Thursday, 27 September 2007

Community intimidation, out with the goombas

I out in Little Sicily today as part of Community Intimidation Week. Don Campbell is concerned by growing reports that Labouristi are preparing to hit the mattresses as early as November and we are disciplining the cugine to be ready for trouble.

Accompanying me on doorstep are two old Liberali cronies, Linda 'the Knife' Jack and Tom 'Liberali Polecat' Papworth, reliable goombas who can be trusted in shake down for the Don.

I just finish helping local university professor understand wisdom of contribution to Liberali plans to stop Labouristi charging entry to his students when Jack the Knife take to me to one side.

"Liberali" she say "I can't help but notice that every time you target a house it's the man you demand gives you the money."

"Um si, I feel more comfortable that way, it's what I know."

"Well it's not very fair is it?"


"Look, we're never going to create an equal Family if we constantly reinforce gender stereotypes in our intimidation techniques. It's bad enough that of the three of us out tonight, two of us are white Sicilian men, shocking actually when we consider lovely Signor Fiyaz is available and so very experienced and energetic at putting the frighteners on."

"I sorry about my colour, tan tend to fade when out of Sicily more than two months. I ask Signor Fiyaz about tonight but he off with Signor Hughes attempting to recruit some ex-Tamil Tigers for special ops against his Singhalese rival Signora Fernando."

"Fascinating, but not my point..., observe"

She walk up to next door and ring bell. MAYHEM intimidation card tell me family of public sector professionals live there. A couple open the door.

"Helloooo, Ms. and Mr. Postlewaite is it...? lovely... can I interest you in the protection of Don Campbell?"

The man begin to speak.

"Sorry love I was talking to Ms. Postlewaite... Janice isn't it... red really suits you... these trying times must be so hard to make ends meet what with all the nonsense the Labouristi have been up to with your jobs..."

Polecat drift over to observe as well... conversation continue for a couple of minutes, couple smile a lot, Mr. Postlewaite occasionally look very sheepish. Soon Jack the Knife is back with big bunch of notes.

"See" she say, "all it takes sometimes is a woman's touch. Mrs. Postlewaite has made a handsome contribution and agreed to put up a poster of Signora Kramer, Mr. Postlewaite has agreed it's absolutely disgraceful that he earns 20% more than his wife and doubled her contribution, adding 40% by way of apology for his gender's crimes against wimmin."

We very impressed.

Polecat though take me aside and say.

"That's all very well for these modern progressive families, it doesn't work though in the streets with big houses where the Conservatori used to hold power, before Hollywood Don Cameron decided they were going to ditch their old territories to reach the people who shop at Primark. Allow me to demonstrate."

He take us down more salubrious street near Little Sicily Riviera and select family who both work in banking sector.

"Hello Mr. Jermyn" he say when man in pin-striped trousers, red braces and stripy shirt open door "Ede and Ravenscroft I see, exceptional tailoring, tell me have you ever thought about diversifying your portfolio into Signor Huhne's renewable hedge fund... Signor Cable's protection against inheritance theft perhaps...?"

He again continue for several minutes and come back with handsome bankers bond that should see little Liberali through university, whatever Labouristi do to them...

It sure good to get out in community with friends.

Thursday, 20 September 2007

United in respect on the fringe

Part of joy of Family gathering is fringe discussions, which often showpiece more interesting ideas and techniques than main event. Today I host discussion between two old friends from Euroenforcer days, Signor 'BabyDon' Clegg and Signor 'Carbonator' Huhne. The topic is "Respect, what I like best about my paesano"

Carbonator start:

"What I like best about my good friend Signor Clegg is his courage. Personally I wouldn't have announced to a room full of Sicilians that I wanted to open the United Territories to waves of immigrants after their jobs and homes. But I salute his bravery in doing so. It shows true commitment to courting unpopularity for the Family in an era of flim-flam merchants chasing the easy score."

"Grazie Signor," say BabyDon "what I like best about my eccellente and loyal friend Capo Huhne is his vision. His notion, for example, that we should put the squeeze on all forms of motor transport by 2040 goes far beyond suggestions made by more modest and cautious men of honour. His thinking is so far ahead of more ordinary and humble citizens that in less enlightened times he might have been referred to as a mystic or seer. So much more refreshing than the easy reassurance of the popular."

