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Larry Neild wonders if the expenses scandal has left voters way too wised up to be confused by a name game

Published on September 21st 2009.


WHAT's in a name. It seems political shananagins have already started aimed at confusing electorate ahead of next year’s General Election.

There was a time when ballot papers contained a list of candidates, but no mention of the parties they represented.

Veteran Bob Wareing, sitting as an independent after quitting Labour, is likely to oppose Stephen Twigg, the official Labour Party candidate. The Lib Dems have unveiled their secret weapon for the assault on West Derby: Paul Twigger. You can see the potential confusion, even though the Lib Dems insist its coincidence

It meant election agents using every trick in the book to make sure their own person was in everybody’s mind.

Party members patrolled the streets with Tannoys parroting the name of the candidate to vote for.

Volunteers in clapped out jalopies chauffeuring reluctant voters from their firesides, lecturing them on the way to the polling station about the virtues of the best man or woman for the job.

Now it seems the sleight-of-hand and election wizardry departments have been started.

Veteran Bob Wareing, now sitting as an independent after quitting Labour after over 60 years of membership, is likely to oppose Stephen Twigg (pictured below), the official Labour Party candidate.

The Lib Dems have unveiled their secret weapon for the assault on West Derby, councillor Paul Twigger. You can see the potential confusion, even though the Lib Dems insist its coincidence.

In the recent Euro elections long standing Labour hopeful, Theresa Griffin faced a battle against the BNP’s Nick Griffin – he went on to win a seat.

I’m not sure trickery, intended or otherwise, will confuse or confound a public already on red alert and cynical about politics and politicians.

Love them or loathe them one thing is clear, most politicians work so hard for their cash. I predicted – and I know I’ll be right – the so-called expenses scandal will be solved by giving MPs a big pay rise and guaranteed living expenses. So, to make sure they are all squeaky clean, it will cost us taxpayers. In many ways it would have been better to allow the status-quo, ie liberal exes, to continue on the basis it would have saved millions.

My solution was too simple – a wage for the job plus a £24,000 a year allowance for living costs, and not a farthing more.

Our MPs have to have a main home, preferably in their constituencies, and somewhere to live in London. That £24,000 would not buy much more than a glorified bedsit. No receipts needed, no claims for extras. If they wanted to sleep under Westminster Bridge and pocket the dosh that’s fine by me.

But back to the name game. I wonder whether there are a ny other potential politicians who could throw people off the scent?

How about a comeback for Lady Doreen Jones (LD) taking on Labour’s Helen Jones in Warrington South. Man of the moment Gary Millar(LD) could face Labour’s Andrew Miller in Ellesmere Port, while colleague Malcolm Kelly could nip over to Bolton West and fight Ruth Kelly. One time Labour councillor, then Lib Deb Nadia Stewart is quitting the town hall. So she could head to Eccles and oppose Labour’s Ian Stewart.

My favourite though, would be Gerry Marsden, taking a ferry across the Mersey and up the coast to Blackpool to challenge Labour’s Gordon Marsden. Depends though on the politics of the veteran popstar.

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20 comments so far, continue the conversation, write a comment.

Dick ShonerrySeptember 21st 2009.

Perhaps, but what has that to do with the price of fish?

Sycamore DriveSeptember 21st 2009.

I can't see the wood from the trees

MikeSeptember 21st 2009.

Some people find Mock The Week very droll. I know I do.

DigSeptember 21st 2009.

Are the above rants a partial transcript from a rubbish recent episode of Mock The Week?

London RoadSeptember 21st 2009.

Hear hear!

PoliticoSeptember 21st 2009.

Labour seems destined for the political wilderness nationally , except in Liverpool where Twigg and the other four will no doubt win. Yet in a mirror image of what is happening across the country it seems the ruling Liberal Democrats in Liverpool will be dispatched to the wilderness in the city to be replaced by Joe Anderson and his Labour soldiers. Is politics strange or wot?

TwiggySeptember 21st 2009.

I think this is a matter for branch officials, don't yew?

Sir Howard WaySeptember 21st 2009.

Voters vote the way the foreign-owned British press and media tell them. In Liverpool we don't buy papers because (a) they're too expensive and (b) they contain rubbish.

DigSeptember 21st 2009.

Liverpools Pervert Saints rust is an anagram of Liverpool Preservation Trust, almost. Sounds like a club for teachers in some catholic schools too. How about your name Caramel? Ya?

Wareing BobSeptember 21st 2009.

So - where's the confusion then?

London ToadSeptember 21st 2009.

Can Not Y be an angram of Tony?

Press for a Buckle ChuttySeptember 21st 2009.

The spelling is probably a trick. Look closely it may be a shananagram.

HelpfulSeptember 21st 2009.

Ar Nelly Rid is an anagram of Larry Neild

A. NewleafSeptember 21st 2009.

(Turns over)

Ay!Carmela!September 21st 2009.

You must live a very sheltered life, LPT.

Liverpool Preservation TrustSeptember 21st 2009.

It's Ay! Carmela!'s fault for being bitchy.

The Voting FloaterSeptember 21st 2009.

The real confusion during the last couple of elections has been telling the difference between the Conservative Party and New Labour, one a right wing, anti trades union, undemocratic, warmongering, friend of the rich and the other...is the Tories. Spot the difference? Oh sorry, I forgot one will cut public spending and services with a heart and the other will do it while twirling their moustache.

Liverpool AwgSeptember 21st 2009.

Do you mean this is a Paddy Shennan-agram? Disgraceful.

tonySeptember 21st 2009.

ruth kelly isn't standing in bolton, larry. thank god

Ay!Carmela!September 21st 2009.

Shananigins? First time for that spelling.

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