Thursday 7 March 2024

Laser Focused

Jewish Space Lasers sounds like a band championed by John Peel. But eventually they all turn into one or more of the spoof interviewers of the 1990s: Christopher Morris, Alan Partridge, Mrs Merton, Dennis Pennis. Morris was lampooning someone who already existed. Emily Maitlis lasted longer than most before succumbing to the inevitable.

Maitlis missed a trick in not asking Marjorie Taylor Greene to endorse Keir Starmer, as the vastly more consequential Steve Bannon did a few hours ago on LBC, saying that he had, "always been very impressed by Sir Keir." Centrism and right-wing populism are con tricks, designed to sell the same economic and foreign policies to different audiences by pretending to wage a culture war. We are the enemy, and proud of it.

Of course Greene was extremely rude and unprofessional towards Maitlis. If Maitlis had wanted erudition and repartee, then other interlocutors would have been available. As well as Starmer, Greene should be invited to endorse her sister from another mister, Kim McGuinness. I for one greatly look forward to seeing windows displaying posters that bore the following slogan over exhortations to vote for McGuinness and her party.

Although the case for Jamie Driscoll is the case for Jamie Driscoll, this election is an existential matter for those of us who, being less than 100 per cent Northern European, might be mistaken for Gypsies by McGuinness or her supporters. It would be physically unsafe for us to live in the North East under her. The Mayor is supposed to attract investment, whereas a Mayor such as McGuinness would open an area more populous than at least 12 European sovereign states to a campaign of Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions.

Similarly, the result at Rochdale, or something very like it, would be ideal for the new seat of Blaydon and Consett. If that seat had existed in 2019, then Labour would have won it by only 3,250 votes. Either the candidate of the Workers Party, which has contested Chopwell and Rowlands Gill in the past, or one of the four redoubtable Independents in the new constituency's former Derwentside wards, ought to come first, with the other in second place, and with the Conservative third.

Liz Twist not only failed to vote for a ceasefire in Gaza, but she returned to the frontbench by taking the place of someone who had resigned in order to do so. She is the Blaydon Racist. Bloody Betty, you can't hide, we charge you with genocide. So if Twist were Consett's MP, then I would be unable to visit the town closest to my home. Since I am not a pureblood Aryan, then Twist or one of her goons might take me for a Palestinian and kill me. Yet some of my ilk live there.

By the way, there was a Labour candidate at Rochdale. He was a card-carrying member of the Labour Party, he had the words "The Labour Party candidate" next to his name on the ballot paper, that party nationally had imposed him as its candidate, the local party campaigned for him with some vigour, he campaigned for himself, and had he been elected, then an excuse would have been found to have welcomed him back into the fold within two weeks, if not half that. Instead, though, his 2,402 votes were 7.7 per cent, placing him fourth.

When I tell you that there is going to be a hung Parliament, then you can take that to the bank. I spent the 2005 Parliament saying that it was psephologically impossible for the Heir to Blair's Conservative Party to win an overall majority. I predicted a hung Parliament on the day that the 2017 General Election was called, and I stuck to that, entirely alone, all the way up to the publication of the exit poll eight long weeks later. And on the day that Rishi Sunak became Prime Minister, I predicted that a General Election between him and Starmer would result in a hung Parliament.

To strengthen families and communities by securing economic equality and international peace through the democratic political control of the means to those ends, including national and parliamentary sovereignty, we need to hold the balance of power. Owing nothing to either main party, we must be open to the better offer. There does, however, need to be a better offer. Not a lesser evil, which in any case the Labour Party is not. We have made a start.