Do we get the leaders we deserve?


When the results of the last general election in 2010 were announced, I was disappointed that no party got overall majority. Things might have been more clear-cut. But then I thought that to have two parties in power might not be a bad thing. At least they could moderate each other’s excesses, couldn’t they?

When we elect leader, we tend to choose people in our image. People who think like us,who have similar values to us. So our MPs, in this case, are a reflection of what we are like collectively. I suppose you could say we get the leaders we deserve. Hmm …

Now, in 2012, we are asked to chose a mayor for London. Who is best suited to serve your interests and those of your fellow Londoners? None of them, probably. We might say that those who have been mayor did a bad job and those who aspire to the role have limited experience to be able to undertake such a task.

Londoners will use different strategies to choose the best candidate to be mayor. Some will blindly support the candidate that represents the political party of their choice, without thinking too hard about the consequences. Others will seriously consider the record and proposals of each candidate and weigh them up before voting. And I am sure there are those who will just take a stab in the dark and hope for the best. Ultimately, it may be that the candidate chosen on the day might be the one who has presented themselves best during the televised hustings. It only takes one fatal slip to expose a candidate’s faults and put them out of the running.

Let’s face it, there will be no unanimous acceptance of the winner. Whoever is chosen will have an uphill struggle to win the hearts and minds of all Londoners. Will we get the leader we deserve? As one friend suggested, maybe we should pray for a good outcome of the election.

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