VOTE REMAIN – why I won’t be voting Labour today

I grew up in a political family. My parents were Tory activists. My mother had worked for a Conservative MP and my Dad was a Conservative councillor, but I learned a lot from them politically, because they were not ‘drones’ or Heathites or Thatcherites or any sort of ‘ite’ at all. They didn’t blindly toe a party line and were not afraid to say so. It was extremely admirable in retrospect. My Mum had grown up in a pit village in Staffordshire and was enraged with her government over the treatment of the miners in the 1980s – and despite campaigning for the party in 1983 she hinted to me later that she had voted Liberal instead. She once wrote an angry letter to The Telegraph about expenses and discovered that a memo had promptly been sent to her constituency office asking if she was a local communist. A letter was sent back informing that she was in fact the branch Chair.

In her later life she worked with refugees and having heard their stories and known them as human beings she was equally passionate about their circumstances and their fate and angry again with the way the immigration and asylum debate was going. Consequently she spent most of the nineties falling out with fellow members and Shire Tory friends over their unhinged xenophobic opinions. She wasn’t right about everything – far from it – but she was very right indeed about putting principle before party.

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Vote Remain

For my own part, I began as a teenage Tory, became a Liberal, flirted with the hard left, came to my senses and since my early twenties have (mostly) voted Labour.

As a Labour member I went through the trauma of witnessing Kinnock’s defeat in 1992, the loss of John Smith and the rise of Tony Blair. Like many I was rather sceptical of Teflon Tony but warmed to him in his first term only to come crashing back to Planet Reality after the invasion of Iraq. I departed after that and voted Green in 2005 in protest, but I returned to Labour in 2010, 2015 and for Corbyn last year in the 2017 election as well as locally and in all of the EU elections in between. Yes – it said in the manifesto that they would implement Brexit – but I hoped that Labour might come to its senses and anyway it’s ‘my’ party – so I voted for Jezza.

Never again.

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And stop electing them too

Since Corbyn came to power the party has increasingly turned its back on people like me. I view myself as a progressive and a centrist and the Labour party doesn’t do those things at front bench level any more. Corbyn may have his acolytes and Momentum but in order to win elections in the UK you have to appeal to those beyond your immediate constituency and if he has lost me and thousands like me, then he will never become PM and there will not be a Labour government and we are stuck with the Tories and their disastrous out of control administration.

That Labour (incredibly) continues to trail behind the unbelievably useless and unlikable Theresa May and her barmy Brexit army in the polls says it all. The main reason for that is blindingly obvious and it has nothing to do with the MSM or ‘Centrist Dadaists’ or whoever they are blaming now. The truth is this: Labour under Jeremy Corbyn is blindly following the agenda of the most ghastly Tory government in history in pursuing the most suicidally stupid and unnecessary political endeavour since – well since ever. By enabling Brexit the Labour party hierachy is ignoring the will of most of its members and supporters and doing the 48% of largely progressive and outward looking Britons, who voted Remain, a massive disservice. Yes there is a slight nuance of approach – but then Pepsi is essentially Coca Cola isn’t it – they both taste much the same – while fucking with your teeth.

There are those who claim that Jeremy Corbyn is actually a Remainer and that he is simply going along with the democratic choice of 52% of the people of the UK; but then there are also people who believe that the Earth is flat.

Brexit – the stupidest thing since – well ever

So tomorrow I shall be voting on the issue of Brexit – and as such I shall not be voting Labour.

“But wait! Hold on!” I hear you cry “Brexit isn’t a local issue!” And that, my imaginary reader who disagrees with me, is sadly where you are mistaken. Brexit is a local issue precisely because Brexit affects everything. Brexit is like taxation or those Kardashian people – you might not want to hear about it or have any interest in them – but it is an unavoidable, big fat arse casting a shadow across the land and unlikely to go anywhere any time soon.

Now given that you have read this far I am guessing that you are a Remoaner. I have talked here about the Labour party but precisely the same logic (and some) applies to you if you are a Conservative Remainer. If you want to stop Brexit you need to give the leadership of the two main parties a mighty wake-up call and you can do that tomorrow by not voting for them while making sure you vote. The one place you can hit the government and the Brexit friendly Labour leadership is in the ballot box. You will never win the Lotto but you do have that power.

