Question Time 29nd April 2021
Anne-Marie Trevelyan (Conservative)
Jon Ashworth (Labour)
Daisy Cooper (Liberal Democrats)
Tim Stanley (Journalist & historian)
Danny Sriskandarajah (Oxfam)
Last week’s QT Review proved from first principles that the National Health Service isn’t the best in the world as your humble reviewer couldn’t find an NHS dentist. Be careful what you wish for. The phone rang on Tuesday evening delivering a double whammy, potentially both proving me wrong and allowing painful revenge. If Puffins are in the habit of referring to public sector workers as ‘fat’, ‘bone idle’, ‘useless’ and ‘overpaid’, bear in mind that one day you may be laid immobile before them with your mouth wide open while they stand nearby with needles and knives.
Likewise, the Scots are a canny but capricious race, perfectly capable of passing dentistry exams while simultaneously being labelled as ‘racists’, ‘bigots’, ‘Nazis’, ‘scroungers’, ‘drunks’ and ‘druggies’. What has been said cannot be unsaid but at least you can pretend that you never said it in the first place. The written word, however, sets itself in stone, especially on the document of record that is Question Time Review.
My new Scottish dentist was female, tiny, sweet, quietly spoken, titian and in possession of, hanging on the other side of a spotless sink, an impressive array of bone saws and pliers. Was she a Puffin or a spammer? I was about to find out.
Every woman who has given to the world tells of the longest and most painful labour. My own mother (usually at mealtimes) would recall your humble author emerging upsidedown and the wrong way round, taking a day and a half about it, and being such jumble of painfully sticking out bits and pieces that the midwife thought him twins.
Likewise with my tooth. The root was a foot long. The nerve, not only as thick as an Irish labourers arm but also attached to every bone and muscle in my body. What was most unexpected, was the noises. It sounded as though someone was smashing my teeth and pulling them out of my head, which, come to think of it, they were. My face is now so sore I am unable to eat. I live on water and chopped up bread but the pain killers are a riot. Last night I dreamt that David Lammy’s brother called at our house looking for David. Having reached the Debatable Lands and still not found him, and it being the middle of the night, I felt obliged to invite him in. Thoroughly good egg, bit of a Tory, mad keen on trains, cracking good imagined company during somnolent toothache.
Such a confluence of politics and pain brings us to television’s very own weekly trip to the dentists, BBC Question Time.
The first question referred to Boris Johnson’s behaviour. Tittle tattle or scandal? The questioner suggested this a scandal and Jon Ashworth (Labour) agreed. Who paid for the lavish upgrade of this flat? Asked Jon. Boris paid for it, Bruce reminded us. “Indeed, indeed,” replied Mr Ashworth, “and it matters!” Jon struggled while trying to make a scandal out of paying for your own decorations.
Anne-Marie Trevelyan (Conservative) knew Boris had paid for it but not who had initially paid for it. Did he always intend to pay for it asked a carefully rehearsed member of the QT 50 audience? It was buy now pay later, like what the rest of us do, suggested another.
Anne-Marie is the Conservative MP for Berwick-upon-Tweed and Minister for Business, Energy and Clean Growth. Privately educated at St Paul’s Girls School, Anne-Marie is a graduate of Oxford Polytechnic after which she enjoyed a career in accounting, becoming an MP in 2015.
Her father was the interesting Canadian-born Defence journalist, Donald Leonard Beaton, who died in Anne-Marie’s childhood. Her mother was Catherine Bourgarel of Chateaux Roux and her husband is John Trevelyan, one of the Northumberland Trevelyns.
And he really is one of the Northumberland Trevelyn’s, the family having lived at the county’s Netherwitton Hall since the 14th Century. In the interests of equality, Anne-Marie lives in the Grade I listed building which includes a stairway tower and a disused Roman Catholic chapel. The mansion is heated by a biomass boiler which you may well have paid for through the Government’s Renewable Heat Incentive scheme.
Danny Sriskandarajah (Oxfam) didn’t know, but emphasised the importance of transparency. “Build back fairer,” when we eventually emerge from the pandemic, he urged.
