Tag Archives: spoof

#JoeLycett’s spoof #SueGray #Partygate report panics the government #ItsAllSueGravyBaby

Joe Lycett: he feels “fantastic” to have caused “chaos” and “mayhem” in the government with his spoof Sue Gray report – and so he should.

If a spoof version of Sue Gray’s report into the many Downing Street parties that happened during Covid-19 lockdown can terrify the Tory government, what will the real one do?

Comedian Joe Lycett isn’t normally considered political, or a satirist, and it seems he was just having a bit of fun when he tweeted this:

It states (allegedly from Sue Gray):

“A summary of my main findings:

“1. A culture of Covid-19 regulation rule-breaking at Number 10 Downing Street.

“2. Games were played which were known as ‘Slow Dance’ and ‘Pass the Arsehole’.

“3. A number of WhatsApp groups were established to organise gatherings, with titles including ‘Definitely A Meeting <winking emoji>’ and ‘Down It Street’.

“4. At one party, <redacted> a senior minister insisted all cabinet ministers get onto a table and perform Pure & Simple by Hear’Say.

“5. Before one of the gatherings <redacted> who worked closely with the PM insisted everyone be tested and was subsequently referred to as ‘Twateral Flow’ by advisors.

“6. A video of the PM’s wife at one party confirms her attendance in which she is heard saying, ‘it could be as few as four and as many as sixty kids’ lol.

“7. One advisor insisted this report makes clear ‘it is categorically not a breach of the rules to be part of a human centipede if said centipede was formed prior to lockdown’.

“Please forward any queries to my email [email protected]

In a follow-up post, Lycett shared a message claiming to be from an employee of a cabinet minister: “Your tweet this morning was read as an actual serious leak from Sue Gray’s report.”

So he has now written the following, which explains why, like so many of us, he is angry about what the Partygate revelations mean – and why he is utterly unrepentant about causing any distress to the government:

It says [boldings mine]:

“Well it’s been an odd couple of days. I catfished (sort of accidentally) Nadine Dorries and then supposedly catfished (sort of accidentally) the whole government. I wrote some jokes on Twitter, some dumb people (some in our government) found them plausible rather than funny, and now I’m in most of the newspapers.

“I write comedy sometimes as a way of using anger. I write a daft letter about a parking fine or change my name to Hugo Boss or fake a Sue Gray report, all essentially because I’m angry. I’m angry right now probably for the same reason many other people are angry. In the early stages of lockdown in 2020 my best friend died from cancer. He was the person who had been with me through my journey in comedy the most closely; he had been to the smallest pub gigs all the way up to the Apollo and when I was first on Graham Norton. He had been ill for a number of years and towards the end I had helped as a part time carer. I watched him slip away, gradually, over months, and all that comes with it. It’s a long story for another time. But he died, at the start of lockdown, and I wasn’t there because I was following the rules, and we had a tiny insufficient funeral, because we were following the rules, and I drove his kids away from that funeral back to Birmingham without any sort of wake, because we were following the rules, and it felt unnatural and cruel and almost silly, but we did it because we followed the rules. So I suppose like thousands of others with their own stories, I’m angry about that.

“I’m not a political comic particularly and rarely if ever make outwardly political statements. And although I’ve never voted for the Tories (huge surprise) I’m not in the business of trashing them for the sake of it either. In the old days the Conservatives were literally about ‘conserving’. They believed in historical institutions and traditions, promoted incremental change and cautious progress. For a somewhat lefty w*nk*r like me that of course conflicted with my beliefs about gay marriage, the treatment of women and minorities, but I respected their approach in other areas and found some of their policies and ideology to be stable and reassuring.

“This lot don’t seem to be into that. They’re about power and little else. They torch traditions and institutions with ease if it helps them retain their grip. To Hell with my dead friend, they think, and all your dead friends and dead relatives. You followed the rules and we didn’t but we’re in power and that’s all that matters so spin on it.

“So I get angry and I write a few jokes about Sue Gray’s report, a report which will probably change nothing and we’ll all be here again in the not-too-distant future, in some other scandal, with some other liars. But for now you might wonder how it feels to have been described in the papers as having caused these people ‘chaos’ and ‘mayhem’ and ‘mass panic’ because of a few jokes.

Let me be clear: it feels absolutely f*cking fantastic.

