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politicalbetting.com » Blog Archive » In the 40 year since the Tories selected a woman LAB has ha

SystemSystem Posts: 3,967
edited August 2015 in General

imagepoliticalbetting.com » Blog Archive » In the 40 year since the Tories selected a woman LAB has had 8 male leaders and looks set to choose a 9th

It was in February 1975 that Tory MPs (there was no party member involvement in those days) made the momentous decision to choose a woman, Mrs Thatcher, as their leader to succeed Edward Heath.

Read the full story here


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Comments

  • SlackbladderSlackbladder Posts: 5,721
    As said on this weeks polling matters. there's a lot of labour party which is still sexist.
  • KingaKinga Posts: 59
    What a delightful bunch. They really do deserve each other.
  • SlackbladderSlackbladder Posts: 5,721
    Mind you, Cooper statement that she should get it 'because' she's a woman is without merit. Get the best person for the job and don't worry about anything else.
  • JosiasJessopJosiasJessop Posts: 18,176
    FPT:

    Mr. Jessop, madness, whether it fails or succeeds.

    But it is indicative of the fear many have of Corbyn winning.

    I don't know what the heck Harman's thinking. Miliband suffered from the very start from being seen (rightly or wrongly) as an illegitimate leader: elected not by the members or MPs, but the unions. It was the first layer of concrete around the boots of his leadership (or the first chisel mark on Ed Stone).

    Now, if Corbyn wins, he will be haunted by these allegations that he was elected by non-Labour supporters.

    If ABC win, the mysterious process by which voters were vetted and Harman's attempt will enrage the Corbyn camp;

    If the process is null and voided, the Corbyn camp will see it (perhaps rightly) as a shabby attempt to stop the 'wrong' person from winning.

    She'd have been better off just letting the process continue. The chances of the party pulling together behind whoever wins is very low now.
  • AlastairMeeksAlastairMeeks Posts: 18,063
    I'd love to see a picture of your full collection of political mugs, Mike. Your Coalition one is my favourite of the ones I've seen so far.
  • The Tory party was more progressive and less misogynystic in 1975 than the Labour Party in 2015.

    The Labour Party is also the party of Phil Woolas, so if you're not a white male it is a horrific place to be a member.
  • FinancierFinancier Posts: 3,916
    FPT

    Given an historic opportunity to pick its first woman leader, what does the party of fairness and equality do? It goes pine nuts over a 66-year-old bearded Trotskyist vegetarian whose first wife, Jane, left him because he spent every evening photocopying documents for the Labour Party, never took her out to dinner once in five years, and ate baked beans out of a can.

    Corbyn divorced his second wife, Claudia, because she refused to send their son to a failing London comprehensive, weirdly preferring a fantastic grammar school of exactly the sort that educated – guess who? – Jeremy Corbyn.

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/politics/labour/11809421/Liz-Kendall-is-the-only-candidate-who-could-tempt-me-to-vote-Labour-again.html
  • Morris_DancerMorris_Dancer Posts: 40,070
    Does the lack of a female leader matter?

    Backing someone because they have ovaries is ridiculous. Whoever's best (or least worst, in this case) should get the gig.

    I don't have a vote, but initially I would've probably gone Cooper-Kendall. Now, I'd probably just support Kendall. Cooper's idiotic "I have children and ovaries, you know. Boo hiss to white men" doesn't impress me.
  • Morris_DancerMorris_Dancer Posts: 40,070
    Mr. Financier, 47.4%, closest to Poland.
  • FinancierFinancier Posts: 3,916
    OGH

    Is it because that Labour is quite dominated (at least financially) by male Trades Union leaders - there have been/are lady union leaders but they tend not to be so dominant.
  • ydoethurydoethur Posts: 8,139

    FPT:

    Mr. Jessop, madness, whether it fails or succeeds.

    But it is indicative of the fear many have of Corbyn winning.

    I don't know what the heck Harman's thinking.
    This could of course be the issue right there.

    @Plato, thank you for those wonderful quotes by Jinnah. I shall cling on to them for GCSE results tomorrow (my first as Head of Department after a very difficult year). Jinnah was, from what little I know of him, a remarkable man. It's a real tragedy all around that he and the equally remarkable Nehru couldn't agree on some way to keep India together on independence.
  • SandpitSandpit Posts: 15,516
    Ouch! Hattie Hatemen isn't going to like this one being brought up again.

    Theresa May for next Tory leader, purely to spite the Feminists?
  • welshowlwelshowl Posts: 3,088
    Financier said:
    56.6% (nearest equivalent Belgium !)
  • MikeKMikeK Posts: 9,053
    Financier said:
    I'm a 46.9% European according to this quiz; almost a Bulgarian. Now theres the thing! :)
  • Huzzah I'm as British as rain and kebabs on a Friday night

    You are 47.0% European, and you scored closest to United Kingdom, with a similarity of 64.9%!
  • Morris_DancerMorris_Dancer Posts: 40,070
    Mr. K, I'm not sure the test is valid if a staunch UKIPper is almost at 50%.

    Mr. Sandpit, Priti Patel.
  • SandpitSandpit Posts: 15,516

    Mr. Sandpit, Priti Patel.

    Do you have a bet on her, by any chance..? ;)
  • MikeKMikeK Posts: 9,053

    Mr. K, I'm not sure the test is valid if a staunch UKIPper is almost at 50%.

    Mr. Sandpit, Priti Patel.

    ;)
  • Morris_DancerMorris_Dancer Posts: 40,070
    Mr. Sandpit, indeed.
  • SandpitSandpit Posts: 15,516
    edited August 2015

    Mr. Sandpit, indeed.

    And is it at 50/1? :tongue:
  • HurstLlamaHurstLlama Posts: 9,098
    Financier said:
    I am even more European with 49.2% and should go and live in the Netherlands apparently (which I wouldn't mind doing because I like the Cloggies and their way of life).
  • BannedInParisBannedInParis Posts: 1,650
    They're nasty people and they're using whatever tools come to hand.

    The Mary Creagh thing really does stand out, for example.
  • ydoethurydoethur Posts: 8,139

    Does the lack of a female leader matter?

    Backing someone because they have ovaries is ridiculous. Whoever's best (or least worst, in this case) should get the gig.

    I'd say it matters for 2 reasons:

    1) Labour pride themselves on being the party of equality. Being, in effect, fifty years behind the rivals they castigate for every crime under the sun including misogyny looks bad and hurts their image of themselves;

    2) As there are a large number of women in the Labour party, and have been now for two decades, it looks a bit odd that apparently not one of them is fit to be placed in the top two in the leader and possibly deputy leader contest. Is it because they are not very capable or is there something holding them back (the infamous 'glass ceiling')? Even if other people are like you and don't care, Labour will and it will cause prolonged naval gazing while they try and work out the answer.

