The secret of my success No 4033

It appears from Cherie's memoirs that Tony Blair "has spoken to Gordon about how he could win [the n

Report by Ms de Meaner

I realised the difficulty when half of you advised him to smile more and half said to smile less. I mean, should Gordon smile more and look uneasy and fake? Or less, and - while behaving more naturally - get it in the neck for looking dour? I find the second less visually offensive, but many won't. I guess that's the nature of his dilemma: whatever he does, it will be wrong. So any advice he gets can be seen as "less than helpful". The big winners get £20 each, excerpts a £5 token, and the Tesco vouchers, in addition, go to Keith Mason.

Everyone hated me for playing guitar and getting down with the kids, yeah? So finesse that "son of the manse" thing. God knows what a manse is, but you're surely master of it by now. Be stern on detention, stick to your guns over tax. OK, so you're ungainly and uncomfortable in your skin; make a virtue of clumsiness, like Boris. This recession is an ideal opportunity to tell the nation "I told you so" over credit and embed thrift in the nation. People think you're cold, so fly into more rages in cabinet to show you care. Besides, leadership is only directed aggression - even Mugabe would tell you if only you'd invite him over. And make more jokes; we get them, honestly.

Adrian Fry

First, wrong-foot the opposition! Threaten a snap election - then don't do it! Cameron's lot will panic! And avoid jokes at PMQs! "Dour" suits you: emphasise those "son of the manse" roots. Then your Clause Four moment: find something that really annoys Labour members - say, detention without trial for 42 days? - and force it through. Finally, a real feel-good measure: reduce everyone's tax by 2 per cent. This wouldn't cost much if you also abolish the 10 per cent rate, which would only trouble a few bottom-feeding scroungers - and no bad thing! I hope this helps boost the enormous popularity you will no doubt enjoy as PM. Break a leg! Tony

Keith Mason

Remember the speech I made about our "young country", Gordon? Very popular and worth remembering. For example, post offices. You may as well shut the lot straight away. Nobody uses them except pensioners, and - as you might stress in your next speech - there's only a few million of them, and a good proportion will be dead or senile before the election. That'll get the youngsters on your side. On the other hand, go easy on knives. Remember what Jesus said (I talk to Him every day; so should you): "I bring not peace, but a sword." To a 16-year-old, his knife is his sword. Offend him, and you've lost a voter for life.

Ian Birchall

Put some spin on setbacks: try "Affordable housing for everyone" and make it look as if you're responsible for the price crash.

Bill Greenwell

Ditch those suits. Order in designer boxers. Cool, young, potent. But you'll need to lose weight. Cherie has a great list of coaches - I say you can't go wrong with Seb Coe.

Sue Skinner

No 4036 Taking the proverbial

Set by Brendan O'Byrne

Let's have some updated proverbs, along the lines of "A man's home is his castle - let him clean it".

As many as you like by 10 July


This article first appeared in the 30 June 2008 issue of the New Statesman, Thou shalt not hug