Perkins & the Undeclared Donations

"Morning Perkins. How is the ship of state?"

"Well, it's looking a bit wobbly, Sir."

"Wobbly? Explain yourself Man!"

"Well, it's this Peter Hain thing, Sir. His team forgot to declare a 100,000 donation."

"Hmmmm, but the thing is Perkins, we are only human. It's easy to forget things now and then."

"Yes Sir, but it's funny that they didn't forget to pay the donation into their bank account, isn't it? It seems to be a sort of selective forgetfulness, so to speak; a sort of being economical with the remembering."

"I think you're being a bit harsh. After all, he has got the PM's backing."

"But the PM says it is out of his hands!"

"Yes, cunning ploy eh! Then he doesn't have to take any flak for having to decide either to sack him or not."

"But this think-tank is a bit dodgy, isn't it? Everyone knows it was designed to receive funds from rich backers on the right while at the same time he was courting the unions but without them knowing about the other lot!"

"Ah, but that's politics, Jenkins."

"But I thought we were going to be transparent; open and honest?"

"We are, but only relative to the previous lot."

"Do you mean Blair's government or the John Major one, Sir?"

"Blair's, of course! A right maggot's nest of spin, lies, bluff and deviousness."

"But the GCF was an integral part of that government, Sir!"

"Come, come Perkins! That's all in the past! Look on the bright side!"

"Is there one, Sir?"

"Of course; it's just a question of developing the right PMA."

"How does that work, Sir?"

"Easy! Just spin and bluff it out for a few days and then "The Daily Mail" will move on to something else. And anyway, at the end of the day, we'll still have our jobs and pensions."

"I See, Sir. But there is something else on my mind."

"OK, spit it out."

"Well, the experts say this hospital deep-cleaning is a waste of time and money."

"Oh come now, Perkins. How can cleaning be a waste of time and money! There are superbugs to kill."

"But at the same time it seems that money for ordinary cleaning is being reduced."

"Exactly Perkins. You can't have your cake and eat it, can you!"

"But even if they deep-clean a hospital couldn't the bugs still be brought in by the next patient after they finish the deep-cleaning and when they go back to pretend cleaning?"

"But you miss the point, Perkins."

"Do I, Sir?"

"Yes! The point is, by taking this high-profile, aggressive deep-cleaning action costing 50 million the government is seen to be decisive, active. It creates an image in people's minds of thousands of highly-trained technicians in white coats scourging the bugs with super disinfectant; just like, for example, Danger Mouse whacking it to the Baddies. Besides, if it costs that much it must be good."

"You mean like Northern Rock, Sir?"

"Now don't be facetious, Perkins. Anyway, that's going to cost 50 billion, not 50 million, and good value I'd say. The country needs a bank."

"But I thought we had plenty of banks, Sir?"

"Yes, but now we have a new, ground-banking entity: a bankrupt private bank owned by the people. Doesn't it make you proud?"

"Sorry Sir. I think it's all total bollocks."

"No Perkins, Public Relations."

"Isn't that the same as bollocks, Sir?"

"Perkins; I think you're due for some leave ....."