Monday, April 30, 2012

my first council election

Today's soundtrack:
Party election broadcasts

This will come as a shock to no one, but I'm a bit of a political junkie.  Devoted readers will remember my elegy to Canadian elections, in which I lamented losing my right to vote when I've lived abroad for five years.  While I'm still bothered that I won't get a chance to vote PM Harper out of office, I discovered that I can vote in elections here in the UK.  This has required a crash course in all things British, Scottish, and Fifeish?  Fifian?  Fifer?  I should probably check on that.

As a Commonwealth citizen with right to remain in the UK, I can vote in local, Scottish Parliamentary, UK Parliamentary, and EU elections!  That's one more than Miguel, who as an EU citizen, cannot vote in the UK Parliamentary elections.  Finally I've got something else out of the Commonwealth aside from all the 1994 Games memorabilia.

After a quick perusal of the four main parties' websites (all of which were severely lacking in platforms and candidate information), I decided to take a look at their party broadcasts on the BBC.

First up, the Scottish Liberal Democrat party broadcast: 

The worst production values of the lot.  Compared to the more polished Scottish Labour and SNP, the Scottish Liberal Democrat video looks more like a high school student council campaign.  Interestingly, both the Scottish Conservatives and the Scottish Liberal Democrats claim responsibility for Aberdeenshire's prosperity.  It's like watching Clegg and Cameron but with Doric accents.

Next up, the Scottish Conservative party broadcast: 

Another great example of deer-in-the-headlights interviewing of "random" people on the street.  However, credit where credit's due:  both the Scottish Liberal Democrats and Scottish Conservatives lay out their successes, goals, and platform.

The Scottish Nationalist Party broadcast...

... is bewildering.  I'm not sure, but I think the SNP wants me to get a mortgage and to live on the whitest street in Scotland.

Lastly, the Scottish Labour party broadcast: 

I'll be honest - it doesn't matter what party policies are presented in this video.  My lasting impression is "holy crap!  It's David Tennant!", which I don't think is what Scottish Labour wants voters to take to the polls.  Or maybe they do.  Maybe this is all a secret Time Lord plan, but that's suspicious in itself because that Rassilon was nothing but trouble.

Miguel and I have been pouring over the election leaflets pushed under our door; however, this examination has only resulted in the discovery of various typos and a debate over the various demerits of using Arial.  At this moment, it appears that typography is the deciding factor.  If you use Helvetica or Arial, you've been warned.


And I've just realized I can change the font for this blog!  Brilliant.  Alright typography nerds, time to vote:  Georgia or Trebuchet?  Leave your choice in the comments.


  1. Would it delight you to hear that we also have a Green candidate up north (and a Crazy Christian one)?

  2. Oh well that's spiffy! We have a UKIP down here, but nothing more entertaining. I miss Canada's Rhinoceros Party. Those were good days with their bold cry of "fauna, not flora!". Of course, I now support the Lemon Party ("for a bitter Canada") in their attempts to abolish Toronto.

  3. Nerd alert: Ack! Trebuchet is so clunky and it has icky terminals! Verdana is way slicker if you want something similar in the sans-serif family. Georgia is pretty classy. I'd go with Georgia.

    Incidentally, it's a deal breaker if I get an election leaflet that is written in Comic Sans. It's like the Nickleback of fonts.