February 19th 2013 | Comments

How to stand for public office

You know how these things go. You’re somewhat in your cups in the public bar at the Dog and Duck having one of those “I’ll tell you what’s wrong with this country” conversations, one thing leads to another and all of a sudden you’re five hundred quid lighter and running for mayor. Luckily, I didn’t get elected (On a technicality: Nobody voted for me because the local press made it look like my completely reasonable policies were the work of a swivel-eyed maniac), but it served as a valuable life lesson.

And it is this: Don’t stand for public office. Everyone involved is a swivel-eyed maniac. But if you do want to stand for public office, we at Socked Party HQ are here to give you a few helpful pointers:

Choose your party carefully

Don’t make the mistake of trying to stand for a party that reflects your political views. Chances are they’ve already attracted the kind of swivel-eyed maniac that the gentleman would wish to avoid if he met them in the street. Given the choice again, we’d go for the Official Monster Raving Loony Party, as they seem to be the sanest of the lot, and hang around in decent pubs.

monster raving loony party

monster raving loony party ironically the only sane party

What kind of election are you going to stand in?

Most people make the terrible mistake of going for The Big One: The House Of Commons. Sad fact is that if unless you went to Eton (Conservatives) or Brighton Sixth Form College (Everybody else), you’ve got no chance at all, because it’s all about who you know and how rich you are. And – face it – you’re not.

Go instead for your town or village council. Most of the time, nobody actually bothers to stand (mainly because it’s about setting the budget for mowing the cemetery and arguing over the price of biscuits for council meetings), and it’s a fair to middling chance you’ll be elected unopposed. In which case: You’ve already achieved Step One of your world domination plan. Well done.

District council elections are slightly more difficult, and at that point, you’re going to come up against party politics, local businessmen in suits who think they should be running the country, and swivel-eyed maniacs.

Am I eligible to stand for office?

Are you a citizen of the European Union or the British Commonwealth? Are you over 18? Do you live in the area in which you are standing? Congratulations. Have a bunch of local people nominate you, and you’re on the ballot. That – we are afraid – is the easy part.

How do I ACTUALLY get elected?

This is where it all came unravelled in our plan to be mayor. It turns out that people don’t actually have to like you – you’ve just got to be less repellent than the other candidates through a carefully crafted plan to discredit them as swivel-eyed maniacs.

To this end, we made sure that the general public didn’t find out that we were the most awful people in God’s creation through a campaign involving the local press. Unfortunately, this was DISTORTED by LOCAL AGENDAS that made us look like the kind of SWIVEL-EYED MANIACS that type in ALL CAPS when we get ANNOYED. This is quite simply NOT THE CASE, but by the time polling day came round, we were onto a hiding to NOTHING.
Also, I don’t think the black party uniforms, the red armbands with the party logo and the toothbrush moustache helped, to be perfectly honest.

Should I get some policies?

If you must, but be warned you’ll be the only one that does. If it’s a local election, stand on a platform that opposes everything that the present council is planning. Also, promise stuff for old people, as that gets them out in droves, like free doughnuts and a return to pre-decimal currency.

How about publicity?

Local newspapers are always desperate for content, hence their pages are always filled with swivel-eyed maniacs pointing at dog turds and holes in the road. But beware as they might try to make you look like a SWIVEL-EYED MANIAC (see above). Also, get a celebrity endorsement going. We got a promise out of TV funny man Don Estelle, only hampered by the fact that he’s been dead for ten years. Do your research.

What happens if I win?

Get your snout in the old gravy train, and don’t forget us when you’re running the country. Over and out.