General Election Talk

Shamelessly ripping-off Talk Round-up, while the election campaign is running we're going to do mini round-ups of your commentary on election shenanigans.

6 May 2010

Useful/interesting/funny political websites

StewieGriffinsMom made someone's day when the Labour party phoned to ask who she was voting for. "We're in a Lib Dem/ Labour marginal so its an important seat for them. When I said Labour, the woman basically squealed, 'Are you really?'. I pointed out that was perhaps not the correct response...I think she was too excited to hear me though."

As for the day itself, voice of doom LadycAshcroft warned, "It is raining here, so the turn-out might be lower than expected." "Dear God, if we never went when it rained, we would never leave the house," tutted StewieGriffinsMom. At AbsofCroissant's polling station, "There was one Labour person and one Tory person standing around bothering people. Strangely, no BNP ... those people can deliver flyers like Mofos, but fail to turn up at the ballot box. Man, I LOVE a good election." LadycAshcroft's parents "were asking whether we are getting a day off just to vote, as it is a Thursday after all. Bless them!"

Happily a voting disaster was averted when SilveryMoon said "Must go now, that slip of paper won't tick itself." "Don't TICK the box!" shrieked InmyheadIminParliament. "You have to put an X or it's invalid." Although it seems there is a bit of wiggle - or should that be willy - room. "I have been at counts where we have debated whether a willy shows a clear voting intention," explained OhYouBadBadKitten. "I'm still undecided on that one myself." "Lol at willy," sniggered twit, "makes me wish I'd been more imaginative now."

4 May 2010

There's doom and gloom spreading across the Politics Talk threads as left-leaning Mumsnetters assume the worst. Be afraid, be very afraid explained Wilfsell; "If we assume there will be a Tory govt, then the crowing triumphalism of all the Chinless Wonders and Thrusting Monetarists and Nasty Racists who'll poke in here to crow and gloat, will somehow force a cosmic rift in the time-space continuum." "If the suggested rift in time and space brings Dr Who to the rescue then the kids will be impressed," piped up SantiMoanyArse, "but otherwise I hang my head and say gah."

"The only consolation I can think of," muttered Takver, "is that next time I'm standing up against a line of riot police, at least the chances are that I won't know that they've been sent there by a govt that I voted for."  Thank goodness then for said who tried to lighten the mood by pointing out, "There's something very satisfying about having someone to really, really hate though. <Trying to think of a bright side >."

"To be honest, I swallowed the line that we were getting a Labour goverment in 1992 and that was rubbish too," added clemette. "Perhaps it will all be OK (frantic finger crossing and bombarding my FB friends with reminders to vote when most of them care more about who will be Dorothy...)"

3 May 2010

As news broke on the boards that Gordon Brown was returning for a second grilling from Mumsnetters, it took mere minutes for his motives to be assessed. "Blimey. He's brave," claimed notnowbernard. "He's not that brave," countered foureleven. "He's coming on at 7.15 when most mums will be doing the bedtime routine." "See, there's no such thing as one visit to mumsnet,' cheered theyoungvisiter. "It's so addictive even the PM is back for more."

"He isn't going to slag us all off afterwards in the car is he?" mused saiditall. "Did you microphone him up in case, Justine?" On a similar note, LadyBlaBlah wanted to ask him, "If Sue is still your friend?"

onebatmother gave the PM a pep chat in the moments before kick-off. "Chin up, back straight, and good luck." But when custardo asked her DH if he wanted to ask the PM anything while he was on Mumsnet, she got the bemused reply "Why would he do that you're all evil bastards?"

Once Gordon was in the hot seat at MNHQ and scoffing our choc chip biccies, octotheschoolherder had an offer for him. "We want to know where the cuts will be - you must know, just tell us! We promise not to tell anyone else!" portabello on the other hand had a much more important question to ask the PM; "We're dithering over the name of our beautiful new son," she explained. "Which do you prefer - Benjamin, Frederick, Seamus or Jasper?"

While Gordon was wondering how best to answer that, EricPicklesFatNeck had an interesting story for him. "When my dd was 3 and saw pictures of you she would say; 'Poor Gordon Brown, he is trying his best you know.' She also wanted to know if Peter Mandelson was a baddie!'. Apparently she wasn't the only one worried about baddies. onebatmother's son "had a bad dream about David Cameron. I know because he shouted out 'David Cameron!' in his sleep, in the same tone of voice that you'd use for 'Behind you!'"

"Would you step aside in order allow a Lib-Lab coalition?" asked MrJustAbout, to which fruitshootsandheaves responded, "Lib-Lab sounds like some sort of dog cross. A labrador crossed with a Liberian spaniel perhaps?." But it seems the Prime Minister did win over some new supporters. "Ooo, he answered me," blushed SwingVoter. "Definitely a redder shade of purple now. "He seems so much more human than the other two,' agreed janeite. "I think you mean, 'He is so much more on my wavelength than the other two.' suggested Bonsoir. "He seems totally extraterrestrial to me!".


