Utterly bereft of any kind of political inspiration, I note that the Counting House is being sacked as the Queen’s Ministers do squabble and sally to score points from each other. It excites me not, and seems to me as pre-joust goading and banter between hopped-up rival factions.

“Our Darling is but a portly popinjay; a stuffed sack ripe for the pricking! Ho! See how she doth yet fall back upon her cushions, where we, standing tall the while, in opposition to the black hole of her voluminous and oft-dipped purse, do project unyielding, firm, fit to lance this bubo, this fat boobie of the chancery.”

If only it was as interesting and openly lewd as that. Instead, I am being asked to pick through thickets of inelegant rhetoric, as exampled in the image below, snapped from the Metro this morning:

My sir loin of beef here: there is no substance to any of Cameron’s wordplay. It danced around ineffectively on the page for a bit but it didn’t mean anything more than ‘Look, I’m ripe with clever turns of phrase, me. Here comes an ace football analogy…’ It did precisely nothing to convince me that the current Debate Soc drinking club atmosphere of the British House of Commons (COMMONS! a whole nother post needed for that misnomer) is likely to be improved or dispelled by an election climaxing in the blue set getting a spell in Downing Street over the red set.

Stuck, going nowhere… doing a little shimmy to The Smiths at the indie disco, scuffing the ball wide from a yard out, when we wanted James Brown, George Best. Dave’s little riffs irritated me more as I read them over:

“These are the ticking tax bombshells timed to go off after the election that will destroy our recovery.”

Perhaps it’s just the way this has been rendered as text, without punctuation, that makes it read so flat-footedly and unfunky. I didn’t hear the delivery, maybe it was masterful. But on the page there, where most people are going to see it, there was no poetry, no precision. ‘Bombshells’ aren’t timed. They go off on impact, they are projectiles, casings. If you’re going to alliterate in pursuit of an ordnance metaphor, what about:

“These are the ticking tax timebombs set to go off after the election, to destroy our economy.”

? The extra tick of the t-shaped hand on the alarm clock tape-bound to rose red sticks of dynamite, the slight pause for suspense, a flat account of the waste laid by the blasts, the relish of emphasis on ‘destroy’ in depicting the inevitable financial carnage cunningly set in chain by the current Chancellor.

What we read instead is a script from the theatre of the dull, enacted with tedious mumming from part-time players in faded costumes and “outside interests”. The responses from government are hopeless too – ‘Wrong, wrong, wrong, that’s the Conservative Party!’ It’s like they can’t even be bothered with really zingy, Churchillian insults, it’s all just… meh. As the band Magazine once almost put it, shit by both sides.

I mean, seeing as we are still technically playing at being in a monarchy, in the antiquated style this piece alludes to laboriously, why can’t we run the place like one? If we can’t be arsed taking personal responsibility and creating something more entertaining, more affecting, I mean.

In this context, I wait in vain for a dramatic twist, for the Queen to whip off her hoodie and reveal that all the clerks of her realm have been found wanting, that the strong statutes stand like the forfeits in a barber’s shop, as much in mock as mark, before having them all flogged and beheaded. THAT would be political theatre.

Advertisements