When Hillary was on the campaign trail her old home town was high on the itinerary. Unexpectedly, she encountered an old teenage boyfriend, working on a gas-station forecourt as he had done since leaving school. "Gee Hillary" he commented "Just imagine if you'd married me". "Yup" she replied "You'd now be the 42nd President". Nearer home, Christine Hamilton is a similar, though not equivalent, figure of matriarchal drive. Who could imagine her smarming little worm of a husband achieving anything on his own? She's hideous, terrifying, but by God what a woman.
The Tory party used to produce them in spades. In my youth they'd host cocktail parties at which we boys awkward in DJs and encumbered with overactive sebacious activity would make embarrassed conversation with farmers' daughters. They regulated a precise social scene that was every bit as much an incentive to party membership as the politics; one could laugh-off the latest stiffie on the mantelpiece, but it was a secret source of joy. Like hens, they had a clear pecking order, and those beneath the Grande Dame delegated to bake meringues or address envelopes were possessive of their own place in the hierarchy. They were the true heart of the Tory party as it was before the local associations were destroyed.
As Tanya Gold writes in the Guardian, the Tories can't win without women. But they've deserted the party in droves, unimpressed with the metropolitan elite and unsupportive of Central Office blow-ins such as Louise Mensch who have usurped their role in candidate selection. The social scene and the cocktail parties have dried-up. Our DJs hang unused and crushed by moth-balls. Many - such as Dee-Dee, a regular commentator here, I suspect - have drifted towards UKIP. The WI with 208,000 members has a higher membership than any of the three main parties, and the Rotarians have inherited the social side.
So, I think it's high time for UKIP woman to step forward. It's enduringly true that (1) people like to be organised (2) people like the chance to dress-up (3) single people welcome opportunities to meet in structured social environments (4) networking and establishing hierarchies can only truly be done in person (5) everyone welcomes a stiffie. So get to it, women of UKIP; the festive season is close to hand.