Ben Nolan, the Labour Party’s Head of Membership, is having a nervous 2015 general election campaign.
Whereas other Labour figures (or their MailChimp newsletter administrators) have been relentlessly upbeat in their messages – “GUESS where our JAWS are this morning, Samuel, after we saw our latest fundraising totals!” – Nolan seems to be paid to be pessimistic. And creepy.
As a political blogger, I make a point of staying on the mailing lists for all the main political parties. Normally they are completely unrevealing missives, simple straightforward requests for cash. Sometimes they direct you to a website where you are invited to enter your postcode to reveal a bespoke list of that party’s achievements in office or future spending bribes, customised for your local area.
But sometimes they look like the one that Ben Nolan sent today, fired out to “supporters” who he has decided are not trying hard enough to propel Ed Miliband into 10 Downing Street:
I know we’ve asked you — more than a few times — in the last couple of weeks for a donation to support the crucial work of our local organisers and volunteers.
It seems from our records that you aren’t yet among our generous group of online donors.*
I’m sure it’s for a good reason, Samuel, and I’d love to know what it is. Do you have one minute to tell me what’s stopped you donating?
Your feedback will help us to build a stronger and more inclusive campaign in these final days.
Thanks so much for taking the time.
Head of Membership, Labour Party
Note the undertone of menace in the words “I’m sure it’s for a good reason”.