Friday, April 29, 2005

The Power of Positive Thinking

Just prior to the announcement of the General Election the leaders of a particular political party wrote to me with an interesting question

‘Stef, We’re in a bit of a bind over here at Conservative Central Office. You see we don’t actually want to win the next election. What with the collapsing national infrastructure, the unprecendented levels of personal debt, bubbles in the housing and stock market, involvement in a costly and unpopular overseas war, rising drug addiction and violent crime, a pisspoor education system, a collapse in industry that means we have nothing to left export other than military force, and all the other stuff, we don’t fancy the prospect of taking over very much. The problem is that Tony Blair is such an arse and is responsible for so many rank things we’re not sure that we’ll be able to successfully lose next time. What do you think we should do?’

Easy peasy lemon squeezy. I sent them my patented five point Guide to Successfully Betraying Your Country by not Presenting a Credible Opposition and they seem to be following it quite closely.

  1. Avoid all positive campaigning.
  2. Develop punchy slogans covering sensitive issues such as immigration that leave even people who are concerned about those issues feeling like they need a shower after hearing them
  3. Take exactly the same position as Tony Blair on all keys issues that people of conscience disagree with him on.
  4. Concentrate your campaigning on a minority of single issue voters in such a way that you win half of their votes whilst pissing off everyone else
  5. Ensure that all publicity material is illustrated with pictures of local candidates looking as smug, self-satisfied and as oily as possible

It’s working a treat isn’t it.


Anonymous said...

Don't forget Balloons, it ain't an election without them ;)

Stef said...

Absolutely - that party atmosphere makes all the difference.
PS Am approving highly of your latest stream of photos on Flickr
It's getting so I don't have to bother taking my camera with me these days

Anonymous said...

Cheers mate, although to be honest I'm not fit enough to carry your camera bag (and no I'm not offering either). Without your photos I wouldn't have got a visa, hard hat and flak vest and ventured into South London. Your stuff is always VERY inspiring for me, probably the best I've BS!. Keep taking them Stef.


David said...

Europe has the say on many big issues now, but I do agree on the remaining ones there's about an 80% overlap between the Tories and Labour.

This bit is my own choice but believe it's a popular one, if the UKIP had the money of the other two parties, I reckon they reflect enough people's views and are different enough from them that they would do pretty well if people expected them to get in. As long as we remain in the EU many mistakes and revolutions we do have won't be made by anyone we voted for. And I happen to like many of their other policies now they've finally decided to write some.

Stef said...


Isn't it funny how both UKIP and The Greens share a Euro sceptical position? Strange times make for strange bedfellows.

I had a spin on this site

which indicated that I should probably vote Liberal or Green but UKIP wasn't too far behind. The two main parties didn't register at all.

Not much chance of my views being reflected in the next election is there? I'd say that's true for a very large number of people. Neither of the main political parties are truly representative and they're shagging all of us by ensuring that there is no real choice on the table.

I've said this before but the issues facing us; globalisation, the environment, the rise of corporatism, the suppression of civil liberties, are no longer about Left or Right but our political system pretends that they still are. A large proportion of the population are dumb enough to play along.

Stef said...


Thanks for the kind words.

I like your photos a lot. That's probably something to do with you having a similar 'eye' to mine so I'm probably biased.

Re. the Street Walking thing. I tend to do it in company. The guy I normally do 'it' with, Ian, is beginning to get tired of London photographically. We're both a lot less active than we were last year. Once you've covered top spots like North Southwark, Hackney and a few others it does start to all look the same.

Right now, I can hear a May Day march forming up in Kennington Park and I'm thinking 'Been there. Done that'. I'll probably have a cup of tea instead.

Summer's almost here though and maybe the juices will return. Or maybe we'll tackle London from a different angle. After all, Life without picture taking? Never

Anonymous said...

Cheers mate, although I hope you haven't got the same eye as me, you'd be blind as a bat.

My view on taking photos is like my attitude to pissing, I can't always do it when others are watching, or to put it another way I take the worlds worse photos if I'm with another 'non-photographer', usually women who perfer shopping etc (bless them).
I guess (select pseudo-babble mode) when I take photos on my own I tend to get into photo mode (I find the same thing in art as well), I just concentrate on photos...nothing else (well apart from traffic, otherwise I'd be dog's meat in London). I guess this is why south London is good, as there's no CDs shops or expensive secondhand book shops to distract me (or if there is I haven't found them yet).

Funny you should mention the May day march, i did think you'd be tempted, but going by your previous comments it might be all the same old faces.

It's good to hear you're not hanging up your camera :)


Stef said...


Have the same problem taking photos in company but long walks through familiar terrain can get boring on your own - plus you get less hassle in you're in company. Working in pairs suits me. Though I rarely inflict that on the other half and tend to go in snap mode when with herself ...

Anonymous said...

Ah...a foreground slave as I prefer to call them *puts feminist hard hat on* at will! ;)

Anonymous said...

As rank as James Brokenshire and his campain flyer clearly are, he won the seat from Labour! are the good people of Hornchurch mad!

Stef said...

Not mad - probably just more desperate to be rid of TB than some others

The BBC actually covered his count on the night - his voice was suprisingly deeper than his photo would suggest. It did sound like his balls had actually dropped.