`Twas the third night after the winter solstice, when all through the workhouse not a creature was stirring, not even a louse. Iain Duncan Smith was safely abed ready to confirm his Christian based morality in a Christian church that considers half the planet as inferior.
Clement Clarke Moore (1779 – 1863) was the first to associate Saint Nicholas with reindeers and a sleigh in a remarkably popular poem published anonymously. This rather strange leap of imagination was soon adopted by a manufacturer of a certain soft drink who converted the patron saint of sailors, merchants, archers, thieves, pawnbrokers, children and students into a character that most sensible parents would report to the authorities. With his strange garb and ability to enter bedrooms undetected, this old man Santa Claus was probably employed at Radio One in the 60`s and 70`s.
Quite how the story of the nativity underwent a transmogrification into a tale of capital gains and the bestowing of the latest version of X-box and PS3 is anybody`s guess, but it is certain that something significant happened slightly more than 2,000 years ago which is now all but forgotten. The beauty of empirical science over blind faith and received theological interpretation is that science is based on stuff that is probably real and not stuff that is contained within the skulls of deranged clerics and advertising executives. Thus, thanks to some very clever people, we can deduce that an astronomical event took place on September 23rd 7BC that caused some wise men to get on their camels and ride. Scripture, sadly, is a bit vague on the actual numbers of wise men or their starting location or the content of the communal dream that came to them in the depth of the night. Without knowing where exactly in “the east” these providers of gold, frankincense and myrrh came from, a seven year journey following a star seems a tad unlikely but this can be explained by pointing out that after 2012 years a seven year anomaly is a margin of error of about 0.0035 per cent which is infinitely more reliable than government figures on employment, the economy and the number of scroungers currently occupying rooms at the inn reserved for pregnant virgins.
Some 2012, or possibly 2019 years on from when the Magi followed a star to Bethlehem, it seems odd that the sons and daughters of Abraham are still at each other`s throats as to who has the correct version of the story. Odder still are the pronouncements from politicians who declare a deep commitment to Christian values yet behave in the most unchristian of ways. So happy Christmas and here`s hoping for a healthy and prosperous new year. If you have a God, offer up a prayer and if you have no God, spare a though for the hungry, the homeless and the desperate this Christmas because your prayers and thoughts are all they are likely to get. And if you have the time, offer a prayer or thought for the soul of Iain Duncan Smith.
That is heading for eternal damnation.