Thoughts on politics and life from a liberal perspective

Friday, 24 August 2012

Why should I listen to Katie Ghose?

I've never met Katie Ghose. I'm sure she's a very nice person. But why am I still receiving e-mails from her under the auspices of the Electoral Reform Society as if last year's Yes2AV campaign never happened, and wasn't a disaster?

I've kept quiet(ish) about this since last May apart from a brief rant shortly afterwards and I guess I have been hoping that even if there was not going to be a public accounting for what the campaign did wrong, at least behind the scenes there might have been some? But it's been 15 months now and Ms Ghose who was the head of the "Yes" campaign is still in place as head of the ERS.

I don't know a great deal about the internal machinations of that organisation and the associated groups that formed the "Yes" camp but they managed to turn a lead in the public polls for "Yes" in the months running up to the plebiscite into a humiliating 32% to 68% drubbing. Why is nobody being held accountable for this?

Yes, I know the "No" campaign was sneaky and evile and all the rest of it but there was lots "Yes" did wrong. LOTS. And if the person who was appointed head of the campaign is simply allowed to carry on as if nothing happened in her position as head of the main organisation campaigning for electoral reform in this country then it speaks volumes about the cliquey nature of the cohort of people in charge. In fact it is starting to make me wonder how rigorous the process of deciding who was best to head up the "Yes" campaign was in the first place. It is starting to smell quite a bit of Buggin's Turn.

I'm not saying everyone associated with the leadership of "Yes" should be summarily dismissed. But please, can we have some sort of accountability for what went wrong? At the very least an acknowledgement and an apology to all of those like me who beavered away at street and grassroots level trying to persuade others to vote Yes. We were badly let down.

Otherwise I will find it very hard to take any campaigning material I receive from this organisation in the future.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

There's a lot wrong with the ERS - then and now - but it's worth noting two things. Firstly Ghose was taken on as chief exec mid-way through the campaign. Secondly most of the board of the ERS lost their places in the election last year.