I love London, but never tell anyone that I said that. I couldn't live there full-time, but even so.
Mayor of London really isn't that much of a job, most things there being delivered by central government quangos or by the Borough Councils. And, not least in view of that fact, Oona King really isn't that bad a candidate. Why, she is even supporting Ed, not David, Miliband. Given more time, the Blairites would have come up with someone far, far worse. But the Ken Livingstone machine was way, way ahead of them.
I am assuming that no pro-life, pro-family, pro-worker and anti-war candidate is going to emerge to give a voice to economically social democratic, morally and socially conservative British and Commonwealth patriots with their political roots in trade unionism, mutualism, Radical Liberalism, Tory populism, Christian Socialism (London has higher than average levels of churchgoing), and Catholic Social Teaching and Distributism. In the absence of that candidate, who might very well have been a lot less acceptably beige than Oona King, it is going to have to be Ken. Nothing else would be quite the right sort of revenge on Boris Johnson.
Boris was legally of age (for we are not talking about the Sixties, but about the Eighties; a generation ago, but only one generation ago) when he joined an organisation - complete with a name, a uniform, officers and a membership list - specifically for the purpose of becoming drunk and disorderly before committing criminal damage and even assault. If a group of boys on a council estate, the same age as Oxford undergraduates, formed themselves into such an organisation, then they would rightly be sent to prison.
Boris has unsound views on drugs. Boris is an Ottoman aristocrat of very recent extraction who has publicly recited the Shahada in Arabic. Yet Boris was elected only with the endorsement of the BNP, which put up a paper candidate for dignity's sake, but which through its weight squarely behind Boris in practice. However, it no longer has any weight. It is quite likely not to exist by the spring of 2012. Without it, Boris could not have won. And without it, Boris could easily be defeated.
As for Ken's campaign being run out of the offices of the TSSA, the TSSA is hardly ASLEF or the RMT. That it is where it is today says something very bad indeed about certain politicians, and Ken Livingstone is not one of them.