Rive Gauche: Voters are strange when you’re a plonker….

After Gordon Rochdaled himself the other day and watching his lamentable performance in the final leadership debate last night – a truly appalling closing speech – I think the words (modified) to the famous song by The Doors might be in order….

People are strange

Voters are strange when you’re a plonker
Reporters look ugly when you’re alone
Advisers seem wicked when you’re unwanted
Debates are uneven when you’re down

When you’re strange
Bloggers come out of the rain
When you’re strange
No-one remembers you’re sane
When you’re deranged
When you’re deranged
When you’re deranged

13 years ago, on a sunny May morning Tony Blair walked into Downing Street and, with many others, it felt good to be a Labour supporter, it felt good to have change, it felt good to have a young prime minister who promised so much. For the first few years Tony could do no wrong.  He was even called Teflon Tony – nothing stuck.  But the Iraq war came along and it all went pear shaped.  We were fighting a war on terror and then our civil liberties started to be eroded, countless new laws were passed, ID cards were mooted, CCTV cameras exploded into bloom like cherry blossom on every street and the Labour government, which promised so much, started to become repressive, authoritarian, divisive and disorganised.  In Number II, rather as the Minotaur of Knossos did in mythology, the Chancellor lurked, scheming, plotting , burning with ambition, to take over the mantle of prime minister which, rightfully, in his mind, was his and his alone.  Gordon Brown has been a disaster for the country and for voters like me who were prepared to back a vision of a fairer Britain. I need not, of course, rehearse the many disasters with the economy in recent years, for everyone has a view on that.

I have  supported Labour consistently for years.  I am not, however, a fan of Gordon Brown.  I have made that clear for years in my blog.  The other day, Brown revealed what many have known for some time that he is a bully, intolerant, unable to communicate with voters on a personal level and, frankly, should never have been prime minister – he lacks the skills for the top job. What I think is, of course, entirely irrelevant, but it is my blog and it is Rive Gauche Friday…  my view is that Labour had the opportunity to get rid of Brown on several occasions over the years and they bottled it each time. They are now reaping what they sowed.  I won’t support a Brown led Labour Party.  I won’t do it, because this is the most important election I have voted in to date and I have changed my mind.

I won’t vote Tory because I don’t agree with many of their policies.  I won’t vote Lib-Dem, despite liking Clegg, Cable, Kennedy and Ming,  because I don’t agree with their policies on Trident, the armed forces, the amnesty on immigration  or their wish to join the Euro zone.  So, I shall have a look at the Independent candidate and if I don’t like what I see, I shall vote by spoiling my ballot paper.  I shall draw a pirate flag over the ballot paper. I have bought a nice fat black marker pen for the purpose this morning.  It is sitting on my desk as I type. I shall practice drawing it quickly over the next few days.

Back later with some law… now that the lawyers and the courts have got back to work after the Easter break, there is, actually, some rather interesting law to write about.

8 thoughts on “Rive Gauche: Voters are strange when you’re a plonker….

  1. I have not been able to watch live the first two leaders’ debates on TV because I have been out debating elsewhere. The final leaders’ debate was tonight. I watched it and I am now tending towards being deeply worried for my own campaign and chances on Thursday next.

    I tried giving Brown, Cameron and Clegg the ‘eyes-closed’ test. With my eyes closed, it was 100% clear that Gordon Brown is streets ahead of the other two in terms of sound ideas and sheer substance.

    With my eyes open, I was beguiled by the pretty boy public school looks of Cameron and Clegg. The latter two, especially the latter one, are so good-looking that one tends to ignore what they are saying, which is mostly slick doorstep-salesman spiel.

    But why I am deeply worried? Well, Gordon Brown, for all of his sound ideas and sheer substance, is no pretty public school boy. Neither am I. He is ugly. So am I. He puts on peculiar facial expressions. So do I. He has a ‘squiffy’ eye. So do I. He sometimes gets tongue-tied. So do I.

    Gordon Brown is the oldest of the three leaders. I am the oldest of seven candidates.

    Worst of all, for Gordon Brown, he is all Scots. I am one fourth part Scots. Gordon Brown is probably doomed. I may be doomed.

    Is there are a chance that the electors will see through all this public school prettiness? Of course there is, because not all of the people are hoodwinked by the slick doorstep-salesman, his spiel and his dodgy products.

    There is a chance that Gordon Brown will prevail and there is an even better chance that I will prevail.

    Long live the ugly old ‘uns who weren’t the prettiest boys at their public schools!

