Friday, 29 July 2011

Yes, yes, it's all SOOO bloody hilarious

It seems that at long last BUBB and NCVO have succeeded in uniting the whole umbrella sector. Everyone seems to think that my deputy Hector Rule's announcement that I am to move in as Sir Hubert Carrington's lodger next year is bloody hilarious. This idea is supposedly to foster greater collaboration between us. But I am not doing it. I even refuse to collaborate on the press announcements around the whole stupid scheme, as I am sulking. Not even so much as a blog post.

I will leave Hector to enjoy his 15 minutes cracking jokes to the media, saying the right things. Apparently this is not a marriage of convenience. I should bloody hope not. It's not even a marriage of inconvenience. We may have spent years trying to screw each over but this is taking it too far. I will not be his gamp gimp. And it's not some long term scheme to merge myself and Sir Hubert together into one all-powerful-all-fizz guzzling-late-night-texting-super-brolly-Knight

Hector really has got power crazy since I was off work writing MY NHS report. I suspect this whole plan is to make sure Sir Hubert and I end up killing each other in a domestic brolly incident so he can take over both organisations. Next he will be suggesting that BUBB and NCVO share an office, though that might not be such a bad idea. By recognising the friction that exists between the two organisations, we can really build on that, get right on each other's nerves and drive ourselves further apart. And I would quite like the chance to rifle through Earl Scalding's research files so I can doctor fact based evidence that doesn't fit any assumption and agendas I have. Or we could treat it like a Trojan horse tactic - get inside NCVO so we can bring it down from within.

What is so good about collaborating anyway? Why can't we all just get together and agree that it is a waste of time for everyone's benefit? It only has any worth if it's done guiltily to protect one's hide. Vichy France had the right idea.

There have been all sorts of rumours about why I am being forced to move in with Sir Hubert and I can categorically say they are all wrong apart from the ones that are right.

I have not been given an order by the Council to leave East Lambeth as my tomato plants are threatening to destroy the ecosystem and my neighbours haven't complained about me blasting out Rihanna records late at night.

And it is nothing to do with the fact that I can't afford my mortgage.

The more I think of reasons why I can't share with Sir Hubert, the worse it gets. Apparently he is notorious for losing umbrellas and just picking up the first one he sees when leaving the premises meaning other people end up getting pissed on. He never does the washing up and hogs the TV watching endless videos of his football heroes, Charlton (Bobby and Jack, that is). The only positive I can see is that at least I won't spend ages picking hair out of the plughole after he's had a shower.

There is one other bright light though. If I am to be forced kicking and screaming to live in Sir Hubert's box-room I will need to keep up a string of meetings, parties and launch events so I am rarely in the house. Therefore it is good that I have been appointed to the board of the Bogg Society Truss, the new layer of supportive dressing for the window of the Bogg Society Bank. That daft old bat, My Great Aunt Maud, has refused to let BUBB and NCVO each have a seat saying we are too similar as organisations. Is she fucking kidding? Has she actually watched how we operate? NCVO exists to promote the voice of the brolly sector whereas BUBB exists to promote the voice of me. OK, sometime, more by accident than design, BUBB ends up also speaking up for umbrellas but in day-to-day terms we are very different.

Still, I have had the last laugh as Maud has said we can share a seat, presumably in much the same way that we will have to share a toilet when we live together. And whose turn is it first? Mine. Take that Sir Hubert. Three years til you get a go. THREE YEARS. I think we all know that that means I am top Knight. So at least I will be at those lovely Bogg Society Trust meetings while you're at home painting your toe nails and watching Holby City.

DWP are work shy scroungers

The DWP are a disgrace and work shy scroungers to boot. Instead of doing some proper work on addressing issues in the benefit system, they are lazily seeking to demonise disabled umbrellas as work shy scroungers by themselves scrounging off the popular Daily Express line and perception that most of these brollies are somehow fit to work really and only pretend to be broken to claim assistance from the State.

You would never catch me simply repeating a populist view and ignoring the statistics and details that don't fit the argument to slur an entire group of people. By the way, did I mention that all bankers are greedy, evil bastards?

And by painting the disabled as the villains in an attempt to spin a justification for cutting oodles of cash going to those people in society who actually need it, so they can further feather their own nests, the politicians are both missing and applying paint to the bigger picture.

There are plenty of high quality scroungers at the top end of the system, not all of them are work shy as such, in fact they put a tremendous amount of effort into playing the system for their own benefit. They milk the less well off in society for the purposes of their own career, chasing personal glory on vanity projects, collecting titles, chairing stuff left, right and centre, blagging canapes and cheap fizz at an endless roll call of launches and lunches...

Speaking of people scrounging off the State, I met Princess Anne last week. She has always been a keen champion of the umbrella sector. We joked about how she used to read my column in Brolly Weekly so I gave her a copy of MY report on the NHS to have a look at. I even signed it for her.