    Of course, the most senior women in the Labour party have been Beckett (temporary leader and Foreign Secretary) Jacqui Smith (Home Secretary) Harriet Harman (twice temporary leader) and Yvette Cooper (Shadow Foreign Secretary and Shadow Home Secretary). None are exactly walking adverts for feminism.

    The fact that this contest from Cooper's point of view has largely revolved around her genitalia, her children and her husband is possibly the most damning indictment imaginable of how little she has actually achieved, but it also suggests, since nobody has been asking those questions of Burnham - not even about his expenses and his wife's threat to divorce him over them - suggests Labour (and the country perhaps?) have some way to go on the subject of sexual equality.
  • Morris_DancerMorris_Dancer Posts: 40,070
    Mr. Sandpit, I see someone's been paying attention.

    But I'm not wedded to her alone. Justine Greening's triumph would suit just as well.
  • madasafishmadasafish Posts: 659
    You are 48.5% European, and you scored closest to Netherlands, with a similarity of 64.9%!

    Hmm

    Comes of being an OAP I guess.

    The Tories have had a Jewish PM, a gay PM and a woman PM. Labour have had only men...
  • Sandpit said:

    Ouch! Hattie Hatemen isn't going to like this one being brought up again.

    Theresa May for next Tory leader, purely to spite the Feminists?

    Sajid Javid would be better.

    The Tories elect Muslims as leader, Labour uses Muslims to make white folk angry to win elections.

    Another contrast to the progressive Tories and nasty Labour
  • ydoethurydoethur Posts: 8,139

    Mr. Sandpit, I see someone's been paying attention.

    But I'm not wedded to her alone. Justine Greening's triumph would suit just as well.

    Mr Dancer, a warning that bigamy remains illegal in this country. Do not incriminate yourself :wink:
  • SandpitSandpit Posts: 15,516

    Sandpit said:

    Ouch! Hattie Hatemen isn't going to like this one being brought up again.

    Theresa May for next Tory leader, purely to spite the Feminists?

    Sajid Javid would be better.

    The Tories elect Muslims as leader, Labour uses Muslims to make white folk angry to win elections.

    Another contrast to the progressive Tories and nasty Labour
    I like that thinking too. First woman PM and first minority PM, would make the purveyors of nasty identity politics go absolutely nuts!
  • 45.2% - Slovakian!
  • david_herdsondavid_herdson Posts: 13,099
    I'd agree with Mike's assessment. Indeed, I'd go further. Labour has a greater tendency than the Tories not just to go for men, but to go for men who are white, middle-aged, middle-class, conventionally Christian, straight and married. Ed Miliband was something of an exception. Corbyn, apart from being older than most, is little different. I don't know about his religious views - I'd assume him agnostic or athiestic - but that's not out of the ordinary these days either.

    I stick by my prediction that the first openly gay leader of a UK party will lead the Tories, as will the first non-white (assuming you don't count Disraeli, whose Jewishness would have counted as non-white at the time).
  • SlackbladderSlackbladder Posts: 5,721
    50.9...66 British hell yeah!
  • ydoethurydoethur Posts: 8,139
    Sandpit said:

    Sandpit said:

    Ouch! Hattie Hatemen isn't going to like this one being brought up again.

    Theresa May for next Tory leader, purely to spite the Feminists?

    Sajid Javid would be better.

    The Tories elect Muslims as leader, Labour uses Muslims to make white folk angry to win elections.

    Another contrast to the progressive Tories and nasty Labour
    I like that thinking too. First woman PM and first minority PM, would make the purveyors of nasty identity politics go absolutely nuts!
    They've already had a PM from an ethnic minority. It's just that most people forget he is from one.
  • DisraeliDisraeli Posts: 1,106
    MikeK said:

    Financier said:
    I'm a 46.9% European according to this quiz; almost a Bulgarian. Now theres the thing! :)
    Yet the article says:
    "Bulgaria, Cyprus, Lithuania, Malta, Romania and Slovakia were excluded due to lack of sufficient data."
  • Sean_FSean_F Posts: 19,519
    I think Corbyn is favoured more because he's extremely left wing than because he's a man.
  • NickPalmerNickPalmer Posts: 9,830
    Obviously weirdos who use obscene language against women candidates are revolting, but there's a more serious point. I was talking to a lifelong feminist last night who was explicitly not voting for Cooper because she'd reportedly used the glass ceiling argument. "I want women to be treated with exactly the same respect as anyone else, as someone with equal judgment, and she thinks I should vote for her because we're both women? No way." She was considering voting Kendall "because she's got interesting ideas, not because she's a woman".

    The difficulty about that is the role model thing - if we never choose women leaders, women candidates for leader will always look to some as a bit of a risk. We've got over that for MPs, arguably thanks to AWS - only very eccentric voters would say, "I'm not voting for X as I think MPs should be men." So I'd like to see a woman leader (and it was a minor factor in choosing Jowell) - but the question of what they're like is more important.

  • OldKingColeOldKingCole Posts: 9,952

    Financier said:
    I am even more European with 49.2% and should go and live in the Netherlands apparently (which I wouldn't mind doing because I like the Cloggies and their way of life).
    53.2%. Belgian. Is that bedause I like beer, moules and frites? Or should I be offended.
  • ydoethurydoethur Posts: 8,139
    edited August 2015

    I'd agree with Mike's assessment. Indeed, I'd go further. Labour has a greater tendency than the Tories not just to go for men, but to go for men who are white, middle-aged, middle-class, conventionally Christian, straight and married. Ed Miliband was something of an exception. Corbyn, apart from being older than most, is little different. I don't know about his religious views - I'd assume him agnostic or athiestic - but that's not out of the ordinary these days either.

    I stick by my prediction that the first openly gay leader of a UK party will lead the Tories, as will the first non-white (assuming you don't count Disraeli, whose Jewishness would have counted as non-white at the time).

    Out of curiosity, has Labour ever had a leader who was unmarried? I can't think of one. I think their most senior more-or-less openly gay figure would be George Thomas?

    The Tories meanwhile have Heath, who was unmarried and who is of course embroiled in a current scandal (although we could argue all day about the merits of the case put forward so far) and Balfour never married (although I think was probably for other reasons, questions were also asked of him).
  • ydoethur said:

    I'd agree with Mike's assessment. Indeed, I'd go further. Labour has a greater tendency than the Tories not just to go for men, but to go for men who are white, middle-aged, middle-class, conventionally Christian, straight and married. Ed Miliband was something of an exception. Corbyn, apart from being older than most, is little different. I don't know about his religious views - I'd assume him agnostic or athiestic - but that's not out of the ordinary these days either.