"My colleague is too kind," say Carbonator "and it reminds me of another one of his qualities, his ability to adopt many of the mannerisms of our opponents, old Don Blair and Hollywood Don Cameron. Some might have looked at these superficial fly-by-night opportunists with disdain. But my friend sees aspects of their characters that he much admires. It is a tribute to his adaptability."

"My life-long amico is of course correct" repost BabyDon "learning from your enemies and an interest in winning are two of my interests. I on the other hand admire his traditionalism and appeal to Moustache Petes who have been fighting for the Family in the same way since the 1970s without ever seeing the need to adopt the tactics and techniques of larger more successful Families. It gives him a real homely appeal."

"It is of course good of my esteemed and respected collaboratore to highlight his association with the much admired 'right-on' wing of the Family." comment Carbonator "While many would shy away from the ideas espoused by his former employer Conservatori Commissar Leon Brittain, he does not flinch from that controversy. It is most refreshing."

"It is equally refreshing of my admired and eminent accomplice to have reinvented himself as a champion of the 'left-behinds'," add BabyDon. "Some would have said his seven homes, former career exploiting bankers, and application of market-stall solutions to traditional forms of violence against the vulnerable would have made him naturally right-on. However that former Labouristi, kicked out for having views too 'committed' for that Family, are flocking to his banner, is a source of pride for all of us. I will have no hesitation in labelling this movement the new Huhney Left as a token of my deep respect."

At that moment Signora Campbell enter the room

"The Don would like to see you both..." she say acidly "... now... he has some matters of respect to discuss."

I sure glad my fringe theme already influencing highest ranks of Family. BabyDon and Carbonator and get up and start walking out. Crowded room though, so it hard for them to avoid feet connecting with each other shins as they leave. Don Campbell is lucky to have such articulate men of honour in a hurry to see him.

Monday, 17 September 2007

Don Cambpell correct silly speculation

Don Campbell issue apology to paparazzi today.

"When today I referred to the emerging economic superpowers of China and Italy, I did of course intend to say Calabria and Sicily. That's what comes of spending all morning talking to Signor Foster about bloody tourism, rather than thinking about Family business."

Signor Davey added:

"Anyone can make a mistake, Don Campbell though is safely entrenched in our London Territories, tittle-tattle that he about to be sent to sticks in Jockland entirely idle speculation."

Signor Cable also commented:

"Further the Don did not intend to say that he wants the Family to 'hammer the rich'. That would be barbaric. We find a good slapping with glove usually sufficient to get the fat-cat wimps to open their wallets."

"I also need to add" say Don Campbell "that when I was reported to have said I'm a failure earlier today, the report missed the end of that sentence which added in the eyes of treacherous ungrateful vicious old whiners like former Capo Rodgers, who simply bitter that Don Brown only interested in talking to former colleagues Williams and Owen when seeking advice for Labouristi big tent. Phewee what a bitter anonymous miseryguts, who cares what he thinks."

"I am not a soundbite-era Don, so I can quite understand how that nuanced position might have been missed by lazy useless paparazzi swine."

Signor Davey further added:

"When I referred to Jockland as 'the sticks', I was of course misquoted, for which I apologise. I did of course intend to say, 'welfare dependent backwater full of disloyal ginger old lags who should know better than break omertà after after night on the tiles'."

Liberal Mafia is recruiting

I wake up in skip on construction site near beach this morning. This not uncommon occurrence at Family Gathering, only in this case it seem due to misunderstanding with Committee for Diary Control.

Seem Signor Opik's handling my 'donation' to Hornsey Green intimidation fund go little awry, as photo below show.

Happily I able to direct Committee to Opik hotel room in dodgy downtown Brighton fleshpots so they let me off with mild beating. Signor Opik seem likely due for second handgliding accident.

Anyway with unwelcome attention, and fearsome enforcers like those above lurking in dark viuzzi, I think I need more protection.

