Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Good Old Boy #25

Paul Flynn has been a Good Old Boy for many years. Via Tom Watson, here he is, talking about youth involvement in politics:

Paul Flynn (Newport, West) (Lab): Towards the end of her speech, the hon. Member for Chesham and Amersham (Mrs. Gillan) was unwise enough to mention a constituent of mine, whom she quoted as an exemplar of a politician in Wales, the young man whom all others should follow. She thought he was elected, but he is a nominated member of council. I think it is my duty to inform the House a little more about this person. I would not mention him normally. I know that his inspiration in politics is the hon. Member for Monmouth (David T.C. Davies), so there is a certain poverty of ambition there.

As the young man has been cited as typifying the brave new world that the Conservatives are offering, we should know a little more about him. He has been kind enough to inform us about himself on the splendid MySpace website. He is remarkably frank. He gives a potted history of his life. He states:

“I’ve evolved from a little whining pussy to a thrill seeking wreckhead to a Conservative who still loves the wreckups.”

On 16 June 2006 he was asked whether he had taken drugs that month. He said yes. The next question was:

“Have you stolen anything this month?”

and he said yes. Asked why he wanted to go into politics, he said that he wanted it for the power, the flash suits and the money.
—David T.C. Davies rose—

Paul Flynn: I am delighted to give way to this young man’s hero.

David T.C. Davies: I have never seen the website and I do not really know the gentleman myself. I presume that there could be something ironic in what he says: if he is after power, money and flash suits, he will not want to follow me on to the Back Benches, as he will not see much of any of those from where I am sitting.

Paul Flynn: It is painful for me to recall my own experience when I was first elected. The first school I visited was Bassaleg school in my constituency. I was discussing politics in the sixth form and I recall one particularly difficult person—he might have something in common with the young man I have mentioned—who was a bit of a troublemaker in the class. I advised him, in my generous way of helping young people, that the best thing to do in life was to take up politics. That young member is in his place opposite as the hon. Member for Monmouth, so I regard that as the worst political mistake of my life. In order to convey a somewhat brighter picture of Newport. I shall mention three other young people in my constituency—Richard Whittaker, Adam Brustad and James Sadler, who will be performing in the Meze Lounge tonight a newly written song called “Land of my Mothers”, which is part of their political agenda. They have wriiten song called, “Lebanon is Burning” and another one based on “Animal Farm”. Those are three splendid idealistic young men, marvellous examples of their generation, who believe in things other than what this gentleman I have quoted believes in—drugs, theft, wreck-ups, smart suits and making money. There is an optimistic side, and if people want an exemplar of what young people can achieve, they would be better off in the Meze Lounge in Newport tonight, listening to the first performance of “Land of my Mothers”.

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