I noted with interest on Bishop Hill that Tamsin Dunwoody is the party choice to contest the by election in the seat of Crewe and Nantwich, which is vacant due to the death of her mother, Gwynneth Dunwoody. Tamsin herself is free due to her losing the seat of Preseli Pembrokeshire in the Welsh Assembly to the Tories (!) in 2003. (As an aside, how come they're always remembered as 'great parliamentarians' or 'true statesmen'? I never met Gwynneth and I'm not suggesting she was a bent shreiking banshee out for every penny she could get, but she was an MP, so the signs aren't encouraging. How come deceased MP's aren't decried as scoundrels and corrupt in the faux sombre pre PMQ's announcements?) Fair enough, the Tories have been at it for years, I suppose you get the MP you deserve.
But then I continued reading the article, hullo, what's this? A little story from the White City Pravda talking about plans for Emily Benn, Sir Anthony Wedgewood's granddaughter, to stand for East Worthing and Shoreham in the next election. Oh, she's 18. Just.
Sweet Mary, mother of God, baby Jesus and all the little orphans? Eighteen? Some complete fuckwit decided to lower the minimum age for MP's to 18 from 21! OK, consenting bum sex between 18 year olds, fine. Watching a film with a bit of nuddy fun and sweary bits, no worries. Going out and drinking so much Smirnoff Ice Slut Petrol that you're picked up by the old bill crawling through the gutter singing the back catalogue of Bow Wow Wow, good stuff. But running the fucking country? And standing in Worthing? Worthing? I thought being younger than 50 and entering the borough of Worthing was still a corporal offence.
When I was 18, my concerns were a; getting laid, b; scraping together enough shrapnel to buy a pint of cider, c; painting my bedroom black. And the order of that changed from day to day(Indeed, at the age of 32 my concerns are still in the main getting laid and scraping together enough shrapnel to buy a pint of cider.) Now, I wouldn't trust an eighteen year old to run a bath, let alone a constituency.
Let us consider the current 'Baby of the House', one Jo Swinson, the LD member for East Dumbartonshire and was 25 when elected. She is currently the LD spokesperson for Women and Equality. She got a BSc from the LSE and then worked in PR and Media in Yorkshire. For how long? 5 minutes? Was it work experience? I'll try and find a picture of her in a bit. I'm betting she's dressed up like a woman 35 years her senior, looking very sincere. But here's my message: You're 25 love, live your life. Don't waste it in Westminster, the SNP will probably relieve you of your seat at the next election anyway, go and do something constructive. You certainly can't be a conviction politican as you've no life experience to base your convictions on. Indeed that goes for you and little Emily, a few months in Peru building a school with organic knitted building materials doesn't count.
Still, I suppose we can take comfort from the fact that baby Emily stands no chance in Worthing as she is a; young and b; Labour.
What a bloody shower.