For those unfamiliar with the character of Jason Voorhees, he is the primary Antagonist of the Friday 13th series of films. Anyone famiilar with these will know the drill. Voorhees appears and wreaks havoc, usual involving multiple homicides only to seem as though he has finally perished. Then the film usually leaves a degree of ambiguity as to his fate. The franchise's original 1979 instalment spawned an enormous 10 sequels, some of which are some of the most wretched examples of horror cinema ever seen, but still Jason survives. The reason for mentioning him is that with the elections for the London assembly and mayoralty in prospect next year, perhaps its time to focus on the man most like him in terms of his longevity and arguably his likely impact on the London scene, for he has once more been up to his usual tricks.
Former mayor of the GLC, and two term London Mayor before his surprise defeat in 2008, Ken Livingstone has compared his mayoral rival's chief of staff, Eddie Lister to the Recently indicted Serbian General Ratko Mladic . It's not the first time the man has made a tastelessly crass remark. Who can forget his comparison of Evening Standard reporter Oliver Finegold (of Jewish descent) with a Nazi Concentration Camp guard?
The Voorhees analogy, no doubt distasteful to Livingstone's acolytes as his comparison of Lister (who has courted controversy for potentially charging children for access to public playgrounds) to a man accused of the genocide of 8000 people is however apt. Whatever else I think of him, following his defeat at the hands of Kenneth Baker in 1986, he bounced back in 2000 to defeat two candidates (including a rival from his former party) to win the mayoralty and held the position for 8 years. I hoped his defeat by current incumbent, Boris Johnson in 2008 had finally driven a metaphorical stake through his political heart, but terrifyingly the man has returned to once again cast his dark shadow over the London scene. As Giroscoper points out, chillingly, the London elections are not, as I erroneously thought conducted on an electoral college basis (ie borough by borough), thus the multiple defeats he suffered in 2008 in the outer London boroughs could be overcome by him piling up enough of a majority amongst the so-called 'Rainbow coalition' (composed of around 11 boroughs with heavy concentrations of ethnic minorities, students and public sector employees) which delivered him two election triumphs. Admittedly many more verbal gaffes such as this one, and the poll lead he has might start to look slimmer, but it is perhaps a reflection on the chaos wrought in the nation's capital between 1997 and 2010, that such a being can have the slightest chance of achieving high office after decisive rejection in 2008.