Published On: Sun, May 19th, 2013

Balls to the Compro-Monkeys


By Graham Rex


One of my favourite videos on YouTube is the one in which George Galloway walks out on a public debate at Oxford University upon discovering that the person he is debating is an Israeli. Amid a mixed chorus of laughter, stunned murmuring and shouts of “what racism!” you hear Galloway say that he doesn’t “recognise the state of Israel and doesn’t debate with Israelis” and therefore cannot continue in the discussion.


Whether he was right or wrong, you have to agree that the guy has got balls. Big, steel balls – and that is what I look for in a leader. It’s what we should all look for in a leader and it is what all leaders should strive to achieve. I don’t agree with even half of George Galloway’s principles but I would be tempted to vote for him simply because of that display of daring and steadfast belief. As Ralph Fiennes says at the end of In Bruges, you have to stick to your principles. In the same vein, I am attracted (only in a political sense mind you) to UKIP leader Nigel Farage. While many see him as a quasi-fascist delusional crackpot I love the fact that he and his party represent an altogether alternative viewpoint and don’t try to cloud their views in doublespeak and mealy-mouthed soundbites. That’s why Galloway, Farage, etc get all this media attention – they’re shockingly different to the identikit ‘big parties’ and their say-nothing leaders.


These compro-monkeys spend their political lives adjusting their principles to suit current moods. A real leader adjusts current moods to suit their principles.


Take Margaret Thatcher (Yes, I did just swear in a published article): the mere thought of her makes some of you crush your empty Irn Bru can into a tin-foil pulp while the public-school lads are still drying their tears on their old-boys ties, yet surely nobody can disagree when I give her my nomination for the ballsiest leader of the latter 20th century. While the rest of her iron body is slowly rusting underground, you cannot piss off what seems like the entire Scots nation without having balls of pure plutonium.


Let’s have a look at some more ballsy characters – William Wallace, Nelson Mandela, Admiral Lord Nelson, Che Guevara. They all had or have a pair of pure gold swingers in between their legs and the history books have recorded as such. They weren’t born with them – they earned the right to replace their fleshy ones when they made personal sacrifices of their life or liberty for their principles.


Consequently it is a little disheartening to live in an age where we seem to have nobody who is willing to leave the safe harbour of diplomacy and go out in search of a real, innovative and fresh bounty of socio-economic principles. Independence, unionism, capitalism, socialism, equality, racism – these are all lacklustre, mind-numbing, dusty words. We need to stick them all in the dishwasher of thought, have one big Greek-style word-smashing party and stick all the bigger, cleaner shards together to make a lovely vase that we can all be proud of. Furthermore, as my Orkney born and Edinburgh raised granddad used to liberally point out, the Scots invented just about everything, from the tar road to oxygen, so know that the rest of the world is looking to you to lead the charge.


Who is going to have the balls to make some new words? I doubt it will be any of the current crop so I am going to give it a go myself. I’m brainstorming so just run with me for a while – I suggest we go for a system called Commonwealth Federalism, with a socio-economic policy called capi-free environmentalism. All the Commonwealth Countries – including the newly independent Scotland, England, Wales and Northern Ireland – are equal partners under the Queen (because I like the Queen), with a minimal administrative headquarters at Westminster. England must build their own new parliament building in Manchester or something. The minimal administration collects and distributes a marginal tax that is centred on four things – education, healthcare, environmental protection and defence. As you go to each country, and each region within those countries the government is more or less involved according to the desire of the people in question, but the overarching common human needs which nobody can organize privately is organized like one big family.


Now come on! That is something I thought of off the top of my head after a hard day of work! Sure, it’s full of flaws, but it’s a start right? So, to all our leaders and supposed leaders, with your degrees and doctorates from Oxford, St Andrews, Edinburgh and Cambridge, stop dicking around, earn your balls and come up with a solution rather than pointing out where the opposition has gone wrong. What the bloody hell else are we paying you for?