So, today, people are voting for stuff. Britain’s electorate has the unenviable choice of a man who the Tories say used to love the IRA, and a woman who the Institute of Fiscal Studies says would bring an “unaknowledged risk to the quality of public services”.
If you’re in a hurry to get dahn the polling station and cross the hell out of that box, and don’t have time to read this fun-stuffed blog, here’s a quick digest of the entire election in 2 minutes 31 seconds (and did I mention? It’s musical…)
A glance at the manifestos
- The Conservatives plan to “reconvene the Board of Trade”, which last met in 1970 – but still, it’s Corbyn who wants to drag the country back to the 1970s.
- A pledge by one of the parties “to create a new Ministry of Labour” (guess which party pledged that).
- The Tories reassure the nation that they will “retain the traditional way method of voting by pencil and paper“ with the franchise extending only to married men over 35.
- The Lib Dems want to introduce “MP job-sharing arrangements”: because last time we had a Lib Dem Prime Minister-sharing arrangement it was such a success.
- Labour promises to “protect the nomadic way of life”, because Jeremy Corbyn’s lifestyle in Islington will just not be complete until he has a yurt.
- If elected in some weird parallel universe, Liberal Democrats will “provide local authorities with powers to improve transport” – whereas at the moment local authorities are positively banned from improving transport, and if they try they get slapped on the bottom.
- Theresa May says she will “continue to invest in our security services” – she apparently doesn’t realise that every party would continue this, it’s not as if we’re just going to sell them off to Lehman Brothers or something.
- Labour also promised to “set up a national review of local pubs“ (apparently the AA Guide is inadequate) and “enshrine the European Convention on the Rights of the Child in law”, which may be challenging as it doesn’t exist.
- Tim Farron pledges “devolution on demand“, which will annoy parents who tell their children to do stuff only to have devolution demanded of them.
- Under the heading “A country that comes together”, the Tories have listed their first priority to be “controlling immigration”, ie not bringing the country together.
Parties agree to suspend campaigning for slightly less time than the other parties are suspending campaigning for
Following the terrorist attack on Manchester/ London, leaders of all parties have agreed to pause election campaigning until just before the other parties start campaigning again.
One of them said, “In this time of national tragedy, it is absolutely right and proper that we are not seen to be the only party still campaigning when our competitors have stopped.”
One of their opponents told journalists: “This is not a moment for politics, which is why I am giving a press interview in the name of my party instead of addressing the public in the name of my party.”
The Blitz spirit
Following the Saturday attacks on London, Facebook activated its ‘mark yourself safe’ tool, which presented users of the mobile app with two options: “I’m safe”, or, slightly more sinisterly, “This does not apply to me.”
There was also a new feature being trialled: “Offer help” and “Find help”. This feature, unsurprisingly, allows the needy to find offers of help, and the self-righteous to offer help. Particularly objectionable, self-serving and smug offers of virtue-signalling help included:
|Help being offered
|Blood||Strangely, the national blood donation system is not as precisely similar to Freecycle as a stupid person might suppose. If you want to donate blood, it’s not a private arrangement between two people who meet on Facebook; you have to register like a normal person. (And also, hospitals need blood all the time and if you’re only offering because of a sudden rush of patriotic feeling after a terrorist attack you might want to rethink that.)|
|Blood “for one person”||Not how it works actually.|
|Blood “in the Southwark area”||“Meet you on Blackfriars Bridge at 10, yeah, and you can transfuse it over? Cheers mate.”|
|“Dryed [sic] dog food”||Uniquely helpful following a mass stabbing.|
|“I can put a hamper in the post for you”||In the aftermath of a major emergency, the prospect of queuing at the sorting office to retrieve a stale pork pie must bring some comfort.|
|Accommodation||I wasn’t aware that this incident actually hindered anybody’s access to accommodation?|
