A politics-free zone (sort of)…

THE Today programme on the BBC is a politics-free zone this morning because of local elections in some parts of the country.

This decaffeinated version of the usual triple espresso of political argy-bargy takes some getting used to but it’s quite refreshing.

Other topics can be addressed instead – the make-up of Saturn’s rings as I type; a male anorexic discussing his weight earlier, without mentioning figures as anorexics can be competitive: hearing his BMI might make them jealous, the young man said. That was interesting.

You must look elsewhere for discussion of what would normally be the story of the morning: Mrs Maybe’s anti-Europe speech in Downing Street in which she claimed that dark forces were attempting to interfere with her coronation; sorry, election.

In keeping with the non-political mood, I won’t dwell for too long on her rather remarkable outburst. Never mind Russians meddling in the US presidential elections, we have our own (unspecified) Johnny Foreigners sticking their fingers where they are not wanted – or something like that: the actual speech is too depressing to reprise before breakfast.

All I could think was that the wind had accidentally blown one of Nigel Farage’s old speeches into Mrs Maybe’s hand as she stepped up to that soapbox podium in Downing Street. It was a speech written in the purple colours of UKIP, presumably to pinch votes from the floundering Kippers.

You will not be surprised to hear that Daily Mail is right by Mrs Maybe’s side. European politicians are “conducting a campaign of threats to our country” it fumes, adding: “Indeed, you can almost smell the panic gripping European elites, as polls show Mrs May heading for a thumping Commons majority to strengthen here bargaining hand in the Brexit talks.”

And there was me thinking that what I could smell was bullshit, but never mind. Apologies for that. Perhaps there is something in this politics-free approach to life, as politics rarely does much to improve one’s mood, especially not during such a dull election campaign.

If I might just say one thing: isn’t this business about a bigger majority giving Mrs Maybe a stronger hand in the negotiations just nonsense? The people she will be sitting down to deal with across the European poker table couldn’t care less about the size of her majority.

Anyway, now the Today programme is discussing singing Mozart, and Humphrys is calmly interviewing a singer rather than hectoring politicians; it’s all oddly calming.

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