And I had the extreme displeasure of having to go to Newcastle last week where I had to meet some poor Geordies patronised by Umbrellabuilders loans of free gamps. Luckily I avoided any attempted popular culture references such as to the song "Bridge on the Tyne is all mine, all mine" (which everyone knows actually goes "Bogg on the Tyne is all mine, all mine").

And I think it would be best not to say anything about the horrors of Norway rather than say something for the sake of being seen to say something.

Over my dead body

So my deputy Hector Rule has a plan to for me to move into Sir Hubert's spare room as his lodger does he? He must be fucking joking. He can shove his cosy canal-side location up his arse. I am not going. I am all for collaboration but the best way to achieve that is by not doing anything together and retaining our own distinct ways of doing things.

Besides, I hear he never buys the milk and uses everyone else's on his grape nuts. And he leaves the seat up.

Wednesday, 20 July 2011

Leadership and the Evil Empire

Have been unable to blog since getting dressed up like a twat last week and taking my knightly oath (not be confused with my nightly one) at St Paul's, due to serious RSI (really smug infection). I had to promise to bang on about being a Sir as much as is humanly possible in a ceremony that made anachronistic seem like cutting edge.

Since then I have been busy using the term Evil Empire as much as possible. The staggering unravelling of the phone hacking scandal has had me gripped but extremely worried. If my mate Dave is forced to resign it will be very sad. Mostly because he is the only person of any influence in government who has even pretended to read MY report on the NHS and competition.

The way that Rupert Murdoch has gone from being a power hungry player, seeking to control the official line on behalf of everyone else by getting as close to politicians as possible, to a withered, deluded old duffer who seemingly didn't have a fucking clue what was really going on all around him is a fascinating one that has absolutely no parallels with my own career.

Of course it is all about leadership and the saga has many lessons for us all. Some oh so clever so and so has written a new book on leadership called The Shite: The Future of Shirk is Already Here, which might be OK, I haven't actually read it but will still quote from the blurb on the back page in an attempt to make myself sound knowledgeable about such things.

But basically there are only two forms of leadership. Do what you want and sod the consequences, or piss off for two months and hope those left behind can pick up the pieces and do a better job than you.

Friday, 15 July 2011

The umbrella sector's Royal Wedding

I was going to post some pictures of the umbrella sector's Royal Wedding between my director of strategy Prince Fab Jobsworth and the beautiful Lucky Robins which was held in Borders bookshop last weekend. But I am sure the last thing Fab would want is me embarrassing him with tales of getting pissed up and dancing the gay gordons with brollies interspersed with blurry, creepy photographs from the day. It's bad enough for him that I made him invite me with a threat that otherwise I would never release him from his contract to go and take his undoubted talents to a better job.

Open public services - power and choice. Whether you want it or not

On Tuesday I was once again presuming to speak on behalf of the entire umbrella sector by offering support to my mate Dave's plan to carve up public services. I have long been a keen advocate on umbrellas taking on a greater public service delivery role, even the ones who don't want to so it was a further opportunity to get my tongue right up Cameron's pampered posterior. Though I note the presumptuous arrogant clown has stared calling me Rob. He'd better show some respect or I'll stop acting as an unpaid spin doctor for his harebrained schemes.

As it turned out what with the unfolding drama at News International it was a good day to bury a controversial blueprint for public service reform. Incidentally I am still waiting to hear confirmation that my phone was hacked. I do hope so. It would be one in the eye of Sir Hubert if I was hacked and he wasn't. Though given the number of text messages he sends to important people late at night, News International probably thought it would be too much effort to process all of the information on there. I will say this to Sir Hubert though. When it comes to bothering Rick T'Hurd and the like he is an amateur. Text messages at midnight? He should be waiting outside his house, ready to pounce when he leaves for work in the morning. Or better still, do what I do and disguise himself as a box of All Bran so as to give him earache over breakfast. Just don't wear a Duchamp tie or you might end up with semi-skinned milk down it.

Friday, 8 July 2011

Edited highlights of the last week as I have been too busy to keep up with the frantic blogging of my spoofer

It's been a busy old week. First of all I went to a posh stately home to pretend to discuss Bogg Society and Europe. There is no finer setting to patronise the less well off in society than a big fuck off pile of opulent bricks with four poster beds and fine food and wine.

There is a lot we can learn from Europe though. In MY report on the NHS I was aware of different EU health models. I would have liked to develop this theme more in MY report but I judged politically this would not be wise as we can be rather xenophobic about lessons from stupid bloody foreigners!

Then I had Commons select committee hearing on Bogg Society. The Unions talked shite. I spoke eloquently and sensibly. And the Committee seemed fascinated by my blog which made it in numerous mentions, admittedly all by me. "Have you read my blog?" I kept squeaking. "What is a blog?" one of them replied. "Is it another word for a car crash?"

Tony Blair is still resplendent, although I did teach him all he knows when we were at Oxford, naturally. The networking, the chasing of the shiny coin, the unwavering sense of righteousness in the face of evidence to the contrary...he's learnt from the best.

