140 Jabs Per Minute – Vaccine Rollout, Its All Your Fault, Not Feeding Kids and Musa Okwonga on his book ‘One Of Them’

Released on Tuesday, January 19th, 2021.

140 Jabs Per Minute – Vaccine Rollout, Its All Your Fault, Not Feeding Kids and Musa Okwonga on his book ‘One Of Them’

Some people have been half vaccinated which is basically a full vaccination to the government as it doesn’t mean they’ve not been vaccinated at all. Universal Credit uplift, social care review changes, ol’ Trumpy’s last few days as a danger. Plus the brilliant writer Musa Okwonga (@okwonga) talks to Tiernan about his book ‘One Of Them’ a memoir about his time at Eton College and how it gave him a prelude to Brexit and the non-handling of COVID.

PRE-ORDER MUSA’S BOOK ‘ONE OF THEM’ HERE: https://www.waterstones.com/book/one-of-them/musa-okwonga/9781783529674

ORDER MUSA’S BOOK ‘IN THE END IT WAS ALL ABOUT LOVE’ HERE: http://roughtradebooks.com/books/in-the-end-it-was-all-about-love/

PARPOLBRO LIVE ONLINE at the Leicester Comedy Festival: https://comedy-festival.co.uk/event/partly-political-broadcast-live/

GET 10% OFF AT BRITISH BOXERS WITH THE CODE ON THE EPISODE: https://british-boxers.com/

PLEASE HELP TIERNAN SURVIVE ALL OF THE COMEDY BEING CANCELLED:

Donate to the Patreon at www.patreon.com/parpolbro

Buy me a coffee at https://ko-fi.com/parpolbro

OR FIND THE ACAST SUPPORTER BUTTON WHEREVER IT IS

REVIEW THE PODCAST AT: https://lovethepodcast.com/parpolbro

USUAL PODCAST BLAB:

LOOK AT TIERNAN’S FANCY NEW WEBSITE AND SIGN UP TO THE MAILING LIST: www.tiernandouieb.co.uk/

Follow us on Twitter @parpolbro, on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/groups/ParPolBro/ and the fancy webpage at http://www.partlypoliticalbroadcast.co.uk

Music by The Last Skeptik (@thelastskeptik) – https://www.thelastskeptik.com/Subscribe to his podcast Thanks For Trying here.

SIGN UP TO NEXT UP COMEDY AT: www.nextupcomedy.com/tiernanisgreat




THIS EPISODE IS TAGGED WITH: • , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,



Further Reading

Linear liner notes 

Some people have been half vaccinated which is basically a full vaccination to the government as it doesn’t mean they’ve not been vaccinated at all. Universal Credit uplift, social care review changes, ol’ Trumpy’s last few days as a danger. Plus the brilliant writer Musa Okwonga (@okwonga) talks to Tiernan about his book ‘One Of Them’ a memoir about his time at Eton College and how it gave him a prelude to Brexit and the non-handling of COVID.

Key links and sources of info from Musa’s interview:

All the usual ParPolBro stuff:


Transcript

Ep217

 

BRITISH BOXERS ADVERT

 

Hello and welcome to the Partly Political Broadcast, the comedy politics podcast that can also deliver 140 jabs per minute which is why no one on the block messes with these dukes. I’m Tiernan Douieb and as Ming The Merciless’s sickly withered brother and Vaccine Deployment Minister Nadhim Zawahi insists the vaccine programme should lead to a marked reduction in deaths from March, does he actually just mean he’ll be using a permanent marker to physically drawing a minus sign next to any toll numbers?

 

I’m recording this on Blue Monday, which we all know isn’t a thing as every one of the 600 Monday’s in January are the worst thing ever and they’re mostly grey, not blue. However, there are some reasons to be cheerful this week, as the vaccine supply is being rolled out seemingly successfully and US President and Leatherface’s dirty laundry pile Donald Trump leaves office this week. Great news for the US, but for us in the UK, it simply means more of us are likely to live through more years of a shit awful Conservative government while we watch the US dropping ranks on most stupid country to elevate us back to first position. Sorry, I was trying to find the positives, although actually right now in this country, it’d be much better if we had heaps of negatives. According to Chief Medical Officer and Moon Baby Chris Whitty, things should improve by Spring, which is presumably down to people being COVID proof by then, rather than just how shutting travel corridors over a year too late means that by April we’ll all have had the virus at least 3 times and the country will be so underpopulated it’ll be reclaimed by nature and thus become a far better place. The vaccines are reaching people though which is good, and over half of all 80-year-olds have had at least one dose, meaning that now the Conservatives know their voter base is safe, they’ll probably halt the process.

