Deep, deep inside 10 Downing Street…
PM: I’m sick to death of all the negativity around Iraq. It’s all bad, bad, bad. Never. Do we read any of the good news. I mean. We’ve got rid of an awful dictator. We made him put his weapons of destruction so far out of reach it was like they never existed.
Drone1: What are you saying, Tony?
PM: I’m saying that it’s time we put across the good news from Iraq. Let’s take the initiative for once. No more reacting to bad news defensively.
Drone2: Is it initiative with a capital I? Or is it a lower-case initiative?
Drone1: We’ve had four new initiatives this month. We’ve got two more scheduled for next month.
PM: Does that mean we’ve achieved our initiative targets?
Drone1: Yes, Tony. Exceeded the target in fact.
PM: Hell, and they say we’re a lame duck government. It’s sickening. We lead the world in Initiatives and do we get any credit for it?
Drone2: How about commissioning a report?
Drone1: Is that an upper-case ‘Report’ or a lower-case ‘report’?
PM: What have we got?
Drone2: I think we’re all commissioned out at the moment. Gordon’s been bitching about this again. Says we can’t take on any more special advisors for doing reports until he’s in the hot seat himself.
PM: Bastard. OK. No Initiative. No Report. I still think we need to get on the case. How about… A major international conference?
Drone2: Excellent idea. I think there’s a slot in a couple of weeks.
PM: And if we take that slot what does that do for our target?
Drone1: Puts us over the target in international conferences as well.
PM: Excellent. World class. So. What is the good news from Iraq?
Drone2: Sorry, Tony? I don’t quite follow…
PM: I want us to lead on some strong news. We need to show the world that my Iraq policy has been a success. So, what do we have?
PM: Come on. You’re not going to tell me it’s all bad? Look at the NHS. It’s so much better than it used to be. They meet their targets often enough. It’s a perception thing.
Drone1: Got you, Tony. Got you. OK. How’s this. Increased social mobility.
PM: I like that. What’s the story.
Drone1: Well, under Saddam people weren’t free. Now, under a stable and popular democratic regime people are free to move around as they wish. All over Iraq people are on the move – in fact whole communities are moving en-masse, actively encouraged by their neighbours usually.
Drone2: That’s good. I’ve got one too. Education.
PM: I like the sound of this.
Drone2: Under Saddam education was nothing but force-fed propaganda and indoctrination. Now, under the popularly elected government education is free. Particularly faith-based education. There’s been a lot of growth in faith-based education, a lot.
Drone1: Yes, explosive growth in fact.
Drone2: Industry? We need something on that too, I would think.
PM: Very true. We need to show how democracy has made the population more prosperous.
Drone1: The private security industry’s really taken off….
Drone2: The association of small arms dealers is doing well….
Drone1: Funeral and mortuary services are showing phenomenal expansion…
PM: Hmm. Let’s just stick to the good news on mobility and education for now.