So Liberal Mafia is recruiting. If you made man or woman of honour from around United Territories with gift for understanding affairs of Family, and too much time on hands, do write to me with sample of handiwork at

Omertà paesano, omertà

Sunday, 16 September 2007

Letter to Committee for Diary-Control

I been at special meeting with Don Campbell tonight. This present conflict with other important meeting, which big nuisance. Happily I make arrangements before I leave for Brighton and send letter via special courier...


Dear Committee for Diary-Control,

It is with regret I inform you I cannot be with you in person at Grand Awards Ceremony of Liberali Family Association of Tittle-tattlers, Scandalmongers and Egomaniacs.

I instead busy with Don Campbell and team tonight, learning about important items on Family Conference Agenda. I very impressed by pending discussions on encouraging bullying, pulling teeth, building more slums, and making prison more bearable for men of honour by putting less women inside.

We sure are most progressive Family in United Territories.

I would though like to thank the Committee for short-listing me for this special-needs monitoring award. I particularly grateful to last year overall winner, ‘Shorty’ Tall for making it clear to me that all that required to win is the provision of donation, to Hornsey Green Intimidation Fund.

“A ‘pony’ should be enough” he say

I simple man and no understand why Signora Featherstone need pony, but figure Cowley Print-works not miss one of old delivery-nags, so go one better and procure reliable work horse, from Signor Rennard. Seem he wear them out quick these days.

Big problem though how to get horse to Brighton in time for ceremony.

Fortunately my friend Signor Opik have solution. He coming to Brighton by helicopter this year and can carry horse in harness.

He say “So long I as I don’t get distracted by pretty Romanian co-pilots and let the horse go wondering near the rotor blades we’re in good shape. You can trust me Liberali”

So I hope the little horse, I call her Galloping Lamido, find you well and we still good for award.

Cordiale Saluti,

Don Liberali


Signor Opik assure me all go according to plan, so I looking forward to meeting with 'Shorty', 'Nogeek', and 'the Aggregator', behind Grand Hotel at midnight where they say they going to give me special thank-you for package.

Signor Opik oddly no want cut for delivery, and had to run very fast to get to his next appointment. He great guy and very fit, no wonder he knockout with all ladies in Liberali youth.

Saturday, 15 September 2007

Family Gathering

It all big excitement today. The Liberali Family are gathering in Brighton to discuss Family business for the year ahead.

Don Campbell has selected Green Scams, We Want Some of the Action Now! as the theme for gathering, so he letting the Carbonator explain some of his ideas to the assembled men and women of honour.

Other initatives include plans to take care of the anti-Mossad Union currently disrupting our arms shipments from Israel, more power for local Capitani, skimming the tourist industry, addressing woeful decline in standards of bullying across the United Territories, and confirming idea for 4% off protection payments.

This make biannual gathering very exciting. Nothing old Moustache Petes and cugine like more than sitting in big room talking about things our public clients not realise are important yet.

And if that not thrilling enough, there hundred of little huddles that happen all around the town where paisan can learn new techniques in taking care of business, or listen to visionary ideas of future from lots of interesting friends ofFamily. I particularly keen on sessions on exploiting Catholics with Liberali Catholic Forum, what to do if there is big gang war this October with Signor Rennard, and Don Smith RIP Institute session on avoiding prison with Capo Browne of our Taunton Conservatori Liberali.

Committee for Diary Control are also annoucing result of their special monitoring programme on Sunday. I not nervous though. I have private word with 'Shorty' Tall and I think I understand now how to get on good side of Signora Featherstone. I say no more, but Shorty... the necessary be delivered tomorrow... capiche?

Tuesday, 11 September 2007

Magisterium Committee conclude business

So this weekend the Committee for the Assassination of the Magisterium have our final meeting to choose Liberali assassin to target Signor Livingstone. In Liberali Family the final decision on who is given weighty task of assassination is taken by wider Family. Our job is simply to select final short-list.

Signor Davey, he take me aside before meeting for little chat about our task.

"The Don is concerned Liberali, that this is a scrupulously fair selection, where the best polic... I mean ma... I mean person for the job is put forward to the Family. We must have no unnecessary complications. Do I make myself clear?"