 

24-hour vaccination centres are being trialled from later this month, which is exciting as my nightlife has been dead for so long, if I get a 2am appointment I’m definitely turning up with glow sticks and shouting ‘shots, shots, shots’ to make the most of it. Over 70s will be offered the vaccine from this week in what the Prime Minister and Ludo from Labyrinth Boris Johnson has said is a significant milestone, though whether we’ll find it when we’ve been travelling either directionless or backwards for months is yet to be seen. There are worries that vaccine production is as Nadhim Zawahi called it ‘lumpy’ which makes it sound like the Prime Minister has been trying to help produce it. But despite that the Vaccine Deployment Minister is certain the UK is on course to vaccinate 15m of the most vulnerable people by mid-February which poses two big questions. The first is, does Zawahi mean with the two jabs that are required as the pledge is that they’ll get the second one within 12 weeks which would then be way past February. It could be that like how every glove was counted as an individual item of PPE as though the government looked at old Michael Jackson and presumed they were guides to frontline health worker safety, though to be fair ‘Heal The World’ could’ve given them that impression – and so now we have where every single vaccine dose is somehow a full vaccine and presumably anyone who falls ill or dies from COVID before getting the second one is therefore only counted as half a person, reducing the toll dramatically. Maybe, like with everything the government do, one jab means you’ve not not been vaccinated and therefore that means in their minds, you have been completely vaccinated in the same way some coronavirus regulations mean they haven’t done no coronavirus regulations and therefore the pressure the NHS is currently struggling under must be your fault, you there in the public, because you haven’t inflicted any regulations being too selfish to even be able to push through laws. That’s what the Home Secretary and severe ice warning Priti Patel insinuated during her first press conference since last May, where she reminded us all that she’s tough on crime, but the Home Secretary’s far tougher on your ears as she dribbles out a statement like she’s been forced to do a presentation at her school assembly, despite not doing any prep for it. According to Patel, there is a minority putting people at risk, because it’s impossible for her not to dog whistle even when about a virus. Patel made a big hoo hah about how we all have to stick to the lockdown restrictions, but the fact is, most people are, and compliance is actually higher than in lockdowns 1, 2, the mini-series or the spin-off special. Maybe the Home Secretary’s referring to the police who seem to be giving fines to anything that moves in the fear that if they don’t seem busy Patel will cut their numbers again. Which she will, by insisting there’s clearly no crime anymore now everyone is stuck at home, and as soon as things return to normal will blame the police for the sudden rise, despite the entire force now being one officer on a scooter with a football clacker and a kazoo. ‘Play your part in the fight against COVID’ said Patel, making me wonder if they’re only destroying the arts so they get everyone to be extras in their never-ending over the top drama for free. I’m happy to play my part as long as it’s speaking and I get to do my own political stunts, but who is everyone else playing? Priti, you can be the villain that pushes over kids yeah? I know it’s typecasting but it really suits you and you’re good at it. Johnson, idiot who turns out to be working for the virus in the end yeah, and where’s Hancock? We need someone to play a gormless hatstand.

 

One of the new slogans for a government advertisement campaign to make people comply like they already are doing, rather than spending money somewhere it’s needed, is ‘Don’t Let A Coffee Cost A Life’. Which no, isn’t a nod just how pricey Starbucks is now that they have to recoup the past year’s losses. ‘Flat white? That’ll be £89 and your first born please.’ It’s the government insinuating that by going to get a coffee you could spread the virus, something they could have prevented by insisting coffee shops close and investing in their staff being furloughed. Another one ‘COVID takes the train too’ which it doesn’t, its airborne. Don’t think you can refund the transport system by trying to charge germs for a child ticket. But also, just close the trains then and fund people so they don’t have to get them. Or change the adverts to say, ‘It’s your fault if you obey the rules we half arsed and then you get ill, so listen to us telling you not to listen to us except for this bit that you need to listen to.’ According to polls, the public are sadly blaming the public rather than the government for the high infection rates, just not them public, you know all the other ones. It’s a sad inditement of modern-day Britain that absolutely no one trusts each other to do the right thing even though most people are, but then we have all witnessed how elections go so maybe it’s a sensible way to be and let’s face it, the government are so incompetent it’s at times hard to believe that they’ve managed to achieve anything, even if it is a consistent level of monumental fuckupery.

