The Harrogate Agenda: The Wife Test

Many of us gathered yesterday at a conference centre in Leamington Spa for the follow up meeting to ratify The Harrogate Agenda; I need not cover the contents as it has been more than adequately covered by Autonomous Mind, what remains unsaid will be revealed in short enough a time to all.

It was 9.30 by the time I got back from the meeting and, with a young family waiting and a wife who had lost her husband for a third weekend in a row* there was obvious interest in why I had spent a lot of money and time travelling to random towns to sit in hotels and talk for hours on end.

So I showed her the draft pamphlet with our six demands.

And these are her observations:

Observation 1. My wife is a very clever lady - a science teacher of several years, but she will be the first to admit that she hates reading; beyond the bible and her text books when preparing or studying for lectures she avoids it like the plague, maybe managing 1 book a year if the mood takes her, so getting her to read a 30 page pamphlet was just not going to fly - will need to be shorter and punchier if it is to appeal to the "man in the pub". Probably more visual too.

Observation 2.
"So your grand idea is to let everyone do what they want regardless of the consequences?" "What?!?" "This but here: pt.1 talking all about sovereignty..."

pt1. deals with individual sovereignty and whilst I understand it to mean that we are ultimately the masters in our relationship with the state and that our demands make this implicit notion (well to most of us) explicit; for the record we are not inviting anarchy to reign, merely that the mechanisms in society be firmly in our grasp rather than a self-selecting elite.

Observation 3.
"ye gods you expect people to turn up to multiple referendum on every piece of legislation?" "No sweetheart that's not what pt.4 actually means and you can read about what it means on page..." "Sod that give me the abridged version." "Okay well [here follows a 5 minute dissertation on the difference in negative and positive ascension of laws, statutes and treaties in parliament and our proposed changes]" "sorry I kind of zoned out there, can I finish watching Transformers 2 now?

Definitely need to make this point visually and as simple as possible.

There would probably be more but sadly Optimus Prime had jus risen from the robot-dead and was kicking ass so had to leave it there.

But it is a good start to getting a view external to our talking shop.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad


Albert The Anaconda

So old Billy Hague has been given a monumental kick-in by the MSM and bloggers alike...over a stuffed snake; it's as if we have descended into an episode of Yes Minister.

As the FoI request shows this is a historic snake; it was given to Colonial Secretary in the 19th Century and represents a piece of history; I believe we need to preserve artefacts like this for all our benefits and wonder if the simplest solution to this embarassing problem is to ask for donations to Alberts upkeep? Am sure Billy can set up a Just Giving account?