“You Sir, are a Misogynist,” a bird’s-nested underbint told me recently. And it’s true, I shan’t deny that. My misogyny comes not from jealousy or hatred. I love women. I just accept that we men are better than them. How long does the war of the sexes have to rage before a winner is declared?
Men are simply superior. How else to explain us being the uninterrupted dominant force between the sexes for millennia? Human history demonstrates the indefatigable unsustainability of one group’s dominance over another. All empires fall and every dominion ends. All, that is, except for one.
We have been taking the piss out of our sisters, wives and mothers since time immemorial. We all came from the primordial soup as equals, but at some stage in the journey of human evolution Man competed with Woman and Man defeated her. She has been under his yolk ever since.
This continues even in our civilisation today, despite the obvious and inherent powers women possess over men. Sex is a powerful tool, used by women over men and very rarely by men over women. I’m no expert but I’ll wager that a male prostitute should probably expect same-sex clients if he wants to earn a living in the way his female counterpart wouldn’t have to.
But then of course, as soon as female prostitution became profitable men took control over that too.
Of course men need women to produce progeny, even if the reverse, thanks to modern insemination and donation practice, is not strictly true. And this is something that we should be developing further: studding the more desirable sperms among us as the basis for the next generation and eschewing the less desirable donors.
But men still dominate. And that’s probably just as well. Women tell me that they definitely aren’t spending billions of their husbands hard-earned on cosmetics simply for the beholding of men, so it isn’t unreasonable to assume this waste would still go on should we men all emigrate to Planet Pipe and Beard and leave them to their Diet Coke adverts and sexism hypocrisies.
The hubris is of course unwarranted. The coin-flipping of amniotic fluid and Y chromosomes determined for me my place in the superior half of the species. And that there are many millions of women better than me at absolutely everything I do is not under question.
But my collective remains better than theirs. The scandal is not that the superiority exists, nor that it sustains, nor that it was worse for women who died before I was born and I am asked to reparate for that because of my gender.
The real scandal is how we confuse representative democracy for governance and capability and how this confusion is manifest in our House of Commons, and delivering an absurb iniquity as a result.
If the Commons is not a House of representatives it is nothing. That women constitute just 22% of it is the scandal. That’s less than half of what it should be, and is a high watermark: in the entire history of our Parliament there have only ever been 400 women MPs. We have more men that than in Parliament today.
It is possible to both a misogynist and a democrat, because democracy, by definition, is the power of the half-girlified masses. Even when the masses demand senselessness.
The Commons is meant to represent the country, not be the exclusive pool from which we draw our government. The Lords is meant to be the seat of sage advice to the rabble from the house under it. This should be the place for your experts, your wonkery, and massive Oxbridge over-representation, not the bearers of the ‘new politics’ in the Commons.
And of course if the Lords’ is the seat of all this expertise and about 90% men then that sounds about right to me.
The solution isn’t in the typical let’s-solve-sexism-with-a-different-kind-of-sexism which even the Conservatives succumb to. The only solution is in changing the absurd nature of how we elect the Commons.
In selecting candidates for election, each constituency party – usually male dominated – select not for the good of the country but who they think can win for their team. They judge potential candidates according to the template of successful politicians in the past: who are of course men.
Those people need to select without the risk that we, the feckless public, will reject their average female candidates in the way we don’t their average male candidates.
So we need to remove the power to select the individual candidate from the voter and leave the choice of the people in the hands of the parties. We give the parties the votes, they choose the people to sit in the legislature on their behalf.
By and large, we vote for promises, Leaders, manifestos, ideologies. And of course the old favourites of fear and greed. This change would mean we can no longer vote for our MPs because they are the “local” candidate, or seemingly a good egg. But are these good reasons for voting for parliamentarians anyway?
It takes away personal mandates that MPs currently swell their chests with. This means less opportunity for MPs to rebel from the whip. But this is no bad thing. If you voted for Labour then you might not want your Labour MP voting against things that the party promised because of one MPs hackneyed interpretation of what his constituents want. Something which usually only materialises as important when the majority is thin.
Let us vote for our parties’ of choice and let them have a list of candidates that are directly proportional to the demographic of the country. If 352 Tory MPs are elected, 176 are men and 176 are women. If 200 Labour MPs are elected, 100 each. Yes its quota’s, but we are dealing in lists for 600 candidates, not one. And it’s not a massive shift from when the party sends their chosen daughters to seats they cannot lose, except you remove those instances where a poor MP is imposed on an undeserving constituency.
Critics will say that this removes “the constituency link,” which is pompous, needy nonsense anyway. I want a legislature, not a human magnet for a community’s collective whinge that can do nothing about most of what s/he is asked.
Critics say the public would not be able to expunge MPs who have transgressed. But we wouldn’t need to. An MP guilty of expenses abuse would taint the whole list with his avarice, and his Leader if he failed to remove him. The party would take its own disciplinary measures. It sounds undemocratic, but the reality is they do this now anyway.
In the world of safe seats like Bexley and Sidcup, it was not the public at large making candidate decisions but instead a small cabal of people interested in power but not policy. So if we’re going to let candidate selection be in the hands of these people, let’s at least require of them that their choices fill the first requirement of the job: which dangerous and troublesome as it is, is representing the people. Not just the men.