 

The second big question, yes see I didn’t forget, that Nadhim Zawahi’s promise to get 15m of the most vulnerable vaccinated by February poses, is are the government only trying to save those people first so the virus doesn’t get them before their policies do, which would render them pointless? I mean what’s the point in reducing the lifeline that is the universal credit uplift of £20 a week, if no one will live long enough to suffer from losing it? Labour leader and 1970s sci-fi robot without the lovable personality Keir Starmer urged Boris Johnson to give families a helping hand, which isn’t something you’d say to a man who’s likely to think that means having a one nighter with their mum and then running away.

The Conservatives chose to abstain from voting on the motion to keep the uplift because nothing says responsible for people’s lives quite like hoping if no one sees you there they might forget you’ve got anything to do with it. Instead, a few of them including MP for Stourbridge who looks like she’d patronise you about your love life on a daytime TV show Suzanne Webb, said that the £20 uplift would entrench ‘welfare dependency’. Yes of course it would Suzanne, whereas if you removed it all those people would be straight out the door to get one of those jobs that no longer exists because the government hadn’t prepared for any of the many crises of the year/years/many, many years.

 

Starmer called the abstention pathetic, which is odd as you’d have thought he’d admire them taking his tactics and see it as an automatic approval of his party’s motion. In response, No.10 have accused Labour of spreading fear about the cuts to UC, while also saying they probably will still remove the uplift, but I suppose it would be frustrating to have someone else spoiler all the shock scares you have planned for your never-ending horror show. The funniest bit was when the Prime Minister sent a WhatsApp message on Sunday to Tory MPS accusing Labour of inciting the worst kind of hatred and bullying (of a kind seen sadly across the Atlantic). Was he referring to the storming of the Capitol by fascists just the other week? If so, I wasn’t aware those neo-Nazis smashed into the building to demand that families shouldn’t have to choose between eating or electricity. When they attacked that cop and chanted ‘kill him with his own gun’ did the Proud Boys actually mean, during these crisis times of the pandemic people are finding it increasingly difficult to financially survive and this £20 extra a week is a necessity to prevent them falling into worse poverty? Hmm. Maybe they did. Those southern accents can be hard to understand at times. It takes quite a level of disassociation not to realise that were they over here, those who sieged the capital would likely still just follow the racist one with the shit hair. Johnson’s press officer and draft Picasso piece Allegra Stratton said that the Prime Minister believes all political figures need to be civil and kind to each other, you know like how he once compared the former Labour leader to Stalin or the EU to Napoleon and Hitler or spends every week laughing at Keir Starmer for suggesting that maybe he shouldn’t let people die. Maybe we have to understand that this is victimisation for him, asking Johnson to justify anything he does when the only reasons he does them are because the last person he saw said to, or it was what it said at the top of the page. Zawahi called Labour’s motion a ‘stunt’ and as a stunt means displaying spectacular skill and daring, I suppose to the Conservatives, asking that you help people stay alive without paying money into places you have investments with, it could be seen as that.

 