    I stick by my prediction that the first openly gay leader of a UK party will lead the Tories, as will the first non-white (assuming you don't count Disraeli, whose Jewishness would have counted as non-white at the time).

    Out of curiosity, has Labour ever had a leader who was unmarried? I can't think of one. I think their most senior more-or-less openly gay figure would be George Thomas?

    The Tories meanwhile have questions swirling about Heath, and Balfour never married (although I think was probably for other reasons, questions were also asked of him).
    Peter Mandelson?

    Were Ben Bradshaw to become Deputy Leader then he might qualify
  • ydoethurydoethur Posts: 8,139

    ydoethur said:

    I'd agree with Mike's assessment. Indeed, I'd go further. Labour has a greater tendency than the Tories not just to go for men, but to go for men who are white, middle-aged, middle-class, conventionally Christian, straight and married. Ed Miliband was something of an exception. Corbyn, apart from being older than most, is little different. I don't know about his religious views - I'd assume him agnostic or athiestic - but that's not out of the ordinary these days either.

    I stick by my prediction that the first openly gay leader of a UK party will lead the Tories, as will the first non-white (assuming you don't count Disraeli, whose Jewishness would have counted as non-white at the time).

    Out of curiosity, has Labour ever had a leader who was unmarried? I can't think of one. I think their most senior more-or-less openly gay figure would be George Thomas?

    The Tories meanwhile have questions swirling about Heath, and Balfour never married (although I think was probably for other reasons, questions were also asked of him).
    Peter Mandelson?

    Were Ben Bradshaw to become Deputy Leader then he might qualify
    Whoops, yes. How could I possibly forget the Grand Vizier?
  • PulpstarPulpstar Posts: 42,097
    Anyone know if Gleneagles is likely to run in the Juddmonte ?

    Considering an e/w on Gatsby but if Glenegles is a NR it becomes a 7 runner.
  • SlackbladderSlackbladder Posts: 5,721

    Obviously weirdos who use obscene language against women candidates are revolting, but there's a more serious point. I was talking to a lifelong feminist last night who was explicitly not voting for Cooper because she'd reportedly used the glass ceiling argument. "I want women to be treated with exactly the same respect as anyone else, as someone with equal judgment, and she thinks I should vote for her because we're both women? No way." She was considering voting Kendall "because she's got interesting ideas, not because she's a woman".

    The difficulty about that is the role model thing - if we never choose women leaders, women candidates for leader will always look to some as a bit of a risk. We've got over that for MPs, arguably thanks to AWS - only very eccentric voters would say, "I'm not voting for X as I think MPs should be men." So I'd like to see a woman leader (and it was a minor factor in choosing Jowell) - but the question of what they're like is more important.

    Problem with AWS is that you get MPs which might just not be very good...and only get in the positions they are because of that.
  • AlastairMeeksAlastairMeeks Posts: 18,063
    Oh bloody hell, I'm apparently Belgian.
  • FinancierFinancier Posts: 3,916
    It can be quite difficult to assess many politicians unless you have met them informally as well as formally. That can be especially true of the ladies. I have been fortunate enough to have met Mrs T, Betty Boothroyd (who probably broke the mould for Speakers) and Mrs May. All were/are great thinkers in their own way and not afraid to stand up and be counted.

    Of the gang of four, I have met only Liz Kendal - she too is a thinker - but perhaps needs that few more years of experience to fulfill her potential.
  • PlatoPlato Posts: 15,724
    Given that Mary Riddell is normally a Everything Is Good For Labour sort of columnist, she really isn't happy. I await Jenni Russell returning from hols - her Times pieces were desperate when looking for positives in her BFF EdM. Shame she was the one who caused the whole two-kitchens meme in an ill-judged attempt to show he was normal...
    Financier said:

    FPT

    Given an historic opportunity to pick its first woman leader, what does the party of fairness and equality do? It goes pine nuts over a 66-year-old bearded Trotskyist vegetarian whose first wife, Jane, left him because he spent every evening photocopying documents for the Labour Party, never took her out to dinner once in five years, and ate baked beans out of a can.

    Corbyn divorced his second wife, Claudia, because she refused to send their son to a failing London comprehensive, weirdly preferring a fantastic grammar school of exactly the sort that educated – guess who? – Jeremy Corbyn.

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/politics/labour/11809421/Liz-Kendall-is-the-only-candidate-who-could-tempt-me-to-vote-Labour-again.html

  • ydoethurydoethur Posts: 8,139
    edited August 2015

    We've got over that for MPs, arguably thanks to AWS - only very eccentric voters would say, "I'm not voting for X as I think MPs should be men." So I'd like to see a woman leader (and it was a minor factor in choosing Jowell) - but the question of what they're like is more important.

    Problem with AWS is that you get MPs which might just not be very good...and only get in the positions they are because of that.
    It can also cost Labour seats they should be winning - Blaenau Gwent 2005 was the most extreme example, but there was also a suggestion that it cost them their chance of winning the Forest of Dean in the same election (a 30 year old unknown was parachuted in over the popular and long-serving leader and deputy leader of the council).

    There may have been other factors at play in both, but it is inconceivable that Law would have stood as an independent had the seat not been effectively swindled from him by an AWS. Moreover, he was so ill he might not have been selected anyway in a fair fight - even more of an own goal!
  • rottenboroughrottenborough Posts: 12,936

    ydoethur said:

    I'd agree with Mike's assessment. Indeed, I'd go further. Labour has a greater tendency than the Tories not just to go for men, but to go for men who are white, middle-aged, middle-class, conventionally Christian, straight and married. Ed Miliband was something of an exception. Corbyn, apart from being older than most, is little different. I don't know about his religious views - I'd assume him agnostic or athiestic - but that's not out of the ordinary these days either.

    I stick by my prediction that the first openly gay leader of a UK party will lead the Tories, as will the first non-white (assuming you don't count Disraeli, whose Jewishness would have counted as non-white at the time).

    Out of curiosity, has Labour ever had a leader who was unmarried? I can't think of one. I think their most senior more-or-less openly gay figure would be George Thomas?

    The Tories meanwhile have questions swirling about Heath, and Balfour never married (although I think was probably for other reasons, questions were also asked of him).
    Peter Mandelson?

    Were Ben Bradshaw to become Deputy Leader then he might qualify
    Er. Ed M was unmarried when he became leader as far as i recall. There was a big wedding here in East Midlands a year or two later.
  • antifrank said:

    Oh bloody hell, I'm apparently Belgian.

    Being Belgian is awesome. They invented the D'Hondt electoral voting system which is nearly as good as AV.

