Tuesday, 23 March 2010

Truth Stranger than Fiction?

Yes Minister and Yes Prime Minister were among my favourite programmes in the 80s. They combined a quintessentially British humour with a refusal to get laughs by dumbing down - all the characters were intelligent, yet they still got into trouble. I can still quote Sir Humphrey's excellent way of identifying those unable to comprehend Latin - "Si tacuisses, philosophus mansisses".

But anyway. I distinctly remember an episode in which the (unelected) PM Jim Hacker tried to manipulate the media in order to smother an embarrassing story by taking the eminently newsworthy but utterly pointless step of expelling some foreign diplomats. We are so lucky that could not happen in real life.


  1. How many is this supposedly crack Mossad hit team up to now? I rather lost track around the 25/26 mark...

  2. So that is where they get their ideas.

    Can you tell us what we can expect in this real life soap opera next week when they get out their soap boxes. :-)

  3. Julia - soon, it will be up to roughly the total combat strength of the British Army. Sending them into Iraq and Afghanistan to kill many terrorists was totally different to sending Mossad in to kill one terrorist, however, because we shot the border guards on our way in instead of waving an fake Israeli passport at them.

    M - It ends with Jim Hacker totally failing to achieve anything, and the £ sliding still further downwards. I've no idea how they might use that plot segment ... oh, err...

  4. You are being unduly cynical. The news that 7.6 Soviet diplomats (I think) had been expelled was the lead news item at 18:00 on R4, quite rightly pushing the cash-for-influence innto second place. After all, these days that would be half the Russian contingent.

    I was slightly surprised, however, that by the 18:29 summary the second item had become an Indian army plan to introduce a grenade filled with chili powder, which has an effect much like, well, tear gas.

    The scandal will no doubt be the main story tomorrow evening. Unless a bigger political event happens to have taken place by then.