Sunday 29 April 2018

Granny Wields The Knife

The Blessed Forum is set to become the latest victim of the post-Peer Review clampdown on stakeholder engagement - known as Granny’s Guillotine.

Back in November, Granny challenged the Forum on its value and effectiveness, as there seemed to be a lot of people saying things that she didn’t agree with. “The Forum was fine when they said what we wanted them to say” said Granny. “Recently though, reactionary forces have started to talk about things which are not reflective of the views which I hear from my small group of what I call ‘friends’. Frankly I’m bored with hearing about governance and accountability, whatever they may be. I’d rather they had lectures on climate change and the effect of Brexit on farming, that should keep them quiet.”

Members reminded her that their official role is to offer advice and comment on the Blessed aims and objectives, and said that it’s hard to be effective when nobody is listening and members have to endure Death by PowerPoint instead.

But such dissent is obviously in breach of the Blessed Purpose and so, faced with the prospect of Forum members discussing the outcome of the Peer Review, Chairman Keith Sausage was bullied into cancelling February’s meeting at the last minute on the basis that there was nothing to talk about.

Determined to know how the recommendations of the Peer Review were to be addressed, one brave member put forward an agenda item for last week’s meeting. But the Authority cleverly deployed the Pikeman Pretence, by pretending not to receive the email and instead issued a one item agenda intended to disband the Forum altogether.

Honey Trap

To make things worse, when members arrived for the meeting they found that it had been hijacked by Granny and her ever-loyal poodle Dick Bilson, who took the chair which had been suddenly and mysteriously vacated by Sausage. Quickly realising that he wasn’t a member of the Forum and therefore couldn’t chair it, the former Ambassador to Magnolia decided to cancel the meeting and convene a different one instead - to discuss the future of the Blessed Forum which was, in summary, that it didn’t have one.

“There are far too many organisations involved, and disregarding all of them consumes a lot of resources” he said. “So we’re going to let them have 2 workshop things each year instead, discussing one subject which we’ll plan for them a year in advance to make sure that there’s no chance of it being relevant.”

“We’ll replace the more regular meetings with discussion by email - which is much, much easier to ignore” he added, as Granny tossed him a treat.

The early-retired ex-diplomat is being positioned as Granny’s heir apparent, as nobody else is foolish enough to take on the poisoned chalice. “They’ll be begging for Granny to come back before the year is out” said Dr Pikeman, shaking his head in disbelief.

Friday 20 April 2018

Blessed Temper Tantrums Rock Shaky Peace Process

The Blessed Society ("Friends of the Blessed") was rocked to its foundations recently with the shock resignation from their ranks of Blessed Chair Granny Burgess, along with her ever-loyal pet poodle Dick Bilson.

The surprise move is a protest against an article in The Hamster written by its Chairman “Uncle” Paul Special-Fried, who (as a Blessed Member) is banned from criticism of the Authority under the Burgess Accord, agreed earlier this year after a scathing Peer Review which has been swept under the carpet alongside the previous one.

In his report, Special-Fried suggested that relations between the Blessed Society and Blessed Authority had been difficult at times and said he was sorry that the Society wasn’t given the chance to contribute to the Peer Review.

Keen to dispel any notion of disharmony, the hyper-sensitive and increasingly-deranged emeritus professor flew off on her broomstick in a rage, resigning her membership of the Society and drafting a motion of no-confidence in Special-Fried for Blessed Members to nod through at the next meeting. “I won’t tolerate criticism from these so-called ‘elected’ non-academics” she said. “They can speak their mind, or they can be Blessed Members - but they can’t do both.”

“The Peer Review told me what I wanted to hear and anyone who disagrees with me can go and stand in the corridor” she added.

Blessed Members were left bemused by the outburst. “I thought we'd put all this divisiveness behind us,” said one, “but she’s the absolute bloody limit. Who does she think she is, resigning from the Society on the Authority’s behalf just because somebody contradicts her?”

But former-diplomat Dick Bilson was quick to support his mistress, swiftly cancelling his membership with a strongly worded letter to the Society’s secretary. “Yap yap yap yap yap” he said.

As he left Yeurgh House for the evening, Dr Pikeman was heard muttering “that bloody woman is going to destroy all my hard work” and shaking his head in disbelief.