Thursday, 29 April 2010

Election - Leaders’ Debate – The serious questions

There are two questions that must be asked and / or answered tonight. They are:-

Question one - Is it true that scientists have found a use for the 90 million doses of swine flu vaccine that the government has stockpiled?

Question two - In the light of the financial contagion that is currently sweeping across Southern Europe, is it possible that the next occupant of No.10 will be called upon to save the world (again)?

Wednesday, 28 April 2010

World first!! Latin blog will re-examine the Trojan Horse!!!

Coming soon – this blog will migrate to the ancient world with the introduction of the world’s first “Blogus Latinus”.

Here is a snippet - from Virgil’s Aeneid, Book Two, where the prophet Laocon warns the Trojans against accepting the wooden horse that the Greeks have left at their gates.

“Timeo Danaos et dona ferentes.”

Loosely translated this mean: “I fear Greeks, especially those bearing gifts.”

I hope that Classics scholars amongst you will enjoy this departure. More soon...

(NB: The use of the word “Greeks” here is nothing to do with the country Greece, which is currently in the midst of a major financial crisis. It is in fact a reference to the terminology adopted by investment bankers at banks such as Goldman Sachs when considering the calculus of risk pertaining to a particular trade – As in: “Hey, Brad, I’m going long gamma”. Please also note that as with all financial products sold by investment banks, the value of these investments can go down as well as down.)

Tuesday, 27 April 2010

Election Holiday

The febrile nature of this election campaign has become too much for me and I have decided to take a short break.

Monday, 19 April 2010

Calm down, dear boy

(Michael Winner asks his old mate Michael Caine to do an esure commercial with him. They are lounging by the pool, sipping cocktails.)

MC: You know, Mikey boy. Don't get me wrong or nothing. I know these ads are really important to you and the such like. But I think I'm getting a bit too long in the old tooth to start selling insurance. Don't you?

MC: Nonsense, my boy. You're never too old to do an E-sure ad. What about me, Mikey? What about Uncle Michael. I'm no spring chicken - even if the ladies might say otherwise.

MC: Oh yeah, we all know about you and the ladies, don't we?

MC: Not that I want to brag, Michael, my boy. But I'll tell you what. There have been a lot more of those ladies since I started doing the Esure ads. I can tell you.

MC: Really, Mikey?

MC: Really, Michael.

MC: What like young ladies? You don't mean, like those ones in the ads that you say "calm down" to?

MW: Oh puh-lease, Michael. What do you think I'm like?

MC: I know what you're like, Mikey! I do indeed!

MW: Anyway, look... we must move on. Time is money and all that! What I had in mind was an insurance ad that could have come straight out of a caper movie... like the Italian Job.

MC: Oh, goody goody. Been ages since I done a caper movie!

MW: Precisely... as you say. You're no spring chicken.

MC: Excuse me, Mikey! Was that you just ribbing me just then?

MW: (Dismisses this with a wave) Anyway you... you are doing a bank heist. And you have some dolt of a safe cracker who is going to work on a ten inch steel door. He screws it up royally. And then you shout: "You were only supposed to blow the bloody doors off."

MC: Oh... love it. I haven't said anything like that for ages... Probably not since, I don't know, Get Carter.

MW: (Looks at him quizically) Right.. Yes. You okay, my boy?

MC: Have never felt better, Mikey!

MW: Anyway... I then come a long and I say - wait for it -

MC: (Cuts in) Zulus, Zulus bloody everywhere!

MW: Please, Michael. Don't be so absurd. I come in and say: "Calm down dear. It's only a commercial."

MC: Yeah of course... Of course... But pardon me if I'm a bit slow today, Mikey, but why would someone doing a bank job have bought insurance? It just ain't right. The boys'd never bother with something as namby pamby as insurance. Not on a bank job. That's more like...

MW: Oh please, Michael. Don't be so literal minded. Remember - It's a commercial.

MC: Nah Mikey... Calm down, it's only a commercial. (Chuckles to himself)

MW: Yes, Michael. Very drole. Very drole indeed.

MC: Thought you'd like that one Mikey.

MW: Yes, it was a classic, Michael.

MC: Yeah and who are you supposed to be Mikey? You're not Mr Bridger, are ya?

MW: No, of course I'm not Mr Bridger, Michael. How utterly ridiculous. Bridger was played by Noel Coward. Nothing like me.

MC: I could see it Mikey, I really could (puts on Noel Coward voice)  C-c-c-calm down, dear boy, will you please? It is only... a c-c-commercial. Indeed is it not? Do ya like my Coward impersonation, Mikey?

MW: (Scratching his head) You know, Michael...

MC: What?

MC: I think... You might have something there.

MC: I think I might too, actually.

MW: Might have to work on it a bit. But, I just wonder... Interesting departure, it would be, but... could just possibly be a goer.

MC: Well, we're old troopers aren't we Mikey? If anyone can bring a bit of business to an Esure ad, Michaels Caine and Winner certainly can.

MW: I think you'll find the billing would be MCs Winner and Caine.

MC: On an ad, Mikey? Don't think so.

MW: Anyway this is by the by, MC. You're suggesting that I put on my best Noel Coward voice on and play Mr Bridger? (Plays around with it) C-Calm down... Calm, c-c-ccalm... d-d-down... Dear... Deeear boy....

MC: Yeah. I bet you always fancied yourself as Noel Coward.

MW: I beg your pardon? I most certainly did not. He was most definitely not one for the ladies I can tell you that!

MC: Calm down, calm down, Mikey. Just having a laugh.

MW: Yes, very funny, Michael.

MC: Having a laugh, mate

MW: Yes, you said

MC: Although maybe you ought to get married soon... Other wise they'll be saying: Look at Mikey Winner... Unmarried? At his age?... And what's more he is frolicking around doing all these Noel Coward impersonations... You know, like, what's with this: "Calm down, dear boy" routine? Whatever next? He'll be making a musical next, I shouldn't wonder. And maybe, who knows, doing an impersonation of Noel Coward in the lead role.

MW: What on earth are you talking about? Doing a musical? Puh-lease! This is all becoming rather surreal...  (He sits thinking about it for a moment... then frowns). Although...

MC: Yeah?

MW: Although... Actually, come to think of it...

MC: Yes?

MW:  You know... You might be onto something there...

MC: Might I, Mikey?

MW: Yes.... Come to think of it... What is the one last great thing I have left to do? A musical of course! You know... You might... just be onto something!

MC: There you go Mikey boy. Trust old MC to suggest your piece of resistance! I've just given you your next project, I have.