    Plus the nation of Belgium was created to annoy the French.

    I can't of anything better than annoying the French
  • dugarbandierdugarbandier Posts: 2,596

    Financier said:
    I am even more European with 49.2% and should go and live in the Netherlands apparently (which I wouldn't mind doing because I like the Cloggies and their way of life).
    53.2%. Belgian. Is that bedause I like beer, moules and frites? Or should I be offended.
    because of your past misdeeds in the Congo?
  • felixfelix Posts: 7,014
    Cough! What about the LD record with regard to women? Cough, cough!
  • JEOJEO Posts: 3,656
    edited August 2015
    That "How European are you?" quiz is asking me how much I pay for a cup of coffee. I've never bought a cup of coffee in my life, as like all good Englishmen I drink tea. What do I answer?

    EDIT: Pah, it says I'm French. This is despite being a monogamous, property-owning, long work hours, gym-going tea drinker. What's it basing it on, my water-drinking? Stupid quiz.
  • ydoethurydoethur Posts: 8,139

    ydoethur said:

    I'd agree with Mike's assessment. Indeed, I'd go further. Labour has a greater tendency than the Tories not just to go for men, but to go for men who are white, middle-aged, middle-class, conventionally Christian, straight and married. Ed Miliband was something of an exception. Corbyn, apart from being older than most, is little different. I don't know about his religious views - I'd assume him agnostic or athiestic - but that's not out of the ordinary these days either.

    I stick by my prediction that the first openly gay leader of a UK party will lead the Tories, as will the first non-white (assuming you don't count Disraeli, whose Jewishness would have counted as non-white at the time).

    Out of curiosity, has Labour ever had a leader who was unmarried? I can't think of one. I think their most senior more-or-less openly gay figure would be George Thomas?

    The Tories meanwhile have questions swirling about Heath, and Balfour never married (although I think was probably for other reasons, questions were also asked of him).
    Peter Mandelson?

    Were Ben Bradshaw to become Deputy Leader then he might qualify
    Er. Ed M was unmarried when he became leader as far as i recall. There was a big wedding here in East Midlands a year or two later.
    Yes but he did have one son and another on the way and married shortly afterwards. He just wasn't very good at paperwork (no marriage certificate, his name not on his son's birth certificate, not enough votes in the PLP etc. etc.)
  • IndigoIndigo Posts: 9,966
    Apparently it's still the ovary count that matters for Ms Cooper
    Children as young as 7 should get sex education, Yvette Cooper says, as she announces 5-point women’s equality plan
    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/politics/labour/11810798/Children-as-young-as-seven-should-get-sex-education-Yvette-Cooper-says.html
  • flightpath01flightpath01 Posts: 4,903
    felix said:

    Cough! What about the LD record with regard to women? Cough, cough!

    Kippers seem to think they should stick to the washing up.
  • TOPPINGTOPPING Posts: 11,628

    Financier said:
    I am even more European with 49.2% and should go and live in the Netherlands apparently (which I wouldn't mind doing because I like the Cloggies and their way of life).
    53.2%. Belgian. Is that bedause I like beer, moules and frites? Or should I be offended.
    49.6% Belgium closest. Perhaps it was the cinema question?

  • Morris_DancerMorris_Dancer Posts: 40,070
    Mr. JEO, that coffee question was a problem for me, too.
  • PulpstarPulpstar Posts: 42,097
    "Remember how back in June there was an effort to find extra MP nominees to get Corbyn in the ballot but no such assistance was forthcoming for Mary Creagh who appeared to many to be a viable candidate. "

    I don't think this occured because of Creasy's gender tbh - Corbyn offered a radical left wing vision the others didn't, Creagh was somewhere between Burnham and Kendall iirc.

    There are two women in this contest, one is just too far to the right of the membership to win and the other is dull. Cooper is better than Burnham, mind.
  • ydoethurydoethur Posts: 8,139
    JEO said:

    That "How European are you?" quiz is asking me how much I pay for a cup of coffee. I've never bought a cup of coffee in my life, as like all good Englishmen I drink tea. What do I answer?

    EDIT: Pah, it says I'm French. This is despite being a monogamous, property-owning, long work hours, tea drinker. Stupid quiz.

    It won't let me take it at all. Officially this is because I'm over my article limit, but as it's the Telegraph maybe it thinks I'm Polish as well?
  • SlackbladderSlackbladder Posts: 5,721
    anyone get the feeling the large numbers of people turning up for Corbyn meetings are just the same bunch of unemployed activist oiks following him around the country?
  • JEOJEO Posts: 3,656
    edited August 2015

    Obviously weirdos who use obscene language against women candidates are revolting, but there's a more serious point. I was talking to a lifelong feminist last night who was explicitly not voting for Cooper because she'd reportedly used the glass ceiling argument. "I want women to be treated with exactly the same respect as anyone else, as someone with equal judgment, and she thinks I should vote for her because we're both women? No way." She was considering voting Kendall "because she's got interesting ideas, not because she's a woman".

    The difficulty about that is the role model thing - if we never choose women leaders, women candidates for leader will always look to some as a bit of a risk. We've got over that for MPs, arguably thanks to AWS - only very eccentric voters would say, "I'm not voting for X as I think MPs should be men." So I'd like to see a woman leader (and it was a minor factor in choosing Jowell) - but the question of what they're like is more important.

    I don't think anyone in this day and age thinks a female leadership candidate is a bit of a risk because they're a woman. It's been 36 years since we had a female Prime Minister for goodness sake. The only person I've seen bringing gender into the debate has been Cooper herself.
  • david_herdsondavid_herdson Posts: 13,099
    ydoethur said:

    ydoethur said:

    I'd agree with Mike's assessment. Indeed, I'd go further. Labour has a greater tendency than the Tories not just to go for men, but to go for men who are white, middle-aged, middle-class, conventionally Christian, straight and married. Ed Miliband was something of an exception. Corbyn, apart from being older than most, is little different. I don't know about his religious views - I'd assume him agnostic or athiestic - but that's not out of the ordinary these days either.

    I stick by my prediction that the first openly gay leader of a UK party will lead the Tories, as will the first non-white (assuming you don't count Disraeli, whose Jewishness would have counted as non-white at the time).

    Out of curiosity, has Labour ever had a leader who was unmarried? I can't think of one. I think their most senior more-or-less openly gay figure would be George Thomas?

    The Tories meanwhile have questions swirling about Heath, and Balfour never married (although I think was probably for other reasons, questions were also asked of him).
    Peter Mandelson?

