Direction of Travel Is The Same – Not much Cop, everyone’s got 2nd jobs and a chat with Cllr Mathew Hulbert about local government

Released on Tuesday, November 16th, 2021.

Direction of Travel Is The Same – Not much Cop, everyone’s got 2nd jobs and a chat with Cllr Mathew Hulbert about local government

No wonder the Conservatives want everyone to get back to work, as that way they won’t feel so lonely with their entire party having 12 jobs each. And of course focusing on all of them except the one they were elected to do. Meanwhile global leaders have agreed at Cop26 that they’d prefer to be underwater rulers. Plus a chat with Cllr Mathew Hulbert (@MathewHulbert) about the ins and outs of parish and town councils.



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Hello and welcome to the Partly Political Broadcast, the comedy politics podcast that counters the Westminster sleaze by also doing two jobs but neither of which pay. I’m Tiernan Douieb and this week as abandoned Lilo and Prime Minister Boris Johnson says that the disappointing Cop26 deal is actually a game changer, he’s right as the situation has now gone from ‘Risk’ to ‘Cards Against Humanity’.


The world might be at a tipping point, but it’s hard to want to give those who already take a fair share of the wealth anything on top as frankly the service has been terrible. The Cop26 deal has been met and the big plan to save humanity from extinction seems to be leaving it for a year and then getting all the world leaders to come back and have another go in 2022. Brilliant, nothing like basing everyone’s future on resits by a bunch of people who treat every test like they’re mocks. India and China demanded a change to the text about stopping the use of coal power, something that brought the Cop26 president, and someone drew features on a butternut squash Alok Sharma to tears. Probably out of relief because he knew that now the government would be able to blame other countries for climate change and hope no one notices our brand-new coal mine and seas full of turds. The text means that where it previously said countries had agreed to phase out coal use, it now just says phase down, something that in a Star Trek episode would mean the villain would be merely stunned and come back again later to cause more and likely worse trouble. The Prime Minister said that he doesn’t think and yes, he could have ended that sentence there but sadly isn’t that self-aware. He said he doesn’t think it makes much difference if the language is phase out or phase down as the direction of travel is pretty much the same. Yes, I can see that. It’s like if you fell out of the 15th floor of a building, or you fell out of the 15th floor of a building into a trampoline. Essentially both are the same direction of travel but only one leaves you looking like the saddest of jam sandwiches. Maybe Johnson is correct though in that it doesn’t matter what the language used is, none of it is binding and it could just be the case that everyone will fly on private jets to Cop27 next year and say, ‘oops sorry I forgot, have another go in 2023?’ And why would they when the host nation’s leader said he wants it to be unacceptable across the world to start a new coal power station while preparing to gut a hole in West Cumbria to lug squished dinosaurs out of it and cough the fumes into the sky. But weirdos, sorry optimists will tell you that we must be positive and this conference was good as it showed an understanding that urgent action needs to be taken now and what was decided isn’t enough. Oh good. It’s only taken 26 of these to get them to understand it’s all pretty urgent so I reckon by Cop52 they’ll decide to get round to doing something while floating around at the conference that has to be held on the International Space Station as there’s no longer enough land on Earth to fit everyone in the same place.


It’s important to look into the psyche of the world’s most powerful leaders who can hear humanity’s pleas to keep the very planet we live on alive and instead decide to say, ‘ok but have you thought about how we like money?’ instead. There are only two reasons you can choose to make such decisions, or lack of them. One is because, like some conspiracy theorists suggest, we are led by giant lizard people. Lizards of course would enjoy a much hotter climate; most can swim, and they don’t really need healthcare as they can just grow another tail. Where this theory collapses, sorry, is phased down, is that lizards are cold blooded but that doesn’t mean they’re completely uncaring arseholes and so don’t fit the bill. The other far more likely option is that those in the 1% think they are exempt from the consequences. That somehow rising sea levels wouldn’t dream of affecting their beach condos and food shortages won’t be a problem as they have a small man who delivers all theirs. No, they don’t know his name because he probably doesn’t have one silly. And so, this can be left another year, and then another and if they’re really clever they’ll just keep putting it off till it’s too late to do anything about it and then they can go back to having meetings about the things they actually enjoy like cocaine and selling weapons to places they’ve also condemned for human rights abuses. This is definitely the attitude of the Conservative Party who saw nothing wrong with Boris Johnson having to spend some of his Cop26 speech insisting that UK is not remotely a corrupt country. No that’s true, because why do corruption somewhere else when you can do it all at home? Sovereignty bonuses and all that.


