Dave lords it

Red Meat Rishi is looking forward to Christmas


This article is taken from the December-January 2024 issue of The Critic. To get the full magazine why not subscribe? Right now we’re offering five issues for just £10.

“Jingle Bells!” Rishi is singing. “Starmer smells! Corbyn ran away!” We are putting up decorations to get ready for Christmas in a place called Chequers. It is a house in the country like the one we have in Yorkshire, only not as nice. The swimming pool is a lot chillier for a start. But Akshata says we have to make the most of it, because we probably won’t be here next year. She also tells the girls they aren’t to mention that to Rishi.

“Is it going to be a surprise for Daddy?”

“You know, I think it might be.”

It has been a busy few weeks. At the start of November, Rishi came out of his study looking very excited. “I’m Red Meat Rishi!” he told Akshata. “I’m all about cutting taxes and giving the party what it wants.”

“But darling,” Akshata replied, “we don’t eat red meat.”

“We don’t cut taxes either. It’s a figure of speech.”

“I think it needs more work.” Rishi looked sad and went back inside. 

He came out again a few days later looking very pleased. “I’m a centrist now,” he announced. “I’m going to strengthen my team by bringing back a big beast Tory who knows how to win elections.”

“I thought you weren’t speaking to Boris.”

It turned out he meant someone called Lord Dave, who used to be Rishi’s boss several prime ministers ago. Lord Dave has been giving Rishi lots of useful advice, like “Shut the door on your way out” and “A little more milk in my coffee next time”. 

“In the 2010 election,” Lord Dave told Rishi, “our big advantage was the country had a useless government full of people fighting among themselves, and the economy had tanked.” 

Rishi looked quite optimistic at that point, but Lord Dave said this was all less useful if you were the prime minister. 

“Well, how did you win in 2015?” Rishi asked. 

“Can you blame the Lib Dems for everything?”

“Not really.”

“Promise a strong and stable government?”


“OK. Is there anything you think would be a really stupid idea? Promise a referendum on it. Can’t fail. Now, be a good chap and pop downstairs for some more biscuits.” 

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