Sunday, 29 April 2012
Viva la Revolution!
“Pass the port, brother.” The port was duly passed and dispensed and glasses raised by wizened old hands. The hands of giants. At last the dream was realised and centuries of subjugation ended. The old union lions had finally brought about the crushing defeat of the political elite. Power to the people.
The Lords Spiritual now banished, the Lords Temporal mostly in prison or in exile, the magisterial upper chamber silently awaited the common tongue and an end to unearned privilege. But first, the important issue of lunch. Waste was clearly wrong, of course, so until supplies of beer and pasties could be brought in, the assembled politburo would have to grudgingly make do with the contents of the Lords’ kitchens.
“You know, you could get used to this.” declared Dennis Skinner, as he snarfed up a quail’s egg and took a sip of vintage Bollinger.
“Agreed.” agreed John Prescott. As a member of the advance guard he had developed an impressive palate. “You should try the Chateau Margaux with the fillet” he added, with a satisfied belch and proposed a toast to Leveson, the start of the revolution. “Leveson!” they cried in Unison. “That should be UNISON!” shouted Dave Prentis, before passing out on a red leather bench.
As the afternoon wore on and the wine cellar wore down, the order of business turned to how the assembly should proceed, Len McCluskey proposed they elect a leader, to which Bob Crow objected that they had not torn down one elite to build up another… but offered to take on the role himself. There followed a heated discussion on the purpose and nature of government. By the people, for the people, was the consensus.
In the end it was agreed that the country needed an elected house of representatives of the common people and that, for want of a better title “The House of Commons” would serve well enough. But, lest those people become power-crazed it was essential that another body, shall we call it an upper house, would be necessary to curb their excesses. “That’ll be us then.” said Christine Blower, “We’ll teach them a lesson!”
“Well, now we’re here we need to stay here,” said big John P “so that lot down there don’t get above their station.” The statement was met with hearty agreement and another round of drinks was ordered. The poor house servants eyed each other nervously; this was all looking horribly familiar. “So, appointed, not elected, right?” continued John, “and we’ll need to think up a name.”
“How about, The Upper House?” asked a crusty relic from the TGWU. More vintage port was quaffed as debate raged. A few bread rolls were thrown and a fist-fight broke out in the aisle. To counter the servants’ concerns the members of the club offered to pay for any damages. Bob Crow peeled off a few fifties from a fat bankroll and threw it loftily at one of the stewards. “Plenty more where that came from.” In the end it was proposed, to murmurs of approval, that the title House of Lords was retained until something more grand was suggested.
“But, that’s what the last lot called it!” objected Len.
Man of the People
“True,” said John, donning an ermine cloak, “but they’re gone now… and besides, we’re better than them.”