Where to Stand? 32

After Blackburn, I had promised never to put myself again through the horrors of standing as an independent parliamentary candidate. But the sleazthat has been revealed is only a symptom of the moral laxity and low quality of our MPs, as revealed in their endorsement of illegal war, torture, curtailment of civil liberties, the Ponzi scheme economy… I could go on.

But where to stand? After Blackburn, I refuse to stand in any constituency that does not contain at least one bookshop. Nobody can comprehend the true disaster of the collapse of our public education system, without going to Blackburn. No wonder New Labour have to collect in their postal ballots and fill them in for them.

I had pretty well resolved to raise the anti-sleaze banner against Douglas Hogg, but he seems to have run away already. Of course, by-elections may alter the equation, but otherwise I should be interested to hear any suggestions.

Tim Ireland, incidentally, has done Nadine Dorries up like a kipper.


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32 thoughts on “Where to Stand?

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  • mary

    Please Craig. Glasgow North East. I and I am sure others will help to fund you.

  • William Blakes Ghost

    If you are going to address moral laxity and the low quality of our MPs, go to the heart of it. You must stand in Kirkcaldy and Cowdenbeath.

  • Strategist

    But does Glasgow NE pass the bookshop test?

    This is a tough question, but a few quick thoughts, free & without charge.

    I think really you have to stand against a New Labour incumbent than a sleazy Tory. Someone who is in the Government or was at the time of whatever has upset us most other than expenses during this parliament. At the end of the day, the Gen Elec is not solely about MPs’ expenses??

    Also, be realistic, you won’t get too many votes. So it’s got to be a marginal on a bit of a knife edge where the main parties are pouring in the resources and the votes you get will make a mess of their careful calculations and triangulations.

    Is it looking like Jacqui Smith in Redditch? Could be, but has it got a bookshop??? Yes it has! http://www.touchlocal.com/nat/c-218-t-20132-Bookshops-Redditch

  • Strategist

    Or how about Tessa Jowell in Dulwich & West Norwood?

    She may be out of the MPs’ allowances scandal, but only because she used mafia money to pay off her mortgage??

  • delboy711

    I have always wondered why you have never got closer to the LibDems? In previous posts you have revealed you vote LibDem when living in England, and that you have campaigned for LibDems alongside Clement Freud in the past.

    I would have thought they would be delighted to have you as a candidate.

    My dream government would have Vince Cable as Chancellor and Craig Murray as Foreign Secretary.

    Sadly it is likely to remain just a dream.

  • RM

    Stand for the Green Party, Craig! We agree with you on all the major issues and can provide support. Keep up the good work!

  • Ruth

    May be you should direct your search into an area where you get a lot of your support from on this blog because you’d need help canvasing etc. Both major parties would be doing their best to keep you out

  • johnny anomaly

    It would be better to stand in a marginal where you can affect the result. As far as cabinet members go, this means Jackboots or Darling.

    I believe they have bookshops in Edinburgh.

  • Tim Ireland

    Good idea, doing a poll of readers. But perhaps choose a few marginals first and then do a poll to see where you can get more campaigners on the streets.

    PS – I totally understand your reasons for taking on Straw last time, but this time, ideally, it should be closer to where you live. IMHO.

  • johnny anomaly

    Google comes up with a massive two bookshops in Salford (Blackwell’s and a place called Cathedral Books).

    Of course you could nip over the border into the world’s greatest city where there is a bloody great big Waterstones on Deansgate.

    P.S. I’ll hold her, you hit her.

  • johnny anomaly

    Two others closer to home:

    Barbara Follett in Stevenage

    Tessa Jowell in Dulwich and West Norwood

  • Dr Nasir Ali

    Dear Craig

    I think it is the right time to emphasize the nature of British Democracy and what needs to change if we are ever going to be able to call it a true democracy. Just changing the culture of Parliament and reform of expenses is not going to get us anywhere with regard to honest and rational governance.

    I think we need to make the facts below prominent on as many Blogs as possible. If there is any chance that things might change and this country become more democratic, this is the time to do something about it.


    At least since 1945 no British Government has been elected with a majority of all the votes cast:

    Date of election Winning Party % Vote cast % Parliament %Turnout

    Thu 5th July 1945 Labour 48.1 62 72.6

    Thu 23rd Feb 1950 Labour 46.2 50 83.6

    Thu 25th Oct 1951 Tory 48 51 81.9

    Thu 26th May 1955 Tory 49.7 55 76.8

    Thu 8th Oct 1959 Tory 49.3 58 78.7

    Thu 15th Oct 1964 Labour 44.1 50 77.1

    Thu 31st Mar 1966 Labour 47.6 58 75.8

    Thu 18th June 1970 Tory 46.0 52 72.0

    Thu 28th Feb 1974 Labour minority Gov 37.2 47 78.8

    Thu 10th Oct 1974 Labour 39.3 50 72.8

    Thu 3rd May 1979 Tory 43.9 53 76.0

    Thu 9th June 1983 Tory 42.4 61 72.7

    Thu 11th June 1987 Tory 42.2 58 75.3

    Thu 9th April 1992 Tory 41.9 52 77.7

    Thu 1st May 1997 Labour 43.2 63 71.3

    Thu 7th June 2001 Labour 40.7 63 59.4

    Thu 5th May 2005 Labour 35.2 55 61.4

    You will notice that even the Blair Government with the thumping majority was elected with only 43.2 % of the votes cast out of a total of 71.3 % turnout!

