Thursday, June 04, 2009

Brown Is Busted, Get Used To It

Bunkered Brown has run out of time and options. His days at Downing Street are doomed. He's pinning his hopes on pulling a rabbit out of the hat and shuffling the Titanic deck chairs. But there's no plain sailing for a sinking ship. 

If the rabbit turns into a chipmunk and no-one wants to play musical chairs, bunkered Brown is busted. He better get used to it. 

At Westminster all eyes and ears are on Big Ben when the clock strikes 10. Votes will be cast and the die is cast for Brown. Alea iacta est. The next frenzied 24 hours will be a long time in politics.

The Chipmunk scurried back to Salford to spend more time with her expenses after delivering battered Brown a killer blow on the eve of elections. Public humiliation without having the guts to sack her has left the sisterhood seething. A Revenge Of The Chipmunk may be on the cards sticking  the knife in the ex-Supreme Leader.

The backbench revolt is real enough no matter how Mandy tries to spin it otherwise. Brown's fate was sealed by the angry Parliamentary Labour Party who have had enough of a Party leader who doesn't give a toss about them. 

Rebels may well have a cause as they try to gather more than the magic 70 signatures to force a leadership challenge. But the cyber plot of an email doing the rounds to oust the once Dear Leader is a waste of time. There's no need. Mortally wounded, Brown is toast. 

The Orange Party well remembers other letters doing the rounds. They usually don't come to much. A useful seed but little else. The plan is to undermine the PM so much that a top dog will pull the rug from under him.

All the usual suspects are there. Clarke, Byers and Milburn. Once again, there's talk of a 'stalking horse' joining with the rebels to force a contest and stick the knife in. 

But all this mindless manoeuvring is pointless. Beleaguered Brown's fate was sealed by the PLP and Guardian calling on the Party to cut him loose. With friends like that you don't need enemies. 

Disastrous results from today's local and Euro elections are a side-show but they will provide the catalyst for the end-game as Brown is finally forced to face up to reality and admit the game is up. 

The sheer chaos sparked by the MPs' expenses scandal and blind panic over disastrous poll ratings says it all. The government is falling to bits.

The end can only come come at cabinet-level. Pre-emptive strikes by two homes secretary Smith and rocking the boat Blears sent a clear message that the time is up. Out of the chaos a whole raft of challenges have popped up. When the authority of a prime minister is undermined to such an extent it really is time to spend more time with his family. 

The key lies in the once vaunted reshuffle. Flammed up by Downing Street as part of born-again-Brown to re-assert his authority. it was all designed to give the government breathing space and a new lease of life to cling on ahead of the inevitable general election. 

But it's all too late. Brown should have struck while the expenses iron was hot. Two of those earmarked for the sack to show his 'strong leadership' have now gone. His chancellor and foreign secretary don't want to budge. If they are forced out, chances are they would rather quit the cabinet leaving another direct challenge to Brown's authority. 

Brown is not in the business of promoting his enemies to stop the plotting but the neat solution to entice back Blair bruiser John Reid with the poisoned chalice of the home office again fell on deaf ears. Promoting his henchman Balls to the treasury would sign his political suicide note to the PLP and the country. 

It's looking increasingly likely that Brown simply cannot carry out a major reshuffle and that leaves him a dead duck.

The option left is to refuse to budge with the backing of His Master's Voice Balls and the tight cabal of Downing Street cronies in it for the lust of power and glory. Then trying to prise him out clinging on by his fingernails is hugely difficult for MPs or ministers. 

But then a prime minister's power and support simply melts away with a government in meltdown. 

Meanwhile the long-suffering public are angry and fed-up with MPs' expenses and desperate for a general election. Instead they have to put up with the charade of petty power politics. Only through a Euro election and a Middle Earth battle in the English shires can they make their views known at the ballot box. 

But use their vote they must. If only to pick someone who will fight tooth and nail for a referendum on the disgraceful Lisbon Treaty and someone who isn't in it for themselves to feather their nest as the next Euro millionaire on the EU gravy trail. That narrows the field somewhat. 

Mid Picture: Blears "Rocking The Boat" shipwreck brooch 

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