It’s not a corrupt country though, though the bit that will have a big fuck off coal mine shafted into it will be soon. What I mean is that to say the entire UK is corrupt is to once again share the blame round like was the case with Covid, or debt or pollution. Is it everyone’s fault that human accordion and former attorney general Geoffrey Cox earned £6m in 16 years from second and sometimes third jobs including representing a tax haven against the British state over corruption claims, spending lockdown in the Caribbean and voting in Parliament over zoom? Which actually is being corrupt remotely so once again Johnson is a liar. The only way Cox could have been upholding his job as an MP and representing his constituents is if they’d all made it really clear they want him to fuck off and he misinterpreted it. Arguably, they did vote him in as MP so maybe the residents of Torridge and West Devon did decide that as part of our country’s necessary reparations for the slaves that were forced there by British traders, they would in turn give the British Virgin Islands their MP to do with as they wish. In a good example of nominative determinism because he is both rotten to the core and a total penis, Cox is part of a tax avoidance scheme that he’s failed to declare and he’s one of 17 MPs who are renting out their home paid for by taxpayers money while he claims nearly £2k a month for a second home. All of which is made much worse by the fact he’s in neither when he’s swanning about in the Caribbean stopping more taxes get to the country which could go to his home expenses, but you can pay them instead. In 2016 Cox claimed expenses of 49p for a pint of milk, despite being the most highly paid MP at the time. A bizarre incident that both makes him a massive piss taking snob, but also at the same time says he did indeed know the price of a pint of milk and means he was more in tune with the public than many of his colleagues. Cox is by no means the only one though and stories of MPs failing to declare earnings are now coming out so often its clear they do have standards, it’s just they obviously need different ones for each job. Transport Secretary and the picture under snivelling pissbug in the dictionary Grant Shapps, has allegedly been working for a lobbying group to stop his own government from building planning developments that infringe on airfields. The Department of Transport have denied this, possibly because they haven’t yet seen him be capable of doing anything other than be put in the line of fire to mumble out apologies he doesn’t understand. But Shapps has a history of creating pseudonyms, so there’s always the chance he’s been doing all this under a different name. Though to be fair, its also entirely understandable that the Transport Secretary would want people to think he’s anyone other than Grant Shapps. What if Professor Calculus was an idiot Nadhim Zawahi was working for an oil company while also an MP but kept his earnings hidden due to a parliamentary loophole. Luckily he’s now education secretary so can focus on ruining children’s futures from a completely different angle.


Another minister that was caught out last week was MP for Dover Natalie Elphicke, a woman who always looks like she’s just scoffed a packet of silica gel, and who delighted in telling the real leader of the opposition Marcus Rashford to stick to playing football instead of politics, when he missed a penalty at the Euro2020 final. She of course has a second job herself too, but to be fair both of hers are in the same field of playing with politics, even if she’s mostly scoring for own team and absolutely no one else’s. Nothing about Elphicke’s second job has been shown to breach parliamentary rules either, whereas when she attempted to influence a judge during a sentence appealing for her husband, former MP Charlie Elphicke, when he was convicted of sexual assault, she was punished with a one-day suspension. Still, it was only attempting to pervert the course of justice in defence of a sex offender so how could she be upholding British values anymore than that? She’s basically part of the royal family. Leader of the Scottish Conservatives and one half of the Rescuers Douglass Ross reported himself for £28,000 of undeclared earnings as a football referee which of all the jobs you’d think he’d know where the line was. It seems he’d heard the chat ‘referee’s a wanker’ and assumed those were the qualities you needed for the job. Still it’ll be useful for any team he’s next officiating at that if they tell him he can keep the coin after the toss and they won’t tell anyone, he might sort them the match. Leader of the Commons and bitter gummy snake Jacob Rees-Mogg also failed to declare £6m of cheap loans he got from one of his own offshore tax avoiding companies. Of course he did. Of course he failed to declare it, this government consistently fail to do anything that would in anyway benefit the country and the only way we’ll ever get a positive result out of them is if we could convince them to have openly negative aims like ‘we will flood half the country’ or ‘we will make all of you have less cash’ and then in rapidly fucking that up we might benefit.


