Tuesday, May 26, 2009
Yesterday morning, I awoke with a strange, unsettling sensation. I couldn't recall ever feeling this way before. I just lay there, staring up at the Michelangelo fresco and trying to identify the nature of this unease.
Then a dim childhood memory surfaced, something to do with setting fire to a cat, and I realised the feeling was - guilt. I turned over in the huge four-poster bed, accidentally knocking two Brazilian pole dancers on to the floor. I felt dreadful - not about them, obviously, but about the fate that has befallen our once proud nation.
But why? It's not my fault the House of Commons is full of flippers, chancers and sneaks. I can't be entirely to blame for the grim standard of MP that has swarmed in to our ancient legislature over the past few decades. But I do have to take some responsibility for their antics. After all, they were only trying to emulate me.
The master: A second house? I had nine second houses, one of them a yacht moored off Macauto for change
I admit that when I was first elected as an MP, back in the Eighties, I quickly became infamous for the scope and imagination of my expense claims. A second house? I had nine second houses, one of them a yacht moored off Macau, and all paid for by you - my grateful, if uninformed, people.
And then there were my highly paid girls Monday to Friday, all 100 per cent subsidised, and renowned worldwide for their beauty and double-jointed flexibility. They made the inmates of the Playboy mansion look like arthritic nuns.
But I soon matured and realised that massaging my allowances - and being massaged on allowances - was small beer.
That's when I invented financial derivatives and set out on the path to unimaginable wealth. But, as we all now realise, my derivatives played no small part in the worst recession we've known. And, regrettably, my resulting losses made rather a dent in said unimaginable wealth. I needed to find new revenue streams in which to dip my toes.
And so I admit that it was I who leaked - all right, sold - every sordid detail of the MPs' expenses claims. In my defence, I had no choice. I needed to lay my hands quickly on a modest wad - my bank accounts having been outrageously frozen by the Serious Fraud Office pending their investigation into how, allegedly, I managed to divert £50billion worth of Alistair Darling's fiscal easing into my personal piggy bank.
Naturally, as a life-long Tory, I had assumed that the expenses coverage would focus exclusively on Labour Party misdeeds, while soft-pedalling our own people's minor accounting errors.
And at first it seemed I was right, as analysts gleefully recounted such scandals as John Prescott's two replacement toilet seats.
I have to say I was astounded. Only two? I'd have thought Prezza crushes the loo seat to dust every time he visits the smallest room.
After all, I discovered Tony BlairAs the litany of Labour outrages unfolded, I felt a quiet satisfaction. The vision of Michael Martin and Hazel Blears fighting to be first in the JobCentre queue was politically delightful and oddly arousing.
Then, to my horror, the fire was turned on the Tories. Why? I suspect some still don't trust dishy Dave Cameron, believing him to be a clone of Tony Blair. He is, of course, but what they don't realise is that Tony was a Tory all along.
I should know - after all, I discovered T. Blair. When I first encountered him, he was just a second-rate lawyer with almost no interest in politics. Yet I could see his potential as a promising young actor with bags of ambition.
And when I realised John Major's mob were doomed, I trained up Tony and insinuated him into Labour, so there'd still be someone who believed in unfettered capitalism at the helm of Great Britain PLC. Someone I could control.
The plan worked a treat. On election, I - or rather Tony - promptly slashed taxes, dismantled banking regulations and unleashed the City of London wide-boys. For five or six years we all had a great time.
Unfortunately, the moment I took my eye off Blair he decided he really was a politician - and next thing we're fighting simultaneous wars against insane dressing-gown-wearing suicide bombers.
But I digress. Back to the current expenses business. No sooner had Labour's disgrace been reflected in a joyful collapse in their polling than the honourable and totally justifiable claims of Conservative MPs came to light.
Take Douglas Hogg. He is the latest in a long line of Hoggs who have served the nation for centuries, and all he wants in return is the right to retire behind castle walls and have nothing to do with the common herd.
Can you do anything with a moat for two grand?
But because he claims £2,000 for a moat, everyone turns on him! I mean, 2,000 measly pounds! Does anyone think you can do anything with a moat for two grand, beyond perhaps restocking it with goldfish?
Obviously, Douglas has massively subsidised the public purse by refurbishing his moat with his own money, and probably the £2,000 is simply for signs saying 'Private property - keep out', which should be paid for by the public, as they are aimed at the public. Another fine man unfairly besmirched is Alan Duncan, one of our few remaining Right-wing ideologues.
