A Muppet Tory Christmas Carol: the parties of Christmas past, present and future – Fleet Street Fox

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A festive morality tale about considering the consequences of your actions, with a little help from Charles Dickens and Jim Henson

While classic Christmas flick Muppets Christmas Carol made the list, it wasn't at the top

‘Twas the night before Christmas, and all through Westminster the muppets were ‘avin’ it large.

They partied at the Carlton Club on the night the pubs were closed. They partied in Downing Street while drawing up rules for a third lockdown. They partied at the Treasury, the Department for Education, the Department for Work and Pensions, Conservative HQ, and the Cabinet Office.

Even on a Zoom quiz, designed to help them be socially-distanced, the muppets still found a way to party, drink, gather, and in general make the Zoom call a complete waste of time and tinsel.

And upstairs in the Downing Street flat, the lady of the house reclined on a golden sofa upholstered with angel wings, sipping champagne at the downfall of her nemesis.

“The police will never investigate MOI!”
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There was a rap at the door, and it opened to reveal a Downing Street policeman dressed, for the festive season, as Fozzie Bear. “What’s goin’ on ‘ere, then?” he asked.

The partying stopped upon the instant. Downing Street staffers, politicians, civil servants, press officers, policy wonks and wives, who all knew full well that partying was not allowed, stopped mid-swig, glancing uncertainly at the mistletoe, the Tesco wine stash, and the many households with which they were not supposed to be socialising. They waited with baited breath for the punishment PC Fozzie would dish out.

He gazed around at the tinsel, the Santa hats, the unwrapped presents. “You call this a party?” he said. “This isn’t a party. The beer is warm, the consciences are cold, and I didn’t see anything, wocka wocka!”

And the Detective of Christmas Past turned, and walked back through the wall of sound created by some heavy beats from the Prime Minister’s flat upstairs.

“You know the police were doing okay until they fell off the stage.”
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The parties continued until past midnight, and then the Journalist of Christmas Present appeared, clutching a copy of the Daily Mirror, and accompanied by Ant and Dec. “Parties raged while people died!” intoned the journalist. “What did you see on the Zoom call, Prime Minister?”

“We were following the rules!” said the rule-breakers. “We do not recognise these accounts!” said people who drank so much they’d blacked out and woken up in a tree. “I’m very sorry anybody noticed it,” mumbled the Prime Minister, about a fortnight later.

And the sensible Cratchit family turned away from the government. Bob Cratchit worked from home, although he had not even the money to pay for another lump of coal. Mrs Cratchit tried not to worry about her children getting infected at school, because homeschooling was impossible. And poor Tiny Tim, who had underlying health conditions, said: “God bless the vaccination, everyone! I wish I could have it, but I’m not allowed for reasons no-one can understand.”

Unlike the police, the Journalist of Christmas Present did not go away. They stayed in the corner, looking for evidence the police were not remotely interested in looking for themselves.

“Evenin’ Prime Minister! FOR NOW!”
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As the Prime Minister walked from his study up to his flat, past packed offices filled with giggling drunks, through leaving do’s, Secret Santas, end-of-year prizegiving and other festive japery, he muttered to himself: “I have been assured that all the rules were followed.”

Upon entering his flat, he saw his wife, and his two children, and about a dozen other people. “Who are they?” he asked his wife. “They’re my support bubble,” said his wife. “What, all of them?” asked the PM. She replied: “It’s not easy, being Queen.”

The Prime Minister lay down in his bed, and tried not to hear the drum’n’bass. Keir Starmer then appeared before him, the Lawyer of Christmas Future. “Prime Minister,” he said. “I come from 2 weeks’ hence, to show you the consequences of your actions.”

And he showed the Prime Minister a Tory backbench rebellion; he showed him letters of no confidence; he showed him the Metropolitan Police finally unable to deny any longer the mounting evidence of the nation’s eyes. He showed him the North Shropshire by-election and a double-digit swing to the Lib Dems.

The PM saw his party, which voted to force people to show identity papers before voting, rebelling against efforts to make them have a negative Covid test or vaccine to go to the pub. He saw the Tories become electoral kryptonite for a decade.

He saw 77% of the public disobey his instructions. He saw millions refuse to get the vaccine purely because he was the one who had told them they should. He saw his own claims proven wrong, his lies delineated and amplified, and his legacy disappear in public scorn.

And then he saw the Cratchit house. He saw a family weeping for a loved one, and Tiny Tim’s crutch propped up against the wall. “But how is this possible?” he demanded of Starmer. “How could little Tim die, when we have a world-beating vaccine rollout, and it’s so harmless to the young?”

Starmer pointed an accusing finger at the PM. “Because it is not world-beating. Because you have not vaccinated children when other nations have. Because even a well-vaccinated population includes people who are immuno-compromised. And because you let the NHS run hot all summer with high rates of infection with the Delta variant, in the hope of a herd immunity which has exhausted the NHS, and gave us immunity against a variant that is no longer our top concern.

“Tiny Tim died of blood clots and a stroke, which are much more likely if you get covid than if you get the vaccine. His mother nursed him, and she now has Long Covid, and is unable to work. His father cannot earn enough alone to run his home, or feed his children, and is in despair as well as grief. There are millions of homes like these, filled with weeping and fury as people curse your name, not just at the parties they know you had last Christmas, but the lies you have told since.”

The Prime Minister fell to his knees. “I am sorry I was found out,” he wailed. “I’m sorry if you think I need to apologise. What can I do, to reverse my slump in the polls?”

And from the street outside, many voices rose as one to say: “Tell the truth. Report it to the police. Say it was wrong. Correct the moral harm you have done, and we may yet forgive the personal price we all paid.”

The Prime Minister thought about this. “Bah, humbug!” he shouted, and slammed the door on his only possible salvation.



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George Holan

George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.

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