At our recent meeting it was inevitable that due to the forthcoming General Election our thoughts would turn to politics.
We know that politics is the second oldest profession but is getting more and more like the first.
And that the only people who know anything about politics are taxi-drivers and hairdressers.
It has been said that we vote for the lesser of two evils, which means you are still voting for evil, and that democracy usually means that more people vote against the elected one than for them.
We know that politicians take more notice of the vociferous minority than they do of the silent majority.
We were reminded of some of the famous sayings of politicians.: “We do tell lies sometimes- to be honest with you”; or “ If you will stop telling lies about me I will stop telling the truth about you”; or even “At the time I thought I was telling the truth”.
Ignorance and stupidity are not handicaps in politics and if you can fake sincerity you are well over halfway there. You can also be assured that if you were a howler monkey some people would still vote for you if you represented their party.
It is essential that you always state that the vast majority of the British people agree with you even if you only know two or three who do, and invent some research that will prove your point. Shout out “scaremongering” to any point raised that you cannot counter.
The members of the Old Grumpies have a wide range of opinions on how the country should be governed and we discuss the pros and cons of a variety of policies.
We thought that all the parties would benefit if we gave them advice on what to say, and, more importantly, what not to say in the hustings or TV debates up to the General Election. A few “do’s” and “dont’s”, if you like:
Do mention: The economy, inherited deficit, Europe, the unions, benefit scroungers and Wallace and Gromit.
Don’t mention: the NHS, public schools, fox hunting or Scotland.
Do mention: The NHS as often as you can (but not in Wales), bankers’ bonuses, fox hunting and shout “posh boys” at every opportunity.
Don’t mention: Anything else and certainly don’t talk about David Milliband, Scotland, or Wallace and Gromit.
Do mention: That you have all the best policies of the other parties and none of the worst ones (don’t get it the other way round), and you could form a coalition with anyone.
Don’t mention: Student fees, Spitting Image, Scotland, and now is not the time to say anything about proportional representation.
Do mention: European Union, The Human Rights Act and immigration.
Don’t mention: Anything else.
Do mention: All the things you are going to ban such as the Army, Trident, carbon dioxide, GM crops, fracking and any form of power station.
Don’t mention: How you intend to keep the lights on because you won’t be able to.
Do mention: That all the other parties promised that if Scotland voted against Independence they would give it to them anyway.
Don’t mention: Oil, the pound, Wales and Northern Ireland. Or Mel Gibson.
Just say everything in Welsh but be aware of errors in translation.
To the other parties we say: Keep amusing us, and remember that optimism is not an eye condition
To all voters we would give this advice. Vote for the party that promises very little.
In that way you will be least disappointed.