28 April 2010

As news of Gordon Brown's Sky microphone disaster broke, Mumsnetters began to post their take on the #bigotedwoman gaffe. "Bit of a non-story, isn't it?" posited mumblechum as the storm erupted. "A proper Malcolm Tucker moment," chortled Wilfsell. "I can just see them all in their back office punching each other over this." "Any chance it was a deliberate mistake in the style of Jed Bartlet from the West Wing criticising his opponent when the on-air light was on?" wondered flowerybeanbag, while Marshabrady felt compelled to share the fact she thought "His voice is quite sexy when it's not monotone."

"How fab if politicians could and did say things to people's faces," dreamed MarineIguana, "'Oh whatever, you bigoted old bat.'" "DH and I watch the debates in the hopes one of them will suddenly turn and say 'What a bloody stupid question, weren't you listening last week?'" admitted jackbauer "Trust me, I call my work colleagues MUCH worse on a daily basis (not to their face)," revealed absofcroissant. "It is such a good thing I'm not a politician.

"I can only imagine that David Cameron is thinking, 'Thank fuck they didn't tape me as we left that shopping centre in Bootle!" chortled brogan2.

And as Brown arrived in Rochdale to apologise in person, baileysismyfriend confessed, "The live coverage is really addictive. I love the commentary, 'ooh he's been in there for 15 minutes now', 'ooh it's been 35 minutes now...'" "I'd love to hear what he says in the car after meeting her at her house" ahundredtimes chimed.

26 April 2010

On the issue of what appears to be a rapidly-approaching hung parliament, wannabe posed the question; ""Will Gordon stay in power or hold on till he's pushed?" "Mr cling-on-by-his-fingernails until the last possible second." stated atlantis confidently. "It's like trying to take a cuddle toy away from a toddler to wash it." It wouldn't come to that, piped up edam. "If Brown fails to win a majority, he will be ceremonially decapitated on Tower Hill."

"I'm trying to imagine what a civil war between old and new Labour would be like," wondered Quattrocento. "Will Old Labour wear donkey jackets and sing the internationale and man some barricades? Whilst New Labour will wear designer clothes, sing Things Can Only Get Better and eat antipasti? Will New Labour be armed with extra virgin olive oil? Old Labour with pints of bitter?"

Which got MN-ers on the subject of who would do a deal with whom. "I think because Clegg is Mr. Telegenic Smoothy chops and Brown looks like a rather disgruntled St. Bernard people assume it wouldn't work," said wasabipeanut. "In terms of ideology they're pretty well matched."

Elsewhere on Talk, ZombiePlanB's DH had come up with a fun new game "after a weekend spent in Somerset where there are four Tory Candidates that are double barrelled". It's called 'What's your Tory candidate name?' and requires a combination of:

1) Your father's first name
2) Name of the street you grew up on
3) Headmaster's surname.

Mine is "Hamish Maxwell-Thomas" sniggered FlyMeToDunoon. "I imagine he has an estate in the highlands and likes a bit of huntin' and fishin'". "Leonard Worcester-Cunningham. Florid and clueless at your service'" sniggered onmishambles. "Michael Sussex-Brandon here," was Heidi28's contribution. "Landowner and three timesShadow Schools and Families Minister a descendant from King Charles Spaniel III."

24 April 2010

Mumsnetters were ready with the wine and remote controls for commenting on the second leaders' debate on Sky TV. This time we had a mole - or should we say a squirrel - in the audience in the form of squirrel42 who'd managed to score a seat at the live debate.

"If I'm allowed to ask a question should I go 'off-script' and ask about biscuits?" she mused. "Cough twice and sneeze one and we will know it is you. We will call you SecretSquirrel," advised OhYouBadBadKitten. "I'll be the one in the trenchcoat with the fedora pulled down low over my eyes, looking shifty," replied squirrel42. Ah, but "will that be a Boden trenchcoat and fedora?" quizzed jackstarbright

"Right got the sambuca...I'm going to take a slug everytime DC uses anecdotal evidence,' promised Jaquelinehyde, "Oooh they have all come out fighting I like it!"

"NC is trying way too hard: I think last week has gone to his head," scoffed dad2chchalk. "GB looks like a 62 year old accountant being made redundant, begging his 30 year old boss to keep him on by regailing him with tales of minor successes he had years ago...actually, DC does like a bit like Ralph Fiennes in Schindler's List....I wonder if he's got a big balcony...?"

"DC is using the 'If I was your Primeminister' line a lot." noted ShadeofViolet. "Someone has been brushing up on their interview techniques."

