Do any of the major parties actually want to win this election? I only ask because Labour and the Tories seem to be engaged in their own private version of mutually assured destruction. Polls are notoriously inaccurate so should not be heeded too closely, like the drunk guy at the bar who tells you to put your house on a three-legged donkey in the 2.30 at Aintree. The Daily Fail could probably conjure up a survey which showed that 99 per cent of British people wanted to bring back hanging for foxes. But the Tories seem to believe the polls... and then panic if it looks like they're doing too well. Every time it appears they've put clear blue water between themselves and Labour, they contrive to commit political hari kari in the spectacular manner of a samurai who's just discovered the Black & Decker hedge trimmer. Not that I'm complaining, mind you - the whole debacle has been hugely entertaining.
First we had the apparently numerically dyslexic shadow chancellor who wouldn't know a decimal point from a beauty spot and whose shadow budget was billions out in its sums. It takes a certain amount of flair to be so ludicrously wrong all the time and still not actually admit you're an idiot. This is the man who is perilously close to getting his hands on all our money and I wouldn't trust him with a child's piggy bank. It's as if he was living in a parallel universe - the Cameron Zone, where balls-ups become triumphs and you harvest the rewards for incompetence. Maybe he should consider a job at RBS? Then, as if these golden gaffes were not enough, we had the glorious idiocy of the "We can't go on like this" election posters which somehow managed to make David Cameron look even more like a giant par-boiled baby than he does in real life. There have been suggestions that the posters were airbrushed, but I'm not so sure - he really is that smug. Then, when the tears of laughter from the general public had almost dried, the Tories blundered head first into the Ashcroft scandal.
Lord Ashcroft has by his own estimation funnelled over £10 million into the Tories' coffers. But they claim they only just found out he wasn't paying taxes here. Two possibilities immediately spring to mind - either they're lying or they're incompetent; neither are particularly enticing qualities in a prospective government. In fact, with such a disastrous campaign, the only reason they're still in the running is that Labour is now so punch drunk that it can't even take proper advantage. Labour is so mired in allegations of torture, deception and illegal warmongering that it's not a case of being unable to see the wood for the trees but rather not being able to see the effluent for the moral sewer into which it has sunk. David Miliband can't seem to make his mind up as to whether he's happier denying that he tortured Muslims or cosying up to Israel and the US - not that the too are mutually exclusive. As for the rest of the Cabinet, they seem to have disappeared up their own fundaments.
The allegations of Gordon Brown's temper tantrums last week have failed to have the damaging effect that his political enemies would have hoped for, mainly because his stock with the public has fallen so low that it actually makes him seem slightly more interesting and human. Bullying is nothing to joke about, but the evidence of such a claim doesn't really seem to stand up. Brown is alleged to have shouted at a few people after they made monumental cock-ups and punched a car seat in frustration. Sounds like an average night out for a lot of people. One thing however is clear - his envy and anger towards Tony Blair. Brown was probably secretly seething that he didn't get as many protesters as his former boss at his Chilcot appearance. You can just imagine him roaring at his aides: "Why does Tony always get all the publicity? I've killed people too you know!"