|Accommodation “in King’s Lynn”||I very wasn’t aware that this incident hindered anybody’s access to accommodation in King’s Lynn.|
|Accommodation “in Bolzano”, South Tyrol, Italy||Absolute piss-take.|
|Accommodation “for one baby only”||This isn’t an adoption agency (and are you seriously expecting a parent caught up in these terrible events to say, “Oh, sure, I’ll happily leave my baby overnight with a complete stranger while I try to find somewhere to stay in South Tyrol…”)|
|Accommodation “for a British citizen”||Ain’t it wonderful how times of crisis bring the human race together.|
|Prayer||I’m as strong a proponent of the power of prayer as the next proponent of the power of prayer, but if you believe in it, just do it, don’t post an advert on Facebook offering your services, that’s just weird.|
|“Reiki support”||If only the ambulance crews had thought of this.|
|“Free counselling (via WhatsApp)”||A therapeutic technique endorsed by the British Council of Psychotherapists|
|“Full support”||“Hi there, I’m calling about your advert. I’d like to take you up on your offer. Can I have your full support please?”|
|“Help in finding the lowlifes who did this.”||So Sherlock isn’t the world’s only consulting detective after all?|
|“Any useful information I get, I will tell the police about it.”||This was posted by someone who lives in Bangalore. Just saying. (Also: again, don’t offer, just do it.)|
|“Anyone want to grab a cheeky Nando’s?”||Yeah, I could do with a halloumi burger right now.|
|“Anything.”||“Well, I’ve been looking for funding to do a Master’s degree…”|
Coroner insists that Labour Party’s ashes must not be scattered near Downing Street
A judge has directed that, when the tragic, tattered remains of the Labour Party are cremated tomorrow morning, their ashes must not be scattered near Downing Street.
Mr Justice Emmanuel Festo, coroner for Inner Westminster, told a courtroom packed with journalists reporting the death of the much-loathed entity, “I think it would be offensive for Labour’s ashes to be interred so close to the site of their infamous deeds. I want assurance that this will not happen.”
Hello and welcome to: Sacking Senior Public Officials with…
This week, I’ll be taking a leaf out of Donald Trump’s book and Sacking Senior Public Officials with the leaders of all the main political parties, and also the Lib Dems.
I’ll be asking each of them which senior public official they would, if elected, like to fire.
Jeremy Corbyn, which senior public official would you sack? “Owen Smith.”
Tim Farron? “I’d have about nine referenda to let the public have the final say.”
Theresa May, which senior public official would you sack? “What I recognise is that this country needs strong and stable leadership.” (Alternative joke: “Sorry, I don’t have time to answer, I’m too busy thinking about the Brexit negotiations.”)
Leanne Woods? “Peter Nuttall from UKIP.”
Nicola Sturgeon? “55.3% of the Scottish electorate.”
Paul Nuttall, who would you like to sack? “Nigel Farage. Then I’d re-hire him, sack him and re-hire him again. A bit like he did to himself.”
Corbyn criticised for “victim-blaming” speech
Leader of the Opposition Jeremy Corbyn has been widely condemned for a “crass piece of victim blaming”, namely his speech suggesting that the assassination of Abraham Lincoln took place because Lincoln was President.
Security minister Ben Wallace (pictured right), who literally nobody has ever heard of, told Radio 4’s Today Programme: “It is absolutely appalling to suggest that there is any link between a person being President of the United States and that person being targeted by assassins.
“No amount of excuses or twisted reasoning can possibly lead to any suggestion that certain political activities increase a person’s vulnerability to acts of violence.”
In other news, historians have confirmed that:
- Charlie Hebdo was selected as a target totally at random and its record of printing controversial Islam-related cartoons had nothing to do with it.
- There was no link between the Treaty of Versailles and the events leading up to World War Two.
- People are not more likely to fall victim to identity theft if their online banking password is ‘password’ and anyone who says they are is fake news.
- There is no link between a bear’s need to defecate and their presence in woodland.
- The Pope may or may not be Catholic but that is nothing to do with it.