To be fair, it could still be seen as a stunt for the opposition too, as with the issue of free school meals, they only got into action after a footballer and a food writer did first, choosing to act on policies a lot like how politicians choose to do reality shows, you it depends on who else has been invited in-case it’s bad for their image and may highlight how emotionless they are. Photos circulated around Twitter of the food packages sent to families whose children qualify for the free school meal support during remote learning, and they contained the kind of varied and nutritious food collection that you’d find in a cardboard child’s shopping board game where it’s assumed an apple means all fruit and veg in existence. The parcels supposedly cost £15 but only contained about £5 of food, so unless the providers were spending a £10 on scratch cards so they could blame the claimants or using it to snort up the line they took while packing these parcels they thought were funny at the time, it’s clear something was off. What was off of course, was that one of the main companies supplying packs are owned by a Tory donor and big game hunter, the two things that go hand in hand, as they like gloating about directly having killed living things. The company, Chartwells, apologised that someone had found them out and said that the food in one particular image but not the others, don’t ask about the others, was for five not ten days, and cost £10.50 not £30 as had been stated. Yeah so they only expect children to starve and become malnourished for half the amount of time you thought, and they only poorly spent a third of the money, so it’s clear they aren’t the bad guys here. Jesus, I can’t believe that by speaking up about wanting children to be fed properly during a global pandemic, these parents are inciting the worst kind of hatred and bullying (of a kind seen sadly across the Atlantic). Luckily thanks to leader of the opposition Marcus Rashford and Jack Monroe, food meal vouchers were reinstated too, meaning parents could pick actually decent food for their kids themselves, and Boris Johnson said he agreed that the company he and his government have repeatedly hired for 4 years now and take donations from, do not meet the standards they set out. So that means they’ll probably have to donate even more to the Conservatives from now on which they should manage from pocketing all the cash they didn’t spend on cheese slices. Despite all this, the government have confirmed that they won’t be providing free school meals during the next half term and I have to say, it’s really changed my mind about many of those cartoons I watched as a kid. I always thought Wil.E Coyote trying the same evil plan over and over despite its constant failure was unrealistic, but no, it turns out not.

 

There are also big worries that there are plans to rip up workers-rights now that we’re out of the EU, with the Prime Minister claiming he would go even further than the EU to protect workers in the UK. So, we know that means he’ll look to countries such as Bangladesh or Columbia for influence instead. The new Business Secretary and grumpiest member of the Munch Bunch Kwasi Kwarteng said there were no plans to lower working standards, but that just sounds like they’ll go ahead with it on a whim, like they do everything else. I’m skeptical to be honest, but only because they wouldn’t diminish workers’ rights when it’d just get in the way of their plan to make everyone apart from their mates unemployed.

 

Don’t worry though as the government are going to do their all to protect those grey, motionless symbols of historical violent imperialism. No, I don’t mean Conservative backbenchers, I mean statues. Housing Minister and like if someone tried to open a carton of milk upside down Robert Jenrick wrote an article in the way to dishonour a dead trees family The Telegraph, claiming that every statue will be given protection from baying mobs, with bizarre fury that can only come from someone directly related to the Weeping Angels from Doctor Who. Jenrick said the statues are often raised by a village, clearly mistaking them for children, and warns against lying about past while including a made-up fact that Birmingham has banned naming streets after people, when they’ve just recently named one after the first black person elected to the council. Saying that, I’m almost certain Jenrick doesn’t count anyone that isn’t white as people. A financial scheme for airports in England will also open this month to support them during the closure of travel corridors to the UK, as industry groups said that there was only so long, they could run on fumes. So nice to know they now understand how the planet feels. So that’s no support for families on the poverty line, children who are hungry or workers’ rights, but lots of support for out of date, unanimated, stoney faced nods to slave owners, and to polluting runways. I suppose you turn to the things you feel you have something in common with first don’t you?

 

In other news and over in the US, it is Donald Trump’s last few days in office, and he goes with the lowest approval rating of a President after their first, or in his case only, term ever and being the only President in history to be impeached twice. Still it must cheer him up knowing he’s the best at something. President Elect and star of Sackboy: A Big Adventure Joe Biden will be inaugurated on Wednesday and the event will include the reuniting of 90’s alternative rock band the New Radicals to sing their 1998 hit ‘You Get What You Give’ which is meant to be an uplifting anthem but in the age of the coronavirus the title just sounds a bit much. Biden is expected to reverse a lot of Trump’s policies within his first few days in office, like scrapping the travel bans and re-joining the Paris climate accord. Hopefully he’ll reverse the child separation policy, with an exception for Barron Trump who’s probably going to need everyone’s help to avoid having anything to do with his dad ever again. Trump is planning to issue more than 100 pardons in his last few hours in office, but isn’t expected to pardon himself, but that’s ok, he doesn’t need to because the entire world is sorry for his existence.

 

In the Netherlands the entire government resigned after thousands of families were wrongly accused of child welfare fraud. Which might seem pretty admirable when you consider the British government pretend not even be aware what a mistake is, but actually it looks like it’s an act of self-preservation meaning that Prime Minister and what if you drew glasses on the sole of a shoe Mark Rutte will avoid a vote of no confidence in parliament next week. Still I’d take a resign before you could get fired from Boris Johnson any day of the week over a ‘I’m still here and its everyone else’s fault I’m a dickhead.’

