Huer’s Call

That childish rabble in the Commons run our country

Originally published in The West Briton 3rd Febuary 2014

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I like to turn on Radio 4 in the morning, and when its steady drone hasn’t put me straight back to sleep, ponder the issues of the hour as presented by the BBC (brilliantly, so hands off any weasel politician trying to wreck it – you’ll have me and most of middle Britain to reckon with!) Sorry, where was I? Ah yes, in that happy dozy pre-getting-up state I’m aware of changing trends, and it’s become apparent that with unusual co-operation the political parties have decided that the New Year celebrations marked the starting gun of the next election campaign. You can almost see those memos and texts now:

“Dear XYZ, as someone likely to be interviewed on radio/TV or featured in the press you will in future be sure to tie in a pointlessly negative comment on the current government/ the previous government/ the EU/ whatever the subject; furthermore to promote the key phrases in your handbook, i.e. ‘Hard working families’ (Tory); ‘Fight for a fair Britain’ (Labour); ‘I’m so so sorry’ (Lib Dem); ‘Floods aren’t really an expression of God’s anger at gay marriage’ (UKIP) etc. These phrases must be used at every opportunity. You have been warned.”

The mood music has become even more discordant than before. We’re facing fifteen mind-shredding months of blame and counter-blame.

I enjoy sport, support the Cornish Pirates and (small letters) manchester united and cheer when they win. Likewise I grumble at refs and diss the opposition, even though I secretly know they’re decent teams too, all doing their best. But that’s sport, a game. The worst that can happen is that we lose games and lose face, all of which is fixable by a couple of pints and good moan.

Politics isn’t sport. People say they’ve no time for politics, but whatever they think, politics has plenty of time for them. It’s like saying they’re not interested in money, or jobs, or the communities we live in, or our kids, or the state of the world, or war. Politicians run the show, a huge responsibility which touches every side of our lives. We need them to be on the ball, but sadly we can forget about that until May 2015. Whatever brains they have will have been rented out in the noble cause of Party Propaganda, demonstrated by behaving like quarrelsome and stupid infants.

So welcome to the launch of yet another new political movement, SITOP, the Sort It Out Party. First on its agenda will be the establishment of two Houses of Parliament. The House of Commons will be remodelled to make its geography match most other serious assemblies, that is in a semi-circle rather than two opposing ranks divided by the length of a sword as at present, with all members facing the Speaker and one person speaking at a time. Anyone shouting, cat-calling, jeering, or otherwise disrupting proceedings will be instantly thrown out. It will observe normal office hours, to encourage more women to take part. Prime Minister’s Questions will be abolished. Party references will be punished by ducking in the Thames. Only those who’ve been present for debates will have the right to vote in them, which can be done by pressing a button rather than farting around in lobbies. The signal for voting will be a large illuminated sign reading: “Sort It Out.”

But, you may think, doesn’t that take all the fun out of politics? Yes it does, which is why all members of the Commons will also become members of the Upper House. This will no longer be the sleepy home of Lords but will be renamed the House of Fun, open every evening, where in the red and gold halls the benches will still be on opposite sides, members will be encouraged to shout, scream, insult each other, tell jokes, score silly party points, jump up and down, interrupt, do the conga, and dance the hokey-cokey in the aisles. Once a month custard pies will be provided and water-filled sponges may be hurled at the Speaker. Proceedings will be broadcast and selected members may be put through complex physical discomforts with a commentary by Ant & Dec. Then, suitably refreshed, members will reconvene in the Commons at nine sharp the next morning and focus on sorting out the matters we actually care about, concentrating together on pragmatic solutions to real issues rather than party gibberish. Oh please…


One comment

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    September 07, 2014

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