The British Renaissance – Conservative Conference horror show, Wage Not Growth and a chat with Patrick Brown at UBI Lab Networks

Released on Tuesday, October 5th, 2021.

The British Renaissance – Conservative Conference horror show, Wage Not Growth and a chat with Patrick Brown at UBI Lab Networks

It’s that miserable time of the year again. Yes that’s right, the Conservative conference which this year has the theme of ‘Alternate Reality’ or appears to considering how nothing that’s being mentioned has any baring on our current existence. A look at all that, plus Starmer’s broken hairdryer of a speech and a chat with Patrick Brown (@Paddy_JBrown) at the UBI Lab Network (@UBILabNetwork) all about Universal Basic Income.


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Further Reading

Partly Political Broadcast episode 5th October 2021

Conservative Conference horror show, Wage Not Growth and a chat with Patrick Brown at UBI Lab Networks


Linear liner notes 

It’s that miserable time of the year again. Yes that’s right, the Conservative conference which this year has the theme of ‘Alternate Reality’ or appears to considering how nothing that’s being mentioned has any baring on our current existence. A look at all that, plus Starmer’s broken hairdryer of a speech and a chat with Patrick Brown (@Paddy_JBrown) at the UBI Lab Network (@UBILabNetwork) all about Universal Basic Income.


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



All the usual ParPolBro stuff:








Hello and welcome to the Partly Political Broadcast, the comedy politics podcast that isn’t worried about its secret wealth being in a document leak because no one knows exactly which jar I keep that £5 for emergency crisps in and they never ever will. I’m Tiernan Douieb and this week as children’s pipe cleaner model project and Chancellor Rishi Sunak says there’s no magic wand to solve global supply problems, that’s a real shame as it’d definitely help loads if the government disappeared.


Often a political photo opportunity or phrase will be made by the British government, and many will flock to call it a distraction from what they are really doing, which by the way is inexplicably ruining everything and also doing not enough all at the same time like Schrödinger’s Twats. But there are times I would disagree on the validity of supposed dead cat, because sometimes they are actually blaring foghorns that tell us everything we need to know about the reality of British politics. Yesterday, for example, a photo emerged of the Prime Minister and bin bag full of dog shat on leaves Boris Johnson supposedly going for a run in Manchester. Yet, on inspection he is wearing a shirt, and suit shoes, and appears more like he’s been caught short or was discovered in someone’s hotel cupboard and had to leg it. Again. Potentially this picture was publicised as a shameless PR opportunity, with the aims of showing our Prime Minister going to all the efforts to stay healthy even though with every picture he looks more like something that’s being eaten alive from the inside. But perhaps the truth is that the photographer was trying to show us something else. That Johnson runs for his health like he runs the country, with all the incorrect gear, an inability to plan properly and an absolute disregard for the damage that will cause in the long term. If we take that as read, it means there’s hope. And by hope, I mean I am crossing my fingers and toes that he pulls a calf muscle within days and has to limp round Manchester while people shout ‘wanker’ at him.


