Simon Carr:

The Sketch: It's not metaphorical: these people need an elephant in the room

Share
Related Topics

The new politics in action. A friend of mine has a friend who went out for a drink with a parliamentary candidate for one of the three main parties. The next day, the candidate sent her a photograph of his genitals.

She does not want to get dragged into this. I have the name of the candidate but not the photo. Surely it can't be the only time he's practised this form of constituency outreach.

So may I make this unusual appeal to readers of the Sketch. If any of you have been sent a photograph of a parliamentary candidate's genitals, will you kindly forward it to simon@sketch.sc, and we'll see what he has to say about it.

Which party? Is he a conservative with a small C? A democrat with a big D? Or one of Gordon's lot labouring under a massive misapprehension? So far, my lips are sealed.

But now, on to the serious politics. "Go over there! Sit down! Stand up!" The organiser of the Independent Network dealt with his franchise-holders in quite a dictatorial way yesterday, we couldn't help noticing. But they were also quite obedient, for free spirits. One of them turned out to be the whip for the Independent Whip for Cheshire East council. He said he never did anything.

There were 50-odd civilians who got through the checks, and were standing for Parliament, pledging to uphold the Bell principles. There are 15 main ones because Martin Bell portmanteau'd all the Nolan ones in there as well.

They are really the B'Nolanell principles which sounds like a despairing English profanity at all the integrity, selflessness, leadership and objectivity they're supposed to do.

"No professional politicians here!" Martin declared proudly. He said the Network wasn't a machine so much as "a contraption" and that it had no policies, structure or leader. It's not what you'd call politics but that is the point.

There's Denny de la Haye (Hackney South) who's going to share his vote with his 70,000 constituents. He has hair he can sit on and doesn't look like a politician at all. "None of us do," said Paul Edwards.

Paul certainly did, and I said so before asking what his profession was. He's the leader of the Independents on Cheshire council. There is some clever definition of "professional politician" in the Network.

Graeme Quar has his vision, mission and values statement for Meon Valley. "Vote for me, I live next door!"

There's glamour-pants Alice Sakura Dartnell, whose fifth-generation Gravesend voice goes straight to my heart. "Sakura means cherry blossom which is symbolic of Samurai who have to suffer kamikaze," she explained and added: "My mum's Japanese." Vote for Alice! (She'd vote for you.)

Stephane Timdane could get a hall going, I suspect, there's a fire in his eyes when he talks about abolishing the tolls on the Dartford tunnel. And Mike Parsons is standing for Gwyneth Dunwoody's old seat (Crewe and Nantwich) on public services for the vulnerable. "For them or against?" He thought about that and said, "For."

Good luck to them all, but the odds aren't good, even though the independent vote has gone up to 144,000. They need a thing, a visual aid if they are to achieve recall. A white suit isn't enough.

I'd recommend an elephant. They should campaign with elephants. I was going to say a volcano to make it topical but a good volcano isn't portable enough. And there's the lava. But elephants are popular, likeable and transparent. Well, two out of three isn't bad.

twitter.com/simonsketch

React Now

Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Home Care / Support Workers

£7 - £10 per hour: Recruitment Genius: This care provider is looking for Home ...

Recruitment Genius: Web Team Leader

£30000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: One of the UK's leading web des...

Recruitment Genius: Client Manager

£27000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A growing, successful, friendly...

Recruitment Genius: Property Negotiator - OTE £20,000+

£16000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This family owned, independent ...

Day In a Page

Read Next
Separate lives: Boston’s streets illustrate the divide between the town’s communities  

Migrants have far more to offer than hard work and wealth creation, yet too many exist in isolation from the rest of society

Emily Dugan
Harper Lee's To Kill a Mockingbird has sold 40 million copies  

Go Set a Watchman: Harper Lee’s new novel is more than just a literary event

Joseph Charlton
Greece says 'No': A night of huge celebrations in Athens as voters decisively back Tsipras and his anti-austerity stance in historic referendum

Greece referendum

Greeks say 'No' to austerity and plunge Europe into crisis
Ten years after the 7/7 terror attacks, is Britain an altered state?

7/7 bombings anniversary

Ten years after the terror attacks, is Britain an altered state?
Beautiful evening dresses are some of the loveliest Donatella has created

Versace haute couture review

Beautiful evening dresses are some of the loveliest Donatella has ever created
No hope and no jobs, so Gaza's young risk their lives, climb the fence and run for it

No hope and no jobs in Gaza

So the young risk their lives and run for it
Fashion apps: Retailers roll together shopping and social networking for mobile customers

Fashion apps

Retailers roll together shopping and social networking for mobile customers
The Greek referendum exposes a gaping hole at the heart of the European Union – its distinct lack of any genuine popular legitimacy

Gaping hole at the heart of the European Union

Treatment of Greece has shown up a lack of genuine legitimacy
Number of young homeless in Britain 'more than three times the official figures'

'Everything changed when I went to the hostel'

Number of young homeless people in Britain is 'more than three times the official figures'
Compton Cricket Club

Compton Cricket Club

Portraits of LA cricketers from notorious suburb to be displayed in London
London now the global money-laundering centre for the drug trade, says crime expert

Wlecome to London, drug money-laundering centre for the world

'Mexico is its heart and London is its head'
The Buddhist temple minutes from Centre Court that helps a winner keep on winning

The Buddhist temple minutes from Centre Court

It helps a winner keep on winning
Is this the future of flying: battery-powered planes made of plastic, and without flight decks?

Is this the future of flying?

Battery-powered planes made of plastic, and without flight decks
Isis are barbarians – but the Caliphate is a dream at the heart of all Muslim traditions

Isis are barbarians

but the Caliphate is an ancient Muslim ideal
The Brink's-Mat curse strikes again: three tons of stolen gold that brought only grief

Curse of Brink's Mat strikes again

Death of John 'Goldfinger' Palmer the latest killing related to 1983 heist
Greece debt crisis: 'The ministers talk to us about miracles' – why Greeks are cynical ahead of the bailout referendum

'The ministers talk to us about miracles'

Why Greeks are cynical ahead of the bailout referendum
Call of the wild: How science is learning to decode the way animals communicate

Call of the wild

How science is learning to decode the way animals communicate