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Tuesday, 18 January 2011

The ConDem Overlord & The Search For Paradise Lost

"Has one been here before?" mused Call me Dave to his ever loyal butler, Clegg.

"Not sure M'Lord" replied the erstwhile bagman as he puffed and panted just a few steps behind the overlord, struggling to bear the weight of Cameorn's batfink style steel wings. Yanking at his black bowtie, Clegg scanned the surrounding area with his keen eye, desperate to meet Dave's ever whim, as ever.

The two stood for a second, digesting the dramatic scenery that met them. Wrecks and carcasses lay before them, filling this apocalyptic vista with the remnants of many an old battle, the ghosts of warriors past and defeated trudging forlornly through the heavy mud that lay beneath the cashmere rug upon which Dave Cameron now stood.

Clegg nervously flicked his gaze between the rug, which he only just managed to get down in time, and the scorched remains of..what was it exactly?..ah yes, that's right, its the charred carcass of the miners union!

Diverting his eyes away from that mangled heap of working class hopes and aspirations, he again surveyed the rug that protected his master's designer shoes. Breathing a sigh of relief he congratulated himself on his timing. He has learned the hard way after last time. My, how David cameron had lambasted him! Those shoes must be clean! An Etonian cannot suffer the indignities of mud, except when playing rugby!

For a second, Clegg considered which was worse, Rugby, with its garish proximity to the hoi poloi, or cleaning Cameron's shoes? He couldn't help but grimace as he remembered the last time he has been forced to clean the overlord's footwear. The taste of shoe leather and mud had plagued his pallett for weeks afterwards. Choosing the latter, he made a mental note of his undying passion for Rugby, and promised himself an election phot opportunity next time.

Putting it from his mind, he returned his loyal attentions to the musings of his leader, and moral compass, who was breathing in the smoky air as he gazed at the past glories of his predecessors.

Feeling much like a conquering Roman emperor, the overlord stood on the brow of a steep hill, its imposing height enhanced further by the piles of rotting P45s and decomposing union rights which bristled and crunched gently below his decadent cashmere rug. Dismissing thoughts of commissioning himself his very own roman-esque imperial helmet, Dave strained to focus on the plentiful images of ghoulish figures and long since pulverised organisations that scarred the land.

Far, far in the distance lay yet more twisted and burned memories, scattered amongst the rusting components of a paper press, complete with buckled 'Welcome To Wapping' sign. To a side, the ghosts of honour, truth and integrity sat around a rickety table, arguing over who would privatise heaven first when they die, Thatcher, or Murdoch?

Sneering at the sheer vulgarity of their comments, the overlord let out a sigh. Reaching into his poscket, he pulled out his brand new wallet. Stiff and shiny, it was a gift from the editor of the Daily Mail, freshly made, by the hands of chinese children workers no less, from the life chances of council estate babies. Holding it gently to his nose, he inhaled deeply, revelling in the tangy, yet musty aroma of damp classrooms and milk tokens.

Gently opening the wallet, he smiled broadly at the picture of Rupert Murdoch that lined the inside pocket. "I love you Rupy" whispered Cameron, slowly and carefully stroking the edge of the photograph.

His thoughts were interrupted by a wheezing and choking sound which seemed to be approaching from over the brow of the hill.

"Good Lord Clegg" he mused, slipping his wallet casually back into his inside jacket pocket "We must have privatised the grave diggers! You wouldn't get a nationalised grave digger being that efficient! We haven't even delivered the kill shot yet and they've managed to get the NHS to the graveyard!"

"No M'Lord" replied Clegg, stepping forward and brushing some loose criticism from Cameron's shoulder. "It's just Andrew Landlsey. He's still recovering from the, er, holiday incident with the ambulance service"

Peering at the brow of the hill, Cameron and his butler watched as two scrambling figures appeared and moved closer, angry words bouncing back and forth between the two as they walked. It was indeed Andrew Landlsey. The overlord could not hide his admiration for his Health Secretary. Even when his trachea was blocked nearly to the point of bursting, and even when his throat was bruised to the point that he was bandaged, looking like a, ahem, "laydee" in a suit, he still managed to maintain that air of self serving and oblivious superiority that got him elected as a tory MP.

But who was the other? Why, it was none other than Michael Gove, Cameron's Education Secretary, and unofficial child fire safety figurehead!

The two men were still bickering furiously as they stopped in front of the overlord and his manservant.

"I say, what's the breeze chaps?" asked Cameron as he snapped his fingers.

Clegg rifled through the leather bag that hung at his side, producing a highly polished bottle of panda pop. He gave the lid one last polish before opening the bottle and passing it to the overlord. Ever since he was derided by many as being a 'senseless posh tw*t' he declined to drink from a glass. It made coffee drinking somewhat hazardous, but it was worth the effort.

"This twerp!" exclaimed Landlsey, rubbing at the bandage on his neck. "Why did you grab me? I usually pay before I get tied up!"

