Good old Bob Ainsworth, the present Secretary of State for Defence, let the cat out of the bag. The date of the General Election is to be Thursday, the 6th of May.
I have never said 'Good old Bob Ainsworth' before and I'll try never to be rude again about this rather unattractive politician though I have to say that his visage does nothing for his image - or is it the other way round?
Anyway, Bob has been helpful in that he made me and my team run through a checklist of what has been done and what is still to be done in preparation for the announcement of my candidature and then for the campaign itself.
1. The proofs of the principal leaflets have been received from the printers and have been approved. The printers are waiting to go and can produce the goods within 48 hours, which is impressive.
2. Royal Mail has been alerted. The company delivers election leaflets free of charge.
3. Poster sites are being listed.
4. Advertisements have been readied for the local newspapers.
5. Canvassers and helpers are increasing in numbers.
6. A youtube presentation is poised for putting on line.
7. My 'blog' is being up-dated daily.
All Gordon Brown has to do is to confirm the date and we are off!
I will not make rude remarks about any local candidates either but something else has reminded me of one of my national bêtes noires.
He is Mr Nick Herbert, who is the Conservative 'Shadow' Defra Secretary (and who makes the right noises, agreeing with Hilary Benn, regarding the need for increased home-grown food production), but whom I have known since he worked as a junior at Conservative Central Office. I was on a national committee that he served as secretary and I discovered then that he was less than competent. Indeed, I actually taught him how to write minutes and about how it was needful to get said minutes out in good time.
Anyway, Master Nick has 'done well' since, but he is definitely a bête noire for me because, ever since he was a leading light in what became the Countryside Alliance, he has worked night and day for the retention and then - post the 2004 Hunting Act - the un-banning of fox hunting, hare coursing and stag hunting. I have a particular hatred for hare coursing, having fought it for the best part of five decades and that is one of the reasons why I plan to stand at this General Election. There are, of course, several other reasons.
In my opinion, Mr Herbert is too narrow in his known interests to become a Cabinet Minister in Mr Cameron's prospective government. He is obsessed with blood sports to the point of depravity. I am not saying that he is personally depraved but participation in the blood sports that I have mentioned is a form of depravity.
I oppose the un-banning of fox hunting, hare coursing and stag hunting. Mr Herbert opposes me. Well, let battle commence.
Here is my line: the Hunting Act should be strengthened so that we can be sure that chasing and killing wild animals for fun is clearly and for ever unlawful and regarded by all with well-deserved revulsion. If they know what's good for them politically, Cameron, Hague, Herbert & Co. should, at the very least, promise to let sleeping dogs lie.
In this picture, Nick Herbert looks solemn and responsible. Like Bob Ainsworth, his visage doesn't do much for his image - or is it the other way round? In fairness, I am told that the seemingly solemn and responsible Mr Herbert can be quite gay if he chooses - perhaps on foot when beagling or on horseback when out hunting?