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Wednesday, May 11, 2005
Electoral common sense
Here, on Airstrip One, there were many bizarre incidents in relation to the election. Here’s one that was widely missed by ‘The Press’.
On the morning after the election, BBC had a fill-in, chat-to-the-voters piece with a ‘panel’ that included Menzies (pronounced Ming-Iz) Campbell (Lib Dem) and Malcolm Rifkind, the new (Scottish) Conservative MP for Kensington & Chelsea. The first woman wittered on about her autistic son, autism, and the MMR jab*. The second person, a bloke this time, accused both Menzies Campbell (no relation to Alastair), and Malcolm Rifkind, of being in favour of the Iraq war** .
Jeremy Paxman, renowned for his abrasive style of interviewing/chairmanship, failed to deal with either of these idiots in the appropriate and expected way. I would have said ‘If you can’t get your facts right in this sort of arena, you don’t deserve to have a vote!’ Instead, he said little.
* MMR does not cause autism. Failing to immunise children against measles, mumps and rubella is very dangerous. Parents scared by the ‘MMR causes autism’ bandwagon who do not ensure that their children complete a timely course of injections are putting the health and lives of children at risk.I sometimes have sympathy with the Soviet politician (Oops, it was Bertolt Brecht, 'advising' the East German government) alleged to have remarked: ‘Perhaps we should dissolve the electorate and appoint another...’
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