Friday, April 28, 2006

Saturday night in Sodom and Gomorrah

This morning's House Points from Liberal Democrat News. It was rewritten in haste in my lunch hour on Wednesday. You so nearly got something tedious about agricultural subsidies.

The full quotation from John Prescott's speech can be found on Iain Dale's blog. I didn't have room for the whole thing, but do read it yourself.

Carnival relations

This is a “By the time you read this…” week. Except that if Charles Clarke gets his way, by the time you read this nothing will have happened.

Never mind that 1023 foreign prisoners have been released without being considered for deportation. Never mind that there are murderers, rapists and child abusers amongst them. Never mind that 288 of them were freed after Clarke learned of the problem. Never mind that on Tuesday he claimed that “very, very few” were released after that.

To Clarke’s mind none of this constitutes a reason for resigning. In that strange modern way he went to the prime minister and offered to offer his resignation. But you don’t do that unless you are sure of the answer first.

When Ruth Kelly was in trouble over sex offenders working in schools, the ludicrous story about Fathers 4 Justice plotting to kidnap little Leo Blair hit the headlines. And on Wednesday John Prescott’s affair was on the front of the Mirror.

John Prescott? What can his chat-up line have been? My money is on “Hello love, do you fancy carnival relations?”

What John Prescott does in the bedroom is something none of us wants to ponder too deeply. But it is ironic that his affair was used to bury the bad news about Clarke. For this is what Prescott told the 1996 Labour Conference:

"They are up to their necks in sleaze. The best slogan he could think up for their conference next week is Life's better under the Tories. Sounds to me like one of Steven Norris's chat-up lines …

The Tories have redefined unemployment, they have redefined poverty. Now they want to redefine morality. For too many Tories, morality means not getting caught. Morality is measured in more than just money. It's about right and wrong. We are a party of principle. We will earn the trust of the British people. We've had enough lies. Enough sleaze."

New Labour’s concentration on sleaze was always a way of disguising how little they differed from the Tories on the economy. But now Blair’s government resembles a cross between the last days of Imperial Rome and a Saturday night in Sodom and Gomorrah, it is coming back to haunt them. You have to laugh.

2 comments:

Lobster Blogster said...

I read the title "Saturday night in Sodom and Gomorrah" and I thought it was another Mark Oaten story.

Ian Thorpe said...

All politicians are basically career hypocrites.