    Were Ben Bradshaw to become Deputy Leader then he might qualify
    Er. Ed M was unmarried when he became leader as far as i recall. There was a big wedding here in East Midlands a year or two later.
    Yes but he did have one son and another on the way and married shortly afterwards. He just wasn't very good at paperwork (no marriage certificate, his name not on his son's birth certificate, not enough votes in the PLP etc. etc.)
    To add to your earlier list, Hague was also unmarried when he was elected leader in 1997, though he may have been dating Ffion at the time(?). Your substantive point stands though, in that unlike those two, Heath and Balfour were confirmed bachelors.
  • PulpstarPulpstar Posts: 42,097
    You are 44.1% European, and you scored closest to Ireland, with a similarity of 63.2%!
  • Morris_DancerMorris_Dancer Posts: 40,070
    Mr. Pulpstar, "Better than Burnham". A harsh backhander of a compliment.
  • PlatoPlato Posts: 15,724
    37.6 Closest to Italy!

    Mr. Financier, 47.4%, closest to Poland.

  • ydoethurydoethur Posts: 8,139
    edited August 2015

    ydoethur said:

    ydoethur said:

    I'd agree with Mike's assessment. Indeed, I'd go further. Labour has a greater tendency than the Tories not just to go for men, but to go for men who are white, middle-aged, middle-class, conventionally Christian, straight and married. Ed Miliband was something of an exception. Corbyn, apart from being older than most, is little different. I don't know about his religious views - I'd assume him agnostic or athiestic - but that's not out of the ordinary these days either.

    I stick by my prediction that the first openly gay leader of a UK party will lead the Tories, as will the first non-white (assuming you don't count Disraeli, whose Jewishness would have counted as non-white at the time).

    Out of curiosity, has Labour ever had a leader who was unmarried? I can't think of one. I think their most senior more-or-less openly gay figure would be George Thomas?

    The Tories meanwhile have questions swirling about Heath, and Balfour never married (although I think was probably for other reasons, questions were also asked of him).
    Peter Mandelson?

    Were Ben Bradshaw to become Deputy Leader then he might qualify
    Er. Ed M was unmarried when he became leader as far as i recall. There was a big wedding here in East Midlands a year or two later.
    Yes but he did have one son and another on the way and married shortly afterwards. He just wasn't very good at paperwork (no marriage certificate, his name not on his son's birth certificate, not enough votes in the PLP etc. etc.)
    To add to your earlier list, Hague was also unmarried when he was elected leader in 1997, though he may have been dating Ffion at the time(?). Your substantive point stands though, in that unlike those two, Heath and Balfour were confirmed bachelors.
    I had forgotten him as well (I'm having a great time on 90s politicians this morning)! As I recall, he was engaged at the time and got married two months later, although I could easily be wrong. In 1997 the sex lives of politicians, apart from the One who did strange things with cigars, did not interest me much!
  • HurstLlamaHurstLlama Posts: 9,098

    felix said:

    Cough! What about the LD record with regard to women? Cough, cough!

    Kippers seem to think they should stick to the washing up.
    And cleaning behind the fridge, well housework generally. Also cooking and washing and ironing.
  • Beverley_CBeverley_C Posts: 3,770
    Apparently I am dutch
  • TOPPINGTOPPING Posts: 11,628
    Financier said:

    It can be quite difficult to assess many politicians unless you have met them informally as well as formally. That can be especially true of the ladies. I have been fortunate enough to have met Mrs T, Betty Boothroyd (who probably broke the mould for Speakers) and Mrs May. All were/are great thinkers in their own way and not afraid to stand up and be counted.

    Of the gang of four, I have met only Liz Kendal - she too is a thinker - but perhaps needs that few more years of experience to fulfill her potential.

    There is a popular and lazy misconception that mediocre people end up becoming MPs almost by mistake or sleight of hand.

    In my experience they all are extremely bright, sharp, driven individuals.

    Do they all have the spark of greatness, or genius, for that matter? Of course not, but they are uniformly a pretty above-average bunch.

  • PulpstarPulpstar Posts: 42,097
    I'm looking at Liz Kendall's timeline, and can't see any abuse.
  • flightpath01flightpath01 Posts: 4,903

    Financier said:
    I am even more European with 49.2% and should go and live in the Netherlands apparently (which I wouldn't mind doing because I like the Cloggies and their way of life).
    I hate cyclists - so I would probably end up living in Wyoming.
  • FinancierFinancier Posts: 3,916
    It must be that leisurely Sussex lifestyle - well dressed and sipping coffee (and eating a naughty cake) in the sun whilst watching the people go by (and assessing the well dressed men).

    BTW, do you have multiple sets of accounts with a special one for the tax-man?
    Plato said:

    37.6 Closest to Italy!

    Mr. Financier, 47.4%, closest to Poland.

  • felixfelix Posts: 7,014

    anyone get the feeling the large numbers of people turning up for Corbyn meetings are just the same bunch of unemployed activist oiks following him around the country?

    I think this my be right - and I'm unconvinced also by the twitter frenzy - much of it is froth. however, I suspect that among the politicized Labour support base the enthusiasm is there and could see Corbyn over the line. This could split the party and produce a long-needed re-alignment.
  • PlatoPlato Posts: 15,724
    edited August 2015
    I'm beginning to wonder if Hattie was actually right about forcing Labour to have either a female leader or deputy.

    Up until this point, I thought it was part of her Hatemen feminism that's been her main agenda for 30yrs.

    Now, perhaps she had a point - compelling Labour to have ovaries as a default seems to be the only way it's going to happen. I suspect she knows the Party better than the rest of us on this one.
    ydoethur said:

    Does the lack of a female leader matter?

    Backing someone because they have ovaries is ridiculous. Whoever's best (or least worst, in this case) should get the gig.

    I'd say it matters for 2 reasons:

    1) Labour pride themselves on being the party of equality. Being, in effect, fifty years behind the rivals they castigate for every crime under the sun including misogyny looks bad and hurts their image of themselves;

    2) As there are a large number of women in the Labour party, and have been now for two decades, it looks a bit odd that apparently not one of them is fit to be placed in the top two in the leader and possibly deputy leader contest. Is it because they are not very capable or is there something holding them back (the infamous 'glass ceiling')? Even if other people are like you and don't care, Labour will and it will cause prolonged naval gazing while they try and work out the answer.

    Of course, the most senior women in the Labour party have been Beckett (temporary leader and Foreign Secretary) Jacqui Smith (Home Secretary) Harriet Harman (twice temporary leader) and Yvette Cooper (Shadow Foreign Secretary and Shadow Home Secretary). None are exactly walking adverts for feminism.