Tim Stanley (Journalist and historian) spoke via webcam from a room decorated by Graham Greene, complete with lots of swotty books, a couple of icons, a statue of the Virgin Mary and a photo (yes a photo, Greene must have been there at the time) of Jesus healing a sick person. Boris isn’t giving an answer because he’s embarrassed, but what is there to be embarrassed about? Especially when you recall MP’s and the expenses scandal, where the taxpayer had to pay for decorations. Boris gets things done and the voters don’t care.
Tim Randolph Stanley is the author of Whatever Happened to Tradition?: History, Belonging and the Future of the West, the 998,941st most popular book on Amazon, a disappointing 323,729 places behind the Marquis De Sade’s Hundred Days of Sodom.
No one touched upon that strange thing called human nature. Consumer advice. If you are a divorced 56-year-old father of six (or seven) and you think that 33-year-old girls fancy you, then you are going to be cleaned out. You will be taken for every penny. You will be picked up by your ankles and all of your money will be shaken out of your pockets. That is a fact. If, in the meantime, Mrs May’s 1970s doctor’s waiting room decor is turned into a paintball fight in a Marakesh Molly house, then so be it. You have only yourself to blame.
Daisy Cooper (LibDem) thought all of this depressing. The Tories were papering over the story. Ho ho ho. Nope, nobody laughed, not even dopey Daisy who didn’t realise she’d told a joke. Bruce observed that the opposition didn’t seem to be making much headway. The anomaly has just emerged, stated Daisy finding, with ‘anomaly’, an excellent word to describe Carrie Symonds’ dreadful taste in furnishings. “A very serious matter,” said an earnest Daisy. Cladding on flats is another decorations scandal insisted the LibDem.
Daisy Cooper is the MP for St Albans. She graduated in Law from Leeds University and is also a Public International Law graduate from the University of Nottingham. After uni, Rosie ‘worked’ in leftie campaigning and advocacy before becoming an MP in 2019.
Jon got himself all bothered. His constituents were suffering terribly. Children were going hungry, presumably because Boris bought a carpet that didn’t match the wallpaper.
“Why are you banging on about it?” Asked Tim, rightly. Tim had something written down that he had to read out about profiteering by consultants (presumably management consultants) during the pandemic.
The next question was from Nathalie, with the scouse accent, and was about the fire cladding problem. She was trapped in a building with the wrong type of cladding and this could cost tens of thousands of pounds. Her room had been decorated by Andy Warhol, with two pop art paintings, one of astronauts and one of businessmen, all with their faces blotted out.
There is a fund, said Anne-Marie and an Act through Parliament. Daisy had already mentioned this in her first answer. Is it fair to assume that she must have known about the question in advance? “Four years on from the Grenfell tragedy,” said Daisy.
Tim thought this a scandal but wasn’t sure how it should be paid for other than by ‘contractors’.
The audience had obviously been rehearsed and the problem was dumped on Anne-Marie who didn’t know what to do, other than to say that the problem would continue.
Jon set off with his hands, waving them about in compassion. “As it ‘appens,” he began. Careful Jon. “As it happens, I was on Question Time at the time of Grenfell,” explained Jon, but he had no solution beyond literally wringing his hands at the Tories.
Jon Ashworth is the Labour MP for Leicester South. A comprehensive QT Review biography of Jon, and especially his vile wife, is available here. The key points being that he is a PPE graduate wallah who has never had a job outside of leftie politics and that his wife, Emilie Oldknow, was mentioned on 198 pages of the Labour Party’s antisemitism report. Following which, she left Labour head office in disgrace and was awarded an OBE and a cushy job at the Unison union.
“Poverty crisis,” said Danny. What’s it got to do with poverty? Asked Bruce, rightly. “Poverty,” repeated Danny, for no apparent reason.
Dhananjayan Sivaguru Sriskandarajah is the £148,216 a year chief executive of impoverished people’s charity Oxfam.