MW: (He sits nodding, stares into space, sipping his drink. Then all of a sudden his face drops. He slowly begins to shake his head.) No...

MC: No?

MW: No. Wouldn't work, this musical.

MC: No? I thought we was onto something there.

MW: No, Michael... it couldn't work...

MC: Why's that then?

MW: Well... for a start... Charlie Bronson isn't around any more, is he...? And I just couldn't do it without Charlie? Could I?

MC: (Ponders) Oh... I see your point, Mikey... Nah, you couldn't really do your musical, your musical piece of resistance without Charlie. Could ya?

MW: I'm afraid... Sadly not.

Sunday, 18 April 2010

Volcanic eruption! An apology.

The other day I suggested that Prime Minister Brown was angry about the ash cloud that has halted all flights. We are in the middle of an election and should be focused on who governs Britain, not on some volcano that we can do precious little about.

I would like to correct this: The ash cloud has given the Prime Minister a photo opportunity. Flanked by Lord Mandelson and Foreign Secretary Miliband, he can once again pretend that he is the saviour of our nation. He can appear invaluable; he can tell us that he won't abandon us in our hour of need. He will show us his mettle, he...

Hold on, hold on, Gordon. No one believes any of this. This is UTTERLY pathetic. Stop thinking that photo opportunities will save you. Do you have that low an opinion of the British people???

Saturday, 17 April 2010

Morgan the Vulture and Barcode Bob

Summer 2010 - St Jean - Morgan peers out over the Med - Matt's point about 'Goldie' is bothering him. Has he tapped into something significant - public anger, public disquiet? People see blood-sucking parasites everywhere they look nowadays. The papers bang on about vampire squid and vultures. Last night at Le Cap, he listened in as a bunch of wealthy humans discussed 'bankers': "They're going for Goldie; who's next? Barcode Bob?"

He thinks: Goldie? Do humans have their own 'Goldies' - their own bloodsuckers? Maybe every species has its parasites - like every species has its mugs, its slaves, its worker bees. And what of Barcode Bob? Does he deserve what's coming to him? What exactly is coming to him? Being a parasite - was it okay once? But now... a bit last season?

He asks Matt where that other 'Goldie' - the squid - lives, and pays him a visit. The squid and the vulture know right away - forget Darwin - that they're same species. They get on like a house on fire, swallowing endless Martinis and ramming enough coke up their breathing apparatus to kill a horse . "Every creature," says Goldie, "Every 'Morgan', every 'Goldie' can go too far sometimes - if they're allowed. Like drug addicts, they'll take everything they can lay their hands on. But because we're talking money here, and because money ain't a drug - not officially at least - they can say to the political animals, the self styled kings of beasts: DON'T tell us what to do. DON'T regulate us. This is real life. This is not a drug... or some kindergarten fantasy. You CANNOT regulate real life... Oh, and just to show we're on the right side, and that we really do care.... here, have some of our, like, earnings, our largesse... and why not come and stay some time? And now, could you please run along and kindly get the fuck out of our lives."

"Well, well, well. I cannot tell you how often I have used that line." says Morgan

Goldie laughs. "Me too."

"It works. Every time."

"Maybe it shouldn't. Sometimes we need to be saved from ourselves."

"Sometimes... perhaps. I know a lot of dead vultures... guys who were a little too greedy. Ended up eating their own livers, their own viscera."

"Yuk. Heard similar stories."

"Problem is, Goldie, these self-styled "political animals" - the ones who say they'll contend with the really greedy guys - they can end up going too far in the other direction... stopping everything. Or sometimes they say they'll stop the greed... until they get a taste for it."

"You know why that is?"

"I got a view. Love to hear yours."

"They're only in it for themselves... this political class, this leadership class"

"They'd deny that, most of them. And I've argued this, both sides, many times."

"Believe me. They are. Some of them don't even realise it. A lot of it's psychological, why they want power... You know, fucked up childhoods, hang-ups about being short, that kinda thing."

"Anyway, there's some other Goldie, I understand - some human Goldie - and apparently, he's going down.

"Yep. Got too greedy, they say. One of them banker guys."

"Something else I overheard at Le Cap... Who's this Barcode Bob guy they're talking about?"

"Barcode Bob, the Bottomfeeder. Ha! I reckon... I reckon they might indict him on similar charges as Goldie at some point. More greed... He was doing fine, making a stack. Then he and his bottom feeder associates, they thought they'd tart up some low grade innards and other crap and then - get this - sell it to the big, big fish - the sharks, the barracuda, even the whales. Can you believe it?"

"Jeeeesuz! I thought those guys never touched that kind of stuff."

"Yep," replies the squid. "Never as simple as it seems though is it?"

"You're not kidding."

"And I'll tell you something else."

"What's that?"

"They say Barcode Bob knows where one or two bodies are buried."

"Bodies? Really?"

"Oh, yeah."

(To be continued...)

Friday, 16 April 2010

Election Debate - The Director's Cut

We all know they had to stick to the rules. And we know these rules were agreed months ago. But most people don't know about the cut.

This is all we have to go on... For now at least.

Alistair Stewart: This question is from Adrian. He comes from Basingstoke and has a question about banking.

Adrian: What would each of the leaders do to avoid a repeat of the banking crisis of 2008?

David: It is clear what occurred two years ago was simply unacceptable. The ex-Chancellor, the Prime Minister, Gordon Brown, was clearly out of touch... on the back foot, from the start of the Northern Rock debacle, through to the Icelandic Banking Crisis. He is now still out of touch because he has neither the will nor the desire to build an international consensus on banking regulation. The Conservatives would abandon his reactive approach and act proactively to formulate policies such as the separation of retail and investment banking. This would ensure that "shutting the stable door" would never again happen.

Alistair Stewart: Gordon?

Gordon: I can announce today that a Labour government will pass legislation to ensure that British air space will never again be subject to Icelandic volcanic eruptions, including those that start in America. We must safeguard our airspace, our airlines, our air miles, our airports that pay homage to consumer capitalism with duty free, the financial interests of those who travel on aeroplanes, the businesses that depend on this essential transport service...

David: (Rudely) Yeah, yeah. We get it, windbag. Change the record.

Alistair Stewart: Please gentlemen!

Gordon: (Ignoring both) Never again will a British airport or a British plane be endangered by a foreign volcano. We will have a Volcano Day when the British people can come together and discuss the issues surrounding Icelandic, and indeed other nearby volcanic eruptions. We will promise a policy of British airspace for British flyers.

Alistair Stewart: Nick?

