The King of the Badgers has had a tottering time trying to sort out this issue of voting reform for the Badgertown Town Council.
Yesterday, the curtain was raised on the campaigns in the referendum to be held on 5 May.
Everybody is in a right tiswas over it. Politics does indeed make strange bedfellows. Badgers do not normally get on very well with dwarfs - but many have joined forces in calling for reform.
The big problem for the King of the Badgers has been to solve the problem of how a Yes/No referendum would work when there are so many different opinions on what the new voting system should be.
He has decided to include a box for voters to write in their own ideas for the perfect system. Cowgill will then feed these into his computer. He hopes that this will provide an answer, not only to the ultimate means of voting, but also to the meaning of life, the universe, and everything.
The Old Monkey, who is very well read, insists that he already knows the answer. Apparently, it is 42?
This year I am conducting a census. I need accurate information on the numbers of inhabitants who live in Homeward, where they live and what their needs are. So they must all take part.
This must, of course, include the dwarfs who live on my moon colony.
My old friend Professor Brian Cox rang up begging me to let him be the Census Taker "Oh please, please, let me go, Uncle!" he declared "Even when I was a year old, I’d watch anything to do with Apollo and the moon landing! I have always wanted to go!" he pleaded.
Of course, it is his one chance - the Americans gave up going years ago wheras the dwrfs are up there mining Helium 3 for me. As you know, dwarfs are excellent at mining and subterranean extraction. The majority of our moonbase is underground but we do have have a number of solar farms above ground to power it.
Sadly, after his long journey in my rocket, he was not well received by the dwarfs. I should have warned him. They are a truculent lot and don't really like anyone. They consider the Census to be some underhanded ploy, by myself, to get details out of them for some equally underhanded reason.
The cause of this seems to be some campaign by the Badfort Crowd, who have put up posters all around the Moonbase depicting me in a particularly bad light.
I have done my best to assuage the dwarfs - I even put in a category for Cosmic Gypsy Travellers, because they insist that they are stardust and golden and have got themselves back to the garden ( a reference to my Moon Farm, one presumes!).
Anyway, they pelted the Prof with rotten tomatoes and he was very upset because he much admires the dwarfs - he thinks that the Red Dwarfs and the White Dwarfs are brilliant!
Following a remark made by a Mister Karl Pilkington, on Comic Relief day, some disreputable gossip has been put about by members of the Badfort Crowd regarding the provenance of my new pair of slippers. The remark can be found at 2.20 on this video.
Let me set the record straight here and now. These emerald and ruby encrusted slippers were not bought using the proceeds of money collected by the dwarfs, of my many towers, for the benefit of Comic Relief.
They were bought for me by The King of the Badgers in gratitude for services rendered, by myself, in an economic capacity.
Also, for the record, I do not go to the newsagent in my slippers - or indeed, at all.
A freshly ironed copy of The Homeward Gazette is placed on my desk, by The Old Monkey, every morning.
The news recently has all been very depressing. In these harsh economic times, it is difficult to ask people to donate to good causes. However, though the mountains divide, and the oceans are wide it's a small world after all - so I hope you will all be good neighbours.
Today is, of course, Comic Relief Day. With all the disasters around the world, not the easiest time to be raising money, but they do a lot of good work for our neighbours in Great Britain and Africa so do your bit if you can, here: http://www.comicrelief.com/
Talking of being neighbourly, the TV reality series "Love Thy Neighbour" has caused almost as outrage as the furore over Midswinter Moiders.
In this series people compete to win a two bedroom flat in Afghan Flats. And it's the existing residents of Afghan Flats who get to decide who wins the prize.
Not much of a prize. Afghan Flats is the highest tower and my Aunt, Evelyn Maidy, lives there. It is not a very nice neighbourhood. It’s full of thousands of dwarfs of the most cross and irritable disposition. She only lives there because she loves domineering over the dwarfs. The tower has a spiral lift – rather like an ordinary lift but keeps going round and round. The dwarfs are a truculent lot and don't really like anyone.Typically, the production company appear to have chosen contestants that ensured that none of the tenants will be spared the opportunity to air any latent prejudices.
