Alternative Christmas gifts for our political mastersPosted on: 29 December 2009 by Gareth Hargreaves
Politicians are not shy when asking for perks and expenses, but have you wondered what Santa left in the Christmas stockings of Gordon Brown, Nick Clegg and David Cameron?
Christmas may provide a brief lull for our three party leaders as they try to recharge before a general election year. It's possible their wives were not thinking about political advantage while shopping for gifts, so we asked Ian Dunt to create an alternative list of gifts which could improve their fortunes.
The Lib Dems supremo needs a pair of half-moon glasses. The man is desperately in need of some gravitas. Did you ever find yourself dating someone who was the precise opposite of your previous partner? 'Perhaps I'm dating them as an antidote to my ex,' you think. That's precisely what the Liberal Democrats have done. The move from Ming Campbell to Nick Clegg was mind boggling, like a political version of the scene where Clarke Kent steps into the phone box to turn into Superman, but far, far more boring.
Eco Dave needs a bluffer's guide to football, and he needs it quickly. By June next year England will be in the World Cup, at which point the UK turns into a giant one-track mind. The Conservative party Conservative party leader will want to capitalise on the mood, but his claims of loving the game are less than convincing. Pundits were bemused when he claimed to be an Aston Villa supporter, given his name can be readily found in the dictionary next to the words 'Henley regatta'. The rules are easy, of course. Just say 'Ooooooooo' if the balls comes within 20 metres of the goal, and mutter generalisations about 'playing deep' every so often.
The PM, for his part, has the football supporter credentials sorted. After all, the Labour leader merrily spent taxpayer's money ensuring he had Sky Sports in his bedroom. What he lacks is charisma and mathematical ability. The former is difficult to purchase, but the latter could be solved with a simple calculator. Try dividing the £76 billion black hole in the public finances by the number of families in Britain, by the government's recovery plan and you get a very special figure: £2,400. That's the amount it will cost each family in Britain per year to pay it off. Happy New Year? Don't count on it.
Ian Dunt is editor of Politics.co.uk
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