 

Back in the UK, the police have lost over 400,000 records, but that’s ok as you can get the one with message in a bottle on it for really cheap now. Arf. No, they accidentally deleted them due to human error and Priti Patel is seemingly reluctant to give an account of what happened, instead fobbing it off to Tony Way’s worst character and Minister for Crime and Policing Kit Malthouse to deal with. Maybe the Home Secretary can’t talk about it as it’d give away that she’s nabbed them for herself so she can roam the streets at night trying to apprehend the suspects themselves in order satiate her thirst.

 

Scottish Labour leader and man who always looks like someone is aiming a hairdryer right at his face Richard Leonard has resigned from his position in charge of the party, though I assumed he’d done that about 3 years ago, at least in spirit. Contenders are now stepping up to see who wants to see if there’s any of the dead horse left to flog, and hey I guess in these times of a pandemic a job’s a job innit?

 

And lastly, Brexit is continuing to cause trading problems as all the red tape that was supposedly being cut is now just in many, many small pieces and sticking thousands of lorries to the Dover/Calais crossing. One of the particular highlights is the inadequate government system for goods that tells you how much you’ll have to pay in tax for imports, charges you to tell you what the fee will be. So, to work out what to pay you have to pay. Its like the exact opposite of a try before you buy deal. The fishing industry, you know the one that many MPs touted as a specific reason for a harder deal, are particularly miffed as delays and extra paperwork mean much of their stock has gone off. So many lorries staged a protest outside parliament though sadly very few MPs noticed as they’re trained to turn a blind eye to anything fishy. Leader of the house of commons and star of the cabinet of Dr Caligari Jacob Rees-Mogg responded by claiming that the important thing is that we’ve got our fish back and they are now British fish and better and happier for it. I’m not saying he should have his basement investigated asap but it says a lot that he thinks true joy comes from being a lifeless, cold corpse that has been bashed on the head and then bled out. Or perhaps he actually knows how they feel due to his ability to communicate with other fellow bottom feeders.

 

 

 

ADMIN

 

Heeeeeey ParPolBrods, how’s you? Oh really? Oh that sounds grim. Maybe try putting cream on it? Yes, double I reckon. Me? Oh I’m still here, which I think bares up as decent at the mo and I realised the other day that this week, sort of, more sort of next week really, will be 5 years since I started this goddamn podcast. I know right? That’s five years of me spending every Monday going ‘how do I make a joke about the same things being awful as they were last week?’ That’s five years of descriptions. The very first one was describing Theresa May as a woman who’s constantly haunted by all those Dalmatians she’s killed. Original? No, not now, but back on January 19th 2016, it also wasn’t. The first guest was doctor and pal Keir Shiels, who talked to me all about the junior doctors strike, and its so funny to think that all these years later we barely remember that as the NHS is collapsing in entirety. Sigh, how times change. I saw someone praising Jeremy Hunt, or as I described him in episode 79, a man who constantly looks and speaks as though he’s just stood on a rake, saying that he was making sense about telling the government to close schools and I just thought, mate if he was in government he’d have been as bad as Matt Hancock and probably have spent this entire time hiding behind a tree. And then hopefully got arrested for being outside for something other than essential exercise. See its that sort of golden insight this show has given me? 5 years ago I didn’t even know what a tree was, now here I am. I can’t believe though that it’s been five years and this show still hasn’t destroyed populism, or neoliberalism or even just a prism. I should really have bought one and broken it just to say I’ve achieved something. But I do hope you’ve enjoyed at least a bit of those 5 years or at the very least, not hated it and I suppose I’ll probably keep doing it until those things are finally sorted out, or I have to do something else more important on a Monday.