The theme at this year’s Conservative Conference appears to be Alternate Realities, with every speaker and attendee going all out to pretend they are in a universe other than this one where things are going swimmingly and not just in the climate change way we’ll see in years to come. Why shouldn’t the Conservatives seek escapism from our current shitty reality? All the rest of us want to, it’s just that on week three without fuel it’s pretty hard to escape anywhere right now. Collapsed lung and Chief Brexit negotiator David Frost embraced this theme by telling the very few attendees who hadn’t realised they could get an equal amount of stimulation watching a sewage pipe leak, that the British renaissance has begun! Correct! We have had a countrywide rebirth in so much as we’ve massively regressed and are now being run by babies. Maybe I’m being mean, perhaps and as Frost said, the long bad dream of EU membership is now over, if like him, you have nightmares about the general public having enough food or fuel which means you can’t cackle at their misfortune like a Baron Greenback tribute act. We are a very different country now to the one we were before, one where the army deliver fuel, firefighters are asked to drive HGVs and bus drivers have to protect you from police officers. Hopefully it’s only a matter of time before politicians are rallied together to fix a burst pipe in the North Sea, enter a collapsing mine or something equally as dangerous that they’d have zero ability of managing. We’re just in a period of adjustment, said the Prime Minister, yes, you know of the kind where we have to get used to what it’s like to not need food for sustenance and be able to survive cold temperatures using just the power of thought. Luckily at the Conservative conference they don’t need to worry about people’s Christmases being too bleak for a Dickins novel, because in their themed reality it’s got nothing to do with them. Foreign Secretary and bollard Liz Truss said the prime minister wasn’t responsible for what’s is or isn’t in the shops, and thankfully that’s true or we’d end up with just shelves and shelves of bangers and mash and blow-up sex dolls. But the government are responsible for all the regulations and circumstances that get things into shops. I mean they aren’t, but they’re meant to be. Rishi Sunak said there are things they can do and things they can’t do, which is the sort of nothing lyric you’d expect to hear in a Bitty Mclean song – but while they can sort out an inadequate amount, of visas or not enough army officers to help the situation, they can’t just wave a magic and make global supply chain problems disappear overnight. Which is funny because they definitely made them appear that quickly between December 31st 2020 and January 1st 2021. I suppose it always takes longer tidying up a mess than making one.


Thing is, we have to remember what’s really important and as the Prime Minister says, nevermind life expectancy or cancer outcomes but look at wage growth. I mean wage growth isn’t happening, but if it was at least you’d get to briefly enjoy it and be able to afford some now higher costing food that also isn’t there, before dying at a young age. And isn’t that what we all want? Johnson said that wage growth has been stagnant for 10 years, so if only we could find out what sort of pricks were responsible for that. Ah well at least its growing now just in time for furlough to end when people were on 80% of their wages and if they haven’t been thrown into jobless oblivion with no support then they’ll get 100% which is growth right? Like how if I steal your TV, then one night, when you are asleep, I put it back only you’ve now missed all your favourite shows, then you’ve gained a TV. Yeah? Rishi Sunak is pledging a £500m plan for jobs package which will help all the people who’ve lost jobs thanks to Rishi’s last two years of fucking useless schemes to now find jobs that pay worse and not remotely cover the £20 Universal credit cut and tax rises. Sunak said in his speech to conference that he wants to focus on good work and better skills, presumably as he hasn’t managed either of those himself yet, and said that increasing benefits would just make people lean on the state, which they will be anyway due to the lack of food. The Chancellor reckons Brexit is in the long term interest of the UK, though again he may just be referring to his and other Conservatives private investments. Or maybe he just means we’ll still be bringing it up in 10 years time whenever we refer to something else going wrong.


I’m being facetious obviously as some people are indeed having huge amounts of wage growth like, for example, several Conservative donors who’ve all been named in the Pandora Papers. An odd name because the story of Pandora’s box was that she unleashed evil, death and misery onto the world, whereas these 12 million leaked documents just show us where the billionaires who have already unleashed evil, death and misery onto the world hide all their money and dodge all their tax. It’s like an MTV Cribs for money that should be being used almost anywhere else. Many names are contained in these papers, including lots of associates of bad morph Vladimir Putin, and the Czech Prime Minister and Velcro shoe strap Andrej Babis. Momo demon couple Tony and Cherie Blair are also in there having saved £300,000 in tax by buying property through an offshore firm. Still its probably the least violent way he’s been involved in occupying somewhere.


In amongst all that are also details on the Azerbaijani President and owner of Bob’s Burgers Ilham Aliyev who’s been accused of looting his own country but has over £400m of property in London. Though to be fair that could just be one studio flat where the toilet is in a shared hallway. The Aliyevs made a £31m profit after selling their London properties to the Crown Estate, which is owned by the Royal Family and managed by the Treasury. Urgh, how embarrassing to the Royal Family right? I mean the only thing worse than buying tax avoided property off a corrupt foreign leader would be harbouring an alleged paedophile amongst your ranks and protecting them from the law with the money you take from the public. But only a true villain would be that grim right? Several other Conservative donors’ names are also in the papers, but Johnson has insisted that all donations to the party are vetted, so I think that means they have any concerns about them put to sleep rather than let them carry on causing problems for their owners. Sunak of course said the UK’s record on tax avoidance is not a source of shame. Well, no I suppose not to him and the Conservatives, as its far more a source of income.


