Should I be con­sid­er­ing all the op­tions?

Buckinghamshire Advertiser - - OPINION - with Erica Neustadt of Change4Chal­font

I have some­times been scathing about politi­cians’ rather fleet­ing ac­quain­tance with truth, and their rather more in­ti­mate re­la­tion­ship with opin­ion and ex­pe­di­ency. But this week I have had to eat my words.

Boris John­son has fi­nally per­suaded me that there are some deep think­ing and self­less politi­cians out there. How many peo­ple, after all, would write two per­fectly honed news­pa­per ar­ti­cles, on the same sub­ject, from di­a­met­ri­cally op­posed per­spec­tives, just to make sure that the fi­nal, pub­lished view was sin­cerely held and could not be thought as mo­ti­vated by, say, am­bi­tion?

I ad­mire him for his in­tegrity, just as I re­spected his depth of knowl­edge when re­cently in­ter­viewed with John Kerry on the is­sue of Rus­sian in­ter­ven­tion in Syria. Those long pauses be­tween phrases showed how much he truly cared, and how thor­oughly he had read his brief­ing notes, as Kerry stood by, hold­ing his breath and nod­ding be­nignly when Boris fi­nally came out with a sen­tence that al­most made sense.

I have de­cided to start fol­low­ing Boris’s ex­am­ple by rig­or­ously con­sid­er­ing the pros and cons of any de­bate.

In fact, we should all do so, be­cause we’ve all got so much time to spare, haven’t we? From now on, when I go shopping, I will take two lists, one out­lin­ing what I need, and one ar­gu­ing what I could buy in­stead, just to make sure that I fill my bags with what I re­ally, re­ally want. When I go into Lon­don, I will also buy a train ticket to Birm­ing­ham, by way of re­search, so that wher­ever I end up, I can be ab­so­lutely sure that that is where I want to be.

Come to think of it, it would even be sen­si­ble to start go­ing out with other men, so that I can mark my part­ner against them, rather than just as­sum­ing that we should stay to­gether. I mean, I can see the ben­e­fits of being with him, and they are quite sig­nif­i­cant, but maybe I should ex­am­ine other pos­si­bil­i­ties, in case it be­comes, what is the phrase, ‘blind­ingly ob­vi­ous,’ that I should make a dif­fer­ent choice, par­tic­u­larly if some­one else might be able to of­fer me, oh, I don’t know, a very nice house on Down­ing Street?

I would show you the other ar­ti­cle I wrote this week, but I imag­ine you can pre­dict what it says. Just walk with me through the look­ing glass.

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