Wednesday, 7 June 2017

under the blue water of a hard rain

The picture above shows the 'before' state of the constituencies for the General Election. Yes, there is some red, mainly bundled around a few major cities. The rest, south of the Scottish border, is largely blue.

May called for the election allegedly to strengthen her mandate for the Brexit talks. Yes, right, nothing to do with the expectation that she could wrong foot every other party and grab a much larger majority. Nothing to do with the reversal over 'no election before 2020' pledge.

That the electorate then get treated with disdain, listening to few soundbites repeated endlessy, by a mainly robotic leader. That debates are eschewed in favour of set-piece pseudo speeches. That the largely empty manifesto doesn't provide costings and appears to be so easily adapted whenever it draws heat.

I feel there is little to commend the Maybot's performance, even with the low bar set by the other parties. I watched the rousingly good Corbyn speech from Gateshead, which drew a crowd of some 5000 to the area around the Sage. His words were well-received but largely unreported by the media.

May's scenes 'out and about' were supposedly also mixing with the electorate, but came across as wooden and protected from real debate by a doughnut of core supporters. She even had someone to knock on the doors for her. Stage managed for the media optics, although even that could be considered to have backfired.

When May stepped in to dig out the Cameron/Osborne mess, I was prepared to give her approach a chance.

Instead of providing plans, operational constructs and pragmatic actions, we are entering another period of reflexive actions, bereft of clearly articulated approaches beyond further hard times for the many.

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