Gordon: (Interrupts) Can I also add that Nick agrees with everything I say, so he can simply endorse my views, if he finds it easier.

Nick: Yeah, right. Thanks, Gordon. (Whispers) Ass-hole.

Alistair Stewart: Please, Gordon. You've had your go.

Gordon: Can I smile?

Alistair Stewart: Please, please, Gordon! Over to you Nick...

Nick: Our party is clearly not going to win, so I can be, like, slightly more relaxed and flexible and say things that the other two leaders could never risk saying? I will be the one who looks good, appears laid back, smiles sweetly, winks knowingly and occasionally kinda purrs... I'm the guy who says things that make people feel comfortable - especially the ladies - I just luv to put the gals at their ease. I am essentially… cool... Co-oo-ool! And in the event of a well-hung Parliament, ladies, I will fight for the best possible deal for British guys and, most important, British gals. The best deal, that's right... Which is also, like, cool... Or at least, if not cool, it'll be kinda cosy. Capiche?

Election Debate - The Verdict

Question: How long does it take to change a light bulb?

Answer: Give me another five years and I'll tell you.

Thursday, 15 April 2010

Morgan the Vulture and the Vampire Squid

Morgan was rather pleased with himself. He'd sold the lions and all the other important animals a pile of dead vulture meat. He reckoned he deserved a well-earned rest. So he headed for the Med., where the rich vultures flocked and found himself a perch near St Jean. There he spotted a guy rolling stones into the sea. He wondered what he was up to, so he flew down and perched nearby.

"What you doing?" he asked.

"What d'ya think? Rolling stones."


"Trying to get the vampire squid. The fucker's in there somewhere."

Morgan flew a little closer. "Hi, sorry, should've said, name's Morgan."

"Hi, I'm Matt."

"What's a vampire squid?" asked Morgan naively.

"Come on, man. He's the greedy fuck that sucks the pond life dry. Can you believe this dude's called Goldie? Like, hello? Where's the gold, man? But I'll tell you what: I'm Goldie's nemesis."

"Or perhaps Goldie's yours." said Morgan innocently.

Matt didn't respond so Morgan asked, "What's the problem with this squid?"

"What's the problem? I'll tell you what the problem is. This dude soaks up everything for miles around... sucks it up until the entire system is out of kilter. He wraps his tentacles around the faces of all the animals in that eco-system and takes way more than any single squid could possibly need. Then he departs and leaves behind a wasteland in which every remaining beast finds it a real struggle to survive."

Morgan knew he had to be cautious. Matt had just described something that could sum up his own approach to life. So he played safe: "Maybe that's all he knows, this squid... Like a lot of animals. He knows nothing else."

"All he knows. So fucking what?" said Matt.

"So maybe it's not his fault. He just does what comes naturally."

"Yeah, so?"

"Well, maybe it's the fault of all the dudes who say they represent the interests of all the other beasts, the pond life you mentioned. I see this kind of thing where I live all the time. The lions and the tigers and all the other "kings of the beasts", who know it's to their advantage, they buy every friggin' piece of friggin' shit I sell them. Then they justify it to their prides, their tribes, their whatever you want to call them."

"Tribes'll do."

"Okay, tribes. But, I'm saying that this Goldie is just doing what any squid would do. And the real problem is not Goldie, it's these so-called lions and tigers, or these sea-lions... and these pond-tigers or whatever, who say they represent the interests of all the animals, but who are actually making a tidy sum out of dealing with guys like Goldie and me."

"Yeah, but so what? If my rolling stones hit Goldie, then that's problem over, surely? Problem solved?"

"Nope. All that'll happen is, another vampire squid'll come along and take Goldie's place. So what'll that achieve? You'll be back to square one."

Matt thought about this, then said. "Yeah, suppose you've got a point, dude." He straightened up "You know, you're quite smart for a vulture."

"All vultures are smart, Matt. It's just, some are smarter than others."

Matt liked Morgan and thought he might like to hang out with him. "Hey, Morgan why don't you come over here and grab a line." He held out his flask. "And a shot?"

But Morgan declined. "Three years it's been, Matt." he said earnestly. "And I found out a while ago that they even have meetings down here in St Jean. So I'll say no, if you don't mind."

Matt shrugged but appeared to understand. And with that, Morgan flew off to hang out with all the other rich vultures that flocked to St Jean at this time of year. He wasn't really off the sauce - or the dope. He simply preferred to grab the kind of lines that vultures grab when they're on vacation... or at home... or wherever on earth they happen to be.

(to be continued...)

Wednesday, 14 April 2010

Morgan the Vulture - A Fairy tale in many, many parts

Once upon a time there was a vulture called Morgan - and a very happy vulture he was. You see, Morgan used to spend all his time gliding over the plains looking for dead bodies. Oh how he loved those dead bodies! He even loved the not-quite-so-dead bodies, not to mention the weak and the vulnerable ones. In fact he basically loved easy meat, did Morgan. Which meant, any meat he could lay his beak on with the minimum of effort

What a wonderful life it was! Morgan loved nothing more than to survey the plain in the early evening when the sun was going down. This was a good time to find a dehydrating gazelle, exhausted and soon to expire. And as soon as the animal began twitching and its expression went vacant, he'd swoop down and fill his fat, greedy, bloated guts with the tainted flesh of the dying creature.

Sweet! No exertion involved, no complications. He often thought how stupid the King of the Beasts was. He knew that lions, just like all the other big cats, had to go through much labour to fill their proud tummies. They had to expend so much effort, so much industry. Whereas Morgan simply dealt with the remains. And what rich pickings those remains provided.

But one day Morgan noticed that many of his fellow vultures were becoming sick and weak. The first stage, he noticed, was coughing and spluttering. Then the vultures lost the ability to take off and fly. Then they started vomiting and going very, very, deathly pale.

Morgan thought there must be some really dodgy flesh knocking about the plain. Because, boys and girls, some flesh is too purulent, too rotten, too toxic even for vultures. And so it came to pass that the other vultures started dropping like flies - like very big fucking flies, I'll warrant you.

But Morgan was okey-dokey. You see, he was a wily old bird and he avoided the really stinking, oozing, festering flesh. He stayed fit and well fed. And he carried on much as he had before.

But there's something else you should know about Morgan: he was also a very imaginitive, a very creative birdie. And he hit upon an idea: There was so much vulture meat now knocking around on account of the plague and what-not, that he thought "I could do a nice little sideline in flogging it, I could."

