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Yes, Prime Minister

June 9, 2009
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I have been enjoying seeing again some of the episodes of the BritCom “”Yes, Prime Minister” which is a sequel to “Yes, Minister”. Both series are based on the relationship between a Cabinet Minister (and then Prime Minister) with his senior civil servants. The civil servants are much more intelligent and well-read than the politician; only in native cunning can he outsmart them and get his own way. The episodes are all are extremely  funny and none more so than the one I saw again this week, when the Prime Minister has to consider the appointment of a Church of England Bishop.

It is impossible to tell the whole story, but here are a few gems I noted.

1)   Sir Humphrey: “An atheist clergyman couldn’t continue to draw his stipend, so when they stop  believing in God, they call themselves modernists.”

2)   Sir Humphrey: “The Queen is inseparable from the Church of England.”

       Prime Minister: “What about God?”

       Sir Humphrey: “I believe he is what’s called an optional extra.”

3)   Prime Minister: “Bishops – they’re just managers in fancy dress.”

4)   Prime Minister: “Truro is to the Church rather like what the Vehicle Licensing Centre in Swansea is        to the Civil Service.”

5)   Bernard: “He’s been waiting for a Bishopric for years.

       Sir Humphrey: “Long time no See!”

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Paul Edington (“The Madness of King George”) is the suave Cabinet Secretary. What an actor! This is a series to watch if you see them repeated or can get them on DVD.

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