Other highlights at the conference include the Bride of Wackula Carrie Johnson, a straight white woman, giving a speech about defending LGBT+ rights. No Carrie, you’re not having a same sex marriage just because your husband has zero imagination and only ever humps at you like a drunk sofa being carried the wrong way into a stairwell, till he falls asleep. Sealant gun accident and housing minister Michael Gove said that levelling up allows everyone to live their best life, so he’ll soon be announcing apprenticeships to become his own personal drugs mule. Boris Johnson’s speech is on Wednesday, and will no doubt include vacuous tag lines such as the one he amended to be ‘Build Back Bitter’ as he posted a video of him pretending to drink a beer. Thing is, it is also an apt description of how the country is going to feel after another year of his leadership. Johnson’s speech will be focused on the notion that actually these HGV driver shortages and the like are a good thing as less supposedly uncontrolled immigration will mean Brits get paid more. Though I don’t think it’ll work like that unless we’ve got such a shortage of labour, everyone here has to do at least 5 jobs, meaning will be raking it in and saving loads because you’ll only have 2 minutes of free time a year. Still forget about the life expectancy dropping and think about that wage growth you’ll have as you get 5 different inadequate wages all at once.


Luckily in order to tackle and provide opposition to the Conservatives empty three word slogans, the Labour leader and embodiment of the feeling you get when you’re asked to sign for someone else’s package because they aren’t in Keir Starmer ended his party’s conference with an extremely long 90 minute completely empty statement. In it he mainly went on about how his dad made tools, which I supposed inspired Starmer early on as to what to blame for his terrible work. He said he was willing to break pledges if it meant Labour would win, so it seems the big tactic to get voters onside is to say that they’ll also lie but won’t be as good at it but hey, everyone loves an underdog, right? Many policy wonks online said it was an incredible speech, though it could have just been that Starmer’s voice like a congested hairdryer sent them into a meditative state for an hour and a half and they’ve not felt as calm in years. But really it was the same chat that might have appealed in the early 2000s but much like the documentary on the Spice Girls, now is clear has many things wrong with how it works. Starmer said it was a ‘serious plan’ for government which is the sort of thing you only have to clarify if it isn’t. The Labour leader criticised Boris Johnson for being a showman with nothing left to show, but that’s a dangerous stance to take when people like Saturday night TV which largely consists of just that. If the option is a really shit bit of entertainment that will collapse society or the repeated droning on of a man who sounds like he’s perpetually slightly underwater that will collapse society slightly more slowly, I can’t imagine many will choose the latter. Still there were some good bits as people from the audience heckled him with his own decisions. As he criticised Labour’s previous Brexit strategy, someone yelled out that it was Starmer’s idea, but he said they didn’t bother him, perhaps thinking he was once again having to shout down his own conscience. The same policy wonks who loved the speech criticised the hecklers for shouting when Starmer was talking about the death of his mother, but they didn’t shout then. Either they weren’t paying attention or had made it up and I suppose whichever it is shows why they may have thought it was pretty good overall. I definitely thought of a much better speech as I zoned out while watching it, and mine mainly involved fart noises and someone loudly saying the word ‘plinth’. One promise Starmer has kept from his Labour leadership campaign early last year, was that he wouldn’t give an interview to the equivalent of pissing on a tree’s grave, the Sun. Though he’s only managed that by writing Op-Ed pieces for them instead. You might say that it’s a vote losing strategy to insult all of Labour voting Liverpool, but I wonder if his best chance is to appealing to readers who like him, also hate the Labour party.


