The McGuffin Effect: I’m mad as hell and Ed Balls needs to stay out of my eyeline
So little time. So much to do. And such weak-ass material. Hey look, what’s that on the horizon? It’s a goddam General Election. And it’s barrelling toward our frail rickshaw of hope, coming fast and heavy. A monster truck, hauling a full-ass load of granulated fuck.
Right now it’s Operation Hide Balls. Keeping the shadow chancellor out of direct sunlight for a few days. Hand to God, you asked me at the start of this campaign which clueless fucking clown from our entertaining masquerade of chumps would have to be hidden from public view? I’d have said You Know Who. Milistone. Tank Boy. Dedward. The Baconteur. The Nasalizer. Squirmhole. Little Miss Streak o’ Piss. Rubber Fucky. Eraserhair. Adenoid Android. Puttymouth. The Gherkin. Candidate for the next Prime Minister of Greater London and Licensed Scotland, Ed Miliband.
But no. All the focus pools, all our ultravox pops, say Balls is “even lower public esteem-wise” than EdMil. I know, right? Consensus: Balls has a grip on economic theory (plus) but he looks like an anesthetized Furby (minus). Hey, most days? I don’t even dislike the dude that much. Neverthefuckingless. Be that howsoever the fuck as it may. Right now I’m mad as hell and Balls needs to stay out of my eyeline. Oh, WHY? Allow me to elaborate.
PREVIOUSLY ON DICKWATCH: Eddy Boy Balls got dull as shitwater. I mean OK, in private Ed Balls is a boring-ass dick. But in public? On TV? Boring-ass times a hundred, in high fucking boring-ass definition. He looks like a middle manager from one of those northern banks you British guys all love so much. Some serious ass-ache, listening to his droning economic sex talk week after week. Deficit. Drawdown. Pushback. Inna yadda da fucking vida, give me a BREAK bitch.
Our mission? To flash-fry some sizzle into Ed Balls’ soundless steak. And fast, man. I had this strong feeling that time was literally and dramatically running out, like I’m a minor character in a Coen Brothers movie? Christ. I hit the metric panic button. Got the press guys together. Called in a favor from my old buddy Sil, who does narrativization for some really big fucking hitters. Example, Spielberg. Example, Qatari Royal Family. Example, Malaysian Airlines.
Sil workshopped a doozy. Found this hotshot economist, got one of those Downton Abbey club sandwich names? Sebastian Pheasant-Morse. McDonald Peregrine-John. Whatever the fuck, this guy estimates that George Osborne’s austerity fetish has shitcanned economic recovery by fucking YEARS. All that GDP, forfeited for EVER.
“Yeah, Britain lost about a hundred billion of your adorable Cockney pounds!” shouts Sil. “That’s A GRAND AND A HALF FOR EVERY MAN, WOMAN AND CHILD IN THE COUNTRY. So, here’s my pitch. Spotlight on a poor family of four living in a beat-up row house, someplace gritty. Looks like a Beatles biopic, or Billy Elliot? Ed Balls, dressed as Robin Hood, knocks at their door, hands Mom six grand in cash, whole family goes nuts, Ed says yeah, that’s what George Osborne owes EVERYONE for the delayed recovery, Tory bastard gave it to his millionaire friends instead. Balls turns to camera, like “ask yourself - where’s MY fucking money? Vote Labour!”
That’s platinum narrativisation, right there. So we find our Charlie Bucket golden ticket family, in this superbleak town (by the way - Jewsbury? You can still call a place that?) and summon the winged press monkeys. Gotta say, Balls sure has the legs for green tights and those Puss-in-boots-ass boots. Standing there all proud and Games Of Thronesy. Bow in one hand. In the other, a burlap sack marked “SWAG” with six grand in cash inside.
Off he strides in his squeaky boots to Casa Bucket, spads dressed up as the Merry Men following on behind. Looks like a pride march in fucking Sherwood Forest. They pass a park, Ed spots some kids playing soccer. Pavlovian, right? Sees the soccer ball, realizes there’s a shitload of press around, hits autopilot. Trots over to the kids, says hey I’ll be goalo or what the fuckever. Puts the bag of cash down, that’s a goalpost. Puts his pointy green hat down, that’s a goalpost.
OK, he says to the baffled kids, who are now surrounded by leering photographers smelling of hangovers and breathmints, I’m gonna be Chancellor of the Exchequer, you guys try to kick your party donor tax breaks past me ha ha ha STOP THAT FUCKER HE’S STOLEN OUR MONEY!
Of course. Our six grand cashback is disappearing round a corner, now in the ownership of a GENUINE political opportunist. Maybe he was called Robin. For sure, he was wearing a hood. Ach, AND those Telegraph assholes got the whole story. Worse, they’re saving it…
Joe McGuffin is also a consultant for Ian Martin, who is a writer for Veep and The Thick of It