And so he went about the plain and said to the lions and the tigers and the panthers and the cheetahs and the leopards and the crocodiles and the hyenas and the... anyway, you get the message... He said to them, "Hey, dude, wanna know the deal? Even a vulture can provide you a meal."

And you know what? All these majestic animals, even the big, cool cats, they all said yes, because times were tough on the plain what with global warming and the fucked up balance of the ecosystem and they went and bought every ounce of vulture meat that Morgan had.

Boy-o-boy-o-boy-o-boy! What a nice little earner this was for the wily vulture. He was making a mint (which was not what his vulture flesh smelt like, I can tell you). But times were good for him all of a sudden. And who would have thought it after all that nasty old vulture pestilence that had occurred so recently.

And none of the animals knew what he was getting up to and how he was getting so rich.They just could not see how it was possible when the economy of the plain was so totally fucked up and chaotic and twisted and when even the King of the Beasts was having a really shit time.

But, in chapter two, boys and girls, we'll find out what happened next to Morgan and his vulture way of life, and how it was that all the other animals turned a blind eye to everything that Morgan did.

(to be continued...)

I am not a number

David Cameron and William Hague are discussing the pitch for their “people-empowerment” agenda. They want a popular frame of reference that'll get across the idea that individual citizens can make a difference. The remake of the cult sixties series "The Prisoner" is about to appear on television. Could it offer an avenue worth exploring?

Hague: Of course the line that everyone remembers is, I am not a number.

Cameron: (Laughs) I am not a number. Yes. Love it.

Hague: Classic line. Has resonance even today David, does it not?

Cameron: It does. Everyone knows what it means

Hague: ... People quoting it on television

Cameron: That might be to do with the remake, of course.

Hague: Possibly.

Cameron: (Smiles) You're not a number, are you, William?

Hague: Me, David? No, most definitely not. I am most definitely not a number.

Cameron: Me neither, William. One thing Eton taught one was that one is not a number.

Hague: And even with my state education, I can quite categorically say that one is not a number either.

Cameron: You did do your thing, your speech, didn't you? You know, party conference back in 1976, as a wee nipper. Some might say that you were already a career politician back then. The party hierarchy already had your, er, number, if you like

Hague: (Chuckles) Very funny, David. But in all earnestness, I would say that my appearance at conference back then would actually prove that I was an individual - even as a wee nipper, as you so appositely put it

Cameron: In a tweed jacket was it not?

Hague: Well, yes, David. But that just shows once again how much of an individual I was. No one in my school would have been caught dead wearing a tweed jacket back then. One would have been the laughing stock.

Cameron: I'm sure one would, William.

Hague: Anyway, we're straying from the point if you don't mind my saying.

Cameron: Of course. Your point...

Hague: Which is that this government under Gordon Brown treats people as numbers. This lot, they eat sleep and dream numbers, statistics, numerical analysis.

Cameron: Not wrong there.

Hague: So, this is what we need to be getting across, in my view. We could even test out the campaign slogan perhaps: "I am not a number."

Cameron: "You are not a number?"

Hague: No, I just said, Dave. I am not a num...

Cameron: No, I meant as a slogan.

Hague: Oh, I see. Yes. You mean, we say in our presentation, "You are not a number."

Cameron:  Exactly. That's what we say: "You are not a number."

Hague: Although, we do have to be careful there. We can't TELL people that they are not numbers. Telling people that kind of thing is what Gordon and his lot would do. You know: You are NOT a number. I'm telling YOU. YOU are NOT a number!

Cameron: Fair point. Mind you, just imagine what a nerve it would be for Gordon Brown to quote from "The Prisoner", what with his record on civil rights. Remember Damian Green, for example? Not to mention databases, ID cards, 48 days detention etc etc.

Hague: It would indeed take some chutzpah were he to do that David. But I wouldn't put it past him.

Cameron: No, you're right. I wouldn't either... Well, maybe we ought to start using this quote pronto, before he has the chance to get it out.

Hague: Good idea. We'll get it out before he does. Then he'll look stupid if he starts telling people that they're not a number, after we have already told people they're not a number.

Cameron: Or that they are not numbers, to, you know, use the grammatical...

Hague: Yes, I'll correct myself, if I may... That they are not numbers.

Cameron: Anyway at least that means we'll steal a march on him, if he does think of making any references to "The Prisoner" when the remake launches, whenever that is.

Hague: I'll talk to Pickles about it immediately. See how he might want to play it.

Cameron: Good man, William. I really reckon that this could pay dividends.

Hague: Indeed it could, David.

(The two sit back and reflect for a couple of moments)

Cameron: Of course... You know, one thing worries me though, William.

Hague: What's that?

Cameron: It's the fact that we are all, in a certain sense, prisoners nowadays. Politicians included.

Hague: Yes, David?

Cameron: Yes, we're all having to play the same game.... the same consensus game. It's the fight for the same old middle ground, the fight for the same old hearts and minds - for which New Labour originally fought... We're all prisoners now. We can't do anything in politics anymore without it having some kind of popular... some kind of middle of the road frame of reference.

Hague: Very true, David. And you have to ask yourself: Why is that? Who started it all?

Cameron: Well, I suppose it was, I don't know, we politicians who started it all?

Hague: Exactly, David. It was down to politicians in the first place, I do believe, that one, that one and all are... are? is? (Looks confused)

Cameron: Are, William. It's are!

Hague: Yes, that one and all are effectively numbers nowadays.

Monday, 12 April 2010

This is no ordinary shopping list, this is a Labour Party shopping list

Gordon Brown has said that the Labour manifesto is not "an expensive shopping list, spraying promises as the Tories have been doing." Quite what he means is anyone's guess. But here goes...

Ed Milipede: I think the voters'll go for it Gordon. There are some really cool commitments.

Gordon: Yes, great presentation. Lovely graphics and special effects. I especially like the animation. I am sure it'll appeal to younger voters. Very modern.

Ed: Yes, but Gordon. There's one commitment that isn't in this manifesto, which worries me a bit.

Gordon: What's that?

Ed: The commitment that a Labour government will honour its manifesto committments.

Gordon: The commitment that, you what? What are you talking about?

Ed: Well it's the one commitment that voters never hear - but which they'd probably like to.

Gordon: Oh, don't be silly Ed. The manifesto is not about what they want to hear. It's about what we want to say. It's about us 'manifesting'. It's not about them, them...  'audifesting' or whatever it would be called.

Ed: Audifesting? Audifesto? Yeah, like it. Listening to what the voter wants. Could catch on one day.

Gordon: But come on Ed. We don't have time for all this. This (waves manifesto in his face) is our mission statement. Get it? Our mission statement.

