The Spectator

How about a really radical reshuffle?

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All this “talent” business is getting out of hand. In some of Gordon’s speeches, it sounds like a reference to the parable of the Talents (Matthew 25: 14-30). And, for the record, this is how that particular Gospel story ends for the unfortunate soul who squanders his asset: "Cast ye the unprofitable servant into outer darkness: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth." On the other hand, when Prime Minister Brown says with a twinkle for the hundredth time that this will be a “government of all the talents” I am reminded rather of Britain’s Got Talent, and Piers Morgan, Amanda Holden and Simon Cowell judging the auditioning acts.

Rumours are flying around Westminster which was obviously all part of the plan – Chris Patten for the Cabinet? A big business name for high office? The speculation is as important as the end result. It creates the sense of action and heat: an administration that is a furnace of change.

It all depends on how widely Gordon is willing to spread his net and (as is being heavily suggested) restructure Whitehall to fit personalities and skills. How about Billy the Fish for Minister of Sport? Or Howard from the Halifax ads as Minister for Financial Services? Trisha Goddard as Secretary of State for Listening and Learning? Bono as Minister for Love Actually? David Bowie as Secretary of State for Ch-ch-ch-changes? Vicky Pollard as head of welfare task force? Just some thoughts while we wait.