David’s Daily Digital Dollop: Dollop 178 – Seriously Hartlepool, First The Monkey, Then The Canoeist, And Now This

Download the audio version of today’s Dollop here

Yesterday I read an article in the Hartlepool Mail saying that Hartlepool library was running an all day event, celebrating great works of fiction. It’s a shame they didn’t put this event on a couple of days earlier; they could have had a family fun day centred around the promises and statements of Farage, Jonson and the Leave campaign. It might have done some good, and helped inform the voters. Instead they chose to have their Fiction day yesterday, and according to the Hartlepool Mail, it seems as if they’ve opted for a harrowing tale of a dystopian island where everyone’s divided, the economy is collapsing and fascists are rejoicing. No, hang on, this isn’t the Hartlepool Library fiction day; it’s just the actual news.

70 % of people from Hartlepool voted to leave the EU. I’d like to think the majority of these voters made a properly thought-out and informed choice, and their decision to go against all the experts, 90 % of the economists and the vast majority of politicians was an educated one, but if the voxpops from the town are anything to go by, I’m very doubtful that this is the case.

I saw a news report on national BBC TV news, in which people from Hartlepool were interviewed about their vote. There wasn’t a single well reasoned argument from those who’d voted to leave, with people just spouting nonsense about immigration, even though Hartlepool hardly has an immigrant population. “We need to get the foreigners out so we can spend the money on the NHS,” as if there’s a direct link between foreign people and free public health care. How will these people feel when they realise that the foreigners aren’t going anywhere, and the NHS isn’t going to get any more money ploughed into it. Farage and Iain Duncan Smith have already suggested that the whole 350 million into the NHS thing wasn’t actually true, plus Farage has previously stated that the NHS might have to be privatised.

So it seems as if these promises were untrue. OK, maybe “untrue” is a harsh word; how about “white lie?” A nice, white, Caucasian, British lie. Ah, it doesn’t sound so bad now, does it. It was a British white Caucasian lie, for real, ordinary and decent people – you know the type; not like those pretend, weird, indecent folk from London, Scotland or Northern Ireland. Not the vast majority of young people. The ones that aren’t us. The decent people.

How will they feel when they realise they’ve been lied to? I mean, they were bloody livid when they elected H’angus the monkey as mayor of their town in 2002, who, after being voted in, reneged on his election promise to give all school children free bananas. The people of Hartlepool were furious. OK, this isn’t quite as serious; I mean we’re only talking about free health care here, but still, they’ll be pretty pissed off is what I’m saying.

There were a few people on the report who said that they had absolutely no idea why they’d voted to leave, but they just did. Other people said it was to get Cameron out; presumably for an even more rightwing tory government? Because that makes sense. Then you’re voice will really get heard. My gripe isn’t simply with everyone who voted to leave, it’s with those people who didn’t know why they were doing it, or were voting for specious reasons like getting the foreigners out, or as a protest vote. No one sees your vote as a protest vote, there’s nothing that distinguishes your protest vote from a well-informed, educated vote, it’s just a vote, and if they’re more leave votes than remain, guess what, the leave vote wins. It’s basic maths, like one and one equals two, unless those numbers you’re adding up corrolate to British pound coins, in which case it equals 20 pence.

The interviews were recorded at a bus stop, and you could see the 36 bus pulling up, which is the bus that I used to get everyday to go to college and then after that to go to work, but watching Hartlepool on the TV on friday, the town didn’t at all feel like home.

Normally, people who I’ve just met will assume that I’m Geordie, and will ask me if I come from Newcastle. Usually I’ll tell them that I’m from “Artlepool,” dropping the H like all true Artlepudlians do. But, to be honest, so ashamed am I at the ignorance of my home town, that I think from now on whenever someone says, “so, you’re from Newcastle I assume?” I will respond with, “why aye bonny lad, that’s reet man, up the toon.” Or I’ll probably just say “yes,” but you get the point.

In fact, so upset am I with my home town, that I’ve decided that I’m no longer willing to help them with their efforts to get back to the top of the teenage pregnancy league. That’s right, I am so pissed off that I am no longer prepared to have sex with teenage girls, in fact, just to teach you a lesson Hartlepool, I am going to come to your town and have sex with all the foreign teenage girls (of legal age), meaning that there will be an influx of new-born foreigners, so then you’ll actually have a bit more factual weight behind your complaints about “all these foreigners.” Plus, what with all the foreign births, these foreign women will be taking up the NHS’s resources having their foreign children. I mean, really, I’m doing you a favour, Hartlepool. I’m making you look less stupid by introducing more NHS hogging foreign people, so that you’re arguments will actually hold some value. I think this is an even more noble cause than my original teenage pregnancy campaign, and my original cause was pretty noble, I’m sure you’ll agree.

I’ve written today’s Dollop very hastily. I’ll write something a bit more considered and interesting tomorrow; or maybe I won’t, maybe I’m just saying I will in order to get you to come to my website tomorrow, and when you come back tomorrow it’ll just be a recording of me farting; although, I suppose there’s a chance that you might enjoy that more than reading a load of boring words. Oh well, come back tomorrow and we’ll see what happens. There isn’t a plan. I am choosing to adopt the exit campaign’s approach to this blog from now on.

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