Of all the animals of prey, man is the only sociable one.
Every one of us preys upon his neighbour, and yet we herd together.
The Beggar's Opera: John Gay

Saturday 17 April 2010

Nick Clegg's Adventures In Poetry - the PEB

In the interests of political balance (see 'Gordon Brown versus the Daleks: AD 2010), we bring you the Lib Dems PEB, reviewed here by Brian Wheeler.

Following a suggestion in the comments, I turned on the audio transcription captions (not available here - sorry), which a pop-up box describes as 'experimental'. Well, they're certainly that. In fact, the entire transcription could probably hide undetected in a collection of modern free verse.

Here is a sample - imagine it being read in a mournful voice to a roomful of earnestly nodding, slightly scruffy intellectuals in the arts faculty of a university near you.

Say Goodbye to Broken Promises
Broken promise
They've been too many in the last year
To many of the lost that
Elections be lifted
But right

Broken promise
You remember them
There are taxes
But from a stroke
But as schools everyone police broke
Clean up polls
Performers broke

I believe is trying to do things differently
I believe it's time for a premise input
Well I believe it's fine

I expect to see it on the GCSE syllabus about three years from now, or possibly released as a chart-topping rap single along with the soundtrack music by Clegg's official 'Youth Advisor', the ever-so-slightly middle aged Brian Eno (61).

Other treats include the unexpectedly relevant, 'The week kind of painful for air attacks' ('But we can pay for fairer taxes'), an exhortation to 'Break up the Bronx' - so that's who's to blame for the financial crisis - and my particular favourite, the gnomic closing statement 'Jeanne moos little bit', which surprisingly turns out to be 'And choose the Liberal Democrats'*.

*Which did make me wonder whether there was a saboteur at work - on the other hand, isn't it just so Liberal Democrat to agree to participate in an experimental process? Like when they ask you in hospital whether you mind if a student medic has a go. Sadly, Labour's PEB does not include this entertaining facility.

Update: Latest on the nephew stranded in Sicily; he and his fellow students are now returning to the UK by coach - at least 27 hours on the road. 
If his generation needed a lesson on our dependence on air travel, this is surely it.


  1. Could they bring me in some grapes please, the local supermarket has run out.

  2. Would you want to eat anything that had survived a 27-hour bus journey with a load of students?

    But an interesting point - when will we start to see the first shortages of imported perishable goods?


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