"Si, Signor Davey, I sure we get many great applicants for this hit, it not be difficult to choose three good people."

"Yes, again, and I know with your rapier-like grasp of the incisive nuances of complex situations, I barely need mention this, no complications or the Don will not be a happy man. But don't let me interfere, I know how tricky these decisions can be."

So later that day Magisterium Committee convene for last time and sit in panel behind long table. Our first applicant is Signor Mughal.

The door open. A man wearing black cape, white mask, and large theatrical fedora enter... he sweep away the mask with a flourish.

"Yes... fellow Liberali... it is none other than I... Fiyaz, Haringey Capitano, former Deputy El-Presidente to former Magisterium Assassin Signor Hughes. I stalk like the tiger... I leap like an antelope... and I swoop on my prey like the mighty condor. It is I who will slay Signor Livingstone... me... only I can appeal to the disadvantaged groups, so cruelly neglected by this family in the reign of Don Kennedy, but necessary to breach Livingstone's inner sanctums of power."

"Er thank-you Signor Mughal" I say "that very nice costume, you going to opera later?"

"My disguise is I admit a little unconventional, however necessary to fool Livingstone in under-estimating me, no one expects Signor Fiyaz Mughal...! And when they do... Ha...! it is then too late."

"Er thank-you Signor Mughal."

"Deputy El-Presidente, my arse." mutter colleague, as he leave. I must admit it not post I heard of before, but sure sound impressive.

The next applicant is Signora Fernando, formerly of our Leicestershire faction, who now consigiliore in old Finchley stomping ground of Conservatori Iron-Don Thatcher. She dress very demurely, come in quietly and sit politely waiting for first question.

"So you're a woman then?" say fellow panellist. She glower at him

"I believe that is fairly evident. Would you perhaps like to ask me some questions about my plans to assassinate the Magisterium? Or were you hoping that I'd make you a nice cup of tea before vacuuming this rat-hole and pressing your trousers?"

Tea would be brilliant I thinking, would really hit spot right now.

"That won't be necessary," my colleague continue "Please do explain your plan."

"Most attention, during the next few months will be on the Conservatori assassin Signor Johnson and Livingstone stalking one another. That gives me opportunity. The Labouristi and Conservatori will not expect me, I will confuse them, and that confusion will give me my chance. A slim one I admit, but a risk I am prepared to take for the Family."

Two sugars and cream I am thinking. I real thirsty now. I note approvingly that colleague is ticking boxes on some form with picture of Signor Davey glowering at him in the header.

"Thank-you Signora, that sounds like an excellent offer, we will consider your request."

She get up and leave, but we still have no tea.

Next it is old friend Signor Paddick, he wearing leather pants, and tight t-shirt with Lambeth Mafia emblazoned on it in rhinestones. He wink at me.

"No cakes today please Brian" I say "this is business, we give you rigorous interview now."

"Indeed" say chair of meeting. "Signor Paddick I have one question. Would you like to kill the Magisterium?"


"Eccellente. Thank-you Signor Paddick, that will be all, please do send in the next candidate."

As Brian leave there is sound of kerfuffle and arguing in corridor that go on for about a minute. Signor Davey pop his head around door.

"Sorry to interrupt gentleman, it appears all the other candidates have been so impressed by Signor Paddick that they have decided to voluntarily withdraw. Do not let me detain you in your weighty deliberations any longer."

Well we think, we need three, we have three, it sure tough, but in absence of nice cup of tea we anxious to wrap up. So that conclude business of the Magisterium committee. Now Family must decide.

Friday, 7 September 2007

The pull of co-operation, a painful choice

I in Cowley Printworks bonding yard today with Don Campbell to have instructive chat with Capo Oaten about matters of Family discipline.

"Signor Oaten" say the Don, "Much as I appreciate you sending me your new pamphlet, 'Co-operation - we're fucked on our own', I feel, following much inconvenient speculation, that it is important you experience my response, not so much intellectually, but in a very physical way."

"That very kind Don Campbell", he say "But I'm sure a Centre for Um briefing note would be sufficient, there really is no need to have my limbs bound with leather hoops and attached to four horses."

