Monday, May 27, 2013

Highest Office

By Jeffrey Hill

This cartoon by Morten Morland from The Times uses a play on words to comment on the unimpressive performance of the UK's coalition government on a whole range of issues: the economy, same-sex marriage, the EU referendum, etc. etc.

The scene is a meeting of the Cabinet. The ministers are sitting around the Cabinet table in leather-backed chairs. However, only the tops of their heads are visible (Prime Minister David Cameron, third from left, can be recognized by his hair). The title of the cartoon, 'Highest Office', refers to the office of Prime Minister, but the expression is used ironically to describe the lack of stature of the current Cabinet, who are visibly not 'up to the job'. The blank sheet of paper in front of each minister can be seen as symbolizing their lack of ideas. The message seems to be that we have a Cabinet of pygmies rather than giants.

1. In a room, the fireplace is the place where a fire can be lit and the area on the wall and floor surrounding this place.
2. A mantelpiece is a wood or stone shelf which is the top part of a border round a fireplace.
3. A candlestick is a narrow object with a hole at the top which holds a candle. Related articles

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