We’ve had variously clueless commentators in the recent past who have suggested that only those with property, or a number of other qualifications, should have the vote. Generally, these idiots are somewhere out there on the right, and believe that this is somehow justified, although the only reason would be to ensure an ideologically acceptable Government for the foreseeable future.
The latest of these wandering oafs is the odious flannelled fool Henry Cole, tame gofer to the perpetually thirsty Paul Staines at the Guido Fawkes blog. I would not normally ascribe any influence to anyone whose landlord trusts them so little that they impose pre-payment for electricity, but it seems that Cole has a fan in the House of Commons (can you guess who it is yet?).
Cole’s wheeze is that only those who pay Income Tax get a vote. By the most fortunate of coincidences this means Himself Personally Now, whereas the property qualification of old (by which I mean before 1918) would have excluded him, as he is not a householder. The property qualification (having to own property outright) would have benefited me, but as I am not so selfish and mercenary, I disapprove of it.
The idea of only giving the vote to taxpayers is an old one, but nowadays we all pay taxes: filling up the car, your bar bill, rail and bus fares, energy bills (including those on pre-payment meters), a selection of supermarket goods (Aldi, for instance, itemise bills to show this), eating out, consumer goods, and of course getting access to council services all mean paying some form of tax.
So Cole’s idea is, as so much to come out of the Fawkes blog, a total non sequitur. We’re all tax payers, and some of us are also property owners who, in the words of the legendary TW3 sketch, could if we wanted to look down on them. But one reason to be mildly concerned about such otherwise batshit ideas is that Master Cole has the ear of (yes, it’s her again) Mid Bedfordshire MP Nadine Dorries.
How can I know this? Simples. Observe these two Tweets from yesterday, when Young Dave was making his speech to the Tory conference. First comes the flannelled fool at 1140 hours, suggesting that Samantha Cameron’s emotions in a hall full of cameras were not for public consumption and blaming the hated BBC for the transgression. Then, six minutes later, comes Ms Dorries.
And, to no surprise, she too makes the “private” claim, and also blames the BBC. What a remarkable coincidence – except it wasn’t. It’s a truly desperate situation for a serving MP to have to get their talking points this way, but that just about sums up Nadine Dorries. Another fine mess, once again.
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