Here’s the thing though, none of those MPs think they’ve done anything wrong and one unnamed minister even told journalists last week that he needed a second job as it’s hard to afford childcare on £82k a year. Is it? Did you get told you had to hire a Nani and thought you had to pay an hourly rate for a Portugese football player? I suppose the problem is if you pay less for childcare then you might have to see your children inbetween and then god forbid they might develop emotions and love for you which will mean they’ll never have the skills to be in government. Or the 12 other jobs you can do at the same time. The average salary in the UK is £31,461 so the question is how does that MP expect other people manage on less than half of what he gets? Or does he think pleb kids need less care as they can entertain themselves playing in the bins in-between sweeping chimneys? Maybe Conservative MPs just need more childcare because with all the jobs they are doing they’ve got even less time to do any themselves and perhaps the key would be, for them to do less work than the work they already don’t really do, and then they’d be able to stare confusedly at their children themselves. No wonder the Prime Minister keeps complaining he doesn’t earn enough when he’s got so much childcare to cover. Following the fall-out from what if someone dug up the future corpse of Matthew Perry Owen Paterson’s suspension not suspension back to suspension resign dance two weeks ago, there has been a lot of pressure on the government to do something about upholding MPs standards, which is a bit like asking a dog who’s guiltily got crumbs round its mouth to be in charge of biscuit security. Boris Johnson said there won’t be an outright ban on MPs holding second jobs as that would catch those few who still work as doctors or nurses, jobs where you need a back-up as it is hard to pay for childcare with claps. If MPs like Geoffrey Cox weren’t helping tax havens and getting the public to pay for his sub-letting then maybe the doctors and nurses wouldn’t have to neglect their proper jobs and lower themselves to work as MPs. They can’t be corrupt, promised Kevin the Carrot’s sickly relative Oliver Dowden, as luncheon meat faced former editor of the Daily Mail Paul Dacre hasn’t got the job as head of Ofcom. An odd boast when the government changed the rules to allow him to reapply and replaced members of the panel with Tory pals so it’ll be even more likely. Maybe Dowden just means if you think they’re corrupt now, you clearly haven’t seen anything and he wouldn’t want us to think they’d peaked in doing whatever the exact opposite of peaking is before their big moment.


Because of this, Labour have gained their first lead in the polls in over a year though they’ve done fuck all to get there except not be the Conservatives. I mean, let’s face it, that is commendable but your only election strategy can’t just be ‘wait till people get bored of that lot and realise they have absolutely no other choice.’ They will be the sloppy rebound party which won’t bode well for the long term as the public will quickly either want someone who cares about them or is going to fuck them properly. Labour leader and like someone photoshopped a slapped cheek onto a hedgehog Keir Starmer says has never even been in talks to do a second job while an MP, but was in discussion. I’m not entirely sure what the difference is and would assume they are very much the same direction of travel. However maybe what Starmer means is that they asked him to do the job and he took so long to decide that they left and it was hours before he noticed. With a drop in the polls and these endless week’s of sleaze, could this be the 4768th possible end of Boris Johnson’s premiership? Apparently Conservative MPs are angry with how he’s handled this and see him as a liability, which shows how out of touch they are as we all realised that about a decade ago. It speaks or perhaps just discusses volumes that it wasn’t fuel shortages, poo seas, 150,000 people dead or the myriad of other monumental fuck ups that have now made the party find short shrift for their leader, but the possibility he may have stopped them earning more dosh for themselves with multiple jobs. You think they’d be pleased as now all those people struggling after the universal credit cuts will have even more jobs to apply for if MPs aren’t hogging twelve each.