 

Five years in and this is a nice one to have for the unofficial 5th anniversary episode, but before I get to why, oh yes cliffhangers. I have been completely absorbed in a brilliant Korean supernatural comedy action drama called Uncanny Counter on Netflix. Trust me, its incredible. And they do cliffhangers very well, so now I’m tempted to just constantly end every episode of this podcast on something dramatic so you come back next week. Saying that, it’s hard to get more dramatic than ‘the government keep saying they don’t want to feed kids’. Hmm. Anyway, before that thank you tons to Joe & Richard for the ko-fi donation this week, much appreciated and of course should you wish to donate to the happening of this show even though it’s mid-January in a pandemic and no one has money unless they’ve been able to sell paper bags to the government as PPE, if you do still wish to donate you can do that at ko-fi.com/parpolbro, join the patreon.com/parpolbro or via the Acast supporter button on the Acast. It’s been five years now and 247 episodes, including bonus ones, so why not donate something for each one of those? Say £4356 per one? That sounds reasonable I reckon. Actually though, I am ok at the mo thanks to some bits of work coming in and lots of nice online gigs for places like NHS London that I did last week and was a lot of fun. And I should shamelessly say that if you’d like my face on a zoom screen near you, do drop me a line as I’m happy to do gigs for your work, your pals or any sort of group really. Well not any. Not Conservative or terrorist or blood. The latter is because if you perform to a blood group there’s always so many negatives. ARF! But yes do drop me a line in all the many ways you can if you fancy it, and over on my alter-comedy ego, our Comedy Club 4 Kids company has being doing online shows for schools, birthday parties and all sorts so you can always bother me about that sort of thing too. Very quickly thank you also to DataTatar for your lovely, updated review of the podcast and again if you fancy reviewing the show, do. Just do it, I’m not gonna stop you. You control your life, be free, do with it as you will, and er, review the podcast. Or just spread the word about how much you like it apart from these weird bits about being free.

 

Right super quick, there are still lots of tickets left for the live podcast at Leicester comedy festival and I’ve got a couple, I think, of great local grassroots campaigners to talk to, plus there’ll be jokes and that. Feb 6th at 4.30 online obviously. Tickets are available on the Leicester Comedy Festival website and I’ve popped a link in the podcast blurb. Please come or it’ll just be me shouting at my computer. Also, this episode is yet again sponsored by the lovely crew at British Boxers. If you didn’t hear last week, they are genuine good uns and we’re trialling a sort of I help them, they help me co-op thing, so if you go to their site to buy some excellent pants or PJs or the like, use the code PARPOLBRO10 to get 10% off. Oh and while I’m here and I mentioned Comedy Club 4 Kids earlier, if you and your kids fancy a podcast you can actually let them listen to unlike this one, or you’re a grown up that fancies silly escapism, I’ve started up our Radio Nonsense podcast again. The first guest this season was Stuart Goldsmith of Comedian’s Comedian podcast fame who answered questions about flying pigs and eyebrows. Naturally.

 

Ok, I need to shut up as this episode is VERY LONG, but oh its so good. I have finally got the brilliant Musa Okwonga on this show, a fantastic writer who is telling me all about his memoir of being at Eton school and how he saw the beginnings of so many of the events that are happening now. Plus there is a very teeny middle bit BECAUSE THERE IS NO TIME. HURRY HURRY. Cliffhanger music, end credits and now wait a week to listen to the next bit. No don’t. Here it is:

 

INTERVIEW WITH MUSA PART 1

 

If a factory had boasted of producing twenty of Britain’s Prime Minister’s including meat towel David Cameron and our current disappointment and harassed lint rejection Boris Johnson, you’d probably have it shut down on account of a breach of public health and safety. Yet for Eton College, near Windsor, it is seen as one of its marks of success, the school’s motto being ‘Floreat Etona!’, or ‘may Eton flourish’, but in Latin so it sounds less selfish. At £42,501 per year for a pupil to attend, and an annual 80% tax break because it has charitable status because the wealthiest have to eat too, it definitely does flourish. Eton College isn’t a college, it’s the most famous public school in the world, and much like all public schools in the UK, isn’t really open to the public either, having been referred to as the ‘the chief nurse of England’s statesmen’ just obviously via private healthcare rather than on an NHS budget. But is the school solely to blame for nurturing some of the worst people in the world, or is it just yet another part of a cemented monopolising class system like Surrey or the Sainsbury’s Taste the Difference range? While that might seem an odd question to ask, there have been some changes to the way the school works. The fees put it out of the reach of any but the richest families, but in recent years Eton has vastly increased the amount of pupils that receive 70% financial assistance as well as the amount that attend for free. Current headteacher Simon Henderson has attempted to make the school more palatable to a modern world, having apologised to former pupil and writer Dillibe Onywama for the racism he experienced there in the 1960’s, and recently rattling several former Tory attendees for dismissing an English tutor that was promoting toxic masculinity. So, what do they do to pupils to make them feel they should be in charge of the country? Even if we all know they’d struggle to tie their own shoelaces without sooner giving up and announcing that its safer to have untied shoelaces now, denying any responsibility when 12 people were eaten by escalators as a result. Should places like Eton exist or is the bigger problem that people like Boris Johnson do? And while I deeply feel that private schools are inherently wrong, is my real issue that my school’s motto was just ‘Everyone Matters’ in plain English, but I still somehow got picked last for the football team every single time?

