Ed Lines

I GOT the call last week. Was I interested in throwing my hat in the ring and having a run at Dewsbury and Mirfield as an independent?

After all of about three seconds’ reflection, I said that I’d rather eat my own liver – and I hate even being in the same room as liver.

With each passing call to polling stations, I despair more and more of modern political discourse.

I haven’t quite taken to putting a clothes peg on my nose before I leave the house in the morning, but the rank stench of each passing day’s hysterical diet of ministerial manure is enough to make you gag.

Did you ever play that simplest of parent-child games, where you lay your palm flat on a table? The next person puts their’s on top of yours … then the next, and next, pulling your bottom hand to take its place atop the pile, all the time speeding up until you get a wild flapping of slapping hands and everyone laughing?

That’s the 2017 General Election, with lies and hateful screams replacing hands and family laughter.

I will vote because I always do, but as I walk into my polling station I’ll reflect that I wouldn’t blame the people of Britain for staying home, switching on the telly instead and watching anything but the news.

We’re told this is a general election of stratospheric import. Some of the rubbish being fertilised in public about is out of this world, that’s for sure.

I found Theresa May’s tub-thumping attack on Brussels on Wednesday quite unstatesmanlike and unnecessary. Don’t descend to their level, Prime Minister.

If that was a strategic error, at least it didn’t plumb the depths that poisonously stupid bigot Diane Abbott mined the day before.

You wouldn’t trust that woman to change the loo rolls in the Westminster ladies room without redecorating the walls. It would be somebody else’s fault though.

But it isn’t just in matters of great state where the desperate Labour survivalists have hit the ground crawling.

Should Paula Sherriff and Tracy Brabin hold their local seats then The Press will offer the same even-handed platform we always have.

Both have been busy, active, committed MPs during their respectively short times in the post, certainly far more than Simon Reevell and Mike Wood were.

Two thumbs up.

Labour were busy on the local stump this week promising to keep the A&E departments at Dewsbury and Huddersfield open, blaming the changes in the NHS on Tory policies.

That’s so misleadingly simplistic.

No mention of Gordon Brown’s ruinous Private Finance Initiative ladies? The Wonga-loan PFI which bought ‘us’ £311 million-worth of new Pinderfields and Pontefract buildings, and which the Trust will be paying off on punitive terms for another 30 years?

But hey it’s politics and Labour are understandably desperate.

From Abbott’s 10,000 coppers to Corbyn’s £10 minimum wage, and probably a half a dozen extra Bank Holidays before they’ve done, no ridiculous promise is too extravagant.

That’s not what got up my nose this week though. That belonged to a ‘favour’ the Yorkshire and Humber Labour Party really didn’t do for Ms Brabin and Miss Sherriff.

The media were invited to the NHS launch. We went. For some reason however the invite didn’t arrive for their joint event with Shadow Foreign Secretary Emily ‘I hate white van man’ Thornberry. Look at the photo above and you can see why.

I’m not sure Thornberry speaks Urdu or Punjabi.

Maybe just the sight of female politicians kowtowing over Palestine and Kashmir was body language proof enough to secure the Muslim vote.

This election is about Brexit, apparently. Not at that meeting, I can assure you.

Dewsbury A&E? The price of bread, beer or even popadums? Guaranteed rights for EU residents? Nope. Nothing of the sort.

This was the two-faced politics of Shahid Malik and which those women probably thought they’d gotten away with, until some bright spark tweeted that photo out.

I don’t think Sheikh Yakub Munshi checks his tweets while chairing Savile Town’s sharia court, and the drug dealers who are switched on to social media aren’t really Brabin/Sherriff’s audience.

But thanks anyway Labour, for letting us know where our MPs – for now at least – stand.

I can imagine their reply – that these are legitimate concerns of the largest single bloc of Dewsbury and Batley voters.

Really? So why didn’t you invite the media?


I’M told that Beth Prescott, the Tory candidate to take on Paul Sherriff in Dewsbury and Mirfield, is aged 24.

She looks like someone needs to hold her hand across the road, which I’m sure says far more about me than about a young political go-getter who stood against Yvette Cooper in Pontefract and Castleford in 2015.

The lass is local at least, and I have to admit being tickled by the news that she is an evangelistic Christian.

How will that play in Savile Town? I don’t know, maybe she might even get some respect for having religious principles, which is more than can be said for most politicians. The Lib Dems’ bible-bashing leader Tim Farron swiftly bent over – so to speak – for his botty smacking by the Gay zealots when challenged over his thoughts on homosexuality.

I have deep reservations about an MP with so little life experience. Professional politicians, which Miss Prescott is clearly intent upon being, have so little to offer – except perhaps youth and energy, something I certainly no longer have for this sullied bear pit.

May the best woman win.


I’VE heard some bad Irish jokes over the years, but the one doing the rounds about changes to athletic’s list of world records takes the Guinness.

The comedian in question is Pierce O’Callaghan, a one-time Irish athlete whose victories were confined to grassy meadows in County Kilkenny and who subsequently carved a jobsworth career in sports bureaucracy.

His bright idea is to erase great athletes like Jonathan Edwards, Colin Jackson and Paula Radcliffe from the history of athletic world records, because they were won at the time East Germany and the Soviet Union (among others) were raising young sportsmen and women on a diet of anabolic steroids and amphetamines.

And our good guys still beat them? Don’t wipe out the records, gild them and award their holders mythic status!

Of all sports, world athletics regularly shows the readiest propensity for tripping over its own feet.

It is led by Sebastian Coe, who in terms of sport-turned-politics is Pierce O’Callaghan on steroids.

Coe is not the brightest penny in the piggy bank but as in so many fields of endeavour success is measured by who you know, not what you know.

Based on this flawed slice of PC madness, look forward to Jack Nicklaus losing his Masters and Open victories because it couldn’t be proved that players weren’t regularly marking their balls wrong on the green, and Manchester United being stripped of the 1968 European Cup because Bobby Charlton’s comb-over was used to deliberately distract the Benfica players...

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