Friday, December 08, 2006

What's on your Veternari list?

In Terry Pratchett's Discworld series (Yes, I am a nerd), the pre-eminent political leader is Havelock Vetinari. Portrayed as a mixture of Lyndon Johnson, Machiavelli, Richard III and Bismarck, Vetenari is the ultimate in cynical, rational, cold blooded political realism.

Except for his loathing of mimes. The man hates mimes and throws them into pits for nothing more than practising their harmless art.

When I am Supreme Dictator of All Britain, things will be similarly rational and well ordered. Aside from the minor issue over my headquarters (The National Gallery or Somerset House? I cna never decide) every major decision will be considered coolly, rationally and without emotion.

There will however be a few exceptions. They follow below. Consider yourself warned- and feel free to supply additions.

1. Under the "Freedom of the Airwaves Act 2007," Janet Street Porter will be banned from any Television, Radio and Newpaper work. Penalty for allowing her image to grace our screens? To be placed in a room alone with her for four years.

2. Under the "That was just mean Act 2008" the parents of BBC Business reporter Julia Caesar will be publicly flogged. Honestly, Julia Caesar?

3. Under the "Misrepresentation of the people Act 2009" Vox Pops will be banned. Random streetwalkers do not a reflection of Britain make.

4. Under the "Prevention of cliche Act 2010" All Travel articles that contain the words "Land of Contrasts" will be burnt.

5. Under the "Brilliant and Incisive Act 2011" Any book reviewer who does not disclose personal, familial, marital or financial links to either the author, the publisher or a competitor to the above will be banned from publishing anything, ever.

6. Under the "Prevention of Neoptism Act 2012" The son or daughter of a famous person shall be forced to change their name and no comment shall be made about thair parents. No son or daughter of a senior media executive, author, actor or comedian will be allowed to work in the media until the age of 28.

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. Oooh. Get me.

Things I find really irritating. If you use them, I will automatically assume you are a cretin.

See, if you change the letters round… Brilliant. You are a comedy genius.

Nulab, ZanuLab and variants: I don’t even understand why Nu is bad. Now, if is were GnuLab, I’d laugh.

LibDumb, LibDim and variants: Yes, yes, well done.

Oddly, I haven't seen many moronic, childish epithets for the Tories. Why not? Do Labour supporters just have a more finely honed sense of humour, or have I just missed the tidal wave of Konservative, Camer-wrong and other idiocies?

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Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Vote for Someone Else!

Your humble correspondent is a hack. I've stood in more elections than you've had hot dinners sunshine. I've won by landslides, been beaten by less than a fifth of a vote, stood on a stage looking delighted and smug and been the devious hack saying I'll nominate a friend for an election and then standing against them. I won, too.

So when I realised that this Blog had been nominated for the "Best Labour Blogger" award by the fine people at Bloggers4Labour, it was all I could do not to grab the nearest battlebus and head off to the nearest marginal seat.

Yet, I confess I am not worthy. How can I campaign for such an award, when I can't even update my links? how can I win if I care not for the typo or the grammatical error?

No dear friends, This is an award I cannot in all conscience campaign for.

*takes out onion*

Vote here, if you desire, but feel no pressure from your correspondent, who cares not for such trinkets and baubles and only wishes to add his little all to the great struggle for social justice that is the Labour movement. After all, are we not stronger together than we are seperately?

All of the Blogs listed are naturally excellent, so i thought that since i was not asking for support I should give you a bit of information about my fellow contestants. My comments are of, course, intended to help my rivals.

Best Blog
Snowflake 5:
Reasonable, softy lefty and commenter in the bearpit of CiF. Read him, even if he did vote Lib Dem, the swine. THE EVIL LIB DEM SWIIIINE.
Thoughtful, intelligent, nuanced. Currently running a campaign about standards for bloggers and against malicious gossip. This is because the author sleeps with small furry animals, sex-wise.
Half Blog, three-quarters Cruddas for deputy fansite. Currently stalking Peter Hain, as I was informed by special branch. If you go there your movement will be tracked by MI5. Definitely.
Again with the thoughtfulness and intelligence. YAWNARAMA OR WHAT? Recently apologised for slavery. Because he had seven slaves until 1997. Now pays them minimum wage, thanks to Labour.

Oh, all right, they're all very good. The Bustards.

Oh, and do vote for Hamer Shawcross as best new blogger. Just to encourage the mustachioed reprobates. I was excluded from the best new blogger vote, despite being nominated, which is a sign of the repression implicit in the social fascist state. Fight the power. Tom, Kerron and Bob Piper get enough traffic already, the greedy gets.

...and back Fair Deal Phil for best elected representative. He's our man in Deeping St James. It's like being our man in Moscow, except flatter.

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My Pre Pre-Budget Report report.

So Gordon gets a chance to set out his stall today. I think he'll want to be forward-looking.