Ed: Yeah, okay, Gordon. Mission statement, I suppose you're right.

Gordon: (Big smile) I'm manifestly right, Ed. Do you get it? Manifestly?

Ed: Yes, very good, Prime Minister. Manifestly.

Gordon: Yes, I'm manifestly right, Ed. And that is why this is my, our manifesto.

Ed: Yeah, okay Gordon. But if we are in fact re-elected then you realise that the electorate would never trust us ever again if we broke even a single commitment within this manifesto. They really would not. It'd be bye-bye.

Gordon: Let's worry about that when or if the time comes, Ed. For the time being, let's just get re-elected.

Ed: But, Gordon. Isn't that what they all say? You know, politicians? Worry about it when the time comes?

Gordon: Yes, Ed. But pity the poor sod whose job it'll be to go through this purple prose with a fine tooth comb looking for all those itty bitty commitments that we broke. I don't envy him or her that job. Especially in view of the fact that most people will by then be rather indifferent. Let's face it, most people have a hard enough time going through manifestos as it is - and that's before the election.

Ed: Yes, true, true, Gordon. You're right there.

Gordon: Ed, I'm manifestly right. (Grins) Am I not?

Ed: (Forced laugh) Yeah, Gordon, absolutely. You're manifestly right.

pRT wl spk 2 d yung

Labour launched it's manifesto today and it's clear that it's designed to appeal to the under eighteens - people who don't have the vote.

Either that, or the average voter is so stupid that text speak and references to Jedward are the only way in which the party can connect these days.

Sunday, 11 April 2010

Labour Party Manifesto, Mandifesto, Milifesto,

A spectre is haunting Britain - the spectre of cynicism

Tomorrow, Labour will be first to launch its manifesto. The nation will pick through it with a fine tooth comb, certain in the knowledge that it will shock, excite, bamboozle and bore. Ed Miliband wrote it. But tomorrow, will the voters of Britain write it off?

On this site you will find a real-time analysis of the lies as they come in. And of course, we'll be asking the most important question of all: Who reads this shit anyway?

Leak! Cameron-Clegg Pact!

(This is the transcript of a secret meeting between the Conservative and LibDem leaders. They are discussing what will happen in the event of a hung parliament.
The meeting between David Cameron and Nick Clegg is held on neutral territory - a well known restaurant in West London. Team Cameron has booked a private room and the Conservative leader greets Clegg at the door as he arrives.)

Cameron: Nicholas. Lovely to, er.

Clegg: Hi, David. Good to.

Cameron: Yes. Good to...

Clegg: Yep.

(They both take seats opposite one another at a round table.)

Cameron: I suppose that before we get down to biz I should order you a latte or something?

Clegg: Latte? Why's that, Dave? I'm the sort of person who?

Cameron: Who what?

Clegg: I don't know. Westminster? God knows. Bet Etonians don't do lattes

Cameron: What are you talking about, Nicholas? Nothing to do with Westminster, Eton. As it happens I'd be delighted to do lunch, if that's what you'd prefer. I just thought, you know, negotiations and all that. I thought, I thought...

Clegg: Thought what?

Cameron: Golly, latte, Nicholas? Everyone drinks latte nowadays. That was no judgement on Westminster. Westminster's cool. Cousin Wonk went there. Before your time, needless to say.

Clegg: Wonk? Cousin Wonk?

Cameron: Nicholas, please. Can we just, you know... It really shouldn't be this awkward. This meeting... this "meet", as it were.

Clegg: Yeah, of course, Dave. After all, you and I, we went to the best public schools in the country, did we not?

Cameron: No, Nicholas! Not that... Really! Not that at all.

Clegg: So then what, David?

Cameron: Well. You... you and I... we shouldn't be so uncomfortable about... you know?

Clegg: You know?

Cameron: Yes. You know. The class issue, the class thing, whatever you want to call it.

Clegg: Class? Who's worried about class? I'm not worried about class.

Cameron: Well, nor am I, Nicholas. But, I don't know, let's face it... I'm not the awkward one. I'm not all er... flustered. No chips here, not on this shoulder, matey.

Clegg: You went to Eton, matey.

Cameron: Oh, come on, Nicholas. Hello? Westminster isn't exactly slumming it.

Clegg: (Impassive) Right, so, anyway, you were going to say?

Cameron: Okay. So, the thing is, there's clearly - you know this yourself - an issue... we both know that... about class. Not, you know, the way that Brown and the papers would like to portray it, not that class war nonsense... But.. Well, lets just say... let's say, its like this. When I was talking to Pickles the other day... Chairman Eric, he was saying that it wasn't the old Lib-Con pact that was likely to be the issue, it wasn't elites, it wasn't workers versus public school... After all, we're all liberals nowadays. Right?

Clegg: Yes. Liberals. Right. I suppose we are... ALL liberals.

Cameron: Yes, we sort of are really.

Clegg: Fine. So what? What are you trying to say, Dave?

Cameron: What I am trying to say is this... It's the fact that... well, you know.

Clegg: I know?

Cameron: Yes, you know...

Clegg: What do I know?

Cameron: For crying out loud man. Can't you see? Eton, Westminster carving up the, you know... the er... whatsit?

Clegg: The whatsit? What are talking about? You're starting to sound like Boris Johnson, man.

Cameron: No... The, you know... the whatsit. Speaking the same kind of, carving up the.. you know, the language. It's the language for God's sake! What I'm trying to get at.

Clegg: Carving up the language?

Cameron: Exactly, you and I carving up the...

Clegg: (Thinks, then a spark of recognition) Oh, right, I'm... kind of with you. I think I might see where you're coming from now.

Cameron: Do you, old boy? I sincerely hope so, because I think it's kind of... you know, kind of

Clegg: Kind of?

Cameron: Yes, exactly. Kind of.

Clegg: So, hold on David. Are you basically saying that its not the, you know?

Cameron: Exactly. Not the, you know.

Clegg: Not the, you know, backgrounds, as such, that pose the problem.

Cameron: Yep, yep

Clegg: Rather it's the language that you and I... you know.

Cameron: Yes, exactly, its the language that kind of emanates from... that, I don't know, derives from those backgrounds. At least as far as the electorate are, you know, concerned.

Clegg: Right I see. (Reflects) Although, of course Gordon Brown and his crew - his tribe - also speak a totally different language to most of the... you know.

Cameron: Yes, of course, Nick. But he, they can kind of get away with it. He has been getting away with it. Even though he has more friends in the City of London and high places than you or I put together. Ordinary folk still buy into this idea that he speaks a language that's closer to theirs. God knows why. But that's what really worries me. The fact that they think he speaks their language.