Gordon Brown's comparison of Clegg and Cameron's squabbling to bathtime at No 10 was missed by Mme Lindt. "DH was ranting again. What did he say?" she asked. Although there were advantages to not having heard, as morningpaper admitted to being "v.distracted by the thought of them both wet and naked."

The staging of the second debate certainly had its admirers. "Last week's set was rather Going for Gold," said RhinestoneCowgirl. "It looks like they have a button behind those podiums," pointed out an eagle-eyed PfftTheMagicDragon. "Do they open trap doors?" "I don't like DC looking into camera,' complained morningpaper. "I feel like he's selling me Cilit-Bang." "Bet he wishes he could just say 'Bang! and the Clegg is gone!" chortled dinster." "Or rather 'Bang! and the poor are gone!" howled spub.

Generally NC was judged to have won the debate. "Round Two: Nick Clegg," stated domesticslattern decisively. Although there were detractors. "Am I allowed to say that Gordon Brown is actually coming across really well, and playing the 'You two are pretenders, I'm doing the job and am the only one who knows what's what' card surprisingly well?" enquired megonthemoon. "Is Cameron trying not to peak to early?" mused lone voice megcleary.

The final word goes to our studio squirrel, who in addition to getting to shake hands with NC, gave us such inside info as the fact that "Before we went live, a producer was mopping up some spilt water by NC's lecturn and it looked quite suspicious - cue jokes about him being nervous and having an accident!" And "Saw GB standing on tip-toes a lot, asked a producer why - they showed us a perspex box he was supposed to be standing on but they forgot it."

20 April 2010

Last week's leaders' TV debate kicked off a parallel discussion on what Mumsnetters thought each party leader should have for their theme tune - something for Sky to consider for this week's debate perhaps? Clicknegg wanted Eye of The Tiger for her man. No, no - said CatIsSleepy - surely it should be Stealers Wheel, "Clowns to the left of me, Jokers to the right, Here I am, Stuck in the middle with you". Poor old David Cameron got some rather harsh suggestions - Al Wilson's The Snake from RaggedRobin and Radiohead's Creep by CatIsSleepy, but ShadeofViolet thought the natural choice was 'Gordon is a moron'.

"Every time I hear Gordon Brown I think of The Stranglers," mused BulletproofMum, "Gordon Brown, finest temptress. Through the ages he's heading west..." Meanwhile, Molesworth had an altogether more classical theme in mind for Gordon - putting forward Confutatis Maledictus from Mozart's Requiem. And could Tethersend be a disenchanted voter? "It's the theme to The Magic Roundabout for any of them."

18 April 2010

Within minutes of the first historic TV debate starting, Mumsnetters were weighing in with their opinions on whose lectern presence was electric and whose, on the other hand, was wind-powered. One exception was bebejones who harrumphed that she "didn't want to vote for a party because of an X-Factor style popularity contest of the party leaders".

But piffle was happy to wade in and declare that: "Gordon Brown was the most assured and the least patronising and also the least cosmetically enhanced. A rugged honesty which quite frankly worked for me." She wasn't the only viewer obsessed by the leaders' appearance. Had they all been at the Botox, wondered HousewifeOfOrangeCounty. "DC looked positively waxworkian, and like he'd been St Tropezed," agreed TiggyR. "Even the curmudgeonly old Scot looked like a baby's bottom."

It was a good night for Nick Clegg, not least because RainbowBear will now "definitely be able to spot him in an identity parade". "Cleggover for me," agreed BenHer. But while Clegg's ability to namecheck members of the TV audience impressed some, others were more cynical. "NC didn't remember the names, he wrote them down," pointed out Ponders, who admitted it was "still a good trick though". Turniphead1 felt sure that "it was all down to the media consultant (paid ££££) who hammered home, 'Use their names. Look at them. Use real examples. Gordon, please don't do that revolting chin-jutty thing it's awful. I know you can't help it'."

Bottom of the class was David Cameron, who was brutally dismissed by miggsie: "When I looked at David Cameron and the fact he was the leader of a major political party, I suddenly began to comprehend how the Egyptians managed to worship an insect." Molesworth was equally damning: "In the moments when DC wasn't speaking he seemed to turn into a 1950s knitting pattern model with his 'gaze into the middle distance' stance which looked like it had been rehearsed ('Look up and out into the bright blue future like a ship's captain, Dave,' etc etc)."

Last word to preggersplayspop, who noted wisely: "GB had learnt a trick from the Mumsnet webchats - Answer the question, David!"

15 April 2010

In the week that the main parties released their manifestos, Mumsnetters were quick off the draw to peruse the fine print. First to be ripped to shreds discussed was the Labour manifesto which got short shrift from Mme Blueberry. "That was a yawnfest, wasn't it?" "WTF is 'a future fair for all' supposed to mean?" asked oracleofdelphinium. "If they mean a 'fair future', why don't they say it? (Presumably because they could then be done under the trades descriptions act)". policywonk pointed out it was aimed at hard-working families, so "the feckless and the barren need not apply".

