The Plastic Hippo

May 7, 2015

Carpe diem


If the Labour Party gain a parliamentary majority tomorrow; or Ed Miliband becomes Prime Minister thanks to a coalition of anti-Tory parties, I fully intend to leave the UK… months ago me and the wife booked a three-night, mid-week break in one of my favourite European cities…three-star en suite including flights.

This might be just my opinion, but I am unlikely to vote for any particular political party because some c-list celebrity tells me to do so. I don`t give an airborne intercourse about the depth of constitutional insight and influence Gary Barlow, Delia Smith or Russell Brand bring to bear in forming my participation in the democratic process. My decision about the future of my country is based on experience and before I head off for the airport, I am willing to crawl naked across a minefield covered in broken glass to reach a polling station in order to get rid of this vindictive, divisive, incompetent and breathtakingly awful government.

This is not an endorsement of the Labour Party or of Ed Miliband as the least worst option but is instead a hope that we can rid ourselves of the weasel’s intent on selling our nation for personal financial gain. Five years ago Cameron said “judge me on my record”. It would take too long to list the broken promises, lies, deception, inadequacy and sheer arrogant venality of the bunch of crooks we did not elect in 2010. However, take a look at the state of the NHS, education, social care, housing, transport, defence, pensions, the legal system, the attitude to poverty and disability and just about every other area of what was once called society and you will see where I`m coming from.

The Tory led coalition point to the economic recovery due to the long-term economic plan. Invented statistics prove that we`ve never had it so good and that Harold MacMillan is alive and well and living in an off-shore tax haven. The long-term economic plan was two years, then three, then five and is now ten. Borrowing has doubled, debt has doubled, growth is down and the current state of the deficit is determined by reading tea leaves or looking into a crystal ball located at the Office for National Statistics in a tent at the end of Brighton pier. After such a broken record, it is astonishing that “opinion polls suggest” no clear majority.

This, in my humble opinion, might not be a bad thing as long as the next government has the support of parliament. It`s democracy innit. A right wing coalition would be kept in check by the sensible and moderate DUP and the totally sane Kippers. A left wing mash up would involve Nationalists and Greens and might just drag Labour away from austerity and back towards people rather than profit. For all the denials, expect deals to be done over the weekend “in the national interest”.

Before a vote has been counted, there have already been defeats and victories. The British printed press is finished. The hysterical and increasingly bizarre attacks on anything other than Tory propaganda are proof that the influence of non dom media magnets is in decline. It is too early to tell, but the internet thingy might just have the edge. Consider the desperate attacks on Miliband and the response of Milifandom and JeSuisEd and wonder if humour and intelligent observation is preferable to scaremongering and venom.

If the parliament is hung, then the First Past the Post system is dead in the water. You might remember that we had a referendum on Proportional Representation as part of the deal that allowed Liberal Democrats ministerial cars and the pretence of power. Clegg has suffered many failures but that was probably the most profound. He is now scurrying around trying to retain the key to the executive toilet and offering himself to anyone who will listen. He claims that there will be a big surprise tomorrow…yeah Nick…the big surprise will be you still being an MP by about 4-30 in the morning. It was claimed at the time that voting against PR would ensure strong, single party government. “Opinion polls suggest” that the contrary is the case. I voted against PR but after the rise of Plaid, the SNP and the Greens, the main parties have clearly failed in leadership. Perhaps it is time for a federal parliament that reflects every citizen rather than the vested interests of the wealthy few. I`m more frightened of multi-national greed machines than I am of Nicola Sturgeon.

But then again, I`m not a celebrity but I am out of here on Monday. I love Europe. Polling stations open in three hours – seize the day.


  1. The simple beauty of ‘first past the post’ is that if no-one comes first, we sometimes end up with a sort of fudge. With PR, the sticky stuff is inevitable and ever present.

    The Great British Public, or at least those that can be bothered to vote, is likely to choose fudge again. That is their right and they will have to live with the consequences.

    If another election is required then so be it. It is infinitely preferable to an enforced amalgam of the current crop of cheats, liars, deadbeats and criminals who purport to represent us.

    PR is not the answer. Better solutions might be found by

    * making voting a compulsory responsibility rather than a right
    * a ban on corporate political sponsorship of any kind
    * a 3 Parliament Rule requiring all MPs to stand down after 15 years maximum

    It will never happen.

    Bon voyage

    The Realist

    Comment by The Realist — May 7, 2015 @ 12:12 pm | Reply

  2. Oops. Nodded off there.


    Comment by BrownhillsBob — May 7, 2015 @ 10:32 pm | Reply

  3. Personally, I thought the Hippo post, while not one of his best, still made interesting reading. There was no reason to nod off during it.

    Your somnolence may be caused by many things. Age, intellectual decay, obsessive/compulsive behaviour and an overdose of Horlicks (sic) can all contribute.

    One recommended cure is caffeine.

    I suggest that you smell the coffee and try to wake up.

    The Realist

    Comment by The Realist — May 8, 2015 @ 12:51 pm | Reply

  4. Comment by BrownhillsBob — May 11, 2015 @ 1:25 am | Reply

  5. Thanks Bob.

    A great track, although I stil prefer Life is What You Make it and Spirit of Eden.

    The Realist

    Comment by The Realist — May 12, 2015 @ 11:16 am | Reply

  6. Nothing beats ‘I believe in you’ IMHO

    Comment by BrownhillsBob — May 13, 2015 @ 12:33 am | Reply

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