All over the BritPolitBlogosphere there have been recent rumblings. These noises off may be either or both:
- reactions to the nonsense from Sky about the “most fanciable MP”;
- acid reflux in disgust at the context and the chosen ten.
The inclusion of one body rankles: Lynn Featherstone, the low-rent Penelope Pitstop of North London politics. She is mainly celebrated for her self-celebrity and her last-minute £11,000 raid on the Commons stationery-cupboard.
This is the lady who, days after being elected, waxed lyrical to the local Press that she had been left in charge of the LibDim Treasury response to the Budget. Not. One looks in vain for any contribution from her to the Debate.
Then, when the LibDim leadership became vacant, she again had an announcement: despite approaches, she was not herself a candidate. One searches for a second LibDem MP, however LibDim, who thought she might conceivably qualify. In one possessed of the usual number of brain-cells, it might all be construed as self-mockery. That, however, severely over-rates Our Lass.
Then she was “running”, yet again, a leadership-contender’s campaign. Result: abject failure.
Ms Featherstone has made hardly a smudge-mark on being a Parliamentary presence. Her talents have been rewarded with a place as “youth and equality spokesperson” in Nick Clegg’s gang of everyone: she is listed 71st out of 77 names in the Liberal Democrat Shadow Ministerial Team. Let it be recalled that there are just 62 LibDem MPs.
So what is her “attraction”?
In which context, North London has a down-home version of a political feud. Peter Forrest, the Dick Dastardly of this piece, Mr Perpetual Tory Candidate and hardly scratching along himself, repeatedly and repetitively (in letters columns and anonymously on the Web) points out that Ms Featherstone:
is a multi-million heiress with family money coming from the Ryness chain of hardware and electrical shops.
Malcolm finds a warm cockle in his heart to applaud Mr Forrest in his solo-pursuit. It is a domestic version of one of those epics from the past, the National Theatre of Brent re-enacting that celebrated exchange:
Herbie Morrison (twittering): Nye [Bevan]‘s problem is he’s his own worst enemy.
Ernie Bevin (harrumphing): Not while I’m alive he’s not.
Some of the Featherstone lucre went to finance her heavy self-promotion and self-inflation. This filled recycle bins across the Hornsey and Wood Green Constituency in the long months before the last General Election. Things have gone quieter since, though another outbreak occurred in the non-Election frenzy of last autumn.
Her cult-of-personality is of heroic, Stalinist proportions. Malcolm was so exercised by this freakish narcissism that he counted, in one four page tabloid throw-away, the name “Lynn Featherstone” appearing some half-dozen times more than that of “Jesus Christ” in the entire Four Gospels and Acts of the Apostles put together.
Malcolm could never bring himself to vote LibDem (for him, it is the political equivalent of trying to get squiffy on alcohol-free Lambrusco). However, he has feelings for those who do: they surely deserve someone better than Ms Featherhead.