I don't know economics, but I do know politics. So here's my pre-budget predictions:

Gordon Brown will do the following:

1. Let's look at the record. Stability. Growth. compared to years of boom and bust.
2. Big Picture is good, but challenges of future. Focus on facts and details - drawing the contrast with Cameron and Osborne.
3. Climate change, Skills, Globalisation, Education. Business growth. Big challenges need real, worked through responses.
4. I have rejected submissions to cut spending on Schools'n'hospitals which would..... How mean that would be.
5. You want to be green? This is where you start paying. In Cash. You said you wanted it.
6. The Economy is growing faster than predicted. Again. Remember when you said it was going to crash? losers.
7. My brilliance means I can.. spend more on schools!
8. So I'm going to spend more. but that still leaves some space in economy.
9. Shock Tax cut - maybe.... OK. This is just me hoping and he'll probably wait till March for that.

Osborne will:

1. Keep his voice as low as humanly possible, but forget about halfway though.
2. Try to be serious but work in at least one reference to a big clunking fist.
3. Try to take credit for any green moves.
4. China'ndia. Big global challenges, productivity, red tape. Holding back economic growth.
5. The economy is stagnating. Oh yes.
6. Where has all the money gone?
7. (Takes out onion) Life is getting harder for hardworking families, unemployment rising, Inflation, It's all you fault.
8. So we need tax cuts. Err. We need balanced tax cuts. ummm.
9. You're rubbish and you smell.

Your Correspondent will:

1. Try to supress my deep and abiding loathing of George Osborne, the smug, shrill, piping, arrogant wind up merchant. As you can tell it's going well.

2. Throw things at the television when the more ignorant and self satisfied of our press corps burble on. I mean you, Langdale, and you strangely forgettable woman next to Andrew Neil and the entire ITN political team. Not Sky then, the sky people tend to be relatively good if they're the politics team and not ignorant, superficial Kay Burley.

3. Edit this post after the event, so there is no evidence of my idiocy.

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Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Political Book Corner

Iiiiiiits Christmas, quoth little Noddy Holder before all of the miserable sods around Parliament kick his head in.

So for your purchasing joy, here are the first of occassional political recomendations for the hack in your life.

1. The Powerbroker, Robert A Caro.

Yeah, yeah, yeah,. Everyone's heard of Caro's Lyndon Johnson biography. But kids, talkin' bout Lyndon is so 2002. We've all been there done that and told the story about getting the aides to take notes in the toilet. And the one about the pig-loving.

So this book is where you show you really know political biography. This is the Book Caro wrote before he started on his LBJ marathon. This is a Deep Cut, the early work that made his rep on an indie label before signing for a major. This is the Sex Pistols on A&M.

It's about Robert Moses. Moses, baby! It's seven hundred pages about a New York builder who made one run for elected office and lost.

You know you want it.

Buying this book for your loved one is like getting some rare Miles Davis bootleg for a jazz fan. It shows you understand. it shows you care.

Buy For: Gordon Brown, William Hague.

2. The Washingtonienne

OK, So you're a bag carrier. It's not so bad but could be so much better.

You could be a minx of an American Bag carrier working for a US Senator. You get free drinks and powerful middle aged men trying to put their pork where it really shouldn't go.

I meant lobbyists trying to insert appropriations into a tax cutting bill.
Honestly, people.

Anyway, it's a book about researchers and sex, which is good for novelty value at least.

Buy for: Louise Bagshawe, Recess Monkey, the writers of Party Animals

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Monday, December 04, 2006

Why this blog is anonymous..

Because I need to tell you that my first reaction on hearing the news that former Russian spy Alexander Litvinenko was poisoned in a sushi bar was to think...

Mmmmm... Sushi.

I am a bad and evil person and my identity must never be revealed.

Could this Story get any more James Bond? The castlist..

Possible villian, Mario Scaramella,
Intriguing Russian... Alex Goldfarb,
English Scientist.. John Henry (snigger).

But where, you might ask, is Xenia Onatopp?

I nominate Maria Gaidar, daughter of possibly poisoned former Russian PM Yegor, as our putative real life thigh-crusher. She's already got into practise by abseiling down Moscow bridges. Mmmmm.

Xenia and her alter ego Maria

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So what happened last week?

John Cruddas decided he wants the mantle of the left more than he wants to be deputy leader. Can you imagine Gordon wanting a deputy leader who opposed Trident?

Will Hutton sketched out the shape of things to come. Idea of a split up Treasury is quite interesting.

Senior Tories decides that the way to attack cameron is to attack his surrogates. Without Steve, you're nothing, they think. This reminds me of the way people would brief against Kinnock by attacking Mandelson and Charles Clarke. In code it means "we don't really think you're up to it.".

I Wonder who the sources are... Iain Dale would know, but he's not telling.

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