Wednesday, March 13, 2013
Talking to the press
I have a horrible habit of just chatting to journalists, forgetting that their lizard brain is constantly on the search for a story angle. I dislike treating them the way that professional politicians do: ignore what they ask, give them your prepared statement, and duck and weave around inconvenient questions. Of course, these formats are a game, and both sides know they're playing. Anyway, I got a call from someone at a local news outlet call Islington Now. His line he was trying to establish was that the Liberal Democrats and Labour aren't really campaigning in Junction Ward, because it is expected to be a Labour victory, and there is a tighter contest in St. George's. I said that local elections don't normally see much action, and by-elections often less, since, given the participants usually have to actually have to work, the lack of a decent lead in to take holidays and plan (and the like) means activity will be limited. I did point out that the Whittington Campaign is predominating in the area, and that, unlike other campaigns I've seen around London, no party was trying to get their name on the campaign (I was thinking of a campaign to stop a Police station closure in Willesden Green a couple of years ago I'd seen where the Lib-Dems put they're name over lots of posters). I told him we expected to come last: best be honest with journalists, eh? But that it was quality not quantity that counted. We don't want people to vote for us, unless they mean it and understand what socialism is. I also said our platform was to promise nothing: if they vote for us, they're making the promise. Promising to campaign and fight for socialism, and letting their fellow workers know this. We'll have to see what comes of the chat.