Protempore – Issue 64


Posted by in May's Magazine

By the time you read this, the General Election will be over and we’ll know who the next incumbent of No 10 Downing Street is. Unfortunately, with this rag being monthly, I’m writing this on the day the vote takes place, so what follows is my prediction as to what might have happened given the respective parties’ recent campaigns. I’m either going to end up looking like Nostradamus with my unerring accuracy or (more likely) with a large amount of egg on my face.

Watching the political parties change their tunes in the run up to the big day is a bit like listening to Brian Kellock playing piano in the Shore Bar on a Sunday afternoon – one minute you think you know where you are and the melody is swimming along nicely with very little diversion and then, all of a sudden, you’re off to somewhere you’ve never been before and you get that surge of adrenalin in the pit of your stomach when you think you’re lost and that you’ll never make you’re way back. The difference with Brian and the politicians is that he knows exactly where he’s going and the road back is paved with familiar and dazzling signposts. The politicians, once they’ve wandered off don’t have the faintest idea where they are and have no intention of turning back to the well-trodden path. Examples? I thought you’d never ask.

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Get married for £3
Remember David Cameron’s ‘broken Britain’ sound bite? That was a particular favourite of the Tories when they were 20-odd points ahead in the polls. But as the polls began to narrow and Labour and the Lib Dems began (surreptitiously of course) to treat the electorate like adults, the Tories realised that to label the whole of Britain as being broken was tantamount to saying that absolutely no one in the country was trying a leg. Far too many hard working citizens realised that, yes, the country was up shit creek but also knew that is was the banks and the City of London that had paddled us there and that if it hadn’t been for taxpayers bailing the banks out, the paddles would have been lost long ago. Right on cue, Cameron reeled in the ‘broken Britain’ crusade and started talking about tougher regulation for the banks and strong communities. Did anyone buy that particular ruse? I’m going to guess not completely. Oh, and he wants to re-introduce fox hunting. Oh, and increase the threshold for inheritance tax from £300,000 to £1 million so that very rich families get the benefit they so desperately need. Oh, and you’ll also get a tax break of £3 a week if you’re married. I could go on and on and on but in the interests of fairness…

Machiavelli
The Labour party began its election campaign by bringing back Tony Blair to rally the troops and show the country that Labour were still the thrusting, progressive, and socially just party that they were back in 1997. His speech, in which he savaged David Cameron, George Osborne and all the other Tory rich kids, went down an absolute storm – unfortunately, only with Labour party activists. The voters saw through this particular scam. Why should they believe one tanned, fit and healthy multi-millionaire and not the others? Suddenly, Labour was all about ‘traditional values’ and simply about getting back to what the Labour party does best – listening to Peter Mandelson. Sorry, Baron Mandelson of Foy in the County of Herefordshire and of Hartlepool in the County of Durham, to give him his full title. Mandy certainly rallied the troops and in a stroke of genius, threw the focus onto the economy, the one area that you would have thought the Labour party wanted to avoid speaking about. But for all his Machiavellian tendencies, Mandelson is a political master. “The Tories can’t sustain the recovery from recession but the Labour party can and will” has been his mantra and would you believe it, the polls then narrowed to the point where a hung parliament is almost certain. Didn’t that have something to do with the Liberal Democrats I hear you cry?

Plato speaks
Yes, it did. On the strength of one very good television performance in the first election debate, Nick Clegg thrust his party to the forefront of British politics. Their policies? That’s easy – listen to what the other two are saying and say exactly the opposite. I’m not kidding – the electorate appear to have had more than enough of the Brown v Cameron show and would like nothing more than the underdog coming through to win.

So who won? I’m guessing the Tories but with a hung parliament to deal with. Genius or egg-splattered buffoon?

In spite of all of the above, remember what my old mate Plato said; “No human thing is of serious importance”.

Protempore


One response to “Protempore – Issue 64”

  1. […] hope Leither 64 frolics into your life like a spring lamb. This month we have Protempore on that election. Rising electronica star Forward Play. John Cusack in decline. Tony Benn’s dad. […]

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