There's a peculiarly cringe making quality about some things in life; being sober and watching uncles dancing is amongst them. As is Hazel Blears' risible attempt to attribute the launch of a white paper with the characteristics of a new single.
Some bumfluff policy wonk in her department probably said something like "Yeah, we can get down with the groovy dudes on this; it's all Web 2.0 now. What we need for this white paper is, er, a promo video, a blog, a message board, a Twitter channel and pages on Myspace and Bebo. I'll get Mr Mucklethwaite in Corporate IT on to it straight away!". You couldn't make it up.
The forum has 13 messages. All written by the moderator, Mrs Wilkins. Blears' blog has been written for seven days in advance by Mr Price from the Press Unit. And her Twitter entries are typed by a work experience girl after being cleared by the Permanent Under Secretary, the Press Secretary, the Parliamentary Under Secretary, the Downing Street Press Office, The Cabinet Office, the Head of Communications, the eGovernment Empowerment Manager, the Head of Corporate IT and the Publicity Liaison Officer.
"Hazel is excited about writing her first blog post." (submitted by Mr Price)
"Hazel finally has a chance for a quick break before heading back to the Department." (submitted by the Diary Secretary)
"Hazel is looking forward to the next event in Camberwell and celebrating with some cake." (submitted by Maureen from Corporate Typing, who's on a diet at the moment)
"Today's already been a busy day and it's only 11:30! We're off to Parliament soon to make a big statement...we'll keep you posted!" (submitted by Miss Zwicicz from the Departmental Creche)
The whole thing is inane beyond words. Just utterly cringe making. If you'd paid a top city PR firm a million quid to come up with something to demonstrate how out of touch Zanu Labour are, they couldn't have done better than this.
Jay Leno's quip that 'politics is show business for ugly people' comes inevitably to mind. Except that this single has already flopped.