Monday, 15 May 2017

Mike Basman in the House!

Good Lord!

It appears Mike Basman is standing for Parliament, in the Conservative/Liberal Democrat marginal of Kingston and Surbiton. Our VAT-averse International Master even has a manifesto. Or, indeed, a (Bas)Manifesto.

Mike's standing as an Independent (or in his own words, as a Alt-Conservative/Independent candidate) and not, as we might expect, for the Tax Evaders and Bankrupts Party. His manifesto is the kind of charmless sub-UKIPpery that you kind of expect if you've come across him, with a few extra eccentricities which do not move his platform any further towards the world of coherence.

Here's Mike, for instance, resolving our problems with climate change, which apparently come down to an "impasse".

Mike's understanding of the state of climate science is not exceeded by his knowledge of political life abroad

and this is an analogy which I think is supposed to explain certain relationships of power

but mostly explains that Mike doesn't know how to construct a coherent analogy. Really, who knows what Mike is raving about. Come to that, who has ever known?

Best of luck trying to wade your way through the manifesto, should you really wish to. If it has any practical function it might be to help dispel the idea that chessplayers are any smarter than the rest of us.

You'll probably have guessed, though, that the real subject of the manifesto is Mike Basman. I'm fairly sure, for instance, that this policy strand wouldn't be there were it not for its author living in a caravan himself

and having read it, let's not try too hard to work out why and whether we're also supposed to be living in Portugal or the north of England, let alone how we're supposed to afford this. For there are further miracles of economics and arithmetic waiting for us:

yes, it's Mike's endless war with Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs, in which he is always going to come second but will never stop trying to prove otherwise, less because he is a warrior for truth and justice and more because he is a self-deluding clown.

"I was perfectly willing to pay my tax, but not actually willing to take any steps to do so" is not an argument which has so far impressed the courts and nor is that likely to change in the future, any more than "I was happy to pay for the goods, but objected to the expense involved and the time wasted in queueing" is likely to prove a defence to a shoplifting charge.

But this is a chess blog - and where would a chess blog be without at least one diagram? Regrettably there is only one, but what a corker it is, devised (and titled to boot) in order to explain the previously little-heard-of principle that one should think about things oneself before immediately going to the experts.

No doubt, no doubt. My personal view is that straight after thinking up this wheeze Mike should have gone to anybody, expert or inexpert, who would have told him not to be so stupid, but then again Mike's normal approach looks rather more like this.

One trusts Tim Farron won't be endorsing this particular foolishness, and come to that nor will anybody else. Last time, Kingston and Surbiton declared at about half-three in the morning. Don't wait up.

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Previous Basman:

Holy tax evasion
Why Britain Won't Have Its Own World Champion

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