I’ve not been too well this past week, loaded with a bad cold while at the same time I’ve started a new part time job because I’m still not working for your other national newspaper. Meanwhile I am still battling the nasty side effects of the nasty medicine that I’m on for my nasty skin condition. So I’ve been too knackered to blog much. Give up smoking, they say. It’s good for your health, they say. But since giving up smoking it’s been one bloody thing after another. Anyway, onwards and upwards, or in the case of the Labour party in Scotland, backwards and into the gutter.
A few days ago a friend asked what it was that I have against Magrit Curran. “She’s just a Labour hack like all the others,” he remarked, “so why do you keep picking on her and not on some of the other equally obnoxious useless Labour MPs? After all, it’s not like there’s a shortage of them.”
And this is very true. My friend has a point, we in Scotland are spoiled for choice when it comes to obnoxious and useless Labour MPs, Ian Davidson and Anas Sarwar spring to mind. There’s the be-haloed Jim who has given the Scottish media the task of anthropomurphising the Labour party – trying to make out that Jim Murphy is actually a real human being. But I do have a particular animus against Magrit, and will continue to do so until she is removed from office. I would prefer that she was hounded from office, preferably with actual hounds, but I’ll settle for voting her out via the ballot box.
The reason for my animus is not because Magrit is a woman, although Magrit is fond of claiming that criticisms of her are motivated by sexism or misogyny. It is because Magrit supposedly represents me in Parliament, she’s my local MP. I deserve better. Much better. And so do you. In fact I would have fewer problems with a chimpanzee as my MP because at least a chimpanzee knows how to screech and hoot in a meaningful manner. A chimpanzee picks fleas with purpose, whereas Magrit’s politics are fleabitten and purposeless. However chimpanzees do throw poo and Magrit also throws poo, so it’s not all bad.
In Magrit Curran, Glasgow East has an MP – a Labour MP remember, a member of the self-described “people’s party” – who goes to £250 per head dinners at top hotels in London as a guest of US arms dealers, while her some of her constitutents have to walk miles to a food bank in order to feed their kids. Magrit was a guest of US arms company Raytheon at the ADS annual defence dinner held at the Hilton Hotel in London last week, along with fellow Labour MPs Brian Donohoe and Gemma Doyle.
While Magrit was saying “Haw see us some mair o that free swally and duck a l’orange” some of the people she supposedly represents were looking at bare food cupboards and wondering how they were going to get through the week. Defence contractors don’t care much about food banks, they care about schmoozing up to vain and not very bright MPs so that the vain and not very bright MPs will vote to allow the defence contractor to rake in millions. Few MPs are more vain than Magrit, and it’s not like she’s got anything much to be vain about. And she’s as bright as a burned out bulb. Although, to be fair, that still makes her a whole lot brighter than the Labour MP for Coatbridge.
This week we got Magrit stuffing her gob in a cafe in Rutherglen where, between scones, she was extremely keen to tell anyone who would listen – that would mainly be the BBC – that Scotland needed to vote Labour in May because if we vote SNP then Labour might not be the largest party. She then added that the largest party gets to form the government of the UK. This is obviously the line thought up in Labour’s line factory – or spin shop – or whatever they call it. It’s also a lie. It is only the case that the largest party gets to form the government of the UK if the largest party also has an absolute majority of seats. Otherwise it’s the party which can command a majority by dint of persuading other parties not to vote against it in a vote of confidence. You’d think that Westminster MPs would know this.
Magrit has previous for having a tangential relationship to the truth. As a result of her continual difficulties with actuality, her schmoozing with defence contractors, and generally being to political discourse as a monkey is to poo flinging, Magrit has been subject to some name calling on her Facebook page. Most of what she’s been subjected to isn’t big or witty or clever – but then neither is Magrit. Magrit has responded by attempting to introduce a new rule:
“Let’s try a new rule here: if you wouldn’t use the language with your mother in the room, don’t post it on a public Facebook page.”
This rule is not going to work though, because my mammy is also a voter in Glasgow East – and you should hear the language she uses to describe Magrit Curran. And my mammy is a respectable, intelligent and articulate woman who used to work as a teacher. Magrit would lose, and lose badly, in a stairheid rammy with my mammy. But that’s what Magrit brings out in people – the invective.
The thing is, when you use politics as a vehicle for your personal ambitions and are bereft of anything that could reasonably be described as a principle, you’re going to attract ire and bile in equal measure. When you habitually preach the most ludicrous half truths and outright bilge you have no right to complain about others misusing language. Magrit’s approach to politics is like doing a massive jobbie on the living room carpet and then complaining about the smell.
Magrit’s can only claim to occupy the moral high ground by contrasting herself to people whose abuse of language is even worse than her own. That means the only folk she can feel superior to are trolls who yell swerry words at her. It’s a bit like boasting you have one more brain cell than an amoeba. The Scottish media, in thrall as it is to the anthropomurphic tendencies of the Labour party, will give her a platform upon which she can play the victim.
But the real victims are those of her constituents who have to walk miles to a food bank. The real victims are the men in those parts of Glasgow East who have a life expectancy lower than that in the Gaza Strip. The real victims are the hollow faced harrassed mothers who have to make a choice between feeding their weans or keeping the house warm while Magrit hobnobs with defence contractors and stuffs her gob with vol au vents and free swally.
Stay focussed, keep your eye on the prize, and let’s work to get rid of her in May. Revenge is a dish best served with a ballot paper and a pencil, not a swerry word on a Facebook page.
Update: In the interests of fairness, and because I’m not Magrit Curran, I should point out that the Campaign Against the Arms Trade have now updated their original list to include a statement from Magrit that she did not attend the dinner event.