First up was a badger family - everyone knows of the running feud between dwarfs and badgers. Beer bottle resting on his belly, one dwarf pronounced that, “T’aint the place for ’em. Thar's nowhere for him to dig.”
There is also a family of Crookball people. "Bloomin' hippies!" commented one particularly miserable dwarf. "What they go to be so happy about? Goin' around with flowers in their hair and singin' - they get on my bloomin' wick!"
An aspiring bourgeoisie family of dwarfs fared no better. Their insistence on walking on stilts all the time, to increase their height, inflamed the locals. "Full of airs and graces - they look down on us because they think they are taller! - thar just bloomin' sticks of wood, that's all!" declared one irate dwarf.
Beaver Hateman has even competed - although this seems to be purely so that he can espouse his revolutionary politics. He tried bribing the tenants with jugs of Black Tom - but the dwarfs are too canny to fall for that. They got drunk and then burnt out the flat.
The gorilla did not seem bothered about the fact that the flat was now all black and sooty. I think he might win - because all the dwarfs are scared of him.
Brin True-Blood, the dwarf who produces and co-created the popular television drama series Midswinter Moiders has been suspended by Homeward Television following controversial comments made about the show in the Homeward Gazette.
He said "We don't have badgers involved. Because it wouldn't be a Homeward Tower with them. It just wouldn't work. Ours stories our set in the fictional high rise tower of Midswinter, they are gritty urban stories. Badgers are rural - they like the countryside and living underground. We're the last bastion of Homewardness and I want to keep it that way."
The fictional tower is notable for its particularly high crime rate. In reality, there is no crime in Homeward and therefore no need for a police force, so the televsion series includes a fictional Midswinter Constabulary - inundated with the number of murder cases that come their way. These usually take place deep within the mine workings beneath Homeward and inevitably involve greedy dwarfs trying to steal my gold.
The King of the Badgers was asked to comment on the furore.
“Clearly, as a fictional work, the producers of Midswinter Moiders are entitled to their flights of fancy, but everyone knows that Badgers are better diggers than dwarfs and therefore far better miners. Uncle often employs us in supervisory roles, down his mines, and the series is not a fair reflection of Homeward society.
It is not true, either, to say that Badgers do not like urban environments - Badgertown proves that badgers are quite happy living in cities."
"That's as maybe," responded Brin, "but they don't like being up in a skyscraper - do they? They go all wobbly! I’m trying to make something that appeals to a certain dwarf audience, which seems to succeed. And I don’t want to change it.”
"I suppose, we might have one as a gardener on the roof garden - I admit they do like digging!" he added.
There was a bit of a storm in my cup of Earl Grey yesterday afternoon.
Someone opened a twitter account just to stalk me!
Oh well, that is the price of celebritydom, I suppose.
It seems they were incensed by the piece I wrote on the King of the Badgers charity, Cosmic Relief.
At first, I thought it must be Beaver Hateman having another pop at me. Now, I suspect that it might have been The King of the Badgers, himself, furious at my disclosing his use of unpaid interns.
I am not keen on the use of interns. Being from humble beginnings, I could not have afforded to work for nothing on leaving University. I had to get on my bicycle (I had managed to buy one by then) and earn a crust. In my first job I was paid two bunches of bananas a week - I ate one and sold the other! My savings soon began to accrue. I used the skins from the eaten bananas to build a most hospitable abode.
When Goodman the cat came to work for me he said "Oh, fantastic, Sir, will I be your intern?" He loves American hardboiled detective stories, and so loves any American expressions.
"I prefer the expression, apprentice, Goodman." I replied "You shall learn a trade and receive a roof over your head, three fish a day, and a half a crown a week - show merit and you will go far!"
Goodman was, of course, overwhelmed with gratitude.
I am a firm believer in a meritocracy - for how else could an elephant rise to such dizzying heights?
