Heathrow, and CHAOS descends on the opening day of shiny new Terminal Five, with "technical glitches" leaving passengers unable to get to planes and baggage unable to get anywhere!
It's a RELIEF that they'd been told NOT to use the BIG-BROTHER fingerprint taking system or things might have gone from UNMANAGEABLE to completely ANARCHIC!
If this is what happens when they open a new terminal, I dread to think what they could achieve if they opened a new runway!
Of course, all the candidates for London Mayor have united against the third runway…
…giving me a DAYTIME TV link to the Mayoral campaign!
The Labour (and by extension their allies in this campaign, the Greens) actually SUPPORT a third runway. Mr Balloon and the Conservatories are against it one day and for it the next depending on whether it's a sunshine and quality of life day or an economic competence and big business day.
This leaves Mr Brian and the Liberal Democrats as the one Party not sending out MIXED MESSAGES.
The INTERESTING thing about the London Mayor election is that you get to vote TWICE, once for the candidate you like and once as a back-up.
I am indebted to Mr Julian of Orange By Name for going to the trouble of asking the other three parties to send him articles explaining why THEY deserve our second preferences. I think that not only is this the LIBERAL thing to do, it is also a GOOD IDEA for us not to become so PARTISAN that we become ISOLATED and disappear up our own thinking.
But it is also interesting to compare the three different STYLES that they use for their appeal.
First up were the Greens who, having already shot their own credibility dead by saying that their own supporters should vote for Mr Mayor Ken, were trying the INTERESTING tactic of begging OUR supporters to vote for them.
Telling the Liberal Party that the VERY Liberal Mr Brian isn't a Liberal is a bit of a DUMB STUNT anyway, even if your arguments don't all get totally shot to pieces by Citizen Alix!
In contrast, the Labour actually seem to have understood what the second preference vote MEANS, and make a pitch based on "why Mr Ken is like you". Although their clear aim is to build a London-wide coalition on the grounds of "Keep Bonkers Boris Out", they also try to make a positive case.
On the other fluffy foot, bringing up Iraq and the Environment just emphasises what a HYPOCRITE Mr Ken was to put returning to the Labour above his so-called principles. And suggesting that the Mayor who has treated the London Assembly with such contempt is an advocate for London Democracy… is probably just bunged in at the end as a joke.
Still, marks for trying.
The Conservatories though, really DON'T get this idea of reaching out to other people AT ALL, with an article steeped in typical Conservatory arrogance:
"We're going to win, so you'd better join us in giving the Labour a real kicking 'cos then you might stand a chance at the General Election of winning some seats off them to make up for the seats we're going to take off you. So ner!"
Quite apart from alienating people their supposed to be appealing to, casually dismissing the huge policy gulf between Bonkers Boris and reality (never mind the Liberal Democrats) and making no attempt to make a positive case for their own candidate seems to accept that Bozza is basically un-sellable.
Mr Brian himself, on Any Questionables, was pitched the "who would you vote for second" question and did VERY well explaining that people who tell him they WANT to vote Liberal Democrat but feel it will be a wasted vote CAN vote for the candidate that they want first because they have a second vote to fall back on for their arty loyalty. Top marks for an answer that could have been scripted by My Daddy Alex… in fact, it WAS!
Ah, countered the junior Mr Dimbledonkey thinking he sensed an ELEPHANT TRAP, but why won't YOU be using YOUR second vote?
Mr Brian recovered brilliantly: because for me, my conscience and my party loyalty coincide, he said smartly, and I'm not allowed to vote for myself twice.
Huge applause covered the sound of Dimbledonkey slinking away tail between legs.
I should also add that Mr Brian had a very good answer to the last question (bringing me back to where I started): if you were trapped at Terminal Five, how would you drown your sorrows?
Mr B said he couldn't drown his sorrows because he is in TRAINING for the London Marathon, though jogging around the Terminal might be good exercise. And he got in QUALITY name-checks for the three charities causes that he is supporting in his run: Downs Syndrome, Strokes and Mr Elton John's AIDS foundation.
Londoners, clearly if you want to fly, you want to fly Liberal Democrat!