Danny was born in Sri Lanka but educated in Australia before enlisting as a Rhodes scholar at Magdalene College, Oxford. After completing his studies, Mr Sriskandarajah became a civil society professional and engaged in a Cook’s tour of globalist vehicles such as the Institute for Public Policy Research, The Royal Commonwealth Society, CIVICUS et al, many of which have connections with Puffin’s favourite George Soros.
As a trustee of Comic Relief, you might think Danny could stoop no lower, but in 2019 Sriskandarajah was appointed chief executive of the scandal-ridden Oxfam whose activities overseas have included using underage disaster survivors as prostitutes.
In 2016/2017 Oxfam received £408,000,000 in funding, the biggest source (at £176m) being from ‘government and other public authorities’. In other words, your taxes.
Because of the scandals, reference to Oxfam’s 2019-2020 Annual Report and Accounts shows funding had dropped to £367m. A look at the report’s list of campaigns is revealing. They are, in order:
- Climate change
- Women’s rights and gender justice
- Influencing institutional equality
- Influencing the UK Government to stop UK made bombs falling on The Yemen
- Supporting people in poverty around the UK (eg the ‘feminist scorecard’)
- Engaging more effectively with companies
- Amplifying the needs of the poorest during the pandemic
Interestingly, no mention of stopping The Yemen’s Houthi’s from using Iranian weapons against Saudi Arabia and her allies, or doing much for the poor and needy beyond ‘supporting’ or ‘amplifying’ which is PR speak for doing nothing. Meanwhile, at the corporate and political level ‘engaging’ and ‘influencing’ are PR speak for lobbying.
The third question was, “Are we doing enough to help India?” Good point. In impoverished and technically backward India the sheer number of people sick and absent from work is threatening the Indian space programme , the ‘world’s fastest expanding nuclear weapons programme’, their $14 billion nuclear submarine project and the construction of the Indian navy’s new aircraft carriers.
Daisy said she had wanted to send them our vaccine after the first 4,000,000 had been administered here. “None of us are safe until all of us are safe,” stated Daisy. Hold on you silly tart, we’re not all going to be safe if only four million of us are vaccinated before you start sending our vaccine abroad.
Danny said this was devastating in India. We believe in making the pie bigger, said Danny. He wanted a loosening of intellectual property rights. The interests of big pharmaceuticals said Danny. But selling vaccines at cost, observed Bruce.
Back to human nature. Perhaps India’s space rockets, nuclear weapons, submarines and aircraft carriers could be better funded if they spent less on beer (320,000,000 crate sales a year) and cigarettes (85 billion sales a year)?
Beatrice from the QT audience’s room had been decorated by Beatrix Potter, Chrisses by Laura Ashley.
Jon thought these things desperate. He reminded us that he is an MP in Leicester. A shortage of Oxygen, cremations in the street. And it’s even worse in India, Jon. “International agreements,” continued Jon, making the mistake of thinking that leftie globalism can change human nature. Here’s another statistic, Puffins. There are 65,000 Indian doctors in the NHS. Maybe if they were still in India and we trained up our own people?
Tim was prepared to delay his own liberation by sending our vaccines abroad. He reminded us, as if we needed reminding, that he wasn’t virtue signalling. Danny agreed with him.
“We don’t have a surplus here,” said Anne-Marie. But, ominously, she mentioned the unvaccinated young, while obviously not virtue signalling.
Primary health care in the poorest parts of the world, said Jon, and the Tories are cutting the aid budget. Shall we take it out of Jon’s wages? Every Indian nuclear submarine and aircraft carrier could have a ‘Jon Ashworth Sickbay’. A fitting tribute to the man.
The last question was about the incarceration of elderly people in care homes. Tim wondered, as we all are, what are the actual benefits of vaccination? Very large numbers of us have been vaccinated and yet there are still care home restrictions and masks and social distancing.
None of the panellists was keen on opening up care homes but Jon thought it was scandalous that residents were only allowed one visit a week. It doesn’t have to be like that, he said.
Speaking of old folk who should be locked up, Fiona Bruce announced that former Speaker of the House of Commons John Becow is on next week’s programme. Rather have toothache.
© Always Worth Saying 2021
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