Celebrities and others in the public eye are being given a new way to set the record straight.
Website ICorrect.com is the brainchild of a Hong Kong entrepreneur and sets out to protect forever in cyber space the reputation of those who believe in setting the record straight on accusation.
It costs a modest £620 a year, a small price to pay to protect my global reputation, so I have used the icorrect website to finally put a stop to these base rumours put about by the Badfort Crowd regarding the 'bicycle' incident.
The King of the Badgers asked me if I would be willing to take part in Cosmic Relief.
He is trying to raise 10 billion pounds to go to the moon! Of course, I have already been there a number of times and we have a colony of dwarfs on the moon.
But the King is keen to have his own colony of badgers there. I think he will be lucky to raise the money, myself, given the usual parlous state of his finances.
Anyway I am doing my bit by selling myself on TwitRelief. Bids have already reached over £ 5 million! Click on the image above to see!
I think that Barack is bidding for the American government - he is desperate to have a meeting with me about the World situation.
Part of the money raised is supposed to help impoverished young badgers (as a sop to those who complain that it is silly to spend money going to the moon when the economic situation in Badgertown is so bad) and the King of the Badgers has come under some flack for employing interns, with no pay, on Cosmic Relief. "Why not employ some poor youths, and give them a chance on the career ladder - rather than the sons and daughters of the rich who can afford to work for nothing and boost their CV's!" they cry.
The King of the Badgers is furious! "What other job can I give the Prince!" he moaned to me "No one would pay him to make the mess of things he does!, anyway I don't want a lot of scruffy cubs around!"
It transpires that Beaver Hateman, himself, approved the botched plan to send a team of armed Badfort 'diplomats'into Tarboosh in, what he claimed, was an effort to build 'diplomatic' contacts with the rebels.
He now says they have withdrawn after "a serious misunderstanding about their role, leading to their temporary detention."
It seems great offence was caused to the people of Tarboosh when the Badfort Crowd gatecrashed a party. "They were not invited," declared a rebel leader "They climbed over a fence into the back garden and stole all our booze. We discovered them hiding under a rhododendron, completely intoxicated!"
"It has been a complete misunderstanding!" argued Beaver "We were merely trying to show solidarity with our revolutionary brothers, in the spirit of Marxist Internationalism! We rang the doorbell, but the music was so loud they could not hear us - so, we had to climb over the fence."
It must be noted, that Tarboosh is the only country in the world where Black Tom (the Badfort Crowd's favourite tipple) is naturally distilled in underground caves.
Beaver Hateman has not yet managed to explain how his aeroplane came to be filled with hundreds of barrels of this alcoholic beverage.
I have had to sack the King of the Badger's son from his role as trade envoy for Homeward.
"I am afraid you have now just become a national embarrassment !" I told him after giving him a good ticking off!
It transpires that he has got into some very murky deals with a "notorious" member of a gang of ferrets, took a holiday with a infamous 'Black Tom' smuggler and even used an official trip to find an unsuspecting buyer for his appalling set. Rundown, and with most of its tunnels collapsing, it appears the hapless purchaser has paid well over the odds!
Eyebrows have also been raised in some quarters about his diplomacy style.
Now, most badgers are proud, hot-tempered, and fond of simple pleasures. They are fond of feasting, sparring, sailing, and drinking (often all at the same time). They are highly acquisitive, yet notoriously frugal. Boastful creatures, they are fond of tall tales and one-upsmanship. It seems, however, that the Prince has taken these traits to extremes.
One ambassador described him as "cocky" and "rude".
What was he thinking!
I only gave him the job because his father begged me. He had tried to find a role for the Prince in the Badgertown Navy. It only had one boat - patrolling the Badgertown Park Lake. However, it sank after he 'accidently' rammed a rowing boat full of anti-monarchist dwarfs.
It appears that HBH, His Badger Highness, has become known as His Buffoon Highness in diplomatic circles.
I shall have a lot of work to do repairing the damage he has done to my reputation around the world!