It’s the final straight before the big vote, and Ed Miliband is channelling Spinal Tap and has turned the dial up to 11. He’s even got something to offer literalists who struggle with the concept of metaphor. Hell yeah it’s set in stone. He’s promised that if he’s elected he’ll commission a big structure with Labour’s manifesto promises carved into stone, which he’ll erect in the rose gardens at the back of 10 Downing Street. Ed’s wee spinning munchkins will dance around it while crooning his greatest hit – It’s my party and I’ll lie if I want to. It’s going to be a permanent symbol of Ed’s commitment to cheap publicity stunts which achieve precisely nothing. So pretty much like the last Labour government then.
It’s the perfect symbol of the modern UK and what the welcoming place has become – a massive stone face bearing the legend Controls on Immigration. But of course it’s really a tombstone representing the death of common sense and decency, although they died in the Labour party a very long time ago.
Most people would settle for a potting shed or garden gnomes, but not Ed. Labour has already got lots of small tasteless plastic people. But it is a shame that the idea was ruled out as it would kill two birds with one stone, many of them will be redundant by the end of the week and they could take up a productive career as a blight on Ed’s garden instead of a blight on Scottish public life. Magrit Curran could sit with a wee plastic pole and fish for her expenses. The great thing about garden gnomes is that they never catch anything and have to sit motionless and silent. So there’s already three reasons why we’d love Magrit to take the gig.
Ed said that the stone would symbolise his commitment to keep his pledges and rebuild trust in British politics, a bit like Rory the Tory’s big pile of chucky stanes which was supposed to symbolise the eternal union between our two blesséd countries and which promptly vanished as soon as the independence referendum was out of the way. We can trust that Ed’s big stane will be equally irrelevant and impermanent, and within a week of the election it will be tied around the feet of the party’s Scottish strategists as they are tossed off the Labour boat as the recriminations get into full swing.
It’s very much in the tradition of Labour statements, presented in private before selected and invitation only audiences in venues that are not accessible to the general public. Only this time it’s in stone. It’s Edhenge, a big thick stone faced waste of space – a sort of Gordon Brown without any moving parts or expensive expenses claims, but about as sentient.
Sadly Edhenge won’t be coming with an altar stone upon which Jim Murphy can be disembowelled by the druid Iandavidsonix as a sacrifice to Shallogimmix, the Celtic god of Labour manifesto commitments and publicity stunts. Ian has already volunteered for the job, because Labour likes to get its infighting started early. I might have voted for that. But not to worry, the Labour party is doing a sterling job of bayonetting itself and Jim without any assistance. Originally the plan called for them to build a wicker man and stuff it full of straw, before setting fire to it and allowing it to combust in a bonfire of its own vanity, but they’ve already got Anas Sarwar as a vain self-regarding straw man whose career is in ashes, so it was deemed superfluous.
Edhenge is all a bit grandiose and over-compensatory for a man who struggled with a bacon sandwich. Just because it’s a big heavy lump doesn’t mean it’s got gravitas Ed. You can’t manufacture political solidity, you can’t fake sincerity. If Ed had really wanted a garden monument to keep him on his toes and not just some cheap publicity stunt that would generate a photo opportunity, he could have promised that he’d dig up the Downing Street rose garden and turn it into vegetable allotments to remind him that there are people in this country who can’t feed themselves and who have to rely on food banks because of government policies. If Ed really did have gravitas and sincerity he could have sworn that he’d only allow the roses to return once food banks had been abolished and that in the meantime he’d be spending all his working time working to abolish them, and all his spare time down on the allotment growing potatoes.
Ed is King Milibandias, look on his works ye mighty and giggle uncontrollably for a bit. The technical term for a useless hunk of stone that you plonk in your garden for decorative purposes is a folly. And a monumental folly is also a good description of Ed’s electoral strategy and his decision to tell Scotland and Wales that their votes only count if they vote for Westminster approved parties – otherwise he’s going to let the Tories get into power. Who is advising this clown?
Seriously. Ed Miliband is surrounded by people who thought this was a good idea, and not one of them thought to say “You do realise this is going to make us look like total idiots, don’t you?” Not one. And we’re supposed to trust this guy’s judgement?
Possibly the big stick of Edhenge rock is intended to be one of the obelisks from 2001, and its mere presence will impart sentience upon the rock bangers and head bangers surrounding it who will rapidly evolve into self aware beings. It will certainly raise the average IQ of the advisors who thought it was a good idea.
But it’s far too late for Labour to evolve into intelligent life, and Labour self-awareness died the day that they elected Tony Blair as party leader. On the eve of an election – they commission a tombstone. That’s the only symbolism that people will take from this latest idiocy.
Labour may be building a tombstone for itself, but its death will still go unmourned.
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