After 6 years of failure at everything they’ve tried and in the final year of their disastrous campaign you’d have thought the anti hs2 mob may have grown both older – and wiser. It wasn’t to be.
Instead we see the same failed tactics trotted out time and time again. The latest is yet another attempt at a petition. Like before, it’s a futile attempt to link flood spending with Hs2 and the tired and trite idea that (despite us being the 5th richest country on the planet) we can only afford one thing at a time so everything has to be either/or.
Here’s a link to the petition, which wants to divert hs2 funding to flood defences. I’ve blogged about the intellectual fallacy (and environmental disaster) that spending billions on turning our river defences into sterile flood drains would be here. Instead let’s have a look what the petition really tells us about the anti Hs2 mobs level of support
The beauty of the Government petitions website is that it allows you to see which constituencies the people signing it live in. This gives you both a geographical spread and the ability to identify clusters. In other words, it allows you to get an idea of the level of support for the anti Hs2 campaign in their supposed heartlands – and the news is not good! I’m not going to do a full analysis now as there’s only 632 signatures and the petition runs until June, but feel free to do your own. Take a look at the constituencies with the most votes, then compare them to a map of the ones Hs2 passes through…
Compare this petition to the huge success of recent petitions on keeping Jeremy Clarkson on Top Gear and the massive petition that wanted to get Donald Trump banned from the UK. Each gathered huge numbers of signatures in a matter of days.
This is yet another lesson in how social media and the internet is such a double-edged sword for campaigners. It’s a lesson the anti Hs2 campaign resolutely refused to learn.