Clegg: Okay, okay... I can see what you're getting at now, mate. And you're right. It could be a problem... This language issue, this language thing.

Cameron: Or it could be THE problem

Clegg: Yes, could be THE problem. I totally see where you're coming from... But, but you know what's strange, Dave?

Cameron: What?

Clegg: I'm now thinking... Why didn't you just say this at the outset, mate... about this language issue, that it was kind of ... the problem? You should have said that's what was on your mind. Then we wouldn't have spent so much time, you know, beating about the whatsit.

Cameron: Well, I sort of did, matey. Or at least I meant to... It was just... I don't know. When you walked in like that, you know, through the door, and there was all that latte routine, that chip on shoulder thing... I just couldn't.... er, like, I just couldn't find the right words, I suppose... If you know what I mean.

Clegg: Yeah, I do now, matey. Totally...Totally know what you mean.

Saturday, 10 April 2010

Loads-A-Bonus - The Eighties are back!

Ever since Labour depicted David Cameron as Detective Gene Hunt, the eighties have been back in fashion. Throughout the election, there will be contributions from our own eighties man - reinvented for 2010. He will be dispensing his advice as well as his take on the economy. His name is 'Loads-A-Bonus', and here's a sneak preview.

"Do you know why I'm here, ladies and gents? Do ya, do ya? I'll tell you why I'm here. Because I want to talk about my wad. Yeah that's right. I've got this wad of cash and it's all down to the HUGE BONUS I got paid this year.

Do you wonder why I've got it? Well, while you were all remortgaging your country in order to pay for the bailout of my MASSIVE investment bank, I've been creaming it. Yeah that's right. CREAMING IT!

Quantitative easing, I hear you ask? What's all that about then? There's nothing wrong with quantitative easing - I can tell you that right now. Quantitative easing is why I've had an absolutely MASSIVE BONUS this year.

And it was quantitative easing, ladies and gents that did all that, it did. It gave me my MASSIVE BONUS. And now, you'll be pleased to hear, thanks to quantitative easing and my MASSIVE BONUS, I can afford to keep young Garry at Eton, where he will continue to hang out with all those toffs. But I don't give a toss about him hanging out with all those toffs because thanks to Eton, Garry'll get a good start in life. Then, when he grows up he'll also make LOADS-A-BONUSES. Right Garry? Just like your Dad! Good boy.

Only the crumbliest, flakiest manifesto...

It is being dubbed the 'Cadbury Law'. And it is coming to a manifesto near you. But what is it?

It's Gordon Brown's promise that the future takeover of any British company will be scrutinised... like never before.

Now, hasn't the government made promises about these "touchstone" issues in the past? Didn't they tell us that the House of Lords, for example, would become a wholly elected chamber?

Well, party insiders are saying: "Yeah, but this time its different."

What they probably mean is: "It's election time again."

Or could it be, the bad press generated by the chocolate factory takeover has left poor Gordon feeling like a bit of a Charlie?

Friday, 9 April 2010

WARNING to ALL BLOGGERS: Prescott letter

There is a scam currently circulating the internet that is primarily targetting political bloggers. It purports to be from a victim of John Prescott's and it claims that the ex-Cabinet minister regularly parks his Jaguars and various other vehicles in the victim's driveway. It also asks for money to enable the victim to engage in acts of wanton violence towards Mr Prescott's assorted vehicles. Under no circumstances should bloggers, political or otherwise, respond to it. A copy is posted here:-

"Dear kind sir and blogger,

Your Mr John Prescott threatened to hit me the other day, simply because I asked him to move both of his Jaguars from my driveway.

I am a man of simple means and I pay a lot of money to come here to your country to buy postal votes. But I only possess just one driveway where I live and I have asked your Mr Prescott to move his vehicles on countless occasions, but to no avail. He is also quite a fat man and he always leaves his KFC boxes in my bush (with some chicken pieces still in them and the soggy chips).

What kind of an impression will this give to any foreign national, non-dom living in England? I am never going to come here again to try voting. It is expensive and people like Cabinet Minister Mr Prescott park their vehicles in driveways willy nilly. Also the postal vote is not so good as it seems. It requires stamps unlike the ordinary votes where you only pay just for the vote itself and nothing else.

If you do feel an ounce of sympathy for me, can I ask that you sponsor my act of wanton vandalisms towards your Mr John Prescott's cars?

10p will pay for me to throw stone at car.
20p will pay for two stones.
One pound will pay for small brick on bonnet
Two pounds and I let (three) tires down
Ten pounds pays for me to steal all the wheels (I keep the alloys for my self).
One hundred and thirty nine pounds and five pence pays for the glass all to be smashed
Two hundred pounds and ninety pence, and I will call your Mr. Prescott a bloated northern sh*t-faced stinking philandering swine to his face and then kick the wing of all these Jaguar cars in front of him personally.
Three hundred and forty pounds and seventy seven pence and I will deck the superannuated masturbater, and tell him what a flabby vomiting sonofbitch motherf***er he is and then scream that his wife enjoys love making with his subordinate chimpanzee civil servant workers up the back passage, and finally torch all his cars with paraffin and blowtorch (unlicensed) - as I am trained to do back home.

Please give generously. I love democracy.

If you receive this scam, please delete it immediately or report it to the relevant authorities.

Thursday, 8 April 2010

Gordon Brown to offer Indulgence Derivatives

Gordon Brown will offer the British public a new, more ethical investment product if he is re-elected in May. In a tie up with the Catholic Church labeled PPP (Papal Protestant Partnership) the Indulgence Derivative will be an ethical form of toxic waste that'll allow the buyer the right but not the obligation to go to Heaven. We caught up with the Prime Minister, The Pope and Brad, Head of Derivative Sales at securities firm Japey, Moron and Sucks as they discussed this new class of ethical investment. This is a snapshot of the meeting - an extended version will be published later this month.

Brown: Your Holiness, you say these products have to be secured on Church of England assets?

Pope: That is correct, Premier Gordon.

Brown: But, I am not sure the British public will be happy with such an arrangement. The assets will be at risk, will they not?

Pope: But Mister Gordon, your British public will not understand the arrangement as such... Just as they did not understand any of these credit derivatives that screwed your economy a couple of years back and that are now costing them an arm and a leg.

Brown: Well, it was all a bit more complicated than that, Your Holiness. But anyway, I am still worried that when the British people understand the liabilities of this particular deal...

