Three of the five pieces in Rod Liddle’s column in today’s Sunday Times:
Ah, votes! Such a pity to waste them on the idiotic, Labour-loving young.
vaguely remember being 47. A difficult time of life. The hair greys and thins, the gut burgeons, the knees begin to creak and snap and for the first time you can see Death, with his big black wings, hovering in the middle distance. And indeed the hobbled, pain-ridden procession to the place where Death impatiently awaits.
Everything becomes horribly clear at 47. Perhaps that is why it is also the age at which everybody starts voting Conservative. Before the age of 47 you are more likely to vote Labour than Tory; afterwards it’s the other way around. At 47 you at last start to see the world as it really is, rather than as you wish it were.
By the time you’re 70, there’s only a 19% chance you’ll vote Labour. I assume the growing legions of the demented contribute heavily to that total, that minority of the elderly who no longer know their own names, or where they are. Between 18 and 19 there is just a 19% chance you’ll vote Tory. The age of 47 is where the two lines on the graph cross.
The government is edging towards giving votes to 16-year-olds, apparently. The Tory MP Sir Peter Bottomley, who is 168, says it is a case of when, not if. Other Tories who support the proposal include the worst education secretary we have ever had, Justine Greening, and her close runner-up in that prestigious competition, Nicky Morgan. Oh, and former chancellor George Osborne. The defeated remainer legions, then — you are also much more likely to have voted for Brexit if you are over 47. In fact, one columnist suggested we should hold the referendum again because statistically the winning margin will have popped its clogs by now. But the idiot had failed to understand that statistically even more people will now have passed the age of 47 and thus changed their minds.
I can’t see the case for lowering the age of voting. In truth, I’d prefer stricter criteria to be applied. No votes for people working in the public sector, for example — conflict of interest, you see. Especially not teachers. No votes for women called Roz living in Camden, just out of spite. No votes for anyone who has attended a same-sex civil ceremony. No votes for cyclists who wear Lycra.
I have no problem with women voting in general, so long as they are married and abide by their husband’s decision. I suppose some of you might argue that this is just bigotry on my part, and you may have a case. But 16-year-olds? Have Osborne & Co never met any of these idiots? I would rather we repealed the ban on certifiable nutters voting.
If a private member’s bill is introduced to this effect, it might just win. On the upside, it is unlikely that many will actually turn out to vote — the 18 to 19 age range had the lowest attendance figures at the last election. And it would be comparably easy to stop your kids making a stupid decision. Give them the wrong date for the election, set up a false polling booth at the end of the road, leave some high-quality skunk in their bedrooms. That should do it.
I don’t want people voting who are so insulated from the real world, so enveloped in the distorted reality imposed upon them by our education system, too often convinced that what they “feel” is more important than what actually is. People who do not work and do not understand what it is to work.
Very few places allow 16-year-olds to vote, because they know what they’re like. OK, there’s Scotland — but, then, Alex Salmond would have extended the franchise to foetuses if he’d thought that might nudge his now-desolate independence campaign over the line.
And that’s probably the point. Osborne, Bottomley, Greening and Morgan — this is the vestigial tail of remainer bitterness wagging and wagging away. Let’s be truly European about this — 26 of the 27 other EU countries don’t let 16-year-olds vote and in Italy the age of suffrage is 25. Or, better still, let’s raise the age to 47, when one’s perspective is both broader and comprehensively darkened.
Loretta Liddle, tome raider
Exciting times at New Broadcasting House. An email doing the rounds announces: “The new BBC Feminist Network is holding a women’s book swap between 5-7pm today at NBH, 8th Floor Hip Hop room (turn right out of the lifts).”
I wouldn’t have thought anybody needed telling where the BBC’s “Hip Hop room” is — it’s the place David Attenborough and the Dimblebys hang out.
Anyway, I shall be going (I identify as a woman called Loretta) and will be taking my collection of Sven Hassel classics, including Legion of the Damned and Assignment Gestapo — hopefully I can exchange them for some raunchy lesbian stuff.
The tantalising email advertises that cake will be available. Cake which the feminists will hungrily devour and yet, paradoxically, leave intact.
Slugs and snails and the PC mob rails
Asda is in trouble for its T-shirts again. A while back the company was criticised for selling T-shirts that bore the words “Boys Will Be Boys”. A woman complained that this sort of statement could encourage sex attacks. No, not kidding.
The latest T-shirt simply features a mock dictionary definition of the word boy: “Digger of dirt, noise maker, lots of mischief.” Campaigning groups have said this is gender stereotyping, and one mother said the definition could end with boys having mental health problems. Less severe mental health problems as those occasioned by having her as a mother, I suspect, but there we are.
My own T-shirt suggestion is a short slogan: “Boys — we earn more than girls.” That should keep everyone happy.
You can subscribe to The Times here.