 

This week I spoke to someone I’ve been wanting to get on the podcast ever since I read his incredible piece in the brilliant collection of essays from BAME voice titled The Good Immigrant, that came out in 2016. Musa Okwonga is an exceptional writer, a brilliant political voice and somehow also has time to talk a lot about football. This year Musa has several books being published, but I spoke to him all about ‘One of Them’ his memoir of being at Eton college, and as I have stolen from the Waterstones website ‘his incisive and cogently argued account of his bittersweet relationship with an institution that did him much good yet seems to have a negative effect on large parts of society.’ Thanks Waterstones! Sigh, I miss bookshops. So, I asked Musa to tell me about his book, tell me just why this school is so pivotal to the mess the government has made with Brexit and the handling of the coronavirus, and we worked out maybe why Boris Johnson is so bad at relationships. This is a long one, but to be honest I could’ve spoken to Musa for a lot longer if we’d had the time. I hope you enjoy:

 

INTERVIEW WITH MUSA PART 1

 

And we’ll be back with Musa in a very short minute but first…

 

MIDDLE BIT

 

The government is launching a very, very long-awaited social care review to change, as it says, a system that is failing young people. Yes, yes I know, on day one they could say ‘if we all resign that should fix it’ and then job done, but as we know, that won’t happen. The review is going to look at early years help, child protection, fostering and kinship care, care homes and the family support measures needed to prevent children from having to enter care. Now already you can see why there are concerns that this is being done by a government whose prime minister said money spent on child abuse investigations was spaffed up a wall, and who has left a lot of families in need of support not just by his policies but also his balls. You may also be concerned that they are looking at supporting children except when it comes to feeding them and that Education Secretary and cartoon train whistle Gavin Williamson has it’ll be part of the golden thread that runs through everything we’re doing to level up society. Yes, exactly Gavin, everything you do is hanging by a thread. But there are other reasons that social work leaders and charities are worried too.

 

Firstly, children’s services are mainly fucked because of austerity cuts to council budgets, poverty increases meaning more families need them and a rising number of kids being taken into care. The first real steps to tackling those things would mean undoing all the things the Conservatives are most fond of doing except when they pretend someone else did them. So the concern is that they won’t address any of the things that make them look awful, which is all of it, and instead will use it to water down the safeguards introduced in the Childcare Act 1989, and allow private firms to be in charge of lots of stuff they have absolutely no experience of and will no doubt have G4S employ foster parents who never turn up or Serco who gets kids muddled up and send them to the wrong address, all from a theme park car park. Also worrying is that they have appointed a man called Josh MacAlister to chair the review. Aside from looking like an amalgamation of every apprentice candidate ever, MacAlister is the chief exec of Frontline, a company that fast tracks graduates into social work jobs before they’ve had any experience, they could use to do the jobs properly. He launched that company in 2013 with money from then Education Secretary and now remnants of a body odour candle Michael Gove. Its chaired by a former head of No.10 policy under David Cameron and basically by appointing MacAlister there are big worries that the review won’t be independent from government at all and that they already know how they wants it to go. and that’s in whatever way it can benefit their pals and not really kids in anyway, presumably until Marcus Rashford campaigns against it and they have to change their minds for a month before doing it all over again.

 

There’ll be more on this in future weeks and I hope to have a guest on to talk about it soon, but all I’m saying is while this is an area that really, really needs a review and action to make things better for young people and children, it is worrying that we’re leaving it to a government that includes an Education Secretary that though the best thing for kids was for them all to be in school during a major pandemic and a Prime Minister who doesn’t even know how many kids he has or where they are. I’d sooner trust the Child Catcher from Chitty Chitty Bang Bang.

