Monday, 18 May 2009

Just when it looked like things couldn't get any worse ...

Harriet Harman waded into the expenses row. There is no situation that is not made significantly worse by the involvement of Harriet Harman. Be warned, what follows contains dangerous levels of cosy NuLabour speak and possibly illegal levels of cliche:

We have reached a defining moment – for the public, politicians and, yes, the media. We need a three Rs approach: reparation, reassurance and renewal. On expenses, we must make reparations with a system of reassessment and payback. We have to provide reassurance immediately with an interim system imposing moratoriums on claims for furniture and a cap on interest claims. And, for the future allowance system, we need the independent input that the Committee on Standards In Public Life will provide. But we also must seize the opportunity for much wider debate and action to address the underlying problems – and to renew politics and parliament.

No one is arguing for the status quo, and there is a fresh chance for progress. That will be a debate that takes place within all the parties. As leader of the House of Commons, I believe that it needs to reach all sides of the house – and involve those outside the house too.

And, though I know it is hard to get a hearing on it now, I will continue to argue what I believe to be the truth. That most MPs go into parliament as a matter of public service, and are hard-working, decent and honest. These MPs are every bit as angry as the public to learn not only that public money has been misused, but that their own reputation and that of parliament has been stained in the process. (1)

Just reading that made me want to pluck out mine eyes.

It also prompted me to wonder how NuLabour manages to produce such vacuous waffle. Do they have a standard 'fill in the blanks' statement that they can issue whenever there's a pathetic arse-over-tits event happening? Something like this, I mean:
We have reached a (defining moment/turning point) – for (Choose from: the public, the politicians, our allies, our enemies, the human species, the media, children, our revered war dead, the planet, our new citizens, our indigenous people, British workers, our loyal voters) and, yes, (Insert as necessary, from previous list).

We need a three Rs approach: (Insert three random words begining with R here - suggestions: reassurance (compulsory), regrowth, renewal, reperation, revenge, redistribution (NOT RECOMMENDED), redfinement). On (Insert crisis here), we must make (Insert first R word) with a system of (Insert second and third R word). We have to provide (Insert R word) immediately with an interim system imposing (Insert whatever the Tories suggested last week as if it was a really good idea no-one had thought of until now. Or make something up).

And, for the future (Make spurious reference to the furture - always good to get people away fromt he present), we need the independent input that the (Identify body that will be powerless to deal with future repeat outbreaks of the crisis but will be blamed for it) will provide. But we also must seize the opportunity for much wider debate and action to address the underlying problems – and to renew (Choose from: our country, our leadership, our dreams, our desire for victory, our place as a nation in the front rank of world powers, our status as a firm but fair world power, or something other that might make people feel good).
It works very well:
We have reached a turning point – for our allies, our enemies and, yes, the planet.

We need a three Rs approach: reassurance renewal, revenge, . On the crisis in Iran, we must make renewal with a system of reassurance and revenge. We have to provide reassurance immediately with an interim system imposing harsh sanctions coupled with readiness to take whatever steps are necessary.

And, for the future of the region, we need the independent input that the United Nations inspectors will provide. But we also must seize the opportunity for much wider debate and action to address the underlying problems – and to renew our dreams and our status as a firm but fair world power.
I expect, should Ahmadinejad get stroppy again - he's about due another atack of grandstanding - some NuLabour goon will mouth something very similar to the above.

And I'll be arrested on suspicion of having hacked into NuLabour's top secret speech writing computer.
1 - "Our chance to renew politics," by Harriet Harman, published in The Guardian, 17th of May, 2009. (http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2009/may/17/mps-expenses-reform-democracy)

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