In an effort to get down with the proles post-Budget, Conservatives Chair Grant Shapps this week kindly let us know that the new Workers Party is looking out for the plebs, treating us to duty cuts on our two favourite pastimes: beer and bingo. Social media cruelly responded by getting creative, delivering some parodies even the most skilled spin doctors would struggle to parry. While the gaffe has been the source of much-deserved amusement and ridicule, Shapps joins a long list of politicians just desperate to get their soft hands dirty in order to show they’re just like us. Here are a selection of classics:
1. Osborne’s Beluga Bake.
Following the decision to tax hot takeaway food, a flurried campaign by tabloids and chain bakeries elevated the ‘pasty tax‘ to prime-time news. Cue a baker’s dozen of cabinet and shadow cabinet members heading to their nearest Greggs to grab their daily pasty to demonstrate their working class credentials. Struggling to work out how to get into his steak bake without cutlery, Chancellor George Osborne soon decided he’d better make a U-turn.
2. Red (Top) Ed Miliband.
In his official attempt to ditch the ‘Red Ed’ tag in favour of working class traditionalism, Ed Miliband naturally took the story to his preferred daily news publication. You know, the one with the footy and Jeremy Clarkson and tits.
3. Ed Balls, Left Back (in the changing room).
Bilderberg veteran Ballsy was among the first to sign up for Labour MPs FC to demonstrate his ‘left wing’ credentials. Sadly they were about as much use on the field as off it.
4. Danny Checks Up on the (Food) Banks.
Osborne’s human footrest beams as he joins us at the local food bank. Expenses have been reigned in these days and downwards social mobility is a reality Danny knows all too well.
5. Nigel Necks It.
It seems only a matter of time before Nigel Farage becomes a parliamentary fresher, and like any good fresher he’s happy to down it like a good ‘un. Dulwich-educated stockbroker Nige is super keen to make sure we know he’s just like you and me, and cor blimey guv’nor isn’t he just? Unless you or I happen to be Muslim, gay, a woman, young, poor, European, and so forth, that is…
6. Hague Blends With the Locals.
Determined to make the Conservatives appear more youthful under his leadership against the backdrop of the John Major premiership, Hague began the long campaign up to the 1997 election by reconnecting with his modest working class roots, much to the press’ enjoyment. At the Notting Hill Carnival he decided to ditch the baseball cap and absorb some of the local culture by grabbing the nearest coconut. What could be more ordinary?
7. Blair Ain’t Bovvered.
Always up for some light-hearted fun and games – playing the guitar, tennis, bombing civilians in Iraq – Tony Blair lent his gesticulating hand to Comic Relief in 2007. Not only did he give us a jolly good giggle, he showed us his inner ‘chav’. Precious moments. “War criminal? Yeah, am I bovvered though?”
8. Tory Britain is the Pits.
Ever wondered how Maggie became an expert on mining? Take a look at this photo and you’ll see that Thatcher herself was no stranger to the coal-hole, and the camera never lies. She might have started life as a greengrocer’s daughter but by ‘eck Maggie loved nothing more than donning her hard hat for an honest day’s graft down the shaft. Unfortunately her natural affinity for the industry waned when her fellow miners didn’t share her enthusiasm for closing 70 pits.