Gove fidgetted nervously. The gaze of his emperor always made him feel somewhat uneasy. Feeling his skin redden he fumbled with his now sweating hands.

"I'm damned sorry old bean!" replied Gove, brushing the dirt away from Landsley's tie, the deep blue of the weave disrupted by the smeared stain of the blood of a commoner. "I thought you were a child!"

"I was kneeling down!" exploded Landsley. "I stepped in some socialism and was wiping it off my shoe!"

In a far corner, a football match was taking place. Not being someone who even understood the virtues of football (after all, it isn't world cup year) Cameron studied the players as they rushed to and fro, resplendant in their overalls and safety boots, the respective fans of the Glasgow and the Belfast shipbuilders chanting songs at each other in a language that Dave just didn't even begin to understand.

Tearing himself away from his thoughts as to why football songs aren't written in latin, or at least in PR jargon, Cameron took a swig of panda pop as he spied Winston Churchill confronting the participants of the General Strike of 1911.

His chest swelled with pride at the thought of all those disgusting, lazy, greedy workers being faced down and broken. Not being able to resist, he glanced in the direction of the Liverpool dockers, smirking at their demise as he returned his loving gaze back to Churchill.

"Another brilliant example of a Liberal doing the right thing!" Gove spoke nervously, gulping as his sentence came to a shaky end. He looked at Andrew Landsley for support.

Landsley was engrossed in his reflection, checking the neat sky blue of his custom made throat bandage in the screen of his smart phone. Yes indeed, the i-twat application truly was worth an expense claim! Looking up blankly, he scrambled to recover as his colleague cowered in the icy glare of his emperor.

"Absolutely Michael!" agreed Landsley, rather too enthusiastically as he took one last glance at himself before returning the phone to his inside pocket.

"A fine liberal who became a great tory, no less!" Landsley adopted his best salesman smile. The overlord pondered these words for a moment, gazing at Churchill mid rant, and then glancing furtively at his loyal servant Clegg, who was busy speaking into a dictaphone.

"What are you doing Clegg?" demanded Cameron.

"I'm dictating the Lib Dem manifesto for 2015 M'Lord" replied Clegg. "Do you want to hear?" Clegg urgently pawed the buttons of the dictaphone, rewinding and then pressing play. "Whatever Dave says..Whatever Dave says.." spoke the disembodied voice within. Clegg stopped the dictaphone, and stood eagerly, awaiting his master's opinion.

Cameron rolled his eyes, and returned his attention to Messrs Gove and Landsley. Landsley had just given Gove a 'wet willy' and was slapping his thigh raucously at the sheer hilarity of it all.

Gove was trying to conceal a pet lip as he rubbed at his sodden ear with one of nanny's hankerchieves.

Becoming angry with himself for daring to compare Clegg to Churchill, the overlord snapped at his minions.

"What do you want??" Both men lurched back in recoil.

"Well, its this whole, NHS thing" said Landsley, examining the leather of his shoes.

"What about it man?" replied the overlord, his patience at such trifling matters wearing ever more thread bare.

"Well, how does it work exactly?" asked the Health Secretary.
Cameron sighed, his shoulders sagging heavily as he caressed his sweating quiff with a chamois.

"Andrew, we've been through this" he said, adopting his best calming voice. He stepped forward and put his arm around Landsley's shoulder. Clegg bridled with barely concealed envy.

"Instead of all those squillions of pounds being given to the health service to keep all those 'people' alive" He motioned with a flick of his hand at the football match that raged on in the corner and the foreign chants that were thrown up. "We take those squillions of pounds, and we give it to the doctors" The Health Secretary's face lit up in recognition.

"So we give it to the doctors so that they can give people a better service! Brilliant!" Landsley clapped his hands together" Cameron's eyes rolled again.
Removing his arm from Landsley's shoulder, he slapped the back of his head, causing the Health Secretary to stumble back, his expression one of disappointment as he rubbed his head. Gove smiled smugly as he continued to rub at his damp ear.

The overlord readied himself to speak before stopping himself abruptly.

"Clegg! Hand me my Thatcher pen! Now!"

"Right away M'Lord" Clegg prodiced a thick nibbed red pen from his master's leather play bag, and handed it ceremoniously to Cameron.
Taking one step forward, Cameron scrawled the words NO! NO! NO! across Landsley's face, before handing the pen back to Clegg, who replaced the lid, and polished it with his cuff before returning it to the bag.

"Allow me to point out that we are tories, Andrew" said Cameron quietly and calmly as the Health Secretary licked his hand and scrubbed at the red ink that covered his face. "As tories, we do not do things for the greater good. We do things that will benfit us, earn us the undying love of the gutter press, and keep our friends and family rich. That is all" Landlsey accepted Gove's silent offer of a handkerchief, and stared unblinkingly at Cameron as he continued.

