the baby and the bathwater

Bravo Will, Bravo
February 6, 2009, 1:04 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized


As the promise of more snow hung over us, last night we were treated to a comical episode of Question Time. It was comical because it started off with some of the most pathetic political point scoring sessions I’ve seen recently. It started when UK Independence Party leader Nigel Farage went off on one, and declared the UK as the laughing stock of the world because the heavy snowfall had caused such disruption.

This, obviously, was the fault of the Labour Party, and in particular, Geoff Hoon, one of the other panelists last night. Geoff Hoon, of course, blamed any disruption on local government, but praised Norfolk, of all places, for their foresight in amassing enough salt and grit to not only keep bits of Norfolk running, but also many other counties as well. As someone who lived in Norwich for a while, it was nice to see the place receiving some good press for a change. It almost made up for the embarrassing ‘let’s be ‘aving you’ episode with Delia at Carrow road…..Come to think about it though, whilst I lived there I do remember all these piles of brown looking material clogging up the lay-byes. And I also remember one farmer shouting from across the field at me as I walked towards one such pile one day ‘Oi sonny, mind you don’t step in the grit’. At least I think that is what he said.

To me, though, the most comical thing about the last few days is the fact that people – intelligent people at the heart of the political landscape in this country – seem to get so hot under the collar about a little bit of snow, blaming people left right and center for the consequences. Even when people start trying to put a £ figure on the cost to the economy it just doesn’t cut the ice (excuse the pun) given the amount that has been spent shoring up the said economy recently. Even if we could ever prove such a cost to the economy of the snow, at least we all get to benefit through a day in front of the TV and some pretty views out of the window, rather than it going to fund the continuing bonuses of a few over-paid bankers.

Anyway, the finger pointing continued before the politicians on the panel eventually placed the blame for the problems caused by the snow at the feet of a retired road-sweeper in Coventry called Jim. And then, just as we all felt like we were losing the will to live, Will Young,  who in my mind was the most thoughtful member on the panel last night, said this: ‘Fathers got to spend a day with children building snowmen and having snowball fights. People in the streets started helping each other out. Surely amidst the current economic climate, it’s just nice to see people unite in something other than fear’.

Wild applause.

And rightly so.

Bravo, Will, Bravo.


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