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A Righteous at work.


You would expect, if you know anything of the Righteous at all, that their underlings would be treated as mere office equipment. The shift in name from 'personnel' to 'human resources' was a big clue there. People who work for a Righteous are chattels. They are not permitted to think, only to serve. They are imbued with less importance than the coffee machine.

And so it is with Uber-Righteous Cabinet monster Liam Byrne, if the Sunday Mail is to be believed (always a stretch, although he confirms the document is real on his blog and Righteously laughs it off). He has sent forth eleven pages of commandments. Among the trivial demands of set types of coffee at set times of day, because he apparently can't make his own, there is mention of the rigours of his working week.

He describes his week as: ‘Mondays, arrive London around 3-4ish, 8pm dinner with colleagues. I tend to try and finish up Thursday night.’ Speeches are a ‘huge burden, so we don’t do lots’

As a self-employed taxpayer, working hours 'whenever I'm awake', I can only dream of a Cabinet monster's income while turning up on Monday afternoon and going home on Thursday. He takes no work home, which is okay because he's not supposed to for security reasons (something certain other monsters might like to consider), but his working week is three days. Three days earning, four days spending. No wonder they need so much pay. This man describes himself as a workaholic. He really has no idea.

He says he has a young family and wants to spend time with them. Very commendable. There are those working six or seven days a week plus overtime just to house, heat and feed their young families and who would rather like to spend one entire weekend with them, once in a while. Some of them, I'll bet, work for Uber-Righteous Byrne. They would love to set conditions like these:

Given the limited time I’m in the office, there is a huge premium on managing the workflow. Sunday is a sacrosanct family day.’
Contacting him out of hours is not easy. ‘BlackBerry best. Fax to constituency office/home if not urgent. Never rely on me looking at text/email.’


It is the job of his underlings to ensure he is prepared for his work. If they fail, it's their fault, not his. In pure Righteous mindset, the successes are his, the failures are someone else's. An all too familiar scenario today.

On briefings for questions, he orders officials to tell him ‘not what you think I should know but you expect I will get asked’.
He also warns staff: ‘Never put anything to me unless you understand it and can explain it to me in 60 seconds,’ and he goes on: ‘I am often not very clear or my writing is illegible. If I’m in the middle of thinking about something, I might ask you to come back – don’t be put off by this.’

Illegible? not very clear? Our Government's Cabinet monsters are illiterate and unintelligible? Who'd have thought? You know, you might have once imagined that it is the job of a Government monster to understand his role in the Cabinet, but apparently this is not the case. Someone else has to anticipate questions and prepare his answers, and that can only be because he doesn't know. They have to explain every issue in less than a minute (I presume that's his attention span) and if you exceed it he'll ask you to come back later to give his brain time to cool down.

Well, it's not really shocking, is it? It's not even unexpected. Looking at what this man has done before, and what his comrades are doing, all I see is 'look busy and they'll never realise we have no idea what we're doing'.

The same attitude can be seen in every Righteous everywhere, at every level. They always seem to be in a rush, they always give the impression they are terribly important, ultra-busy people but they never, personally, do a damn thing. When they do, they screw it up.

I wonder if someone could precis 1984 into sixty seconds for him? I expect he received his copy and thought 'So that's a book? It has far too many pages to be readable. Best ban it before some prole hurts himself trying to read it all'.

I have a few spare copies now. Instead of sending them to council officials and MEP's as I had originally planned, I have a better idea. I'll pass them around people who will read and who might actually understand.

There are a lot of intelligent, literate people with time on their hands, thanks to this government, and they'll appreciate a free book. Better yet, they'll pass it on to friends when they've finished with it.

The government stopped listening a long time ago. Time to try the voters.
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Comments

( 1 comment — Leave a comment )
david_k_smith
17th Nov, 2008 10:27 (UTC)
Righteeous Twat
"Do you think that one of your civil servants could explain to you in 60 seconds why there is public outrage over the death of "Baby P"?"

Comment posted on Liam Byrne's blog. Doubt it will get past moderation.

The Penguin
( 1 comment — Leave a comment )