Politics & Current Affairs

GE 2015: The Adventures of Baron Rockard and Other Tales

JRSeveral people are alleged to have said that art is never finished; it is merely abandoned. The natural modesty for which I’m renowned prevents me describing my own work in such terms. Nevertheless something of the essence of the phrase made itself felt, many times, during the writing of my latest book, Making Plans for Nigel: a Beginner’s Guide to Farage and UKIP.

On several occasions I deemed the book finished only to then learn of UKIP’s latest howler, scandal or, as the UK’s imperial overlords so eloquently term it, clusterfuck. All of which necessitated a hurried return to the keyboard to update the manuscript, thus ensuring it didn’t date before it had even been published. Sadly, my efforts in this regard, not unreasonably described as Herculean, were akin to King Canute’s legendary struggle with H2O. Almost by the hour new controversies broke, prompting this writer to consider the existence of a malicious deity whose sole pleasure was pushing under-pressure hacks to nervous breakdowns. All of which enables us to transition smoothly to UKIP’s current headline-grabber…

It appears that the party’s Bristol branch vice (groan) chairman John Langley (pictured above), who goes by the name of Baron Rockard (seriously), is also a porn star. As well as, variously, acting as producer, manager and casting agent within the, er, industry.

Space prevents a more detailed and serious examination of the issues thrown up by the news; the exploitation and comodification of women not least among them. However, the widely-published photograph of Baron Rockard looming over the shoulder of a trussed and gagged black woman accomplished what no amount of UKIP manifestos could; that of accurately and honestly revealing the party’s contempt for both BMEs and women. A conclusion that appears not unreasonable, given that the party’s official response to something it, apparently, already knew was that the Baron’s other career presented “no problem.”

In other news, The Jellyfish found himself under fire from The Eton Rifle’s heavier ordnance. Accused of stabbing his brother in the back by Michael Fallon, the Defence Secretary then went on to declare that this would mean The Jellyfish would also stab the nation in the back by junking Trident.

Such accusations confirm several things. Firstly, the personal and spiteful nature of Fallon’s remarks rather neatly underline why the Conservatives are known as the Nasty Party. Secondly, given the historical provenance of the phrase ‘stab in the back’ – something about which it stretches credulity to imagine the highly-educated and patrician Fallon is unaware – we are provided a further glimpse of the covert anti-Semitism that seems to be running in the background where the Tories’ attacks on The Jellyfish are concerned.

Finally, the idea that The Jellyfish has any intention whatsoever of ditching Trident, no matter how many SNP MPs make it to Westminster after May 7th, is the sole province of the deluded and deranged. Continuity Labour represents the same threat to the established order as it has always done; which is to say absolutely none at all.

Any sympathy one might feel for The Jellyfish, however, is tempered somewhat by recalling the craven and opportunist manner in which he scrambled aboard the media bandwagon during the recent attempts to smear Scotland’s First Minister.

Still, to be fair, there have – finally! – been the first faint signs that the testicular fortitude which, thus far, has eluded The Jellyfish might at last be located. Admittedly, one swallow doth not a summer make and all that but there was some small satisfaction to be gained basking in the bourgeois hysteria triggered by his announcement that Labour would abolish nom-dom status for those allergic to taxation.

In conclusion it would be almost negligent to avoid commenting on the latest polls, all of which – to one degree or another – continue to point to Scottish Labour’s near-total destruction at the hands of the SNP. The latest YouGov poll extrapolated current approval ratings and showed that the SNP would take fifty-three of Scotland’s fifty-nine seats, rendering Scottish Labour all but extinct. Obviously, other polls are available etc but it cannot be doubted that the outcome is inevitable. Only the extent of the carnage remains to be seen.

It might, then, be apposite to draw The Jellyfish’s attention to a remark by one of his political ancestors; Nye Bevan’s observation that those who stand in the middle of the road will be run over.  Alas, no matter how apposite it’s now too late for Scottish Labour. ‘Hell bloody mend them’ as my late ma might have said.