Have YOU donated to my crowdfunding appeal, raising funds to fight false libel claims by TV celebrities who should know better? These court cases cost a lot of money so every penny will help ensure that wealth doesn’t beat justice.

https://www.crowdjustice.com/case/mike-sivier-libel-fight/


Vox Political needs your help!
If you want to support this site
(
but don’t want to give your money to advertisers)
you can make a one-off donation here:

Donate Button with Credit Cards

Here are four ways to be sure you’re among the first to know what’s going on.

1) Register with us by clicking on ‘Subscribe’ (in the left margin). You can then receive notifications of every new article that is posted here.

2) Follow VP on Twitter @VoxPolitical

3) Like the Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/VoxPolitical/

Join the Vox Political Facebook page.

4) You could even make Vox Political your homepage at http://voxpoliticalonline.com

And do share with your family and friends – so they don’t miss out!

If you have appreciated this article, don’t forget to share it using the buttons at the bottom of this page. Politics is about everybody – so let’s try to get everybody involved!

Buy Vox Political books so we can continue
fighting for the facts.


The Livingstone Presumption is now available
in either print or eBook format here:

HWG PrintHWG eBook

Health Warning: Government! is now available
in either print or eBook format here:

HWG PrintHWG eBook

The first collection, Strong Words and Hard Times,
is still available in either print or eBook format here:

SWAHTprint SWAHTeBook

Are they joking? UN poverty expert thought Tory response to his report was a ‘spoof’

Philip Alston: He came to his conclusions by listening to people affected by Conservative policies on the poor, sick and disabled. Tories implemented those policies by ignoring the very same people – and now they are complaining because Mr Alston hasn’t done the same.

At a time when we are all taking a long, hard look at the Conservative government of the last few years, this is damning.

Philip Alston, the New York-based human rights lawyer and United Nations rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights, has responded with disbelief after the Tories responded to his report on poverty in the UK.

“I thought it might actually be a spoof,” he said after ministers claimed that his report was “a completely inaccurate picture of our approach to tackling poverty” and that the UK was among the happiest countries in the world.

“The statement is as troubling as the situation,” he said. “There is nothing that indicates any willingness to debate over issues which have generated endless very detailed, totally reputable reports across the political spectrum in the UK. All of these are dismissed.”

Alston’s report compared Conservative policies to the creation of Victorian workhouses. Amber Rudd, the work and pensions secretary, said she felt it was politically biased and alleged that Alston did not do enough research, only visiting the UK for 11 days.

Alston retorted that the government response amounted to “a total denial of a set of uncontested facts”.

Particularly contentious was Mr Alston’s claim that the Department for Work and Pensions had created “a digital and sanitised version of the 19th-century workhouse”.

Tory apologists rushed to rubbish the claim, like historian Dominic Sandbrook, who wrote in the Daily Mail that it was “simply ridiculous” and “an insult to our national intelligence”.

“I think breaking rocks has some similarity to the 35 hours of job search [required per week to receive universal credit] for people who have been out of work for months or years,” Mr Alston responded. “They have to go through the motions but it is completely useless. That seems to me to be very similar to the approach in the old-style workhouse. The underlying mentality is that we are going to make the place sufficiently unpleasant that you really won’t want to be here.

“Is it the case that 14 million people do not live in poverty? Do they contest the child poverty predictions? That is what it seems to be.”

It seems clear that this man will not be backing down.

As long-term readers of This Site will appreciate, that is a stance with which I can sympathise.

And it really is the only position to take with a government of bullies like the Tories, who deliberately (it seems) ignore the facts in order to continue pursuing malevolent policies of hate towards the poor and vulnerable.

Sadly, as I mentioned previously, the UK government may merrily ignore the findings of the United Nations report, without suffering any adverse backlash.

We know the Tories are wrong because we can see the evidence all around us. We know they are driving the entire country to ruin.

But they refuse to see it. Their attitude is symbolic of the pig-ignorance that came into office with David Cameron, back in 2010.

Source: UN poverty expert hits back over UK ministers’ ‘denial of facts’ | Society | The Guardian

Have YOU donated to my crowdfunding appeal, raising funds to fight false libel claims by TV celebrities who should know better? These court cases cost a lot of money so every penny will help ensure that wealth doesn’t beat justice.

https://www.crowdjustice.com/case/mike-sivier-libel-fight/


Vox Political needs your help!
If you want to support this site
(
but don’t want to give your money to advertisers)
you can make a one-off donation here:

Donate Button with Credit Cards

Here are four ways to be sure you’re among the first to know what’s going on.

