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Want my vote? Arrest the Pope and bring these soldiers home

As an ordinary member of the voting public I'm starting to feel like a 'battered wife'. Picture the scene: the abusive husband is on his knees on the doorstep, calling to his long-suffering wife through the letterbox.

"Please let me in," he pleads. "Please give me another chance; just one final chance. That's all I need to make you happy.

"And I won't hurt you ever again, I promise. I was under severe stress when I kicked your head in that last time.

"But I've learned my lesson. And by God I'll never, never do it again."

And the poor wife is cowering in the kitchen, shaking with fear from head to toe and she's wondering if she dare trust this man again. Or is he only telling her what she wants to hear?

If she lets him into the house will he be straight back to his old ways - spending the household money on daft schemes, ignoring her needs and scaring the living daylights out of the children?

As the posters go back up on the lamp posts, ruining all the good work done by the grass-cutters and the litter-collectors, I can't help but feel a tiny twinge of despair. We've had a few days of electioneering now, but not very much on actual policies. I couldn't really tell you, off the top of my head, what any of the UK mainland or local Northern Ireland parties stand for anymore.

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I got a letter from the Conservative Party last week, and, wait for it, they were asking me what I was concerned about. They were asking me! With less than a month to go until polling day!

I mean, where's the little laminated card that fits into my wallet with the Tory manifesto printed on it? I dropped the letter into my recycling basket. The cheek of them! If they want an advisor they really ought to have the decency to offer me £100,000-a-year.

What's that you say? I've not got a snowball's chance in hell of bagging £100K? Oh, sod it then. I'll tell you what I want.

Firstly, I want the 'war on terror' declared a ghastly mistake and the troops brought home immediately. I want all disabled soldiers to be given brand new houses in the private sector and a generous pension for life. I want all Army accommodation improved as a priority.

Secondly, I want the UK Government to cease trading with all and any countries that fail to uphold basic human rights. For no bona fide despot cares about bombs dropped on civilians; all they care about is money.

Thirdly, I want the Government to put a cap on the percentage of homes in any constituency that may be classed as Homes of Multiple Occupancy. This will put an overnight stop to greedy landlords filling up their properties with illegal immigrants and rowdy students.

Fourthly, I want MPs' salaries cut to £30,000 and expenses limited to £10,000. The majority of workers in this country are expected to manage on less than £40,000 and I see no reason why MPs can't do the same.

My fifth demand is that any available social housing be given to married, working couples as a priority and that teenage mums be encouraged to stay at home with their parents. This is to protect vulnerable teenage girls across the land from being exploited by older boyfriends looking for free accommodation. My sixth demand is for every neighbourhood to have a safe, green space for children to play on. Where I live, the children are trying to play football on the road, bless them. And they have to keep moving off the road to let cars pass.

Finally, I'd like the Pope to be arrested for crimes against humanity (as per Richard Dawkins' excellent suggestion) when he next visits the UK. For the Vatican isn't a true state; it's just a suburb in Rome. And the Pope is not a head of state; he's just a silly old duffer in a long white dress.

So that's what I want, chaps! Now, where were we? Oh yes, I was wavering in my battered wife's kitchen and you were on your knees grovelling on the doorstep.

Go on then, what have you got to say for yourself?