Brexit has shaken up the old convictions and the old certainties and sometimes you have to stand firm in belief over tribal loyalty – just as my parents did. I will be deserting Labour with a heavy heart tomorrow – but doing so in the hope of brighter days ahead.



Lions led by pro Mini Golfers. The peculiar case of Lewisham’s Mayoral candidate.

Troubling times at Otto Towers – the old certainties are gone and I am obliged to take a quick gander at the candidates in our up-coming Lewisham Mayoral election that I might exercise my democratic right. Decisions, decisions. Labour’s Damien Egan is a centrist and would normally get my vote but currently – well I’m shopping around. One thing is certain, it’s not Jeremy Corbyn’s fault because as we all know – nothing is.

It’s a longer list than last time and after a quick look at the usual suspects, my eyes drift inevitably to the offerings from the right. UKIP aren’t fielding a candidate this year but thrillingly the newly formed Democrats and Veterans party are. If you’ve missed them I feel it my duty to bring you up to date.

Essentially, the DAVP seeks to bring a much needed Fairly Secret Army vibe to UK politics. It is led by John Rees-Evans who you will remember first came to our attention when, as a UKIP candidate, he tried to take a gun into a branch of IKEA in Bulgaria. John’s logic was clear; if any Islamic terrorists suddenly hi-jacked the soft furnishings department while he was shopping for flat packed furniture he would be able to take them out – Die Hard style. Sadly on that occasion this cut-price John McClane was stopped at the entrance by a security guard – who told him not to be a prat and promptly confiscated his pistol. Undeterred, Brexit John – who despite his opposition to migrants has spent most of his life living overseas – upped the ante and started claiming that a gay donkey had tried to rape his horse.

Quite a logo for a party whose leader once claimed a gay donkey raped his horse

Since leaving UKIP – Mr Rees-Evans has teamed up with fellow veterans to form a party. The DAVP is campaigning under the gloriously meaningless slogan: “Don’t just BUY British – buy patriot” – and I swear to God I’m not making this up. Campaign photos on social media show a core team whose style could best be described as ‘gammon chic.’ A parade of flabby late middle aged Mitchell brothers – whose views and policies would be terrifying if the overall aspect wasn’t so unwittingly camp.

Will Donelly – DAVP’s Lewisham Mayoral candidate

The group’s core values are summarised on their website as follows: Britain’s veterans have sworn an oath to bear true allegiance to our sovereign. An oath doesn’t expire. It is a solemn promise to be kept until death. So basically politics done by men who think that Who Dares Wins is the greatest film ever made – or stupidism writ in military form.

I was naturally eager to see who they had put up in Lewisham. Andy McNab perhaps…. or one of the 3,000 men who claim to have been on the Iranian balcony during the 1980 hostage siege….… oh no it’s Will Donnelly late of the Colchester 8th Cub pack platoon. Will is a former leading light in Young Independence – the Kipper youth wing – a holding pen for weirdos too weird for whatever the Young Conservatives are calling themselves nowadays and thus one of UKIP’s only useful contributions to society. His twitter feed reveals him to be an anti immigration Just William impersonator with a fascination for all the usual right wing nut-jobs and conspiracy theorists from ‘Prison Planet’ to – well ‘Prison Planet.’

Career options? He’s got them. He’s a professional mini golfer. Indeed, Will once ranked 2nd in the cut and thrust world of Junior UK mini golf (crazy golf to you and me – sane golf to these people) but his devotion to politics has meant the practice has slid and he’s now down to number 6. And yes, again, I swear I’m not making this up. As for his military record, well to put it mildly, the closest this representative of the ‘Veterans’ party has ever come to an actual vet was when his hamster was put down.

What to think Britain? What to think?

They say in politics that we get what we deserve – and in the Windsor Daviesy DAVP and this National Lampoon of a candidate the UK and even Remain voting Lewisham has precisely that. It’s funny – yes – but should I laugh at any mortal thing – it is perhaps that I may not weep.

Lions led by pro mini-golfers