Race Report: Election Candidates. Sunday 17 July 2022
The Election Candidates trolleyed their policy boats, immediately axle-deep in
fetid, mud-green sludge and sleaze, onto a de-oxygenated riverbed.
Could there possibly be a clean start – or was it a sign of much more mud-
slinging to come?
The wind of change was in the air: a hot and strong Westerly.
Late on the scene, delayed by the ruthless routing-out all other contenders,
the 1922 Committee Safety Boat with James and Nikita onboard, agreed with
the OOD it was a perfect day for long and selection-testing questions on an’
A’ for Politically Correct Answers course with the downstream buoy at the
SGSC ramp and upstream at the Bell & Crown – with even the possibility of
Round the Island, if anyone had a new idea to offer.
Three Lasers stood up first for Questions.
Rob, the “No Fairy Tale” [NFT] candidate was followed by Keith, “Mainstream
Tacks Policy” [MTP], and then by John, determinedly both standing and
sitting for a traditional: “Blood, Sweat, Toil & Tears” [BST&T] policy. They
were followed by Chris and Felicia, who were claiming the votes for:
“Diversity & Gender Balance” [DGB].
All four then found that the fresh hot wind, almost from the start, was dying
out. So politically which way to go?
All were certain that taxing to the Left, while tacking to the Right would be a
sure race winner. Only Keith [MTP] stuck to the mid-channel position with
minor adjustments, fine-tuning his policy-trimming, taxing this way and then
axing taxing that.
But they all struggled to get as far as the grid, where they were all becalmed.
Oliver’s Island, representing the Great British Public [GBP] with its tall bulk of
trees, had stubbornly blocked a slight shift in wind to the South-West – and
refused to allow the fresh breeze of honest public opinion to take any interest
at all in the squabbling and argumentative in-fighting that was now breaking
out amongst these racing Election Candidates.
Whose: “Broken promise” to give way had left a bitter taste? Who was the:
“Snake from behind” who had found that tiny nudge of wind to get ahead and
spoil the fact they were: “Ready to lead”? Where had the ambition to “Get
things done” found that their path to victory was obstructed and unachievable?

What had their experience of: “Serving on the front line” all
been for? They were all obviously now deeply: “In The Thick Of It.”
But John, [Blood, Sweat, Toil & Tears], was certain that now was exactly the
right moment to: “Hit the ground running”. And he did so. Literally.
Dramatically shifting tack to go inside the grid, his centreboard struck the
timbers – and he both broke off a chunk of fibreglass, and nearly broke a
thumb; leaving a smear of blood that could potentially be a good clue for a
future role in Death in Paradise, should he need a post-political career?
The 1922 Committee went to see if [by some mysterious and secret means]
they could shift the position of the downstream buoy to enable a different kind
of voting, and a quicker outcome – and saw that there was a significant
breeze of journalistic investigation that meant they couldn’t. They retired to
moor for the duration in contemplation at the Bell & Crown.
At long last, Rob, [NFT], turned round the buoy and sped upstream on the
incoming tide with a determined: “Will to win”. He was followed by Chris and
Felicia [DBG], beautifully goose-winging their way to the votes they could see
for themselves with an: “Inclusive and united” policy.
Keith with his policy programme now clearly defined as: “Is he Left, is he
Right, is he Centre, is he Anything?” was delighted to find that his third place
for the first lap meant he was surely now on course for victory.
Only John [BST&T] found he was still backsliding in the opinion polls. Could
now be the right moment for the launch of his own excruciating video version
of: “I Vow to Thee My Country”, and get him round the course?
The normally watchful and attentive pub-side lobby groups of Political
Correspondents [PCs] and Special Advisers [SPADS] were more concerned
with raucously bellowing their own ideas to each other on Life, the Universe
and Everything – rather than anything to do with this contest.
So, what could this Election Candidates’ Devils’ Brew of conspiracy, bad
ideas, unbelievable strategies and unwavering self-interest produce from this
“A” for Answers course, other than a head aching-inducing and horridly-mixed
cocktail Cabinet?
Perhaps all of them deserve banishment to the 7th Circle of Hell. It is also
called the Hell of the Violent and the Bestial, very appropriately for the hottest
day of the year, as described in Cantos 12-17 of Dante Alighieri’s “Inferno”,
for sins of violence against neighbours, against themselves, and against God,
Nature, and Art – for failing to commit to Net Zero on climate change.

So, in absolutely no comparison, in our entirely innocent event, who would
turn out to be the ultimate Leader of this Leadership race that is perfectly
obviously and always: “Less about the Leader, more about the Ship”, – and is
never just a flotsam flotilla of fantasies.
And we now have an Answer!
Everyone eventually got round the course!
Rob [No Fairy Tale] completed three laps, as did Chris & Felicia [Diversity &
Gender Balance]. Keith [Mainstream Tacks Policy] completed two. And John,
[Blood, Sweat, Toil & Tears] persistently took a whole hour – and triumphantly
finally completed a lap.
So, on the day, everyone was a Winner!
All political and sailing sins of omission and commission were then
exonerated and forgiven and forgotten with South African Rooibos Tea and
Lemon Drizzle Cake.
But which of them is now actually the Leader?
OOD Andy Ross
17 July 2022