"I'm sure you're used to it." comment the Don "However this isn't just about you, I feel this demonstration will be instructive for your colleagues as well," he point to gaggle of senior Family members from the Family Shadow Committee watching from the balcony, "and I do appreciate your strong desire to be as helpful as possible to your colleagues in your twilight months as Capo of our Winchester Rifles faction. Liberali, please gag the Capo, so he might fully appreciate the lesson without too much distraction."

This I do.

"Eccellente, thank-you... we shall proceed."

"Signor Oaten you will observe, attached to you left-hand side are two old carthorses. For the purposes of this demonstration they represent the Labouristi, I shall call them Prescott and Straw. On your right we have two slightly old former racehorses, a little past their prime, but still deluded enough to think they're still capable of winning the Grand National, let's call them Ancram and Clarke, they represent the Conservatori. You Signor Oaten, represent me, struggling with the weighty decisions of running the Family and our relations with others."

"For the first demonstration let's say, following the next big turf war, that the Labouristi are the strongest Family... Knuckles please excite Prescott..."

Knuckles smashes an egg on Prescott's flank, and the horse moves forward slightly. Signor Oaten groans in appreciation.

"But wait maybe the Conservatori are the strongest... Signor Laws, if you could kindly encourage Clarke..."

Signor Laws holds up a blue flag with yellow stars on it that make Clarke greatly interested in moving forward. Signor Oaten really not sounding happy.

"You see it really can be quite a painful decision as to who to co-operate with." say the Don. "And if you make your preferences known in advance... gentleman please demonstrate"

Knuckles and Laws give Ancram and Straw a modest pat on the hind quarters. Ancram start trying to bite Clarke, which excite him even more. Straw promptly reverse and sit on Signor Oaten's foot.

I could be wrong, but I not sure at this point whether Signor Oaten in pain or enjoying himself. He funny paisan.

"But wait" say the Don, "There's more. You may be wondering why there is a pile of oats tied in a bag around your nether-regions?"

Signor Oaten trying to nod quite vigorously.

"This bag represents the Family's values. When the Family's values are under threat from the pull of power from old nags in Labouristi and Conservatori, then you have another worry... Signora Teather, if you could please let Greaves illustrate the point."

The Signori untie a small grey Shetland pony from his post. The pony seem confused, wheezy and slightly incontinent, however he still recognise where values lie under threat, and what to do about it, and make like a much younger animal straight to the heart of the problem. Signor Oaten's eyes seem to be bulging quite a lot as he struggles in the ropes, against the attention of Greaves.

"And if the old guard are not quite getting through to you, then you might find your freedom to decide constrained in other ways... Signor Graham, if you would please demonstrate the power of the Family Conference." A large angry man, who I recognise as one of the Family's most feared enforcers , and is wearing a rucksack full of rocks, walk slowly over to Oaten and promptly sit on his chest. What follow is not pretty sound.

"Thank-you gentleman, I think we will let Signor Oaten contemplate my thoughts on his pamphlet for a further ten minutes or so and then given the horses some proper exercise..."

"Capo in the gallery, I hope this session has been instructive, and I do of course look forward to welcoming any of your thoughts on our relations with the other Families in future, should you be so minded to write them down. It is now though, I regret, time for my afternoon nap... good day gentleman."

With that he walk upstairs to ponder the great matters of Family business unimpeded by helpful colleagues.

Greaves has widdled on Signor Oaten's trousers and Prescott is trying to butt Knuckles with his head. It is lovely pastoral scene that remind me of old family farm in Sicily at harvest time. I drift peacefully into daydreaming as the Capo file slowly back into Printworks to consider the Don's wise demonstration of the burden of leadership.

Wednesday, 5 September 2007

Do I amuse you?

A most puzzling day. I in Cowley Printworks and get summoned to see Signora Featherstone Capo of the Hornsey Green Liberali. A fratellanza who specialise in dropping broken paving slabs on our enemies and tying them between speed bumps.

"Come in Signor Liberali" she say.

