Morning Lemmings. Slight change of format this week because as of now, I am officially on holiday and not just in a ‘me and Jalf are going to stay up all night hammering tf2 with our nerdy headsets on‘ type way but in a proper ‘I’ve got a week off work and I’m outta here!’ type way. So, as you can probably imagine, kicking off my jollies by feverishly slaving over a keyboard until gone midnight isn’t the most appealing prospect and as a result, tonight’s instalment of LCCPQTMR will be oh so short and oh so sweet. Go!
Q1. Since most people voted against the coalition, what mandate do they have for the cuts?
Q2. Should we have confidence in an Education Secretary who doesn’t check his own homework?
Q3. Do you agree with the US on the need for an inquiry into the Libyan prison release?
Q4. Should the withdrawal from Sangin be seen as a retreat?
Q5. Does holding the AV referendum on the same day as the Scottish elections conform to David Cameron’s ‘respect’ agenda?
In The Yellow Bit Of The Blue/Yellow Corner: Michael Moore, Secretary of State for Scotland and generally unknown quantity.
Ahh, bless… Another generic LibDem n00b is sent out to soak up some punishment on behalf of their Brand New Best Friends/Dark Coalition Overlords. After the perfunctory Greece!/Debt!/Labours Mess!/Econogeddon! roll call it all went decidedly pear shaped as everyone with the exception of Forsyth tore a strip off him and kicked sand in his face. Boos ensued, attempts at a semblance of a defence floundered and he finished up looking very much worse for wear. Welcome to the Corridors of Power, Mike!
A ‘taking one for the (extended) team’ of a 4/10
In The Red Corner: Douglas Alexander, Shadow Secretary of State for International Development and card carrying Scottish Labour Mafia member.
Even though Wee Dougie looks like a miniature replica of an actual person, he did manage to make a better fist of this ‘opposition’ malarkey than Johnson did last week. Having said that, making Labour hay in Lothian isn’t exactly akin to mapping the genome or curing cancer, but it was a serviceable enough outing. Sticking closely to Labours’ post election Divide and Rule/Wind Up The Libs playbook, he got a few good claps in without ever once being in danger of looking charismatic. He also looks a little like Alan Titchmarsh. Just without all the smutty novels. I hope.
An even keeled 6/10
In The Blue Bit Of The Blue/Yellow Corner: Lord Forsyth, ex-Secretary of State for Scotland and Stone of Scone liberator.
He may be Scottish, but by God is he Tory. Making no pretence of being an unreconstructed Thatcherite, Forsyth used some wonderfully extravagant analogies to crank up the Deficit Scare Factor (‘1.3 trillion! 46’000 years at a pound a minute! 200 trips to the Moon and back!’) whilst standing idly aside as Mann was savagely mauled. His message didn’t exactly go down too well, but points are deserved for being brutally, unflinchingly true to his kind.
An unshakably contrary 5/10
In The Pale Yellow corner: Nicola Sturgeon, Deputy First Minister for Scotland and sidekick to Churchill The Insurance Dog.
The slightly tomboyish Nicola Sturgeon joins us once more, but this time the Blame Everything On Westminster ploy seems to have lost some of it’s magic. Whilst occasionally getting some crowd love here and there for the odd pop at her London based foes, she also came a cropper a number of times herself, notably on Q2. The last ditch tactic of squealing ‘Trident!’ was deployed a few times, but overuse made it look slightly iffy by the end. Also, why is that I can’t help thinking she was the captain of her school hockey team? Maybe it’s the eyebrows.
A slightly sketchy 4/10
In the I’m The Funny One/Just Like You Corner: Ed Byrne, comedian and….erh….comedian.
Ed Byrne has a propensity to annoy me with his lurking smugness that only just manages to partially submerge itself, but I must say I was quite rapt by his ‘Yay for Keynes!’ turn on Q1. It tailed off after that, but the crowd had made their minds and from their point of view, it was all fireworks and icecream when ever he opened his mouth. Good result for the hairy, specky one.
A crowd pleasing 7/10
The Crowd: Edinburgh
Given the truly inordinate levels of pantomime applause and booing in this episode, I had to check to make sure that I hadn’t gone back in time and arrived at the 16th Congress of the All-Union Communist Party, Ed Byrne wasn’t Stalin and Michael Mann wasn’t a Troskyite Stooge. The odd thing was that when the camera panned out at the end of the show, it revealed the crowd to be tiny and for the most part, sober. So yes, it was a very busy affair and without a doubt, the Audience Member of Note goes to the weirdly androgynous ginger thing who told everyone to “get a grip” whilst looking to be on the verge of tears/death. Well done, that man/woman/whatever.
A fervid 8/10
Aaaaaaaaaand that’s it. I’m afraid next week’s LCCPQTMR is slightly up in air right now and is almost wholly dependent on whether my dear friend, the Megabus, gets me back home from my hols in time to watch the show. The ticket says it might, a tenner says it won’t. However, I can in full confidence say that normal service will definitely resume the week after and that’s just as well as it will be the last episode in the series. After that, I’m free! Free from Dimbers evil clutches to fill my Thursday and Friday nights with…erh…erh…. I’ll get back to you on that one.