So agreement has been reached on the televised leaders' debate. It's going to be cracking stuff. News on Sky, BBC and ITV have been talking in evangelical terms about how the JFK/Nixon debate marked the turning point in American presidential election campaigns. Nixon eschewed make-up, blah blah, radio listeners thought Kennedy had lost the debate, yadda yadda.
The media expect that everyone in this country will be sat on the edge of their seats, hanging on every word spoken by the great political titans and that as a result, come polling day, there'll be queues down the street outside the stations. Newsflash; people who don't care (most of the population), won't watch. If you really want to see how important it is, put the broadcasts on instead of Eastenders and Corrie, see what sort of response you get. Even better, preface these broadcasts with 'Tonight's episode of Coronation Street/Eastenders has been replaced with three political non-entities doing nothing but calling the other two cunts. The planned episode will never be shown, ever. Now sit down and listen to what these very important people have to say.'
We now have the bizarre situation where we'll see a televised debate between three party leaders, none of whom have a better than below average chance of actually getting a mandate as Prime Minister of a majority government.
The parties will be hoping that everyone doesn't go out and vote, because if the show that these three twits put on is as bad as I think it's going to be, the Green, UKIP and BNP share of the vote will rocket.
Let's have a look at the candidates shall we?
Gordon Brown - The most unpopular PM in history. A man who, even when scrubbed to with an inch of his life and ladled into his best bib and tucker, would make Gok Wang burst into tears and stomp off screaming 'I can't work under these conditions'. His presentation is awful. He can't talk without fluffing his lines. He cannot answer a question. No point about Labour good will be made, it will all be Tories bad. Everything wrong will be blamed on Thatcher, USA, other cabinet members, the renaming of Jif to Cif, etc. Plus there's that thing where his jaw drops open and then slams shut, like he's trying to stop the evil spirits from escaping. Who is going to vote for that?
Dave Cameron - The man who has lost the PM job before he even got it. Really, how bad do you have to be if you can't beat Brown? This is a man who shares no common policy ground with the membership of his party. It's up to them to follow him. Cripes! As Boris would say. He presents well, but can't evade the toffish air about him. He too will not be able to answer any questions due to his complete lack of policies beyond; 1- Become PM, 2- More of the same. As we see from the opinion polls, no-one fancies that much, either.
Neil Clague (or whatever his name is) - The man who will have to preface every statement with 'Hi, I'm Nigel Cludd (or whatever his name is), leader of the Lib Dems. A man so anonymous that when he calls round to see his old mum, she demands ID before she lets him in the house. He'll spend the whole time avoiding the question about what he'll do in the likely event of a hung parliament. He'll be banging on about change and alternatives whilst providing none whatsoever. Policies? Plenty of them, knowing that he'll never, ever be held to them. Flute lessons for lions? Great idea, write it down. It won't matter. No-one will vote for him, because by the time polling day comes around, they'll have forgotten who he is.
The best the party minders can do is to gaffer tape their charges to a chair and pretend they've pulled a no-show. It will not usher in a golden age of engagement between politician and electorate, it will be yet more proof of how out of touch, inflexible and dogmatic our leaders are. As such it will be a triumph and must go ahead, no matter what. If we're lucky, it'll utterly destroy the three of them.