    The fact that this contest from Cooper's point of view has largely revolved around her genitalia, her children and her husband is possibly the most damning indictment imaginable of how little she has actually achieved, but it also suggests, since nobody has been asking those questions of Burnham - not even about his expenses and his wife's threat to divorce him over them - suggests Labour (and the country perhaps?) have some way to go on the subject of sexual equality.
  • JEOJEO Posts: 3,656
    edited August 2015
    Changed my coffee answer from "zero" to the average British price of coffee. Now I'm 64% British. Yay. I can once again feel secure in my plucky shopkeeper nature.
  • watford30watford30 Posts: 3,474
    edited August 2015
    Indigo said:

    Apparently it's still the ovary count that matters for Ms Cooper

    Children as young as 7 should get sex education, Yvette Cooper says, as she announces 5-point women’s equality plan
    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/politics/labour/11810798/Children-as-young-as-seven-should-get-sex-education-Yvette-Cooper-says.html
    7?!



  • RogerRoger Posts: 8,527
    "From my political mugs collection..."

    Add me to that collection. Two weeks ago I said I was hoping for a Corbyn win. Unfortunately that was the romantic in me. Siince then I've done some due diligence and can't believe I was such a simpleton.

    Rooting through moth eaten Che Guevara T-shirts.....what was I thinking! Corbyn's closest political soulmates are IDS and Nigel Farage..and he's as rabidly anti EU as both put together.

    There's every chance that if he wins the Labour leadership he will forge an alliance with the Tory right and form a powerful anti EU force going into the referendum. Add in a PM who's blowing in the wind and OUT suddenly becomes possible

    IDS's to the right of them

    Farage's to the left of them

    Corbyn infront of them.....

    Someone has blundered

    Into the valley of death.......
  • PulpstarPulpstar Posts: 42,097

    Financier said:
    I am even more European with 49.2% and should go and live in the Netherlands apparently (which I wouldn't mind doing because I like the Cloggies and their way of life).
    I hate cyclists - so I would probably end up living in Wyoming.
    Wyoming looks great for cycling !
  • JonathanJonathan Posts: 7,509
    Very odd thread.

    One UK party has once elected a woman as leader. That's it. All have frequently had women in senior positions. Clearly we are still a long way from equality, but to single out any party as having a problem is odd.

  • FinancierFinancier Posts: 3,916
    Instinctively I am against AWS. However, it does appear that many Labour MPs cannot multi-task or at least multi-think. From my experience, having a good lady/s in the boardroom can often give a different viewpoint that man-think often has not considered.
    Plato said:

    I'm beginning to wonder if Hattie was actually right about forcing Labour to have either a female leader or deputy.

    Up until this point, I thought it was part of her Hatemen feminism that's been her main agenda for 30yrs.

    Now, perhaps she had a point - compelling Labour to have ovaries as a default seems to be the only way it's going to happen. I suspect she knows the Party better than the rest of us on this one.

    ydoethur said:

    Does the lack of a female leader matter?

    Backing someone because they have ovaries is ridiculous. Whoever's best (or least worst, in this case) should get the gig.

    I'd say it matters for 2 reasons:

    1) Labour pride themselves on being the party of equality. Being, in effect, fifty years behind the rivals they castigate for every crime under the sun including misogyny looks bad and hurts their image of themselves;

    2) As there are a large number of women in the Labour party, and have been now for two decades, it looks a bit odd that apparently not one of them is fit to be placed in the top two in the leader and possibly deputy leader contest. Is it because they are not very capable or is there something holding them back (the infamous 'glass ceiling')? Even if other people are like you and don't care, Labour will and it will cause prolonged naval gazing while they try and work out the answer.

    Of course, the most senior women in the Labour party have been Beckett (temporary leader and Foreign Secretary) Jacqui Smith (Home Secretary) Harriet Harman (twice temporary leader) and Yvette Cooper (Shadow Foreign Secretary and Shadow Home Secretary). None are exactly walking adverts for feminism.

    The fact that this contest from Cooper's point of view has largely revolved around her genitalia, her children and her husband is possibly the most damning indictment imaginable of how little she has actually achieved, but it also suggests, since nobody has been asking those questions of Burnham - not even about his expenses and his wife's threat to divorce him over them - suggests Labour (and the country perhaps?) have some way to go on the subject of sexual equality.
  • dugarbandierdugarbandier Posts: 2,596
    ydoethur said:

    JEO said:

    That "How European are you?" quiz is asking me how much I pay for a cup of coffee. I've never bought a cup of coffee in my life, as like all good Englishmen I drink tea. What do I answer?

    EDIT: Pah, it says I'm French. This is despite being a monogamous, property-owning, long work hours, tea drinker. Stupid quiz.

    It won't let me take it at all. Officially this is because I'm over my article limit, but as it's the Telegraph maybe it thinks I'm Polish as well?
    fire up a different browser?
  • PlatoPlato Posts: 15,724
    If Diane Abbott had got buggins turn instead - I really can't imagine her getting his level of support despite her/because she's much better known.
    Sean_F said:

    I think Corbyn is favoured more because he's extremely left wing than because he's a man.

  • Sean_FSean_F Posts: 19,519
    ydoethur said:

    I'd agree with Mike's assessment. Indeed, I'd go further. Labour has a greater tendency than the Tories not just to go for men, but to go for men who are white, middle-aged, middle-class, conventionally Christian, straight and married. Ed Miliband was something of an exception. Corbyn, apart from being older than most, is little different. I don't know about his religious views - I'd assume him agnostic or athiestic - but that's not out of the ordinary these days either.

    I stick by my prediction that the first openly gay leader of a UK party will lead the Tories, as will the first non-white (assuming you don't count Disraeli, whose Jewishness would have counted as non-white at the time).

    Out of curiosity, has Labour ever had a leader who was unmarried? I can't think of one. I think their most senior more-or-less openly gay figure would be George Thomas?

    The Tories meanwhile have Heath, who was unmarried and who is of course embroiled in a current scandal (although we could argue all day about the merits of the case put forward so far) and Balfour never married (although I think was probably for other reasons, questions were also asked of him).
    Didn't Balfour enjoy being flagellated by his mistress?

  • ydoethurydoethur Posts: 8,139
    Plato said:

    I'm beginning to wonder if Hattie was actually right about forcing Labour to have either a female leader or deputy.

    Up until this point, I thought it was part of her Hatemen feminism that's been her main agenda for 30yrs.

    Now, perhaps she had a point - compelling Labour to have ovaries as a default seems to be the only way it's going to happen. I suspect she knows the Party better than the rest of us on this one.