 

And now back to Musa…

 

INTERVIEW WITH MUSA PART 2

 

I hope you enjoyed that, and I’m honoured that this is the first podcast to interview Musa about one of his many, many books he’s got out this year. So firstly, you can find Musa on Twitter @okwonga, and recent articles of his at the Financial Times, Byline Times, Guardian and other publications. The book we talked about most is called ‘One Of Them’ and will be out on 15th April but you can pre-order it now from all good, bad and morally vague bookshops. Musa’s other books this year are ‘In The End, It Was All About Love’ which as he mentioned is a follow on from his piece in the Good Immigrant, and that is now out and available from Rough Trade Books. And then there is Striking Out, which he co-wrote with footballer Ian Wright and is a children’s book inspired by Ian’s life. Which brings me to if any of you are footie fans, Musa also co-hosts the very popular Stadio podcast which you can get where-ever you do your podding. All links to all those things will be in the podcast blurb and on the website.

 

Who else should I speak to for this show? What burning issue do I need to discuss that I haven’t so far and if it’s really burning shouldn’t you see a doctor and probably apply cream? Let me know and send all your suggestions for guests or indeed, er, creams, to @parpolbro on Twitter, the Partly Political Broadcast Facebook group, the contact page at partlypoliticalbroadcast.co.uk or email me at partlypoliticalbroadcast@gmail.com. Or you could place your suggestion in an inadequately packed free school meal, and everyone would see it as its posted round twitter as an example of sheer heartlessness and there would be a confusion by non-parents as to what Frubes are and why they sound like something contagious, and ultimately everyone would hate you and by even considering your suggestion I’d be shut down and Acast would give my podspace to charity which would be terrible as they’d end up earning as little from it as I do. So as always, it’s probably just best to email isn’t it?

 

 

END

 

And that’s all for this week’s Partly Political Broadcast podcast. Thank you for once again popping your lugholes into these frustrated brain screams and should you have enjoyed any

of that what you heard, why not suggest to someone you know to give it a listen? Or maybe just suggest it to someone you don’t know by shouting it out of the window at passers by? Or maybe answer one of those spam calls about a car crash you didn’t have and tell them that it’s not good for their mental health to be working for a company that thrives on scamming the vulnerable and why not instead walk out, call their boss a disgraced Derek, and pop this podcast on their headphones as they stroll out of the office flipping the bird and having a total disregard for the fact, they are now jobless and poor because of some idiot comedian? You can of course also give the show a lovely 5* review on one of the many podcast apps that exist, though Apple Podcasts, Stitcher, Castbox and Acast are bestest for that and if you can afford to, please fling a penny or five at the ko-fi.com/parpolbro site, join the patreon.com/parpolbro team or via the Acast supporter button on the app. Or just give a few quid to that person that just lost their job at the call centre because you chatted shit. They’ll need it now and frankly you should apologise.

 

Big cheers and that to Acast for hosting the show, my brother The Last Skeptik for all the beats, Kat Day for the linear liner notes and Katie Coxall for the art party.

 

This will be back next week when it turns out that every part of the vaccine injection is counted at a vaccine and hundreds of patients complain after turning up in a mass jab centre only to have small syringe plungers thrown at them as Nadhim Zawahi shouts each successful number like the Count from Sesame Street.

 

BYEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE

 

This week’s show was sponsored by STATUE COPS! HAVE YOU GOT A STATUE? ARE YOU WORRIED SOME BAYING MOBS WHO FIND THINGS THAT DON’T MOVE REALLY CREEPY WANT TO PULL IT DOWN? ARE YOU SCARED THAT IF SOMEONE PULLS DOWN THAT ANCIENT WAR CRMINIAL POSING ON A HORSE THAT LOOKS SAD, THAT ALL YOUR LOCAL BIRDS WILL SHIT ON ON YOUR CAR INSTEAD? ARE WORRYING ABOUT PEOPLE DELETING HISTORY EVEN THOUGH THE INTERNET APPEARS? WELL CALL US STATUE COPS AND WE’LL STAND NEAR YOUR STATUE AND SEND YOU UPDATES EVERY 5 MINS TO LET YOU KNOW YOUR STATUE IS STILL THERE. SHOULD ANYONE SUSPICIOUS COME NEAR THE STATUE WE WILL SAY ‘NO, GO AWAY’ UNTIL THEY DO! WON’T ANYONE THINK OF THE STATUES? YEAH, US. STATUE COPS!

 

 

Email Tiernan