Brad: (Loudly interrupting) Guys, guys, guys!  I'm sorry to have to remind you but - Hello? - time is money. And these negotiations are charged by... the... minute... Got that? Now can we just move on and agree this deal... like, before all this waffle bankrupts your respective nations?

(to be continued...)

Wednesday, 7 April 2010

General Election - "We love you!"

The election spluttered into life yesterday as party leaders travelled the length and breadth of the land bothering shoppers and travellers. But some observers thought that the adoring crowds greeting the Prime Minister at St Pancras Station were not as spontaneous as they seemed.

PM: (To an attractive brunette) So, tell me. What do you do?

Brunette: I work for the Labour party.

PM: What a coincidence. So do I.

Brunette: I know. I can't believe my luck. This is the best thing that's ever happened to me.

PM: (To man with a beard.) Hello. And what do you do?

Bearded man: I work for the Labour party.

PM: How marvellous. That's what she does. (Points to brunette).

Bearded man: I know. Staggering coincidence, isn't it? But then, who wouldn't want to work for the party?

PM: Very true. (Moves onto a bunch of students, shakes hands) And what do you lot do? Surprise me. Are you students at one of our fabulously well-endowed seats of learning?

Students: (In unison) Yes we are, but right now we are volunteers... for the Labour party!

PM: (Wipes a tear from his eye.) What a marvellous coincidence. Yet more people who want just one thing. A Labour victory!

Adviser: (Approaches the PM) Prime Minister, perhaps you should tone this coincidence thing down. Don't want to draw people's attention to it. (Points to BBC film crew nearby).

PM: No, of course. Well, this crowd cannot all be party workers... (Chuckles) Or can they? (He moves on to a short, middle-aged man in a rain coat) And what do you do?

Bald man: I'm a serial killer.

PM: (Confused) I didn't think we employed any serial killers. (Looks to his adviser).

Adviser: I think it was supposed to be a joke, Prime Minister. You know, light relief.

PM: (Smiles uneasily) Oh, I see. Yes, very good, very funny.

Bald man: In actual fact I'm not a serial killer. I actually...

PM: (Cuts in) Don't tell me. Labour party?

Bald man: No, I'm unemployed.

PM: Oh, dear.

Bald man: But I'm a fully paid up party member.

PM: Oh well, that's good. For a moment I thought you were going to tell me you were a Tory or something horrible like that.

Bald man: (Pointing at a more distant crowd of people) No, that man over there is a Tory, though. The one trying to get past the barrier and your minders.

Adviser: (Cuts in) Yes, you can tell by his total lack of spontaneity that he's a Tory.

PM: I agree. That and the cravate. That's what gives it away. He simply isn't spontaneous or casually dressed enough. Unlike this crowd who just turned up out of the blue and appear relaxed and casual.

Bald man: I don't feel relaxed.

Adviser: You're not actually a Tory are you?

Bald man: No, I just told you.

PM: (Interrupts) Were I... Were I... (Shouts so loud that BBC crew jump) Were I David Cameron, I would be afraid, very afraid. My only supporter would be that man over there, that Tory who is currently talking to my minders and wearing a ridiculous cravatte.

Adviser: (Loudly) It sure would be, Gordon.... Also there would probably be one or two real serial killers in the crowd, who, as we all know, vote Tory. (Turns to bald man). Eh, baldy?

Baldy: (Angrily) But you told me to say...

Adviser: That'll be all, baldy. Run along.

PM: (Turns to crowd) Anyway, I'd just like to say how grateful I am for this wonderful spontaneous turn out.

Crowd: (In unison) Good luck, Gordon. We hope you win. We love you!

PM: I love you too. (Turning to adviser, whispers) That's what I really love - spontaneity! That and love.

Adviser: (To crowd) Thanks guys, good work, that'll be all. Back to HQ. (To Gordon) Where on earth would we be without love and spontaneity?

PM: (Chuckles) In Conservative Central Office, I imagine.

Adviser: (Smiles) Yes... not wrong there.

Tuesday, 6 April 2010

Prime Minister "absolutely loves democracy"

Prime Minister Gordon Brown has announced that the General Election will be held on May 6. It is evidence, he says, that he is totally into democracy. "All my life I have wanted to show how much I adore democracy. Today, by calling an election, I have shown this to be the case."

In recent years, the PM has come in for criticism over the makeup of his cabinet. Both he and the second most powerful cabinet member, Lord Mandelson, are unelected. One fifth of his cabinet sit in the upper house - more peers than women. But by calling an election he feels he has silenced his critics. In addition, he says, a raft of policy initiatives are being prepared for the manifesto that will allow ordinary people to share in the "democracy experience". They are as follows:-

- Lowering the voting age to 16 -  Kids won't need to move from their XBoxes as voting buttons will be obligatory on all gaming consoles. And children who aren't into computer games will be able to call a premium rate phone line to vote, much as they do with X Factor or Big Brother. (Check your phone operator for terms and conditions). What's more, if they are not sure who to vote for, or have never heard of voting, they can try a random generator option. It's great - just like playing the lottery!

Brown claimed that the proposals were revolutionary. He said that if boys and girls could have sex at sixteen why could they not vote at the same time - "not," he added, "that we are suggesting that they vote at the same time as having sex... or playing with their consoles for that matter."

- Democracy Day - This will be a day when people can come together, in large gatherings, or not at all if preferred, and talk, or simply think about democracy. They will also be free not to do any of these things, as we do live in a democracy. Celebrities will be drafted in to talk on daytime TV about their visions and their hopes for democracy, and about what it means to them. And ordinary members of the public will have a once in a lifetime opportunity to converse with them - and they don't even have to discuss democracy!

- Democracy wrist bands. Yes, show that you care. And what better a way than by wearing a wrist band? Collect the whole set - they come in five different colours! No-one will be able to call you shallow, or thick, or a fascist ever again (that is, unless you are already a shallow, thick fascist who wears wrist bands.)

At the end of his press conference the PM invited questions on his proposals and was asked: "If Labour is re-elected in May will we finally get the elected upper chamber that Labour has been promising since the 1990s?"

The PM responded confidently: "Thank you for the question. But that is exactly the kind of thing that people will wish to debate on "Democracy Day. We must allow the people to decide such matters. After all, this is the people's democracy!"

Saturday, 3 April 2010

Lord Mandelson attacks famous bank robber

Lord Mandelson has launched a scathing attack on one of Britain's best loved bank robbers branding him the "unacceptable face of organised crime."

The business secretary said today, "I have always been intensely relaxed about the likes of 'Diamond Bob' and his safe-cracking capers. He reminded me of those eccentric characters in the Italian job played by Noel Coward and Michael Caine.