Boris Johnson was told three times to wear a mask during a hospital visit last week but kept taking it off because that sort of thing only applies to other people. There has been outrage but him not having a mask on just means his chances of catching Covid are higher and therefore I’m pleased and hope its third time lucky. Johnson told a press conference that its unclear how Europe’s new wave of Covid will affect the UK, in the same way for him it was unclear how the other waves affected us, what actually happened or how germs work. The Health Secretary and concussed flying saucer Sajid Javid has made it compulsory for NHS staff to have Covid jabs from April next year, or risk being sacked because what the health service really needs right now is even fewer staff. Meanwhile because malnutrition, scurvy cases in the UK have doubled since 2010 because the government are intent on getting things back to how they were before. I suppose rather than reclaim our seas, they’re just giving everyone a chance at feeling like they’re at sea instead while reducing the backlog of dental appointments by just making sure no one has any teeth left.


In other news, the planned HS2 rail ‘Northern powerhouse’ extension to Leeds has been scrapped. Maybe the real plans to ‘level up’ the North are to make it harder for MPs from the South to go there and come up with shit ways to spend money not doing anything for it.


As the Prime Minister attended the cenotaph on remembrance Sunday very respectfully looking like he’d fallen several times and been through many wars, thousands of war vets who were injured in service are being denied disability benefits by the government armed forces compensation scheme. It’s particularly bleak that in future years Prime Ministers will have to head to Whitehall to remember those who made it home and were then killed in a battle with the Ministry of Defence.


After 21 days Richard Ratcliffe ended his very moving & brave hunger strike to ensure the government do more to release his wife, Nazanin Zaharai Ratcliffe from Iranian prison where her detainment was made worse by Boris Johnson, much like, well everything. The Foreign Office says it is doing all it can to help Britons held in Iran, which is never really anything other than an admittance they are unable to do anything because they don’t want to. To free Nazanin, the UK government would have to repay the £400m it owes the Iranian government which they likely won’t do. What perhaps would be a better idea is get someone from the Iranian government to offer to make a high speed rail line, faulty test kits or app that won’t work and Downing Street would hand it over in minutes.


Shell Oil are moving their headquarters to the UK from the Netherlands, in a move the government says is a clear vote of confidence in the British economy. Unusual choice of word there with clear. It’s probably more because they pay zero corporate tax here and that are Prime Minister is crude, greasy and has a penchant for ignoring mess in the ocean.


Over in the US, what if Roz from Monsters Inc was a Nazi Steve Bannon has been arrested on two counts of contempt of congress. I only hope that as it happened there were lots of people around him shouting ‘lock him up, lock him up.’ I am worried about what prison he’ll be sent to though as he’ll only feel at home in a right wing terror cell.


And lastly, former Health Secretary and UK politics’s Jar Jar Binks Matt Hancock is in talks over a £100,000 book deal on how I won the Covid war. Which presumably will tell how like in most wars, there’s always someone who does well by hoarding all the gold. I’m curious to see the book if it happens, but only because I’d have thought all the pages would fall out if there’s no spine.





Hey hey hey hey ParPolBrods. Another one of these and there’s not much chat time this week because, er, well actually I’d like to pretend I’m busy but actually I’m just tired from a weekend of gigging in Nottingham and all the driving and then for World Diabetes Day my blood sugars decided to celebrate by getting really high and look basically its now the beginning of the week and I’m already done. How do you get energy nowadays? I’ve read all the things about doing exercise and I do that but before I exercise I’m tired and then I exercise and I’m just then more tired so that doesn’t work. I have my vitamin D supplements which do little other than add yet another thing I have to remember to do in the day and I’m drinking so much water that I’m basically buoyant at all times of day. What’s left? I wonder if I need to find one of those old newsagents that still sells some Sunny Delights that went off 20 years ago and just load up on E-numbers or something. I have heard a good night’s sleep works so I hoping to get one of those in around Christmas, but we’ll see what the family is planning. How are you getting on? Hope you’re ok despite all the many crises. Crisi? Chrysalises? Crisps? I don’t know anymore. Thanks for being here and all that. Got a slightly different guest this week and potentially break my one ParPolBro rule but also I made that rule so I think its ok. Typical right? It’s one rule for this show and er, the same rule that doesn’t really matter for this show.  I am speaking to councillor Mathew Hulbert who is a Lib Dem but he promised not to go all Lib Demmy on me and instead tells me all about Parish and town councils. Yes it’s a local government one. Yes its one of those ones where I make at least one reference to bins and then the rest of the time we all go ‘oh yes that’s really important.’ So, hope you like that chat jazz.