Sitting with her are Hapless Cullen 'the Aggregator', Nogeek Howells, and 'Shorty' Tall. A dangerous group of hardened killers often used to sort out Family internal problems.

The boys are staring at me pretty hard. Hapless is picking his fingernails with a stiletto and, Nogeek is frowning. Shorty is bouncing rubber ball off wall, with alarming good reflexes I think.

I not feeling so great about this meeting all of sudden.

"Liberali, Liberali, Liberali, what does the omertà code mean to you?"

"Er... it mean you keep Family business in Family," I stutter.

"Exactly" she say "Would you say the code is entirely compatible with, for example... the keeping of a diary?"

"Well er..."

Shorty is bouncing ball quite close to me now, Hapless is tossing his stiletto in one hand and catching it, Nogeek is polishing his glasses with hanky that have rather unnerving red stains in one corner.

"Well I'm delighted to say", she say "that in glorious regime of Don Campbell it is entirely autorizzato, in fact we welcome it. We are all Liberali here, we have nothing to hide."

"Er... what this have to do with me?"

"Well it seems Liberali that someone has been writing a diary in your name and the old Don finds it... what did he say Shorty?"

"I believe he said he found it funnier than when Signor Oaten suggested he should be running the family or when Signor Hughes claimed he would double the size of Family in two years" he growl

"I personally cracked a smile" say Hapless "once, it hurt my jaw"

"It bought joy to my day" say Nogeek.

"that nice" I reply

"Not especially" he add "I was at a funeral"

"Anyhow" interject Signora Featherstone "The point is that the committee for diary-control here have shortlisted your diary for special monitoring. Congratulations, you amuse us, you will now recieve our special attention"

"Er... Hooray!"

Monday, 3 September 2007

A new kind of mafia

I sitting in my casa today, minding own business, when phone ring. I pick it up and imagine my surprise, as on end of line, it no Liberali caller, but broguish snarl of Don Brown, il Padrino of the Labouristi.

"Liberali" he say "I am glad to find you in today."

"Um, what can I do for you Don Brown."

"Liberali, I believe that the Territories needs a new kind of Family. A Family which embraces everyone. A Family built on consensus, not street fights. A Family that draws on the widest range of men of honour and solidarietà, not the ever decreasing circles of vendetta."

"That great Don Brown, we sure against mindless Punch and Judy slayings in this Family as well, particularly when it us. Are you saying you want Labouristi to merge with the Liberali under Don Campbell?"

The phone line go silent for moment. I pretty sure hear someone in the background muttering something like "I told you not to start with the mick one, Christ what a boozer". But it must be crossed-line, I Sicilian, not Irish.

"Er, no Liberali, I have in mind something more elegant that retains our Family loyalties but allows us to work together constructively. We understand you are a great expert on lemon groves and rural slums?"

"Er no? Little Sicily is lovely town with many slums, but last time lemon tree grow here, local cugine use it make road block to hijack passing Burberry lorry. We about as far from countryside as Don Cameron is from winning paisan-of-year award for man of substance"

There awkward pause on other end of line

"I see, please allow me a moment to confer with my expert research team."

There is sound something that come across like baseball bat hitting a set of bagpipes, and whimpered murmur that I pretty sure sound like "but it was the other Milliband", followed by second bagpipe noise.

"Terrible blunder Liberali" he say eventually "It appears our consultants got mixed up, You are of course an expert on Italian tailoring, we are in fact looking for Signor Taylor. But it was a pleasure talking to you, not doubt when the needs of the big tent extend to a better quality sock, we will speak again."

With that he ring off.

Later that day I find Capo Taylor also get call, and was so delighted to get offer of work on eve of retirement from Liberali family that he accept. Seems offers also accepted by two clapped-out old hasbeens from Conservatori Family. Don Cameron is seething.

Don Campbell though appear delighted when I see him in the afternoon.

"Another pair of eyes and ears in the enemy camp" he say cheerfully "Might have to pop over there soon myself."

"He is of course joking" say Consigliore Kirkwood, with look of determined intensity in his eye.

"That's our Don Campbell" I say "Always up for giggle".

Maybe there something in this new kind of Family, it give me all warm glow inside.