Friends, you will perhaps not need telling that the Intellectual Hooligan deems Ed Miliband something of a plonker.
Actually, not so much of a plonker. A plonker, after all (one assumes) is so called because it plonks. And in order to plonk, It seems reasonable to suppose, one must be at least relatively massy and substantial.
No. After careful consideration, I think our Miliband is more of a plipper.
(Ed Balls, on the other hand? Now, there you have one fucking massive plonker. The kind of plonker that covers the floor — and some of the walls — with water, so massy and dense is it as it plonks.)
Anyhow. What caught my beady and bloodshot eye today was the exchange of letters between the resigning Shadow Chancellor, Alan Johnson, and the aforementioned Mr Miliband.
Allow me to quote from the Plipper's letter:
'You have been an outstanding colleague and great friend for many years. In government you showed real leadership on issues that mattered to families across our country, promoting educational opportunity, introducing a constitution for the NHS and delivering neighbourhood policing.'
Yes, Miliband demonstrates that he is not only a Ciceronian figure when it comes to the verbal joust of PMQs; he is also a man of letters to rival Robert Browning.
Who else, I ask you, could so elegantly meld personal correspondence with political soundbites to form a synthesis of searing epistolary brilliance? Who else could seamlessly shift from friendship to neighbourhood policing, deftly sidestepping even a vague hint of bathos? Who else could masterfully craft such a paragraph and have it emerge miraculously untainted by the cheesy whiff of the shoehorn? A paragraph that — like the finest English prose — seems to have hit its peak midway (in this case, at 'real leadership', a phrase that rings pure and untainted, poetically rolling together the timeless and the new), but yet exceeds that pure, wild pinnacle with arpeggio'd virtuosity, to hit a note still higher: 'a constitution —' (hark ye!) '— for the NHS'!
Few men, I tell you, few men have it within them.
I mean, Christ alive.
Christ alive and breakdancing.
Imagine having Miliband speak at your funeral.
'We are gathered here to remember Barnabas. He was a true friend, an inspirational man, and also helped us to make real progress towards drafting several quite important papers on waste management. He was part of the team that brought us the ASBO. He will never be forgotten.'