Responding to the first-ever TV election debate between leaders of the three largest parties, Simon Barrow from the belief and values thinktank Ekklesia, said:
“The first impressions from the leaders’ debate have been positive. But on reflection many people will realise that this was mostly about style rather than substance; that reducing our political options to the three biggest, richest parties is a degrading diminution of choice; and that the ‘casino politics’ of squabbling over who we bet will win a TV beauty contest mirrors rather than challenges the ‘casino economics’ which has got the world into a terrible mess.
"Ekklesia is pointing out that beyond the limited options being presented in the 2010 General Election campaign is an underlying ‘ethics election’. This is one where ordinary people are voting with their feet, their voices, their lobbying and their growing online power for real change in the political and economic system.
"There is a growing demand for social justice, for peace rather than war, for action to combat global warming – and for a host of other policy possibilities which the big parties are trying to tidy away.
"Politics needs to be remade so that the deep needs and problems of people and planet are not continually marginalised by those with power and money in the dominant party blocs."
Ekklesia has been actively involved in the Power2010 political reform coalition (http://www.power2010.org.uk/), and in the development and promotion of the 'Hang 'Em - until they change' (http://hang-em.com/) initiative for a hung parliament.