"And for a long time we tolerated the antics of such men, believing they added a touch of glamour to the otherwise stuffy world of investment banking. But after they almost wiped out the global financial system with their explosive credit derivatives back in 2008, all I can say is: You were only supposed to blow the bloody doors off!"

Friday, 2 April 2010

Drug capital

Chancellor Darling is trying to grab some shut-eye during a gruelling election campaign. But Home Secretary Johnson suddenly appears at the door. He wants to discuss drugs.

Darling: (Rubbing his eyes) Alan, to what do I owe the pleasure?

Johnson: Something I just need to run by you, Alistair mate.

Darling: If it’s money for some new funding commitment, then I’m afraid…

Johnson: (Cuts in) Nah, not that, Al. Not exactly what I’d call a funding commitment as such.

Darling: (Looks perplexed) No?

Johnson: Nah. Bit of a tricky one this. It's more what you’d call a funding restriction if you like. It’s something our boys at the Home Office have dreamt up.

Darling: (Chuckles) Funding restriction? What exactly can your boys, as such, tell the Treasury about funding restrictions? If you don’t mind my asking.

Johnson: Well, it’s like this, Al: We reckon the Home Office should be responsible for control of the money supply. We think it should be us that’s regulating money and the money supply from now on.

Darling: (Rolling about) Excuse me while I laugh hysterically, Alan old chum. But what on earth are you talking about?

Johnson: (Irritated) No need to adopt that tone, Alistair. There’s a good reason behind this. It's er... Gordon.

Darling: Oh, I see. Gordon.

Johnson: Yes, mate. Gordon. You see, it’s like this: Gordon, as in your boss, as in my boss, is very, very pleased with the war I’ve been waging against these ‘legal’ designer drugs - you know, that mephedrone, and all those clever amphetamine like derivatives that people buy on the internet. You see, it’s making us look very good in the eyes of the Daily Mail readers, this war, this campaign against drugs. Could even help shore up the middle England vote, which can’t be bad. And, like, he and I were having a drink together last night. And we thought, how about if we looked at other legal entities, as it were, that aren’t called drugs but that behave a bit like drugs nevertheless? We were asking: Should we be controlling things that ordinary people don’t even realise are addictive, but that can ruin lives. And one of those things, we decided could be, er... money.

Darling: You what? Money?

Johnson: (Smiles) Yes, great, isn’t it? And we thought that money kind of makes sense because most people don’t even think how much control it has over their lives. Until of course they have to go cold turkey. (Smiles again). Catch my drift?

Darling: You’re totally barking, man.

Johnson: Barking? Maybe, Alistair mate, and maybe not. Remember, it’s a Home Office area of responsibility, mental health is.

Darling: Just as money supply is a Treasury one.

Johnson: Yeah, well that’s where we got a problem, haven’t we? Because, me and the boys at the Home Office, we reckon that you’re not controlling it, this money supply. Never have done. We reckon, in fact, it’s spiralled out of control. It’s becoming almost like an addictive substance, like a drug.

Darling: This is absurd, Alan. It’s not an addiction. It’s... it’s, what makes the world go round, if you’ll excuse the cliché.

Johnson: And that’s precisely why it should be properly controlled, Al. I’m not saying we ban it, nothing like that. I’m just saying we control it. But WE – as in, we at the Home Office – control it.

Darling: You don’t know the first thing about money, man. You’ve never even worked in a senior treasury post. The markets would laugh at you. They’d laugh at this government.

Johnson: The markets, d’you say? As in, the dealers, you mean?

Darling: Yes. If you like, the dealers.

Johnson: The drug dealers, you mean?

Darling: For God’s sake, man. Don’t be so idiotic.

Johnson: You can scoff. But we’ve actually thought this one through carefully, this whole money issue. And not just straight money, but also this funny money, these derivatives that the dealers have been designing. Designer derivatives? (Taps his nose). Know what I mean?

Darling: What on earth...?

Johnson: They’re lethal, these designer derivatives. You must realise that? Those credit derivatives almost did for our economy back in 2008. And all those cheap mortgages what came about as a result of them, all that easy money... everyone high on the smell of Wonga - dealers and punters alike. And unfortunately mate, it was something that the treasury failed time and time again to control. So now it’s cold turkey time as a result.

Johnson: Well, it’s easy to say “failed” now… with hindsight

Darling: Yeah, well there won’t be no hindsight necessary no more. From now on we are going to ban things before they spiral out of control.

Johnson: You totally off your rocker, man? You control them?

Johnson: And first of all, Alistair old chum, we’re going to have to control you, I'm sorry to say.

Darling: I beg your pardon?

Johnson: Yes mate. Sorry about this, but we're going to have to control you. We’re going to send you away somewhere where they don’t have any money, so it can’t intoxicate you no more… A kind of money rehab… What’s more, all your banking friends will go to this rehab too... you can all go there together… and, shall I tell you something else... we’re going to stop people carrying huge wads of cash and spending it all the time...

Darling: You’re crazy, man. Totally off your rocker.

Johnson: (Deranged) Yes, Alistair, old chum. An end, yes an end... to spend, spend, spend... spend, spend, spend.... An end... to spend...

Darling: Please stop repeating yourself, Alan. You’re driving me crazy now.

Johnson: Spend, spend, spend... an end to spend... end end...

(Darling becomes delirious. Johnson’s voice is increasingly ethereal and his face begins to blur. Everything becomes misty and gradually Darling realises that he’s been having a terrible nightmare.)

Darling: How utterly ghastly! Home Office in charge of money supply? It'd be bye-bye to all those lucrative non-exec. roles after I leave office...

Thursday, 1 April 2010

Government - "Stimulant drugs okay for kids"

Breaking News: It has emerged that children as young as five will still be allowed to take stimulant drugs. The news comes after the government recently announced it will ban the speed-like drug mephedrone.

The former government drugs advisor Professor Nutt had proposed licensing rather than banning Mephedrone. But Home Secretary Alan Johnson was concerned for the views of Daily Mail readers and decided nothing short of an outright ban would be acceptable.

But it has emerged that another amphetamine type drug popular with kids is to remain licensed. Ritalin is regularly prescribed for children suffering from attention deficit disorder and the government has no plans to end this practice.

A Home Office spokeman said: "No, this is not an April Fool's joke. Ritalin is indeed a speed-like drug and yes it is prescribed for children as young as five. But it is produced by a major pharmaceuticals company that has employed countless MPs and ex Ministers, so it must be all right."