    Geoffrey Woollard, Independent, South East Cambridgeshire.

  2. we need the ‘none of the above’ box – and we need a figure returned in each seat for those ticking it. it is a valid choice – i too have in the past spoiled a paper (that sounds vaguely filthy…) but it would stick in the throat not to turn up and vote. while i don’t subscribe to the ‘your forebears fought for you to have the vote’ theory (i think having the vote includes having the right to choose not to use it) i believe it would be a powerful message if people could make a ‘none of these’ statement.

    i will vote labour – our local mp is karen buck. she is a genuine constituency mp and has intervened in many local cases for all kinds of constituents with all kinds of problems (some of which i have been involved in personally through my law centre). she appears clean on expenses; she opposed war in iraq and voted against it – show me many others who can say that. i believe she is an honest woman trying to serve all her electors whoever they are.

    i admit i wouldn’t vote for her if she were exactly the same but happened to be a tory; sorry, but i’m an old dog now and i could never conquer my visceral personal hatred for every one of the bastards. and the tory candidate also happens to be dave’s chum joanne cash of 1 brick court – nuff said; i mean who on earth would trust a defamation barrister; that’s only a couple of steps up the evolutionary scale from geeklawyer. though i think he has the better breasts.

    and at a time of the resurgence of the right, i believe every vote for the (hugely imperfect) labour party matters if any of the values i hold dear are to survive the coming storm.

    i make one prediction – if there is a tory administration, the law and the legal profession will look back with rose-tinted glasses at the years of labour. not just the inevitable cuts to publicly-funded work (which surely would be made whichever party got in) but the coming attacks on the rule of law and the interplay of english and european law. there will be a clash of henry ii / becket proportions and i only wish i were higher up the career path to be part of it. perhaps as the fight of thatcher against the people defined my adolescence, so cameron’s (or whoever actually controls him – at least thatcher was nobody’s sock puppet) war against the judges will define my next decade. there is always a silver lining. the young in 5 years time will no longer have the mogadon trance of believing the tories are the answer.

  3. SW – agree with your sentiments on constituency MP. Unfortunately, I haven’t been long enough in my new abode to know much about any of the candidates.

    There are, thankfully, some excellent Labour MPs up and down the country and, if they should have time in opposition, I very much hope they will re-define what Labour actually means and lay off the authoritarian Eye-spy on you mentality on civ libs which has been creeping into labour policy in recent years. CCTV cameras may be fine for trouble spots – but on motorways and roads the impression is very much a revenue earner for councils and government…

    The Bank of England Governor is reported as saying that whoever gets in will become so unpopular with electorate because of need for austerity that when they get chucked out, as they will, they could be out of government for a generation.

    That could be an excellent reason to vote Tory! 🙂

  4. I agree with most of your “Reflections on Labour’s Years”.

    “Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely.”

    Crawford Texas in 2001 was Blair’s turning point. He turned to the Dark Side.

    Rochdale 28th April 2010, will (hopefully) be Brown’s final undoing. Brown was “taken apart” by Mrs Duffy and he had no answers. Now he is risibly claiming that he did not understand something she said. OK – well that adds “thickness” his other qualities. She was articulate and spoke in a very straightforward way. However, it’s not over yet and Labour will fight back and might yet start to fight dirty like cornered cats.

  5. wasn’t her comment that she was ‘worried about all the immigration’ or words to that effect? it may not be bigoted in itself but it’s what a lot of bigoted people say…

    i reckon he should have gone in both barrels; bugger the election that he’s gonna lose anyhoo and say we just have to stop knee-jerking about immigration. is there really a problem? (apart from the stasi approach of the immigration service who are indeed bigots of the nastiest kind.)
    but of course all three of them were whangin on about it at the last debate – cameron presumably because he believes that thinly-veiled racist call for lebensraum and the others because they know you have to appeal to the bigots. bigots bigots bigots.

  6. well yes charon, and the fallback labour plan was of course lose this election blame it on brown and win the next with whichever more appealling-looking leader they feel like. i just don’t think it will be that simple somehow.

    and in the interim, ‘we the people’ have to live under a tory administration that has already shown that they still enjoy a spot of queer-bashing; that still believe marriage is better than non-marriage and are prepared to reward their kind of people who marry over the godless heathens who don’t; that want an on the spot death penalty for burglars. oh yes, back to basics is alive and well in cameron’s party. is it really that different from thatcher’s days?
    and the bigots may well approve.

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