Political kitchen sink drama

imageSwiss Tony, the comical epitome of a car salesman on the Fast Show, compared cars to a beautiful women. Margaret Thatcher, in a nod towards her upbringing as a grocer’s daughter, equated the economy to a basket of groceries. Recently, kitchens have featured in the political world. So, what if we consider kitchens as an analogy of the current political situation.

The Conservative Party have an advantage. Five years ago they had to build a new kitchen to replace the previous kitchen which had spectacularly fallen apart. The designers from the Liberal Party offered to help them and contributed a number of ideas which were taken on board. Parts of the layout and a few of the finishes, the doors and the worktops, weren’t what we were led to expect or wanted, but we have got used to it, and by and large it has worked. The principal designers, Cameron and Clegg are offering to carry out improvement, but the meals prepared will remain much the same for a while.

A different company, the Labour Party, is now offering to redesign and rebuild the kitchen so that a better, wider menu can be offered. Their salesmen are at a disadvantage; they can’t show us an example of what they intend building. We are promised, guaranteed that it will have so many cubic metres of storage and that it will have the essential equipment, but we have not seen a layout plan or a specification of the construction of the units and the finishes. Some of us are not quite sure about it. The last kitchen we were sold, installed, by a different company, New Labour, looked terrific, sleek and modern, but the build was poor and turned out not to be durable. We are a bit suspicious; the company name has changed but the new directors, Miliband and Balls, were apprentices in the previous company.

Another worrying problem: they may need help from another company, a Scottish outfit called SNP. Their in-house designer, Nicola Sturgeon, and a design consultant, Alex Salmond, have a very distinct style. The doors have a tartan pattern finish, the drawer handles thistle shaped and the worktops granite. The decorations are on a ‘Braveheart’ theme; claymores, shields and pictures of Mel Gibson will adorn the walls. Porridge and haggis will appear on the menu, not to the taste of the majority.

So, will we opt for a modification of the existing kitchen or do we want a completely new design, perhaps with a Scottish twist?

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