You can picture the scene, can’t you?
10 Downing Street. The lights down low, to show how serious it is. Iraq is in crisis. Gaza is in flames. Vladamir Putin is eyeing up everything west of the Crimea. And now, another of the ministers at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office has quit, unable to get by on starvation wages.
The Prime Minister hunches low over his desk, deep in thought. “It’s time,” he murmurs eventually. “We’re out of options. Make the call.”
“Prime Minister, things can’t be that desperate!” the Foreign Secretary says, desperation in his grey eyes.
“They are. Get him here, now. Bring me…James Duddridge!“
Yes, in this hour of darkness, David Cameron has made the courageous choice to appoint Rochford & Southend East MP James Duddridge to be the new Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office. A man whose foreign policy experience is seemingly limited to his African banking connections, and more notable for holding exclusive surgeries for Halifax Bank customers, is now representing Britain on the world stage.
Putin must be terrified.
I can think of no crisis, in foreign policy or any other area, to which the answer is “James Duddridge”.