Think that’s all though if you’re in Cardiff I’m hosting the Glee club all weekend and will be wandering the streets inbetween. I mean not constantly, I’ll be sleeping in my hotel room for some of it too. But do come say hello. Preferably at the gig. I’ll get freaked out if you just shout at me while I’m buying a coffee. Then on Dec 1st and 2nd I’m in Glasgow supporting Frankie Boyle again at the Stand. I think it’s sold out but worth checking in case there’s returns. And that’s that for now. Thanks if you’re part of the page, shout out to those of you that still do donations to even though I never mention it and bigger shout out to all you out there who want to hire me for a lucrative second job in the Carribbean. I mean, morally I wouldn’t take it but I’m also not an MP so I reckon I could totally do this show from there without breaching any codes. Hit me up. Here’s this week’s one:




Bit of a different interview this week listener. While usually I either receive your guest suggestions and hunt them down by er, googling them, emailing them and never hearing back, or I annoy people on Twitter, a few weeks Councillor Mathew Hubert DM’d me asking if I’d be interested in chatting to him about all things parish and town councils. And goddamnit, I was indeed because despite all my attempts to understand it, I always feel like I need some sort of dodecahedron made by Harry Seldon in order to make sense of local government systems. Being a city kid as I wang on about far too often, I only know the confusing world of London councils which also have a myriad of wards, departments, impossible methods of communication and only ever get in touch to tell you they’re demolishing all the best bits of your area in order to sell them to a company who wants to develop luxury fire hazards on top of them. So then when it comes to unitary, district, parish and town councils I am largely clueless. But while global leaders bicker about just how much of the world it’s ok to kill off, the first level of government is a different beast, dealing directly with people’s concerns about their community, local services and just exactly when bin day is. So, for this week’s chat, we will divert from the world stage and zoom in to chat with Mathew about exactly why it’s worth taking parish and town councils seriously, as opposed to just a place where people tell each other they have no authority.


This week’s chat also slightly breaks another rule of the show, which is that I vowed not to have party politicians but as you’ll hear Mathew is a Lib Dem councillor. However, he agreed not to just shout campaign slogans at me and so I agreed to bend the rules this once. As you’ll hear, Mathew is genuinely passionate about being a councillor and the importance of local government and after several weeks of hearing about MPs being so unbothered about their elected role they’re doing at least 2 other jobs, it was refreshing to talk to someone who takes his part in the country’s democratic system very seriously. Hope you enjoy this chat as much as I did talking to him. Here is Mathew:




And we’ll be back with Mathew in a minute but first…




Despite the name, it seems the climate conference deal wasn’t much cop at all, and people who’d like to be alive in the future, sorry climate activists as they are apparently called, are saying it’s nowhere near enough what needs to be done. But on the other hand people who can’t see past their own bank account and next week say ‘so much was done I mean all those people who’ve been told by scientists that climate change is going to destroy us finally understand that it’s not good and may even think about doing something about it one day.’ Phew. But what is in the Glasgow Climate Pact and what have 197 countries signed up for?


