My Election Notes 2019: E-Day – 24
by Pseud O'Nym
Two hundred years ago, the prominent German military theorist Carl von Clausewitz proposed his famous definition of war as “the continuation of politics by other means.” And given that at election time the language used to describe the processes by which politicians try to persuade people to vote is – to my mind at least – warlike. They talk about fighting for the vote. The election is a campaign. They face a battle to get the voters out. They need to combat fatigue. Positions are retreated from. Or they’re making ground. I could go on, but you get the point.
Which leads me neatly onto an idea I’ve long held, namely that politicians who want our vote should fight for it. Literally.
They should be made to compete in a televised, live and uninterrupted, as long as it takes, last one standing amidst the dead bodies of their former rivals, fight to the death. No weapons, no time limit, no adverts, no time-outs and of course, no rules. Then we’d see how much people wanted it to be Prime Minister, I mean really wanted it. It’d be ratings gold, I’d watch it and so would you, don’t make out you wouldn’t, because you would. Of course you would. We all secretly want to see Boris and Jeremy go head to head. And if you think harks back to ancient Rome and gladiators fighting to the death as entertainment for the crowds in the coliseums, then your bang on! And if politicians bottled it, then electorate could draw their own conclusions.
And this would also focus the minds on those voting for a new party leader. Which candidate, instead of going to the right school, university, or having the right connections in high places, they’d be looking at who they thought was the most handy.
Not handsy that’s another thing altogether, although if some of the allegations against Boris’s Johnson are to be believed,…
Jeremy Corbyn, well they do say the wiry one’s are quite tasty, but does he have the killer instinct? Jo Swindle, well she is known to be a slippery customer, but this is one televised contest she’d have to take part in, although given her readiness to challenge such things in court, she’d try and wriggle out of it. My money would be on the leader of Plaid Cymru, Adam Price, who looks the business. And, of course, Nicola Sturgeon. she’d be in there, although would she be in at the kill. Writing of kill, I’m not going to mention the leader of the D.U.P., Arlene Foster, not because the D.U.P’s historical links to the paramilitary U.V.F, but because of her opposition to abortion. If she’s opposed to killing the unborn, I doubt if she’d kill someone very much alive. Mind you, she is a politician after all….
I am not ignoring the Green Party co-leaders, because no doubt they are pacifists and wouldn’t want to take part, but would instead want give a talk on the evils of violence, because it doesn’t solve anything.
Had this been enacted years ago, this may have helped David Davies, until recently Minister for Exiting the European Union, but before that, a Tory leadership candidate and long before that, a member of the Territorial S.A.S. Paddy Ashdown, the former leader of the Liberal Democrats because before politics, Ashdown was a soldier who served in the Royal Marines and the S.B.S – the navy’s S.A.S – and as an officer he saw active service in Borneo and Northern Ireland. But for me, it’d be Dan Jarvis, until recently a Labour MP before being elected Mayor of Sheffield. He joined the Parachute Regiment in 1997, becoming a Major in 2003, and saw active service in Northern Island, Kosovo, Iraq, and Afghanistan.
It would certainly strengthen Britain’s standing on the world stage, when at any moment during tough negotiations at a leaders summit, our PM could suddenly stand up, kicking the chair back as they did so, and in their best Ray Winstone voice say, “C’mon then, your giving it all that, but you’re all mouth and trousers. Come and have a go if you think your hard enough. “
Maybe not to Vladimir Putin thought. He’s ex-K.G.B, a black belt in judo and has the eyes of a killer.