Alan is criticised for reclaiming £600 or £700 for a sit-upon lawn mower. What on earth is wrong with that? Have you seen Alan Duncan? He's tiny. We can't expect him to mow his garden on foot! He'd be out there until midnight.
I still clung to the hope that the spotlight would switch to the Lib Dems to take the heat off us Tory big beasts.
Sure enough, Ming Campbell was caught out paying a grand or so to an interior decorator, which at least shows some class compared with Chris Huhne's trouser press - which, to judge by his crumpled attire, he clearly never uses. But overall the Liberals turned out as dull and unimaginative as ever.
What, then, is behind this collapse of Parliamentary probity, other than the impossibility of living on an MP's pathetic stipend? Are our members morally inferior to their predecessors? Is Expensesgate the symptom of a deeper malaise?
I think the answer, one that politicians fear to acknowledge, is that MPs are powerless.
Once in No10, the PM immediately sets out on the path of ignoring his or her backbenchers. These poor worms are kept in place by vague promises of future advancement - and the fear of losing their cushy positions the moment they show any independence.
So cowed and pathetic is today's Parliamentary Labour Party that nobody of stature had the guts to stand against Gordon Brown for the leadership. Thus we have a Prime Minister chosen neither by the voters nor his own party members. Even President I'm A Dinner Jacket of Iran has a more democratic mandate than Gordon!
I think the answer is that MPs are powerless
Besides, even if Parliament tried to hold the Government to account, they'd have little impact, since 70 per cent of our laws are made in Brussels and merely rubber stamped in Westminster.
I suspect you are wondering why on earth I care. Surely, I hear you say, Sir Alan B'Stard (I received the knighthood in Blair's retirement honours, but we kept it out of the papers, obviously) has no interest in this once great country other than to pillage it for his personal benefit?
I admit that is, to a great extent, true. Yet I consider myself to be the equivalent of a proud Masai warrior.
The Masai keep cattle and live off their blood by piercing a bull's vein and draining off a pint every now and then. The warrior doesn't kill the bull, however. He looks after the bull, and the bull repays the favour.
Likewise, I will not allow the beast that nourishes me - the Westminster establishment - to become so sick there is no blood left to tap. I'd be a very foolish parasite indeed.
Therefore I have no choice but to return to public life. Indeed, I'm already building a new party.
Even had Parliament not lost all respect, I fear my services would still be needed, following the worldwide financial crisis that Gordon Brown is in no way responsible for. Everyone knows hard choices must be made and that no mainstream party has the nerve to make them.
My manifesto is simple. We'll save billions by cancelling Trident, our 'independent' nuclear deterrent, on the grounds of cost and the fact that it isn't independent - we'd have to get America's permission to fire it.
We'll lease East London to the French so they can have the bloody Olympics after all
We'll save further fortunes when we scrap plans for ID cards - the Civil Service would either lose our details or misfile them, anyway.
We'll abolish the Department of Trade, the Department of Culture, Media and Sport, and we'll sell off the BBC. We'll lease East London to the French so they can have the bloody Olympics after all - and pay for them.
We'll slash top-rate income tax to 20 per cent to encourage the super-rich to come back and live here. Then we'll triple VAT on luxury goods. Millionaires love spending money, and if designer handbags and posh restaurants shoot up in price, the plutocracy will merely value these things more.
Finally, we'll grant full independence to Scotland and Wales. We might be worse off if Scotland keeps the oil, but in the long term, we'll be well rid of the tartan spongers. I wouldn't mind making the North of England independent, too, but that might be harder to arrange.
You're probably quite excited now and want to know what my new party will be called so you can vote for us. Well, I think there's only one possible name: The Honesty Party.
Will I be leader? Or course not. I intend to auction the leadership to the highest bidder. I will have a far more important position. I'm going to be Speaker.
Sunday, May 24, 2009
It's no surprise that this weeks Tw@ of the week is from the Afternoon Show on RTE ........ as it probably should be every week.
This week its Trevor Keegan , the guy who took over from the woman who took over from the other woman who replaced the presenter who ...... oh lets just say it .... he's the next in a long line of people who are having dental problems while trying to work alongside Blathnaid Ni Chofaigh .
This week our Trev informed the public ( through grinding teeth ) that he made his own Garlic Bread ..... when questioned further by the chef de jour ... " Oh , you made your own bread ? , thats very brave " ... he replied " oh no ... I bought the bread ! " ....... and in conclusion ... it seems that this week Trevor Keegan buttered a piece of bread folks , is there no limit to the talents of RTE presenters ?