Manchester - (Associated Mess): Addressing a totally bewildered Labour Party conference, former US Presdident Bill Clinton told delegates that Prime Monster Tony Blair's government was in a 'stunning mess' and that he was doing all he could to stave off the cops from busting his former Third Way accomplice in the fever-pitched probe into bungs-for-peerages that saw his blind trust portfolio bagman Lord Levy arrested in the summer.
Clinton, who had been hired by the Labour Party for his customary £100,00 speaker's fee, commiserated with the Party faithfull who blamed world-wide loathing of President George Bush Junior for the PM's interminable domestic predicaments:
"I think Bush really sucks and so do all my pals. But with the wife up for re-election in a few weeks time and no other serious Democratic contender for the White House race in 2008, I'm keeping my mouth shut and my fly zipped."
Turning to the Prime Monster himself, Clinton heaped praise on Blair's "brilliant version of the truth" and admired his Herculean grip on muzzling the press, manipulating public opinion and getting away with criminal offences "that would make Saddam green with envy".
But as the two towering giants of the Global Piss Process lapped up the mutual praise-fest that ensued, a few tell-tale fissures in the be-botoxed quivering smiles became discernible to television cameramen who turned on their close-up zoom lenses to focus on the trickles of sweat breaking out on pulsating stress lines of both leaders.
Clinton then praised the Prime Monster's valedictory oration yesterday but joked in a semi-tight-lipped way that he should quickly disabuse himself of any notion that the plum vacancy for Kofi Annan's job at the United Nations might stay open for Blair:
"Six years I've waited for that juicy immunity-from-prosecution slot to become available so that's one hell of a head start. Sorry, Tone."
But in a warm gesture of appreciation, Clinton papered over those all too discernible cracks that had began to show in his relationship with the Bush Administration's CEO at No 10 Downing Street:
"I want to thank Tony for his leadership of the Trans-Atlantic Self-Preservation Society and assure him of my continuing total support .....for just as long as George Bush Senior is still alive, kicking and gagged up with so much bureaucratic red tape by Democrats' lawyers that the long-standing tradition of Omerta remains intact."