Monday, 3 December 2012

"A Coalition Christmas" - News, Views and Music Issue 173 Intro

December 12th:

A Coalition Christmas

Once upon a time there was a man called Cameron. Nobody knew what he really did for a living but most of it consisted of laughing at the poor and trying to make their lives a misery. For some reason no one had tried to stop him flouting the power he shouldn’t have had despite the fact he had lots of dodgy friends, like the Beagle Brooks. He ‘worked’ in a big house in Downing Street where the people always had lots of money and most of the people he worked with had been to a big school with him called Eton and were really rich. His servant Nick Clegg wasn’t a bad sort, but he loved the warm glow of Cameron’s fire and the heat it gave off so much that he could never bring himself to stand up to his own boss and risk being kicked out into the cold. One day, on a particularly snow-ridden Christmas Eve, Cameron was in a really fierce mood. ‘No coal for the fire today’ he told Clegg ‘Oh and you’ll be in charge of running the country again. I’m taking yet another day off to play ‘angry birds’ on my i-pad, count my money and laugh at poor people’.

With that Cameron walked out of his office looking at the people around him. ‘Hmm he’s enjoying himself too much’ he thought looking at a weary old man counting his pension. ‘We’ll have to take some money off him! Oh and there’s a man with one leg staggering down the pavement in agony – he’s clearly fit for work so I’ll have a word with his boss about making him work extra hours. Aha, there’s a hardworking young lad with pocket money to spare – should I send him to the workhouse, cut his family’s child benefit or simply add more hours to his wage as a chimney sweep?!’ The whole street feared old man Cameron and backed away from him when he approached. They prayed and prayed that the old miser would lose his power and be replaced by someone with more compassion and spirit.

And then a curious thing happened. Cameron was visited by the ghost of his brother Bob Marley – the pair hadn’t really shared much in common and had tried to keep quiet that they were related for both their sakes (we’ll ignore the ridiculous age difference for now!) After playing reggae music for half an hour and much ‘wailing’ Bob told Cameron that he would be visited by three spirits who would warn him about his wicked ways. That night Cameron spent his first ever night unable to sleep and had to resort to counting his moneybags - borrowed from the goblin George Osbourne he’d appointed as chancellor to help him drift off. They showed him the past (Old Mother Thatcher’s 1980s recession filled Government and hideous riots, when she went to the cupboard and pretended it was bare, with the iron lady’s legacy in tatters as she’s stabbed in the back by her own party), the present (Nick Clegg angrily shaking his fist at him and saying that his stance on the Leveson enquiry was so stupid he couldn’t possibly agree to it, until Cameron put another piece of coal on the fire and patted him on the head) and the future (an empty land with no one in it to shout and scream at except Cameron working as a servant to his Eton friends – because everyone who hadn’t gone to Eton had died of poverty and illness and they had to take turns as slaves).

Cameron was suddenly overcome with tears. He’d been a cruel, evil, vicious tyrant. He’d tried to claw onto power even when he hadn’t actually been voted into office. He spent his whole time trying to save money for a so-called deficit which didn’t exist (or at least not compared to peaks in the 50s, 70s, 80s or 90s – look at the figures people!) but was actually being spent on laborious office parties. He’d tried to limit the freedom of the press in case they found out something awful about him. He’d tried to take away from the deserving to give to his millionaire rich buddies and there was nothing anyone could do about it. He’d tried to bully his European neighbours into doing what he wanted just because he shouted the loudest even though his knowledge of fiscal policy was naught. He’d set up computer after computer system designed to turn real people into tick-box pieces of meat. He’d bulldozed the local hospital in the name of saving money, leaving the ill to sleep on the pavements outside. He’d destroyed whole decades’ worth of progress in the name of the needy and vulnerable and left them all prey to conmen, crooks and Cameron cronies.

In a terror, Cameron woke up and stared out of the window. Please God, let all that not be true! The past, the preset, the future...oh, the horror! It was Christmas morning. The brand new i-phone with angry birds apps lay at the end of his bed as expected, even though Cameron had been a very naughty boy and hadn’t expected anything off Santa this year. And now here was the big question – how to act in 2013? Was it too late to change his ways? Would he be cast aside by an angry mob like old mother Thatcher? Would Clegg rise up to fight him and stick a metaphorical pickaxe in the back of his head? Would Cameron end up lost and alone? (At least he was used to that feeling, having regularly left members of his family behind in public places!) Or should he carry on as normal, hoping the vision in his dream had never happened? After all, he’d just that very month signed a charter to make the disabled poor work for their benefits and he couldn’t possibly sink any lower. Could he?...
As usual the news section is available by clicking this link:

ANNIVERSARIES: Birthday dates have come around again for the following AAA members born between December 5th and 11th: Bobby Elliott (drummer with The Hollies 1963-present) who turns 70 on December 8th. Anniversaries of events include: The Rolling Stones publicise their new album with a fondly remembered ‘Beggar’s Banquet’ with the world’s music press which degenerates into a food fight! (December 5th 1968); The first of seven specially made Beatles Christmas Flexi-discs is sent to members of the fab four’s fanclub (December 6th 1963); A busy day for The Rolling Stones who record their classics ‘19th Nervous Breakdown’ and ‘Mother’s Little Helper’ in the space of a few hours (December 6th 1965); Four people die at a free festival – one of them murdered by the Hells Angel security - held in Altamont Speedway 40 years ago this week, headlined by The Rolling Stones and also featuring AAA groups CSNY, Grateful Dead and Jefferson Airplane (whose lead singer Marty Balin is concussed after breaking up a fight between Hells Angels and audience; December 6th 1969 – the film of the tour, ‘Gimme Shelter’, premieres on the same day in 1970); The Beatles’ Apple Boutique opens its doors at 94 Baker Street (December 7th 1967) and finally, the NME are first to reveal that Graham Nash is leaving The Hollies to work with David Crosby and Stephen Stills in an as yet un-named band (December 7th 1967); The Beach Boys release their first single ‘Surfin’ on the independent Candix label a staggering 49 years ago (December 8th 1961); Pink Floyd release their seminal album ‘The Wall’ – it will go on to be the last #1 by anybody of the 1970s (December 8th 1979); John Lennon dies outside his Dakota Building home in New York weeks after his 40th birthday (December 8th 1980); The Moody Blues with Wingsman Denny Laine score big with their first hit ‘Go Now’ (December 10th 1964); Otis Redding dies at the age of 27 in an aeroplane crash (December 10th 1967) and finally, John Lennon releases his first solo LP ‘Lennon/ Plastic Ono Band’ (December 11th 1970).

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