David Lammy tells a joke

LOOK at this character, standing in the House of Commons, hands behind his back, chest puffed out, a smarmy look, pursed lips that suggest he thinks he is the cleverest ranker in he world – and all for telling a simple switcheroo gag.

‘As the Prime Minister will be aware’, David Lammy blathered in Parliament today, ‘There are two great clubs in north London: Tottenham and Enfield Town’. He went on to waste a few more seconds of PMQs asking David Cameron whether he could help keep Tottenham in Tottenham. [Insert expletive here] [And another one]

What people like David Lammy and maybe Lammy himself are worried about is that after years of making rubbish jokes (in the absence of trophies) about Arsenal originally coming from Woolwich, and not Highbury, it could all splat back in their face if Spurs hotfoot to Stratford. And let’s face it: the fact that the idea of a move to the Olympic Stadium, whether a bargaining strategy or something more, is even being thought about says enough: They aren’t 100 percent committed to staying within Lammy’s constituency.

But the sad truth, more important than any of the banter in the Commons this afternoon, is that most of the people living in the immediate area around White Hart Lane can’t actually afford to go to Tottenham matches. Whether the club stays or not is nowhere near the top of the priorities in their lives. It holds no relevance to them. They are worried about services being cut and crime rates, whether their families and homes are safe. That’s what should be Lammy’s immediate concern. Once a fortnight, thousands out-of-patchers descend on the area, watch the match and then buzz off again. His mandate doesn’t come from them.

Lammy may think he’s pleasing his constituents with his silly quip and campaigning spirit. But he may actually just be pleasing people in Highgate, Hampstead, Waltham Forest, Bushey and beyond…

4 Comments on David Lammy tells a joke

  1. Isn’t it fair to say that whether or not the local community has the resources to go to games, or even supports Spurs, they benefit hugely from Spurs being there?

    White Hart Lane is located in the most deprived ward in London and in an area that suffers hugely from unemployment and low economic activity. The club is most likely the largest employer in the area, and certainly the economic spillover effects of busing 36,000 people into the ward on matchdays must sustain many of the businesses along the High Road from Seven Sisters Northwards.

    Whether you can bring yourself from seeing past what is only a light-hearted quip, the man is clearly doing his job and protecting the interests of his constituents.

    Like

    • Richard Osley // December 15, 2010 at 8:56 pm // Reply

      You don’t think it’s a shame that more people in Tottenham don’t go to Tottenham? They could have discounted tickets for people living within a certain radius.

      Like

      • Oh, I do, but that isn’t the point I am addressing.

        You said:

        “Whether the club stays or not is nowhere near the top of the priorities in [the people of Tottenham’s] lives. It holds no relevance to them. They are worried about services being cut and crime rates, whether their families and homes are safe. That’s what should be Lammy’s immediate concern. ”

        I say:

        Whether the club moves IS near the top priorities to these peoples lives, regardless of whether they are fans, ticket holders or none of these things because the presence of the club (in the social and economic sense of the word) props up an already deprived area.

        Hence, the issues of services being cut and crime rates that you believe to be the “top priorities” for the area are in fact intrinsically linked to the club. You take away the club, you take away a huge amount of council revenue (services cut). You take away the club, you directly lose 200+ jobs and a further 1,000 indirectly. Fewer jobs, more strain on social support network, higher social malaise and higher crime.

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  2. Richard Osley // December 15, 2010 at 9:36 pm // Reply

    Well done Spurs…

    …if I was a reporter in that neck of the woods, though, I’d definitely feel it was worthy of more investigation than I have seen so far.

    Like

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