Sunday, 18 August 2013
Its true all the people who think they run the country really are driving taxis.
Norwegian Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg recently spent an afternoon disguised as an Oslo taxi driver. He drove passengers around the streets engaging them in conversation about current affairs and kept his real identity secret unless recognised.
Speaking to the media afterwards he said ‘It is important for me to hear what people really think’, adding that ‘if there is one place people really say what they think it’s in the taxi.’
Ok so it was a stunt, and a pretty shameless one too, but it is also a rather good idea. If you’ve got the right sort of mind, and I have, the thought of Citizen Dave behind the wheel of a black cab brims with comic possibilities.
Wherever you asked him to take you he’s cart you off to somewhere else and then tell you this was where you wanted to go all along; you just didn’t know it.
Actually the other party leaders ought to have a turn too. Nick Clegg could bore his passengers rigid by saying endlessly that he was sorry, really, really sorry for making such a sorry job of being Deputy Prime Minister. Sorry.
Not so Red Ed on the other hand could drive his fares round and round the streets of London in no particular direction until he either runs out of petrol or falls into a ditch; which is pretty much what he’s been doing to the Labour Party since he took over as leader.
Shadow Immigration minister Chris Bryant made a speech this week naming and shaming TESCO, Next and other big companies for favouring ‘cheap’ labour from Eastern Europe over British workers. It was supposed to switch the agenda away from the party’s internal squabbles and put the government under pressure on the economy, it didn’t work; in fact he ended up wiping, metaphorical, egg off his face.
The speech was an assemblage of poorly checked facts, Mr Bryant put the TESCO warehouse where the majority of the staff are from outside the UK in the wrong county; he got the number of foreign workers employed there wrong too. As a result he ended up touring the media giving a display of high speed back pedalling that would get a Tour de France winner drug tested. Oops!
Even if it hadn’t been a poorly researched shambles Chris Bryant would have been better advised not to have given the speech at all. Not due to the fear of being accused of ‘racism’, but because in the age of globalisation trying to control the flow of labour across national borders is a bit like going down to the beach and telling the tide not to come in.
Giving local people the first crack at vacancies is an aspiration that can only be fulfilled if they are able to compete with incomers. Something that is unlikely to happen as the government’s austerity drive wrecks the welfare system in the name of reform and Michael Gove replaces vocational courses with Latin prep and hymn singing.
Unfortunately for Labour they have given their tacit support to the spending cuts and so much of what they say on any subject is just noise.
Labour leader Ed Milliband also had egg on his face this week; the real sort. During a visit to South London last week he was pelted with an egg by a passer by, to his credit Red Ed handled the incident quite well, meaning he stood there looking a bit sheepish, something he’s had plenty of practice at.
The man who threw the egg later told police he wasn’t protesting about the Labour leader in particular, he was just fed up of politicians in general. That says it all about Not So Red Ed, three years in the job and even when it comes to provoking violent dislike he fails to stand out.
The number of students gaining top A Level grades has fallen slightly for the second year in a row, am I so very paranoid for thinking this is part of a government plan?
When the news broke I can imagine Citizen Dave and his cabal down in their secret bunker, the cupboard under the stairs at Downing Street to you and I, cackling like a convention of Bond villains.
The plan is working perfectly, if results continue to decline within a decade the middle class will be so dim they’ll believe anything we say and thanks to the welfare reforms the poor will be too busy dodging the workhouse to vote at all. It’s a result chaps!
Here comes a future so scary it ought to be X-rated.
We’re all in it together; austerity is working. You love Citizen Dave and only Citizen Dave.