Having admitted to using fake’ stories to support benefit cuts, the Department for Work & Pensions (DWP) has confessed to having fabricated an entire minister. For the last six years a glove puppet called ‘IDS’ has been used as a front for a raft of ridiculous policies, including selling the poor for scrap, burning witches and the bedroom tax.
Claims that Iain Duncan Smith was loosely based on a Dickensian character have been refuted. Yet a Freedom of Information request, by website Welfare Weekly, has revealed that the fake MP was a deliberate composite of Idi Amin and a Brussels sprout. A DWP spokeswoman admitted: ‘Frankly we were surprised that anyone was fooled by this badly drawn pantomime villain, but I guess that’s why people like Simon Cowell.’
The character began life as a pretend candidate in a Conservative party leaflet, then was ‘elected’ as an MP and even had a short but entirely fictional period as party leader, during which time reams of risible policies were put into his mouth for test purposes as the party already knew it had no chance of winning any election in the foreseeable future.
Of course this is not the first time a branch of government has been concocted – indeed, the entire so-called ‘coalition years’ were simply one of Paddy Ashdown’s more vivid ‘cheese dreams’. Fears have grown about the authenticity of other prominent politicians, with questions asked about Boris Johnson’s hair, George Osborne’s soul and the existence of an actual opposition party.
The DWP have said that IDS was only intended for ‘illustrative purposes’, to show what real moron might be like. The fact that he did not exist does not invalidate this exercise, it claimed. The spokeswoman said: ‘We will continue to cut down on bogus claimants and asylum seekers, as soon as we have made some up to cut.’