1) Register with us by clicking on ‘Subscribe’ (in the left margin). You can then receive notifications of every new article that is posted here.

2) Follow VP on Twitter @VoxPolitical

3) Like the Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/VoxPolitical/

Join the Vox Political Facebook page.

4) You could even make Vox Political your homepage at http://voxpoliticalonline.com

And do share with your family and friends – so they don’t miss out!

If you have appreciated this article, don’t forget to share it using the buttons at the bottom of this page. Politics is about everybody – so let’s try to get everybody involved!

Buy Vox Political books so we can continue
fighting for the facts.


The Livingstone Presumption is now available
in either print or eBook format here:

HWG PrintHWG eBook

Health Warning: Government! is now available
in either print or eBook format here:

HWG PrintHWG eBook

The first collection, Strong Words and Hard Times,
is still available in either print or eBook format here:

SWAHTprint SWAHTeBook

Is this spoof benefit form the basis for Coalition unemployment policy?

Thatcha 2

Take a good hard look at the picture above and then try to tell yourself it isn’t the basis for RTU’s (see the earlier article on Iain Duncan Smith) entire benefits policy.

It is taken from the Spitting Image spin-off book Thatcha! The Real Maggie Memoirs, published in 1993 – just one year after Smith was returned to unit – sorry, Parliament – as MP for Chingford.

He first came to prominence as Shadow Social Security Secretary under William Hague in 1997. It cannot be beyond credibility that he had bought the Spitting Image book and had been taking notes… can it?

Look at the image. The form is described as “Form SCRO/UNG(e)/R” – and now benefit claimants are derided by the Conservative-led Coalition government as “scroungers”.

Note 2, referring to a claimant’s address, states: “Ha! Now we know where you live, we can keep an eye on you. You might have to keep up that fake limp for a long time.” This is typical of the current attitude, that disabled people are faking it in order to get a state handout.

Note 5, for those with relatives, delivers a classic Tory line, “Well why can’t they look after you? Must you always come running to us? Claim disallowed.”

Note 7 is for those who are registered disabled: “Claim disallowed – and don’t bother coming in to complain, we’ve got steps up to the office heh heh.” Is this a million miles away from current DWP policy, to make it as hard as possible for the sick and disabled to claim?

The form disallows claims made by people with partners, with savings, without savings; it asks claimants if they are lying and, if the ‘no’ box is ticked, bluntly responds, “Oh yes you are. Claim disallowed.”

The question “You don’t know the meaning of the words ‘hard work’ do you?” is an exact reflection of the attitude put around by the right-wing press, encouraged by ministers in the Coalition government, as is the fact that there is no ‘yes’ box to tick.

An affirmative response to “Would you be prepared to take any work offered to you, no matter how poorly paid, degrading & menial?” elicits the response: “God, you’ve really got no self-respect left, have you, you scrounging little bastard. I pity you.” Isn’t this exactly the sort of emotional state that Coalition benefit policy is intended to create?

Note 19, for those who ticked a box saying that they wished to claim the money – and claim free NHS spectacles (this last included in tiny print) – states: “Aha! Got you! You obviously don’t need them if you can read that tiny print. Claim disallowed” in a move reminiscent of the ‘voodoo polling’ that appeared on the Conservative Party’s website earlier this year, asking people if they thought benefit increases should be greater than wage rises for working people. When people ticked the box saying they disagreed with this, the Tories were able to claim this meant support for their policy for a below-inflation rise in benefits, when in fact it was based on a false premise, as benefit rises were never greater than wage rises in real terms.

“We promise to process this claim within 28 days. Though exactly which 28 days is up to us,” the form states. This will ring true, particularly for anyone who has received notice that they have a limited period in which to appeal against a decision – and that period ran out the day before they received the letter.

Most damningly true of all is the warning: “Remember, to give false information is a very serious offence – unless of course you are Minister of Employment, in which case it’s essential.” This is certainly a sentence that Iain Duncan Smith seems to have taken to heart.

By now, you may be thinking that this is all taking a silly joke form from a book of satirical humour – published 20 years ago! – just a little too seriously.

But, when you consider the sheer number of similarities between what was wild humour in the 1990s and what is bitter reality now, there can be no conclusion other than that the joke is on us.