    Possibly. However, since it was her decision to resign the deputy leadership before the outcome of the leadership election was known, if they end up with two men she will only have herself to blame. I suspect, with her usual mix of arrogance and ineptitude, she thought Cooper would walk the first one and therefore it didn't matter who the deputy leader was.
  • flightpath01flightpath01 Posts: 4,903
    TOPPING said:

    Financier said:

    It can be quite difficult to assess many politicians unless you have met them informally as well as formally. That can be especially true of the ladies. I have been fortunate enough to have met Mrs T, Betty Boothroyd (who probably broke the mould for Speakers) and Mrs May. All were/are great thinkers in their own way and not afraid to stand up and be counted.

    Of the gang of four, I have met only Liz Kendal - she too is a thinker - but perhaps needs that few more years of experience to fulfill her potential.

    There is a popular and lazy misconception that mediocre people end up becoming MPs almost by mistake or sleight of hand.

    In my experience they all are extremely bright, sharp, driven individuals.

    Do they all have the spark of greatness, or genius, for that matter? Of course not, but they are uniformly a pretty above-average bunch.

    Its got to be easier for labourites - I mean just look at Corbyn.
    Typically, activist - Teacher/lecturer/LG employee - shop steward - councillor - candidate - MP.

    Otherwise it takes time and dedication to trawl the country putting yourself about and your name forward.
  • Roger said:

    "From my political mugs collection..."

    Add me to that collection. Two weeks ago I said I was hoping for a Corbyn win. Unfortunately that was the romantic in me. Siince then I've done some due diligence and can't believe I was such a simpleton.

    Rooting through moth eaten Che Guevara T-shirts.....what was I thinking! Corbyn's closest political soulmates are IDS and Nigel Farage..and he's as rabidly anti EU as both put together.

    There's every chance that if he wins the Labour leadership he will forge an alliance with the Tory right and form a powerful anti EU force going into the referendum. Add in a PM who's blowing in the wind and OUT suddenly becomes possible

    IDS's to the right of them

    Farage's to the left of them

    Corbyn infront of them.....

    Someone has blundered

    Into the valley of death.......

    Labour electing Corbyn would be the charge of the Light in the head brigade
  • JEOJEO Posts: 3,656
    Indigo said:

    Apparently it's still the ovary count that matters for Ms Cooper

    Children as young as 7 should get sex education, Yvette Cooper says, as she announces 5-point women’s equality plan
    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/politics/labour/11810798/Children-as-young-as-seven-should-get-sex-education-Yvette-Cooper-says.html
    She says her feminism isn't about excluding men, yet she does not cover any policies addressing disadvantages faced by men, such as shorter lifespans, judicial bias, or worse mental health. As with Sadiq Khan on race, it's not about creating a gender-blind, colour-blind society, but about prioritising certain demographics.
  • flightpath01flightpath01 Posts: 4,903

    felix said:

    Cough! What about the LD record with regard to women? Cough, cough!

    Kippers seem to think they should stick to the washing up.
    And cleaning behind the fridge, well housework generally. Also cooking and washing and ironing.
    Feeding the baby. Definitely not acting leader of the party.
  • HurstLlamaHurstLlama Posts: 9,098

    Financier said:
    I am even more European with 49.2% and should go and live in the Netherlands apparently (which I wouldn't mind doing because I like the Cloggies and their way of life).
    I hate cyclists - so I would probably end up living in Wyoming.
    My God-daughter lived in the Netherlands and I used to love visiting her. Getting on a bike over there and cycling to the shops, the boozer or whatever just felt completely natural and right (probably because there were no hills).

    That said, the Dutch attitude to animal welfare, especially pig rearing, leaves much to be desired, indeed it is a blot on their civilisation and why, if a push came to a shove, I could never actually live there.
  • PulpstarPulpstar Posts: 42,097
    Jonathan said:

    Very odd thread.

    One UK party has once elected a woman as leader. That's it. All have frequently had women in senior positions. Clearly we are still a long way from equality, but to single out any party as having a problem is odd.

    The party with the biggest female problem is the Lib Dems.

    No Lib Dem female MPs, no prospective leader candidates (UKIP has Suzanne Evans; Labour Yvette/Liz). No former leaders. No former deputy leaders. A record consisting almost exclusively of middle aged, middle class white men reaching the top ;)
  • flightpath01flightpath01 Posts: 4,903
    JEO said:

    Obviously weirdos who use obscene language against women candidates are revolting, but there's a more serious point. I was talking to a lifelong feminist last night who was explicitly not voting for Cooper because she'd reportedly used the glass ceiling argument. "I want women to be treated with exactly the same respect as anyone else, as someone with equal judgment, and she thinks I should vote for her because we're both women? No way." She was considering voting Kendall "because she's got interesting ideas, not because she's a woman".

    The difficulty about that is the role model thing - if we never choose women leaders, women candidates for leader will always look to some as a bit of a risk. We've got over that for MPs, arguably thanks to AWS - only very eccentric voters would say, "I'm not voting for X as I think MPs should be men." So I'd like to see a woman leader (and it was a minor factor in choosing Jowell) - but the question of what they're like is more important.

    I don't think anyone in this day and age thinks a female leadership candidate is a bit of a risk because they're a woman. It's been 36 years since we had a female Prime Minister for goodness sake. The only person I've seen bringing gender into the debate has been Cooper herself.
    Labour's response to Thatcher was to call her 'strident' and 'hectoring'.
    Personally I'm praying that Flint is elected deputy leader. Serve labour right even if it will give me apoplexy.
  • ydoethurydoethur Posts: 8,139
    Sean_F said:

    ydoethur said:

    I'd agree with Mike's assessment. Indeed, I'd go further. Labour has a greater tendency than the Tories not just to go for men, but to go for men who are white, middle-aged, middle-class, conventionally Christian, straight and married. Ed Miliband was something of an exception. Corbyn, apart from being older than most, is little different. I don't know about his religious views - I'd assume him agnostic or athiestic - but that's not out of the ordinary these days either.

    I stick by my prediction that the first openly gay leader of a UK party will lead the Tories, as will the first non-white (assuming you don't count Disraeli, whose Jewishness would have counted as non-white at the time).

    Out of curiosity, has Labour ever had a leader who was unmarried? I can't think of one. I think their most senior more-or-less openly gay figure would be George Thomas?

    The Tories meanwhile have Heath, who was unmarried and who is of course embroiled in a current scandal (although we could argue all day about the merits of the case put forward so far) and Balfour never married (although I think was probably for other reasons, questions were also asked of him).
    Didn't Balfour enjoy being flagellated by his mistress?

    No. The only one I know of whom that would apply to is Lord Melbourne in the 1830s, who was known to be a sadist, a masochist and a paedophile. (There were rumours about Gladstone and Rosebery too - separate rumours I hasten to add - but I don't think anything was proved.) Balfour did not, certainly so far as I know, have any sort of mistress, and it is difficult to believe that if he had had a mistress, we would not have known about it.

