After Barrington Higginbottom’s quite frankly useless first attempt at a political report – which is so long ago now that no one remembers it and is frankly not worth clicking on this link to see, even if you are new and have some masochistic curiosity about it – I have decided on a new approach.
I have recently come into contact with a man who knows another man whose cousin is friends with a well connected woman who likes a flutter on the horses and whose regular bookmaker is friends with a cleaner in the House of Commons. He has access to the Personal Private Secretary to the Prime Minister’s desk and shredding machine bins, due the need for regularly cleaning chocolate biscuit crumbs off the desk and stealing documents for the Russians (who prefer old school spying and assassinations) and may in fact be a more trustworthy source of reliable inside information than Barrington.
I will use the code name ‘Ethel’ for my conversation with him, to obscure the fact that his real name is Colin. Our conversation takes place on the secure chat application ‘WhatsApp’, accessible only to the participants, Facebook, Huawei, Israeli intelligence and shortly out in paperback.
Ethel: Who is this?
Ethel: Ah, friend of a man whose friend has a cousin who knows the lady that uses the bookmaker that a friend of mine uses?
Bryntin: The very same.
Ethel: What’s the password?
Bryntin: I didn’t know there was one
Ethel: Correct. Good, can’t be too careful
Bryntin: Yes. Good. So, what’s the gossip this week?
Ethel: Well, there have been mutterings that there’s less chocolate on the HobNob’s. They say it’s Brexit.
Bryntin: I was hoping for more controversial crumbs
Ethel: That’s just for starters. There’s an air of panic about the place. Again.
Ethel: Well, OK, to tell the truth, that’s not actually new.
Bryntin: So what have you managed to piece together?
Ethel: So far, a dry cleaning receipt and post it note with a pizza order on it. To be honest, the Russians don’t give me enough of a sellotape budget.
Bryntin: Anything about the European election?
Ethel: No, but there was some talk of getting a Hawaiian and someone called Margherita in
Bryntin: That’s still the pizza order
Ethel: Oh. I think the Russians might be a bit confused then
Bryntin: Anything else?
Ethel: Well, I have a recording of the meeting that took place when the Labour people came in to find a way to take Brexit forward and then went away again without taking Brexit forward
Bryntin: I bet there’s a surprise or two in that
Ethel: Do you think so?
Bryntin: No, actually you’re right. OK, what else?
Ethel: I’ve also got the one of the meeting TM the PM had with her staff when she came back from seeing Mr Brady at the 1922 committee having been made to promise to set a date for her leaving.
Bryntin: Glad to hear that she’s finally accepted it
Ethel: Well I think the gist of it was ‘Nothing has changed’ and ‘We are going to deliver the Peoples Will before I run off into the wheat fields’
Bryntin: Ah. Nobody’s changed the tape then
Ethel: And the recording of the meeting when the Cabinet were discussing Huawei and the one when they all had a conversation about the European elections, how they wouldn’t bother to campaign and Mr Farage and how often he was getting on the BBC when he has no policies, no ideas for any and can’t explain where his funding comes from, which is more or less exactly the same as the Conservatives
Bryntin: And the one about the Climate Emergency?
Ethel: There hasn’t been one about any Climate Emergency. They’ve given that to Mr Gove to find a carpet to brush it under. How about when the PM had Chris Grayling in for an exchange of opinions on the re-nationalisation of the probation services due to him being an idiot and going ahead with privatising it in the first place.
Bryntin: Oh, well, that’s more like it, yes, I’ll have all that. I knew you’d be a great source
Ethel: Well, you can’t have it yet.
Brytntin: Why not?
Ethel: Well, The Daily Telegraph has exclusivity for the first three days
Ethel: Well, the Telegraph used to get it from the Defence Minister of course, but he’s been sacked and vigorously denied it in an article in the Telegraph. Unless of course you are willing to up their offer?
Bryntin: Well, yes, OK. I’m sure a jobless entertaining blog writer without a job can easily find the wherewithal to outbid whatever the Daily Telegraph, a newspaper owned by a couple of mysterious obscenely rich right-wing brothers who actually live on their own island can afford
Ethel: That was sarcasm wasn’t it? The entertaining bit?
Ethel: OK, look I’ll give you this for free. I have a picture that might be of interest. It gives you a window on an unseen part of the PM’s office
Bryntin: That’s very generous of you, thank you
Ethel: You’re welcome. Until next time
Ethel: Picture message from Ethel. Open?
Bryntin: Funny bastard