The main pact was about keeping the Paris Agreement alive, because that was 6 years ago, and no one’s bothered trying so far. With any luck in 10 years everyone will agree to keep the Glasgow agreement alive as the Paris one got torched. The Paris agreement as you prob know is to keep global temperatures from going any higher than 1.5C above pre-industrial levels by 2030. So as part of this pact countries have been asked to revisit and strengthen their plans for 2030 by the end of next year. They were previously asked not to do this till 2025, but it’s been moved forward so now they only have one year to say what they’ll have even less time to manage. Current plans would mean countries would keep to the 1.5C max rise by accidentally going to 2.4C, destroying all life on Earth and then immediately reducing emissions because no one is around to make them. Hopefully they’ll find something a bit better than that. There is to be an acceleration of phasing down of unabated – which means it’s not got nothing capturing its carbon – coal power and inefficient fossil fuel subsidies. So not completely stopping digging up old stuff, just the worst of it to burn. It was phase out use, but now its just phase down because India asked nicely and everyone went ‘yeah ok whats the worst that can happen?’ Oh.


Everyone agreed in the pact that there is ‘alarm and utmost concern’ over the fast pace the world is heating up. And then they all shook hands and went for lunch or something. The final agreement also contains regret that wealthy nations didn’t provide $100bn to climate impacted poorer nations by 2020 as previously pledged and now they’re being asked to do it urgently which means by 2025. I’ve seen stronger deadlines on student newspapers. Developed nations have agreed to double what they previously pledged though, which means it’ll still be at least five times lower than what’s needed. Still it’s the thought that counts right? A number of developing nations asked that there would also be financial assistance given to deal with the loss and damage caused by climate change but the US and EU said no and then will presumably also complain when the refugee crisis is full of people escaping those areas.


There are calls to curb methane by 2030, which obviously goes against having a plant based diet. Arf. Sorry its just impossible not to do it every time. But also methane is a terrible greenhouse gas caused by animal farming and fossil fuel burning, and 100 countries signed up to cut it by 30%. In a separate deal with the US, China agreed to cut their methane emissions too because they need special measures for their methane because its so potent…no I can’t do it without laughing. Look you have to find joy in this somewhere right?


There was some special text about the special role that indigenous people, local communities, children and local governments play in tackling the climate crisis, just so the blame can be passed to them when it goes wrong. And all the countries that signed agreed full transparency on how they’re getting on with their targets and to provide updates every two years. Great! Except all of that is just a pledge and now it’s kinda just up to their own sense of morality, and keenness to not let the planet die as to whether it happens or not. If so, things could turn around. If not, at least some parts of the world will cut down their energy used when making CGI effects for disaster films as they’ll just be able to film out of the window instead.



And now back to Mathew…



Thanks to Mathew for that. You can find him at @MathewHulbert on Twitter or if you’re in Barwell in Leicestershire on your parish council. NALC can be found at and on all them socials. Also, if you enjoyed this chat, do listen back to the chat from April this year with Rhian E Jones about how Preston council localised wealth and used local government to really improve the city. Well worth a listen as well as a read of Rhian’s book ‘Paint Your Town Red’ all about it too.


Got the next few weeks of guests sorted, hopefully but as always, what would you like to hear about and from whom wouldst thou likest to be doing the hearings from? Drop me a line, because I’m always in need of lines for things like washing or not writing off the page, and then also tell me what chats I should be having at




And that’s that for this week’s Partly Political Broadcast podcast. How was it for you? Oh really. Oh well I’ll do less of that next time, sorry. But otherwise, if you’ve enjoyed even a smidgen of this like a radio show but less popular thing that happens, then please do suggest it to others who like hearing things, maybe even donate to the to support more of these occurring and if you fancy it, chuck a nice 5 star review for it on apple podcasts or places like that.


Holla at ye Acast, my brother the Last Skeptik and Kat Day.


This will be back next week when the government announces that all of HS2 has been scrapped but to prove they aren’t corrupt the £96bn funding will instead go to one of Michael Green’s children to draw a picture of a train instead.




This week’s show was sponsored by my lucrative second job.




Linear liner notes 

No wonder the Conservatives want everyone to get back to work, as that way they won’t feel so lonely with their entire party having 12 jobs each. And of course focusing on all of them except the one they were elected to do. Meanwhile global leaders have agreed at Cop26 that they’d prefer to be underwater rulers. Plus a chat with Cllr Mathew Hulbert (@MathewHulbert) about the ins and outs of parish and town councils.


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