    I think, personally, that he was a very dry intellectual who wasn't very interested in people. He was good at cutting remarks - that may be what you are thinking of - and for that reason he was good at making enemies. But so far as I know, none of them thought it even worth while making stuff up about his sex life.
  • PlatoPlato Posts: 15,724
    And me - detest the stuff.

    Mr. JEO, that coffee question was a problem for me, too.

  • dugarbandierdugarbandier Posts: 2,596
    Roger said:

    "From my political mugs collection..."

    Add me to that collection. Two weeks ago I said I was hoping for a Corbyn win. Unfortunately that was the romantic in me. Siince then I've done some due diligence and can't believe I was such a simpleton.

    Rooting through moth eaten Che Guevara T-shirts.....what was I thinking! Corbyn's closest political soulmates are IDS and Nigel Farage..and he's as rabidly anti EU as both put together.

    There's every chance that if he wins the Labour leadership he will forge an alliance with the Tory right and form a powerful anti EU force going into the referendum. Add in a PM who's blowing in the wind and OUT suddenly becomes possible

    IDS's to the right of them

    Farage's to the left of them

    Corbyn infront of them.....

    Someone has blundered

    Into the valley of death.......

    do you have a vote?
  • tlg86tlg86 Posts: 7,510
    The ydoethur's answer to Morris_Dancer's question is spot on. Labour's posturing on issues such as gender equality is predicated upon the notion that most of the electorate are unobservant and so won't have noticed the fact that Labour has not itself had a female leader.

    I always assumed it's only people like us that notice the inconsistency between what Labour says and what the reality is. But now I think much of electorate was fairly unimpressed by Ed's attempt to describe the country as being in a bad way (cost of living crisis etc) as it so obviously didn't match their own experience.
  • ydoethurydoethur Posts: 8,139
    Pulpstar said:

    Jonathan said:

    Very odd thread.

    One UK party has once elected a woman as leader. That's it. All have frequently had women in senior positions. Clearly we are still a long way from equality, but to single out any party as having a problem is odd.

    The party with the biggest female problem is the Lib Dems.

    No Lib Dem female MPs, no prospective leader candidates (UKIP has Suzanne Evans; Labour Yvette/Liz). No former leaders. No former deputy leaders. A record consisting almost exclusively of middle aged, middle class white men reaching the top ;)
    On the other hand, they did have an acting leader who was a woman - Sal Brinton, earlier this year.

    Admittedly she was (A) only in de facto charge and (b) in the Lords at the time, but surely it counts for something?
  • dugarbandierdugarbandier Posts: 2,596
    ydoethur said:

    Pulpstar said:

    Jonathan said:

    Very odd thread.

    One UK party has once elected a woman as leader. That's it. All have frequently had women in senior positions. Clearly we are still a long way from equality, but to single out any party as having a problem is odd.

    The party with the biggest female problem is the Lib Dems.

    No Lib Dem female MPs, no prospective leader candidates (UKIP has Suzanne Evans; Labour Yvette/Liz). No former leaders. No former deputy leaders. A record consisting almost exclusively of middle aged, middle class white men reaching the top ;)
    On the other hand, they did have an acting leader who was a woman - Sal Brinton, earlier this year.

    Admittedly she was (A) only in de facto charge and (b) in the Lords at the time, but surely it counts for something?
    where are the ginger tories?
  • JEOJEO Posts: 3,656
    edited August 2015
    Goodness me, this man isn't even charged with "inciting hatred", merely for "offending" Muslims. Apparently it is now illegal to say a belief system is "heathen" or "satanic":

    http://www.gatestoneinstitute.org/6356/pastor-james-mcconnell-islam
  • IndigoIndigo Posts: 9,966
    ydoethur said:

    Sean_F said:

    ydoethur said:

    I'd agree with Mike's assessment. Indeed, I'd go further. Labour has a greater tendency than the Tories not just to go for men, but to go for men who are white, middle-aged, middle-class, conventionally Christian, straight and married. Ed Miliband was something of an exception. Corbyn, apart from being older than most, is little different. I don't know about his religious views - I'd assume him agnostic or athiestic - but that's not out of the ordinary these days either.

    I stick by my prediction that the first openly gay leader of a UK party will lead the Tories, as will the first non-white (assuming you don't count Disraeli, whose Jewishness would have counted as non-white at the time).

    Out of curiosity, has Labour ever had a leader who was unmarried? I can't think of one. I think their most senior more-or-less openly gay figure would be George Thomas?

    The Tories meanwhile have Heath, who was unmarried and who is of course embroiled in a current scandal (although we could argue all day about the merits of the case put forward so far) and Balfour never married (although I think was probably for other reasons, questions were also asked of him).
    Didn't Balfour enjoy being flagellated by his mistress?

    No. The only one I know of whom that would apply to is Lord Melbourne in the 1830s, who was known to be a sadist, a masochist and a paedophile. (There were rumours about Gladstone and Rosebery too - separate rumours I hasten to add - but I don't think anything was proved.) Balfour did not, certainly so far as I know, have any sort of mistress, and it is difficult to believe that if he had had a mistress, we would not have known about it.
    Mr Parris wrote a rather enjoyable read on the subject "Great Parliamentary Scandals : Four Centuries of Calumny, Smear & Innuendo", normally I am not a big fan of him and his particularly patronising brand of politics, but the book is fun.
  • ydoethurydoethur Posts: 8,139
    tlg86 said:

    The ydoethur's answer to Morris_Dancer's question is spot on. Labour's posturing on issues such as gender equality is predicated upon the notion that most of the electorate are unobservant and so won't have noticed the fact that Labour has not itself had a female leader.

    I always assumed it's only people like us that notice the inconsistency between what Labour says and what the reality is. But now I think much of electorate was fairly unimpressed by Ed's attempt to describe the country as being in a bad way (cost of living crisis etc) as it so obviously didn't match their own experience.

    I think what did for Ed Miliband was when he said he was a normal man who understood ordinary people's lives. The child of a university lecturer with a million pound house, who earns £64k excluding pension, and is married to a successful barrister did not strike most of us as an 'ordinary' person.

    But he sealed it when two breaths later, he couldn't remember the price of bread. As Norman Tebbitt is supposed to have said, 'In politics, far better to keep your mouth shut and be thought a fool than to open it and remove all doubt.'
  • AlastairMeeksAlastairMeeks Posts: 18,063
    Incidentally, this morning I'm detecting a few straws in the wind that the relevance of some of Jeremy Corbyn's history is dawning on some of his supporters.
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