Monday, July 04, 2005

Mr Fixit Will Be Needed

DD vs DC- it's shaping up as Mr Fixit vs Mr Empathy (two of Mrs Tyler's favourite Mister Men).

Mr Fixit is going to sort those failing public services, grip the dependency culture, and beat up the bad guys. Just like Clint he'll clamp his cheroot between his teeth and do what has to be done.

Mr Empathy is going to talk a lot about healing our broken society, how we'll all pull together, and how there's good in everyone. Just like Hugh, he'll take you for a cappuccino, talk to you, hold your hand, and be very concerned (well, obviously he won't do that stuff in the parked car, but you know what I mean).

No prizes for guessing which one I prefer. And sometimes, when it's dark and stormy, and Lee Van Cleef has just ridden into town, we all want Mr Fixit. But most of the time, a disturbingly high number of people go for Mr Empathy.

And you know what? A lot of them are women. Indeed the Political Thinker says:

'For women it isn’t what the politicians say, it’s more their looks, their style, their charm … It’s not what they say, it’s how they say it, and it’s also how they act.'

I'm not sure we post-modernists are really supposed to say stuff like that, but let's suppose he's right. Given that problem with those missing famale votes, does it mean we should go for Mr Empathy?

If this is our choice, we need to be very careful. We wouldn't want to go into the forthcoming maelstrom of New Labour's economic comeuppance led by someone who might be great on empathy but doesn't know how to shoot straight.


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