Next on the block was the Conservative Manifesto. "It's very HSM - 'We're All In this Together" pointed out jackstarbright. Morningpaper took issue with The Big Society concept, particularly "Parents running schools in their spare time... snort... have these people ever tried to coordinate a summer fete?" "A prize for the first person who can tell me what this means - 'develop a measure of well-being that encapsulates the social value of state action'" offered slug. While she waited for takers, there was an upside for the Tories. "On the plus side, it does look like quite a few graphic artists made a mint doing those pictures, so at least someone's benefited," cheered tottwriter.

As for the Liberal Democrats, "They actually give figures!" gasped anastaisia. But the downside of the Lib Dems' approach quickly became apparent. "I'm not sure I understand the bank bonus policy...Was it a joke or did they mean to put £25,000 as the limit?" queried jollydiane.

7 April 2010

So the election is under way and as we wait for the various party manifestos to be published next week, Mumsnetters have been dissecting the policies we do know about. On the Tories' education policy, LilyBolero warns: "They will be consulting the 'finest minds of our generation' in constructing the curriculum - Carol Vorderman will be advising on maths, Robert Winston on science... Be afraid. Be very afraid." But it was Dave C's concern over classroom furniture arrangements thaexercised mumsnetters most. "What will happen if a primary teacher dares to put his/her desks into groups?" wondered wastwinsetandpearls. "Will Dave pop out of the cupboard, blow on his hunting horn and chase the said teacher out of town on horseback?" LilyBolero winkled out another Conservative education policy. "They want to teach history as a narrative - start at day 1, and progress through," she explained, pointing out a potential flaw in the system: "My mum said she was taught in that way. Only problem is, she dropped it at age 14 and only got as far as the 1830s." And foxytocin found herself guffawing over the thread title Is David Cameron talking out of his own back passage?: "No wonder the conventional media gets all sniffy about MN the new media," she sniggered.

30 March 2010

Last night's Chancellor TV debate had Mumsnetters discussing the relative merits of who'll take charge of our economy post-Election. For this three-horse race there was certainly a clear winner - Vince Cable. 'That's it. I love Vince. I'm voting Lib Dem!' declared Birdly, adding, 'that Tory bloke was plain scary.' Poor old George Osborne got short shrift generally. 'Osborne looks very waxy,' said llareggub. 'I keep imagining him in a wig and beauty spot, which doesn't help much,' admitted onebatmother. 'Me and DH were counting the number of times he said David Cameron. Like political bingo!' said Grumpypants, wondering if Osborne was in fact wearing a wire with Cameron on the other end.

On the plus side, everyone agreed what a pleasant change it made hearing the politicians setting out their policies, 'without a pompous journalist interrupting rudely every two seconds,' as HumphreyCobbler put it. 'The oneupmanship of the Today programme does become wearing,' agreed jooseyfruit. Agreed, said Eightieschick who found it 'refreshing to have an hour of proper grown-up debate, about stuff that matters. [guiltily switches off Pineapple Dance Studio]' 

24 March 2010

According to The Telegraph, Alastair Darling mentioned 'family' no fewer than 14 times during his Budget speech today 'as befits the last Budget before the so-called Mumsnet election. That wasn't enough to keep some Mumsnetters awake during Darling's 58-minute speech. 'I keep trying to type what Darling says,' fretted OhYouBadBadKitten, 'but I keep zoning out.' 'What's Gordon smiling at?' asked Birdistheword. 'Is DC blowing him kisses?' 'Gordon is looking very handsome, no?' was MorningPaper's comment, prompting OhYouBadBadKitten to wonder, 'Have you forgotten your glasses?' 'Didn't really do anything to help families did he?' noted LadaGoGoGo. 'Well nothing taken away and nothing specific given - but I think that's good news,' was Brockyg's take. Pretty much the only consensus was on Nick Clegg's contributions. 'Clegg only one actually talking about real things,' said OhYouBadBadKitten. He's 'sounding like the only grown-up in the room,' said MorningPaper. 

18 March 2010

Keep a close eye on the audience at the first live TV debate for a Mumsnetter wearing a green T-shirt emblazoned with an AIBU logo. Birdistheword managed to nab a seat through the cunning tactic of showing a smidgeon of interest when she was doorstepped the other day. Despite 'being outside the age range' the organisers were looking for, the poor lady had clearly had enough of being shouted at by other people she'd approached and fell upon Birdistheword's enthusiasm with open arms. 'Start practising your faces for those cut-away shots,' advised Squeaver, 'concerned, outraged, aghast, don't patronise me.' Not to worry, promised Birdistheword; 'Am practising my cats-bum-face as I type.'


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