Blair was speaking at an event about the importance of faith in political decisions. You can't go round making moral judgements and starting illegal wars unless you have faith that a non-existent being you believe in is better than that of some foreigners who have oil.

Faith is also very important in the umbrella sector. Please God, let it not rain as I have left my gamp on the bus. People often refer to thunderstorms as being Biblical, by which they mean they're made up and didn't really happen. Indeed faith is often used like a cheap brolly as an ultimately futile veneer of shelter from the deluge.

I used some biblical analogies to pep up my keynote speech to the major Action Gamping conference in Westminster Hall. Though you try and shelter from a plague of locusts with only a golfing umbrella .I was followed by my Great Aunt Maud. I was flattered to hear her describe me as the best advocate our sector has. Though I may have misheard the word advocate. Or indeed the word best. She said what I say sometimes is uncomfortable for government in that it makes them cringe with embarrassment but is always pragmatic and realistic. She didn't really say that, I am just pretending she did although to do so is clearly unpragmatic and unrealistic.

That is certainly what I aim to do leading BUBB. Work with government when we can promote our (my) common objectives and oppose when things ARE NOT FAIR AND DON'T GO MY WAY. Gobby in the press one minute. And the next. But leadership is complex. It involves compromise and judgment. Or so I am told by those who are good at it. I prefer more shouting my mouth off as loudly as I can and attacking critics via my blog to any of that nonsense.

Perhaps at times I get that wrong. (Perhaps? Perhaps? I nearly accidentally made an admission of fallibility. Thank God for the word perhaps) Clearly at other times I get it right or I wouldn't have had a commission from the PM on health choice and competition. Hang on, that was more to do with me being a fierce supporter of competition. After all the PM does have excellent judgement when it comes to who he associates with though there is no truth in the rumour that he only asked me to help out as all former dodgy News of the World editors were busy trying to save their own arses elsewhere.

I was then
supposed to then fly off to Edinburgh for the Sector Wedding of the year. My
marvellous director of strategy (hang on, we have a strategy?) Fab Jobsworth marrying Lucky Robins in Borders bookshop on Saturday.

But I had to delay my flight as I was asked to number 10 to talk about public service reform. We had a
good roundtable to talk about how to promote this. When I say good I mean in terms of my usual measurement of success - how well known the names of the other attendees were for the purpose of dropping them all over my blog. Key ministers like Danny Kendallexander, Gulliver Leftwing although he spent all of his time on Twitter (check out his feed at @oliverletwinmp, he's non stop and gives Twitter readers the full benefit of his wisdom on every subject.). The PM was also there for a period which given that he lives there wasn't surprising though he did give me a look as to say "why are you in my kitchen again? You've written that sodding report so stop bothering me to actually read it".

Friday, 1 July 2011

Tired of thinking of blog post titles about being tired of thinking of blog post titles about being tired

Decided to take a few days break after a lot of my members kept saying I looked tired. Or maybe they said they were tired of looking at me. Whatever, I headed off to Edinboggrh for a rest. But on my return I have been busy getting back into the day job and have not been continually blogging about health issues as that might lead people to believe I can now only think about the NHS and am being retained as an unpaid unofficial spinner of the government line on competition and am using my BUBB role and blog to do this. That would mean I was completely ignoring my many members using umbrellas in other sectors and wouldn't be right.

Hector Rule, my deputy, keeps putting things in my diary to keep me out of the office so he can carry on running BUBB properly while I pretend to have moved on from my NHS derisory, sorry, advisory post.

Still, if I had have been blogging about health stuff I would definitely have labelled the BMA (Brolly Medical Arses) a disgrace because they don't agree with me. What do they know about the health service? They're not experts like I am.

They run down patient choice when we all know patient choice is key to the reforms. I know this because I talked to loads of patients when writing MY report. OK, I didn't but I know that most patients want a choice. And if they don't it's not their choice. Patient choice will be at the heart of the dismantled NHS as people will have to be patient when making a choice about how much time they decide to wait for unprofitable treatment before paying cash to the private sector vultures.

I was furious with my interview in Brolly Weekly. OK, they did a very good job of allowing me to pitch a one sided justification for my controversial decision to presume to speak on behalf of the whole umbrella sector in helping Cameron out with MY report. But the cartoon was a disgrace. Made me look as if I had been trying to apply clown make-up on a roller coaster.

I will just finish with a plea to the Rough Justice Secretary Gareth Sharke who has announced plans to make it mandatory to stab burglars or indeed anyone who looks at your stuff longingly. But I am confused by this. Does it mean that attacking burglars is only permitted with a knife or are other instruments allowed? Because all of my knives have been stolen by bastard burglars. Would an umbrella suffice or would there be legal complications? If brollies are allowed I will simply set up a trap for all of my enemies (Hubert, Dylan Twirley etc) and lure them into my home, bludgeon them with my gamp and claim I thought they were robbing me. But I am sure no one else would exploit this ill-thought through populist Middle England plan that values possessions over life as a way to wriggle out of, for example, a domestic incident. Would they?