    Once a government has been elected, the party of government then rules with the Prime Minister deciding how the MPs will vote. On all important matters there is 3-line whip and any member of Parliament who dares to vote against the wishes of the PM will have to face sanctions.

    So, first of all we have a government elected by a MINORITY OF VOTES CAST and then the MPs vote as the PM directs them.

    Is it democracy?


    The majority of voters never see a government of those they voted for.

    Unfortunately the table doesn’t come out as very readable when posted as a comment. If you agree with the sentiment perhaps you would format it and upload.

  • Ruth

    I’d be really grateful if you’d come and oust the incumbent MP in Mid Sussex, Nicholas Soames. It will be a heavy task but I’m sure when people realise their MP is deputy chairman of a mercenary company with the CEO, Tim Spicer, implicated in a variety of human rights abuses around the globe, they would much rather have someone above board.

  • Vronsky

    Labour would be delighted to have you stand somewhere in Scotland where you might prevent the SNP taking a seat from them. A similar argument applies in Wales – so if you stand it must be in England. I’d suggest a Labour seat where defeating Labour would mean passing it to the Tories, and it could be surmised that the local electorate would hesitate at that.

    Don’t underestimate the obstinacy of the Labour vote in their traditional areas – I heard vox pop on TV from Springburn where the locals are saying they’ll still vote Labour. They’ll still be voting Labour when the gas chambers are being built at the end of the street. Sometimes, one can see how things happen.

  • Frazer

    Ye Gods….again…thought you had enough of that after Blackburn…never mind ..if you decide to stand, I will quit over here in Africa and come back to UK to give you a hand ! Sounds much more fun ! PS..I know where we can get our hands on a second hand fire engine !

  • Craig

    Vronsky –

    I agree 100%. I won’t stand in Scotland because I may detract from the SNP vote. In England, I need to be sure that where I do stand, I will improve rather than damage the prospects of a good person getting in.

  • Stevie

    If you choose any of the Teesside consituencies I could possibly help with accommodation, etc. Surrounding Labour MPs include Stewart Bell, Dari Taylor, Ashok Kumar, Alan Milburn…

  • Eddie

    Definitely Salford – if Hazel isn’t deselected and fights on.

    One I’d love personally – Gove in Surrey Heath. I loved that link you posted about the elephant lamps, and he plays to your strengths in that he’s both a trougher, and an uncivil antilibertarian. I’d love to see the two of you debate terror alerts and the clash of civilisations.

    However, the Lib Dems have previously been pretty strong in Surrey Heath, so perhaps they have the “clean hands” angle covered. I can dream.

  • MJ

    Why not stand in your own, or an adjacent, constituency? The electorate tends to prefer local candidates. Also you wouldn’t have to claim second home allowance.

  • David Salgado

    +1 for standing against Tessa Jowell in Dulwich & West Norwood. I’m so desperate to get rid of her than I’m even thinking of voting Conservative 🙁

  • Abe Rene

    If you are standing purely to spoil the chances of a bad person being elected, that is one thing, but if you wish to be a proper MP, what policies will you stand for? Also, will your having antagonised many politicians in the past affect your ability to intervene on behalf of constituents?

  • Richard Gadsden

    +1 for standing against Tessa Jowell in Dulwich & West Norwood.

    There are likely to be plenty of other anti-sleaze campaigners letting the Telegraph pick their targets for them, so it would be good to get someone up against one of the sleazemongers they missed.

    I’d suggest making sure that you won’t hurt a real opponent, but in D&WN you’ll bring sleaze into the election which should help anti-Labour campaigners rather than hurting them.

  • Vronsky

    Let us know if you really are going to stand. I’m an experienced pavement soldier and wouldn’t mind giving you some time. I’m a whizz with computers, too. Oh, for fuck’s sake – we all want you to go for it!

    So pick somewhere with your decent bookshop and (for the rest of us) a good real ale pub. These are the difficult criteria – finding a constituency with a corrupt MP is less challenging.

  • Stuart

    Oh god Craig not again! North Norfolk is the place you have history and contacts. Good bookshops and pubs and most of all intelligent people who have political awareness and probably sympathy for some of your views. Just dont go on an anti sleaze ticket only. go for something popular on top. Reform of human rights act (rights for the deserving also rights for victims)the justice system and the police. People are worried about fairness protection and justice. All the things that this scum bag government is against. If you come across as a green liberal in Norfolk you wont get the popular vote.You can be fair and tough thats all the people want.

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