Truth Be Told

Sky Sports News is going to be fun for a while. As much as the latest speculation about Rodallega or Hulk interests me, the Transfer Window real-time countdown which flashes up on screen is the least intentional cruel televisual feature since that 10-year old girl had the temerity to forget the lyrics of her favourite song in front of an audience of millions. The strap-line might as well say “LOOK HOW FAR PAYDAY IS YOU IRRESPONSIBLE SPIRAL-COCKED FREAK”.

Work had certain charms today. Although like most office bound types my main priorities was e-mail sorting, desk diary fathoming, and booking holidays for the rest of the year. I just hope the forthcoming general election is not in June, as that week was rejected. Hear that Gordon, come on, be nice.

On the subject of the next election, for most of the population the phrase “kerryout” probably means nothing at all. It could well be the first of the many election-based techniques used on-line free from most electoral law or media manipulation. Don’t switch off when I explain, please, because “kerryout” is a Tory-backed Twitter campaign, with the aim of defeating ultraloyal Labour Whip Kerry McCarthy in the Bristol East constituency.

It is not a campaign without flaws. Obviously I would rather Tory PPC Adeela Shafi did not win, as LibDem Michael Popham is in second place with a far more realistic chance of winning. In addition the “kerryout” campaign isn’t without its less mature followers. However it is encouraging to see social and citizen media being used in the UK for elections and democratic campaigning; there was comparison around the election of President Obama suggesting Britain was far behind the USA in terms of internet-based electioneering.

Like so many ultra-loyal, never questioning Labour MPs – Preston’s own Mark Hendrick among them – Kerry appears to be in complete denial whenever someone mentions the increasing gap between rich and poor, the ballooning deficit, decreasing standards in primary schools, selling University students into debt slavery, and of course her own personal dubious expenses claims. From the Labour Party of McBride/Draper “smear” emails, “kerryout” is fairly harmless.

Not that I will want to spend the whole three, or four, or five months, focusing on the battle in the eastern suburbs of Bristol. I’ve got to make it to this month’s pay day unscathed before most other priorities. Once upon a time, in living memory, I was forever walking home from supermarkets with bulging bags digging into my hands; now I’m somewhat too eager to nip into Tesco for whatever snacks and pre-packaged meal deals I can wolf down in between brews. Like the lost habits of buying Private Eye and keeping a diary, I’ve long since stopped being eager to steam fish or prepare slow-cooked stewes. Here’s to belated New Year’s Resolutions with some relation to this.

And without the real-time clock ticking in the corner, thanks.

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