In other news, as Sarah Everard’s murderer Wayne Couzens was given a life sentence, it was revealed that he pretended to be on duty to kidnap her. The Met Police responded with ways to make people sure they are safe if apprehended by a lone plainclothes officer, which included asking them if they’re a real police officer, to which they could just say yes, or waving down a bus, which as you know magically works even if nowhere near a bus route and one will fall out of the sky filled with helpful wizards. It is quite the ask to insist that bus drivers are now above the police, especially when the concern is police that may be lying to you to cause harm, when thanks to the government we’ve been through that with a bus too. Another suggestion was to call 999 which would be tricky at best. How do you call them up to say you’re worried about the police so maybe don’t send more? Can they deploy bus drivers? Another officer from the same group Couzens served is on trial this week for a rape charge, and there are many other accounts of misconduct and a number of racist and misogynistic WhatsApps between police are being investigated. That follows a cop being charged for being part of a Neo Nazi group and an inquiry that said Scotland Yard was institutionally corrupt. All of which puts the idea of there being just one bad apple to shame, when clearly the entire orchard needs to be cleared out and a realisation that the ground is now only good for a tarmacking. Or if they are just individual bad apples, why do they all get jobs at the Met? Has that part of law enforcement completely fermented and become toxic?


The Met Commissioner and tortoise Cressida Dick who somehow still has a job, has ordered an independent review into standards and culture at the Met, which makes sense as to find bad apples you need a special in-cider. Dick said they depend on the trust of the public and police by consent, you know unless you’re holding a candle lit vigil, are a Brazilian man on a tube or a young black teenager or really anyone that has zero reason to ever trust the police. Boris Johnson has urged the public to trust the police, in the same way an alligator might tell you you should feel safe around a boa constrictor. The Prime Minister did acknowledge that there are problems in how violence against women is tackled, as he probably has first-hand experience of after the police were called round to deal with his loud altercation with Carrie two years ago. The Home Secretary and graduate of Monsters University Priti Patel says police need to take harassment more seriously, though coming from her she might just mean do a lot more of it. Mostly though Patel has set her sights on introducing tougher punishments for protestors who block motorways, even though it provided a nice change from motorways being blocked by cars anyway and if the fuel crisis continues, I’m not sure who else will do it and then what will happen?


In other news the Green Party have two new leaders, which makes you wonder why they couldn’t just recycle the old ones. They are Carla Denyer who looks like she’s come straight from a kids cartoon as the one with all the smart gadgets, and Adrian Ramsey who also has the fresh face of someone who’s mum made him wear a suit for his first day at work. The new leadership say they will focus on power, not protests, and that is time for Green to shine, which I think makes it emerald, but I won’t be a pedant. They are the youngest leaders of a mainstream national party, so hopefully they’ll be able to make a lot of headway for the Greens as their youth will mean they’re completely invisible to the other parties.


The army are helping to ease the fuel crisis from this week, though hopefully they won’t just fill their own tanks. It’s still expected to go on for at least another week though. Its very monkey’s paw isn’t it, how during the pandemic loads of people said they’d use their cars less when things got back to normal huh?





Holla at thee, and what say thou? Thanks for tuning into yet another episode of this shit, I hope you’re doing ok. I’m having an unbelievably Monday Monday where it took me an hour to drive to the gym this morning that is only 20 mins away and then I got there and realised I didn’t pack my shorts and apparently, it’s not like school and you can’t just do it in your pants. So, I then drove an hour back home. They should, at the very least, have had a box that contains shorts other people have left in them. That’s what there was at my school and you’d always end up in shorts that were 4 sizes too big for you then fall over and break your face. I’m just saying, gyms need to step it up. Yes, I go to the gym despite how unlikely that sounds, and I have got very good at looking like I know what I’m doing and then spending two days unable to move my limbs because I clearly didn’t. Its been a whole week of failed efforts like that. One gig last week got cancelled due to fuel crisis nonsense, then the other I couldn’t drive to even though I spent my Friday night sitting in a queue at Tesco for petrol. I thought about playing my radio really loud and sticking my head of the window to inhale car fumes just to make it seem like a proper night out. I didn’t though and I didn’t get fuel either then spent my Saturday on different trains to the ones I was meant to get as they all got cancelled and the cost of my tickets rendering my fee useless. Grumble grumble. Look I know I shouldn’t be using a car much anyway, and ideally I’d get trains everywhere but the our stupid railways often don’t run after a gig has finished so it often doesn’t work out. Anyway, what I’m just hoping for is that the next crisis that occurs is one that doesn’t affect comedy. I reckon I can gig in a war. I don’t want to, but I totally could. Possibly some sort of natural disaster depending on where and how it was. A plague of locusts? Easily, gigs are indoors, we should be fine.