"What we do, is we move those lovely squillions of pounds away from the filthy socialists in the health service, and we give it to the doctors who we play golf with, and who we went to school with who will use it to make themselves, and us, even richer. We only tell people that we want to make the health service better so they will leave us alone and not infect us with their working class, dirty logic. Do you understand?" Landsley nodded, still not blinking. Gove clicked his fingers in front of the Health Secretary's eyes.

"That's politics Andrew" said Cameron, with a dark smile.

"It's lying!" said Gove, before clamping his hand over his mouth, his eyes wide with fear.

"Same thing!" said Clegg as he manicured the overlord's left hand.

Cameron fixed his servant with an evil look, before melting into laughter. The 3 others eyed each other uneasily before following suit, laughing louder and harder in an attempt to outdo each other in the eyes of their emperor.

The laughing was interrupted by the sound of heavy breathing and tired footsteps. The four of them looked at the brow of the hill, where Philip Hammond, the Transport Secretary was manhandling Eric Pickles, the Local Government Secretary back to his feet. He had stumbled, and mud was coating the knees of his ill fitting boiler suit.

Both men trudged over to where the other 4 were watching from, Eric taking off his helmet and wiping his brow with his glove.

"What's going on?" asked Hammond, his suit immaculate despite being knee deep in composted transport proposals for the last few days.

"I was just explaining to Andrew the principles of being a Tory Health Minister" replied the overlord with a dismissive wave of the hand. "He still thinks that he's there to provide care for normal people!" Both men shook their heads in disbelief.

"Did you find it all?" enquired Cameron.

Hammond shook his head. "We found many parts of it, but it was smashed into that many pieces, there are still many parts that we just can't seem to find.

"What you looking for?" asked Gove, his eyes following the outline of a young boy scampering across the horizon, his face blackened from the soot of a thousand chimneys.

"British Rail" replied Hammond cheerily."We managed to find collective bargaining, but we still can't find Research & Development, or any management competency"
Cameron considered the news for a moment.

The overlord was about to ask why it was that Eric Pickles was there. Choosing to ignore the fact that Pickles was eating, and that whatever it was had legs, which were still moving, he decided against it.

"Keep looking then. There has to be some competent management in all that mess somewhere. Don't worry so much about R&D though, and throw the collective bargaining thingy back. Oh, and Phillip."

Cameron leaned forward. Hammond reciprocated.

"Make sure it isn't found again. Make it go away" Hammond nodded approvingly, a menacing grin creeping across his features. The two men scuttled away, disappearing over the brow of the hill and into the sprawling mess below.

Watching the two men disappear from sight, the 4 men turned toward each other.

Cameron was late for an interview with The Sun and was worrying about whether he'd have time to get his trousers perfumed before the bottom kissing began. Clegg was wondering whether he would get to hold the perfume bottle this time. Andrew Landsley was in the midst of a eureka moment. Gove was stood next to a nearby bonfore, scaring the children away from the flames.

"I get it!" exclaimed Landlsey, his face shining with self congratulation.

"Get what?" demanded the overlord as he commanded Clegg to check his watch for him.

"I can't believe I missed it!" he shouted. Gove glanced across for a second. He was in the middle of smiling at some small children, who in turn were in the middle of running away in terror.

"I thought that the railways were privatised to enhance the experience for the passenger, and to attract inward investment and end decades of chronic underfunding and political tampering"

Cameron pinched the bridge of his nose in despair.

"But all along it was to break up the power of collective trade unionism, provide job opportunities for old school chums and failed tory MPs, and to give our families a good return on the stock market at the expense of safety and the travelling public!"

"Goodo!" shouted Cameron, slapping Landsley enthusiastically on the back. "You took your time, but you got there!"

"A bit like a privatised train after track access charges!" quipped Gove from the fireside.

"Good One Michael!" smiled the overlord.

The three chums shared a laugh for a second, drinking in the social superiority of what they were about to foist upon the parts of society that cannot afford private health care.

The moment was shattered by a shrill beeping. All three men turned to Nick Clegg, who was rifling through the pockets of his dress coat. After a few seconds he produced an alarm clock. Despite his best efforts, it would not stop beeping.

Gove and Landsley looked questioningly at the overlord.

"Its Clegg's latest project" he explained. "Says he wants to be at one with 'alarm clock Britain'"

"Can't he take the batteries out of alarm clock Britain?" asked Landsley, mockingly.

"Too late!" replied Clegg, tossing the alarm clock over his shoulder. "With the VAT increase and the fuel escalator, George Osbourne beat me to it!"

All 4 men laughed heartily, slapping each others backs and bending over double at what they were doing to the people who made them and their families rich.
"Sometimes, I think you're more tory than I Clegg!" spluttered Landsley. Glancing over at Churchill, Clegg smiled to himself. "Never a truer word Landsley, never a truer word"

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