The Cooking of Dave’s Goose: A Dickensian Christmas Tale


“Omigod, Samantha, look at this!”

“What is it, Dave?”

“I’ve got a Happy Holidays card from Barack Obama.”

“So you have, Dave – but why does he call you ‘Gordon’?”

“Oh, that’s obviously a security precaution between world leaders – using code names. I can hardly believe I’ve had a card from the greatest Kenyan of the 21st century. Osborne will be sick as a dog. At this rate, we might even get a card from the Blairs next year.”

“But, Dave next year we might –“

“I know, I know. We might be facing the challenge of majority government, without Baby Clegg and the tree huggers cluttering up the place. Wait till I get a shot at real government. A full-blooded Tory agenda: renationalization of the railways, more power for the Scotch parliament, a triumphant renegotiation with the EU that keeps us at the heart of Brussels, the right of owners to marry their pet dogs and the succession to Number 10 secured for an Asian prime minister – a real modernization programme…”

The pantomime season is under way. Dave is starring in The Big Society On Ice, an extravaganza celebrating all his inspirational initiatives of the past four years, with a dazzling supporting cast: George ‘Shrinking Deficit’ Osborne, Theresa “There is no room for you in our Party” May, Francis Mauve the Father of Modernisation, and many other much-loved comedians.

All the family – and that means every possible permutation of sexes and relationships in Tory modernized Britain – will enjoy this reinterpretation of the Dickensian Christmas canon. Singalong to such popular favourites as “Oliver Letwin Has Asked For More”, weep over the misfortunes of Little Nell (Baroness Warsi) and thrill to Tiny Tim’s welcome to endlessly arriving migrants – “God bless us one and all!”

Since everyone in the real world knows this will be the last Christmas of Dave’s public life it is appropriate to review the Dickensian chronicle of treachery, betrayal and downright farce that was his political career. He first stood for parliament as a Eurosceptic in 1997; in office he pledged to hold a referendum on the Lisbon Treaty, then reneged on that promise.

But pragmatism (as cynical lying and betrayal is politely termed in political circles) has long been Dave’s trademark characteristic. In 2003 he voted in the House of Commons to retain Section 28 and then opposed adoption by homosexuals; in 2013 he forced same-sex marriage through the same chamber, against the opposition of a majority of Conservative MPs.

The depth of Dave’s Tory convictions was revealed in 2009 when he urged the Liberal Democrats (the Lib Dems!) to join the Conservatives in a new “national movement”, saying there was “barely a cigarette paper” between them on many issues. In fairness, this was a rare example of Dave telling the truth, so far as his own views and those of his “modernizing” clique were concerned.

Dave’s big idea was the Big Society – does anybody remember that? – derived from Saul Alinsky, the American revolutionary too extreme for his fellow Trotskyites and one of Barack Obama’s household gods. The extent to which it was intended to reanimate Britain’s voluntary sector, from the grassroots up, may be gauged by the fact that Whitehall civil servants were offered incentives to head the movement in their own locality. In the event, the movement never moved, making it a parable of Dave’s entire career.

Dave has only one ideological conviction: a visceral loathing of anybody who is genuinely conservative, patriotic or respectful of tradition. Those alienated members of his own party who had sought refuge within UKIP found themselves denounced by Dave as “fruitcakes, loonies and closet racists”. Can anybody remember him employing such invective against socialists? Such language directed against the Left would be wholly “inappropriate” from a supporter of Unite Against Fascism, such as Dave.

Dave is eager to bring Turkey into the EU. Don’t ask why – he doesn’t know, the sentiment just sounds cool and multicultural. Remember this is the prime minister whose keen judgement inspired him to appoint Andy Coulson as his director of communications. Since Dave has nothing of substance to communicate, the post might be considered a sinecure.

Now Dave, who has trashed marriage and made Christians, from B & B owners to bakers, vulnerable to persecution, has issued a Christmas message celebrating “Christian values”. Apparently “On Christmas Day thousands of men and women in our armed forces will be far from home protecting people.”… Thousands, Dave? Do you not mean dozens? Can Britain accurately be described as possessing “armed forces” after the destruction wrought on the services by this government?

The Tories have only themselves to blame: they elected this charlatan “heir to Blair” with 134,446 votes; their party does not even have that number of members after a decade of Dave. So brain-dead are some Tory MPs they are actually celebrating opinion polls suggesting the SNP will win 52 seats at Westminster next May, possibly preventing Ed Miliband from securing an overall majority. It has not even dawned on them there are no conceivable circumstances in which the SNP would cooperate with the Tories, with the result that Dave’s goose is well and truly cooked. Compassionate Conservatism? Bah, humbug!


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