Anyway thanks for being here blah blah blah join the patreon doody do all of that and the other bit of admin is that regular pod helper Kat Day is writing a chapter in a book called Great Explanations in which scientists, which Kat is one of, explain their passions in a chapter. So, it includes Kat, and also Dr Helen Czerski, former pod guest Dean Burnett and loads more. But as with all good things in this age, it needs funding on unbound so I’ll pop the link in the pod blurb and do give it a hand and pre-order a copy at the same time if you can.


On this week’s show, there is an interview, yeah really. I finally managed to sort one out. It’s with Patrick Brown at the Universal Basic Income Lab Network, so you can probably get what we talked about. Yes, that’s right, a network of Labradors who have big ideas. No of course not, though if that does exist I would like to get them on the show even if it has nothing to do with politics. Though I feel that could be the beginnings of Paw Patrol and any system where dogs are in charge of emergency services would both be concerning and yet also make the police a far more trustworthy group. Sorry, I mean, this:





Remember way back, back into time, at the beginning of the Covid era, many mouths uttered wisdom about one hallowed way that everything could work out, in terms of support while the world shut down, and that wisdom was UBI? Yes, not an unbelievably big iguana which I think, would have also helped or at least offered a nice distraction, but Universal Basic Income. Which arguably would be a lot better than a big iguana. UBI is where all citizens of a place get given just enough dosh to help them get by without any morbid means tests to check if you’re fit for work as you might have managed to grow back your head or have stopped being dead yet. It’s been a talking point in the UK since around 1920, and recently the last incarnation of the Labour party, as well as the SNP, the Scottish Greens and other Greens have supported it too. But of course, come the hour of need, it made a lot more sense for Rishi Sunak to just only help some people out, completely forget about others and let you have £10 off getting Covid at pizza hut. Now, as you can probably guess, it’s not anywhere near the agenda of the two main parties in England, because they think there’s no money in letting people have money, plus Priti Patel would have less despair to feed off of and might vanish. But it’s still being consider by the Welsh Assembly, the Scottish Parliament and all the many Green parties, so could it possibly, ever possibly maybe actually happen? And more importantly, can it actually work or is you know, giving everyone free money just a licence for you know, everyone to be total wasters and look after their families, enjoy their lives or find jobs they like? Urgh. Can you imagine?


This week I spoke to Patrick Brown at the Universal Basic Income Lab Network Northern Ireland. The UBI Lab have just released their Resilience proposal to help those who have lost work after the furlough had ended, and then with plans for a further roll out too. Now I’m not going to even pretend I was an impartial interviewer here as I read through the proposal and spent the whole time going ‘well that’s just great why wouldn’t we do it?’ And so as you’ll find, I struggled to think of questions rather than just yelling at Patrick ‘let’s storm Westminster and implement this immediately!’ before writing UBI on my head with a large marker and disappointing many iguana fans. It was great talking to Patrick, who I should say is an Alliance Party Councillor too, though we don’t discuss that. And he’s also about to finish his PhD in universal basic income and conflict transformation in Northern Ireland. Which we do talk about it, obvs. So I hope you enjoy this glimpse of actually progressive interesting politics possibilities. Here’s Patrick:




We’ll be back with Patrick in a minute but first…




You might have heard Boris Johnson say in interviews this week, and he’ll no doubt say it again in his speech, that wages are growing and that people on low incomes are being paid more. Now obviously, we’re all aware that if the Prime Minister told you it was raining outside, you’d be better off grabbing your sunglasses and factor 50 before heading out. But is he right on this? No, no of course not. Its total horseshit fired out of a horses arse into a horseshit collecting skip. Sorry, what I mean is, pay did rise, sort of. The Office of National Statistics said from May to July of this year, regular pay rose by 6.8%, or 4.5% when you take inflation into account as well. Which you should, especially if you’re in the balloon industry. So that is the highest real terms wage increase in 20 years, hooray if you’re a Jonny only reads one thing and does no other research type of chump. Cos here’s the thing Jonny, wages dropped a shit load last year. Yeah, I know, I can’t think why either. And then they recovered this Spring a bit, which means that it’s marked as a bigger rise than it actually is. Plus, inflation is rising again right now, great news for those balloon guys again, but that means any wage rises are gonna be parped out by that. It’s quite the gamble for Johnson to say wages are growing when next to no one will see that reflected in their pay packets and it’ll be interesting to see if voters will just believe it because he said so while still unable to pay for anything and thinking maybe their wages just got taller or wider, or if this will sting him in his large face by Winter.


Johnson also said we’re the fastest growing economy in the G7 and he’s sort of right in that our GDP grew 4.8% from April to June which is the fastest out of all those 7 countries that you and I can’t remember what they all are. Can you? Go on then. Ha! See? Now try the G20 dickhead. Again though, that GDP increase is compared to how it was in Jan to March when, again, not sure why at all, but it was totally karked. Across the whole pandemic times our GDP actually fell and compared to the other 7 places, wherever they are, I dunno Middle Earth, Asgard, or whatever, they all rose. So, we’re still world beating for shitness. Basically every boast about how everything is doing great right now from employment to transport use to education, is all against how things were when we were stuck indoors and watching everything that existed on Netflix. Gutted for Netflix who will now have shitter figures compared to then. Do you remember last year when Priti Patel claimed knife crime was down to record low levels, because NO ONE COULD GO OUTSIDE TO DO ANY STABBINGS?


So, this is just a polite reminder that a big fucking pandemic happened and regardless of what Number 10 says, things are still rubbish, but less rubbish as we go outside and do stabbings again to cheer ourselves up. No wait…er….yeah.






And now back to Patrick…




Big thanks to Patrick for having time to chat. You can find the UBI Lab Networks at, or on UBILabNetwork on Twitter and Facebook and you should be able to find their most recent report there. Patrick’s specific Lab is @UBILabNI on Twitter and you can find him on there too @Paddy_JBrown.


Anyone you think I should chat to, or any subject I should chat to someone about? You know on this podcast I mean, not just at a bus stop or something. Though I will if it means there’ll be seats free after I bore them away. Let me know at and I shall endevour to chase them down or find someone to chase down but you know in a less scary or farmer after some naughty geese way.





And that’s all for this week’s Partly Political Broadcast podcast. If yours ears didn’t bleed while listening, or indeed they did but that’s what you’re into, then do recommend this show to other people who enjoy either bleed free or full ears and maybe also safer headphones, why not chuck some money hard into the site or even give us a snazzy podcast review with an update about the state of your ears on Apple Podcasts or somewhere like that.


Muchos Gracias to Acast, my brother The Last Skeptik and Kat Day.


This will be back next week when Boris Johnson’s campaign plans involve going round hospices and hospital wards shouting ‘but what about the great wage growth eh?’ at people who are flatlining. The Conservatives go up 10% in the polls.




This week’s show was sponsored by Pandora Papers, toilet roll fashioned from the secret finances of the world’s most powerful bastards. They’ve shat on the world, so now you can wipe your arse on 100% laundered cash that should have been spent on hospitals but instead bought somewhere in London that would be a cupboard in any other country. Pandora Papers, soft, long and not illegal but still most definitely wrong.

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