Politics & Current Affairs

GE 2015: Power and the Fear of Losing It

tony_blair_1553707cA lust for power does strange things to politicians. History has illustrated the point so depressingly frequently that only the most unglued would consider it a topic meriting further debate. GE 2015, however, is revealing in stark form the bizarre impact that the fear of losing, or not attaining, power has on our political class.

Take Labour, for example – not that the polls are suggesting many are going to – someone, probably several someones, decided it would be a good wheeze to wheel out Tony Blair (henceforth to be referred to by an abbreviation of his near-anagram, Tory Plan B) to give the Jellyfish’s campaign a boost.

Plan B, one of the nation’s leading war criminals, an impressive achievement given the stiff competition historically provided by the Empire on which the sun never set, is an unusual choice of popularity-booster. For starters, the Jellyfish’s desperate and forlorn bid to win the keys to Number. 10 rest mainly on him convincing us that the NHS is Labour’s uncontested home-turf. How novel, then, to draft in the man who did the unthinkable and first set in motion its demise at the hands of the market.

Still, say what you like about Plan B, while his messianic saviour-of-the-world shtick might well owe everything to narcissism and corruption by power, he at least avoids cutting a pitiful figure. Not so the Jellyfish, alas.  How broken must his judgement be, how great his desperation, how cheaply he must value dignity that he’d Tweet about the hugely-despised Plan B thus: “When a serious figure like Tony Blair warns UK national interest is threatened by a Tory 2nd term, people from all parties should take note.” One is almost moved to hug the poor wee fella. Or, as my good friend and comrade, Eddie Truman put it: “The dafty is reduced to punting the thoughts of a man who hates him.” Quite.

Meanwhile, in the land of my infant nurture, or God’s Own Country, as most know Scotland, Jim Murphy’s proximity to reality continues to be at great remove. His performance during the Scottish party leaders’ debate provided several examples but let’s restrict ourselves to just one: “Labour is the party of the common man and the common woman.” Which must be why common men and common women are flocking to the SNP in numbers not seen since the Israelites Exodus from Egypt.

He invited further disapproving frowns by sporting brown shoes with a gray suit, something for which, had I committed such a faux pas,  my much-missed mother would’ve skelped my arse. One doesn’t wish to be shallow, however, and reduce a man’s essence to his clothing and surface appearance. We confine that sort of behaviour to commentary regarding women, of course.

Another pal from North Britain, James Stuart, is clearly enjoying a Wonderful Life as the SNP insurgency shows as much sign of abating as The Eton Rifle not exploiting his sadly deceased son for cheap political gain. James observed, with some satisfaction, “Says a lot about the political environment in Scotland that all the unionist alliance leaders were trying to outflank Nicola Sturgeon from the left. You just know times are getting interesting when even Tory leader Ruth Davidson tries to come across as a bash-the-rich lefty!”

And yet the terror of losing power was revealed in its starkest form, thus far, by The Grubby Chancer. The pusillanimous Clegg, who effortlessly attains a standard for duplicity, opportunism and self-preservation best described as Olympian, is currently leading the pack in terms of gasp-inducing cheek.

The Grubby Chancer insisted that he and his band of Tory-supporting brigands represented the best chance of keeping any future coalition anchored to the centre ground. Indeed, if anchoring to the centre ground could be said to willingly aiding the Tories in quadrupling food banks, killing the sick and disabled and demonising the most vulnerable amongst us, then he’s certainly done that. Oh, and don’t forget tripling tuition fees. Mind you, in today’s Britain that pretty much is the centre ground so, aye; fair point, Cleggy.

Given that the Grubby Chancer is set to lose his Deputy Prime Minister’s job and, possibly, even his own Sheffield Hallam seat, his behaviour is perhaps understandable. Personally, it’s his family I feel sorry for. You can just imagine them begging him “Please don’t tell mam you’re Nick Clegg! She thinks you play the piano in a brothel.”