the concerns of people, groups or communities as much as they really should.  Some parties representatives do make time to occasionally address a matter – but consistency (on  all matters) is just as important as just been seen to be speaking up on one matter alone, at local and at national level.
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    When have you seen a socialist party candidate regular going on about farming (just for example) issues at national levels? Have they been regular doing same at local levels and been regular seen to do so?
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    This is NOT an attempt to have a go at any left-wing party – it’s JUST to make a point.
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    If parties and people wish to be taken as an overall SERIOUS CREDIBLE alternative, they must operate as such – and they must be genuine in doing it – not just trying to look genuine. People talk and these modern days they do a lot of it through social media. When they feel something or someone doesn’t ‘sit right’ with them, they now have more ways to express it – and rather than one reader or listener – with social media you now could have hundreds or thousands.
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  8. When you have a party and person regular approaching issues from all areas and being seen to do it – then an unknown turns up and just occasionally ‘chips in’  – who really is a fence sitting voter going to support? The new blow-in or the shifty person who is still managing to be involved in addressing far more overall issues?
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  9. Given that a proportion of Ireland media is biased, not just the newspapers but TV and radio also, opposition must find alternative ways to (a) reach out to voters at local level and (b) they must do it far more regular than they currently are doing. An occasional leaflet through a letter box every six months (for example) is not going to ‘cut it’.

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Reality Hurts.

Talking straight, the reality is also something like the following? Most people – including the lazy or too political complacent, are not stupid – certainly not as much some do think! They can smell a bullshit artist (or party) when they see and hear one. However, for reason number one above, they still will opt for the ‘safer’ direction (of B.S. artists) than one they consider has even less or no credibility.

Yes. Most mainstream parties all try to undermine each other for political gain. However, people pay taxes. They are conscious of where their money is going more often than some think – even if others don’t but should also! When many of them see a political figure just constant lashing out at any one other person or party, an occasional thought strays towards:

“Well, what’s those that’s giving out, also doing to bring about positive solutions? Do they deserve taxpayer money as an elected representative?”

.Too often than not, the answer is “little or nothing“.
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The Double-Edged Sword.

Politicians and their parties are often caught in the horns of a dilemma. If they speak out about issue and offer solutions, on one hand they are being proactive and seen to be so – but on the other, they too often, through poor supplied material, un-relatable issues  or fantasy content, create an opening for opposition to try political attack.
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If they play their ‘cards close to their chest’ in attempt not to give away too early, their best policy ideas – saving them for bringing up at election time – they are also then seen not to be regular cross-communicating with individuals or groups that have concerns in those areas.

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People in Ireland today – those at least that are political more aware and also willing to do something – are looking for fresh credible alternatives. When they find that, be it dressed up in a suit or wearing the clothes of a more average citizen, they are more inclined to gravitate towards it. It’s human nature – and humans also will also connect more to those they can relate to.

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It’s up to fresh alternatives then to (a) be far more credible than a lot are currently and (b) better connect all levels, with voters. In both cases, they need to be better seen to be both and genuine in doing so. No window-dressing, shallow PR stunts  – but producing acts and material of substance – far more regular.

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In Conclusion.

So how are repeat offenders still getting back in? Sadly, by opposition being their own worst enemy. This includes also being too busy infighting amid themselves publicly and across social media. This has got to stop.
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If we want better in Ireland – we have to start off by being better! Sometimes a first step toward progress can be that simple! Be better united.
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Jeff Rudd
Founder. UnitedPeople

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