"On the outskirts of every agony sits some observant fellow who points." --Virginia Woolf
Wednesday, January 25, 2006
Multitasker of the Year Award: George Galloway
If you asked me last month, I would say that George Galloway is the most awesome MP ever. I have no idea what his role, if any, was in the UN's oil-for-food scandal. All I know is that I was abso-freaking-lutely blown away by his tough talk to the US Senate subcommittee last year during the investigative hearings regarding his involvement. Galloway went berserk before the almighty US Senate, and that's a fact. I don't care if he was involved in a sordid love affair with Sadam and Osama. For one fleeting moment I was able to see, right there live on C-Span, what it might be like if politicians in America actually held robust, open debate similar to that in the House of Commons. I hold no illusions that Galloway opened up some kind of new standard for public discourse on Capitol Hill, but anyone who's ever endured even two minutes of congressional hearings via C-Span knows that the banality is enough to literally spur droves of viewers into dying of boredom. Literally. And there is something deeply disconcerting and almost sinister about that. Lord knows if Bush was held under as much public scrutiny as Blair is by his own colleagues in Parliament he wouldn't last one day as President. The public humiliaton alone would send him stuttering and inventing words which would no doubt lead to the APA diagnosing our little Dubya as showing signs of mental retardation.
But I digress...
Back to Galloway. The MP is ALL over the news out here in Old Blimey. He's been quite the busy bee--not only has he just successfully won a libel case against the Daily Telegraph, but he's also found a home on Celebrity Big Brother alongside the likes of a transvestite who wears gorilla coats, a Paris Hilton look-alike who dubbed Hilton Travelodge, and Dennis Rodman. For the last three weeks the MP for Bethnal Green and Bow has been serving his consituency by dancing the robot in a spandex leotard and lapping milk from a saucer like a kitty.
Unfortunately, such admirable endeavors have taken their toll on his Parliamentary activities. According to theyworkforyou.com, since 2005, Galloway has only voted in 15% of Parliament's elections, ranking him at 634 out of 645 MPs. Among those who ranked below him were five members of Sinn Fein who were practicing abstention, three speakers who were in eligible to vote, and two members who have recently become deceased.
I suppose, if you asked me now, I would not rank George Galloway as the most awesome MP ever, even though his robotic prowess has proven impressive. I will, however, dub him "Multitasker of the Year".
I am uncommonly mobile; I have circumnavigated the globe eight times, walking amazing distances. Through the South Island of New Zealand to the Southern Alps. From Chile to the Andes in Argentina. Across the Serengeti in Africa. I made 300 ascents of mountains 10,000 ft. tall or more, including the Matterhorn, Mont Blanc, and Kilimanjaro. I traveled alone, aided only by my porters, sketching volcanos and collecting wildflowers along the way.