Count Binface in Uxbridge - Nixon

BN1 Chats with Count Binface

Intergalactic warrior turned politician tells it like it is in new book

Sometimes it takes an outsider’s voice to guide us out of the darkness. We’re in a period of robust political uncertainty, where false narratives and hubris play a growing part in shaping public opinion. Robert Burns once said: 

“O wad some Pow’r the giftie gie us

To see oursels as ithers see us!

It wad frae mony a blunder free us,

An’ foolish notion:

What airs in dress an’ gait wad lea’e us,

An’ ev’n devotion!”

Undoubtedly, human nature forces us to stick with the familiar, no matter how broken it may be. But what if someone stood up with words that might break the habit? “I’m quite ambitious,” admits Count Binface. “I don’t want it to trigger the kind of Jan 6 nightmare scenario like in America. I want to empower ordinary voters in the United Kingdom to use democracy the way it should be. That means firstly that you vote because voting is very powerful.” 

An intergalactic space warrior from Sigma 9 turned Terran politician, who has delighted millions with his unlikely campaigns, Count Binface is now taking on the status quo with a new book – What On Earth? It’s part journal and part observation of human nature, with a resolute set of guiding principles running through everything. This bold new work is a philosophy for the future, compiled by someone with the wisdom which comes with extensive travel.

“I do talk in the book about how rare democracy is,” Count Binface tells me, who has kindly eschewed the formal requirement for me to address him as ‘Your Excellency’. “It’s like a Wimpy. There’s only a few of them left, and they’re not as good as they used to be, but you’ll miss them when they’re gone. And it’s the same with democracy. If you use your vote correctly, you can actually influence the system and the choices you get.”

He tells me that What On Earth? contains a fully-costed manifesto, which stands him apart from the mainstream parties.

“You get plenty of juicy policies for your buck. There’s also a biography in there and a little bit of Earth’s history. I take a very objective, alien’s-eye view of what’s going wrong with your planet. And even the occasional recipe.”

While many contemporary commentators attempt to articulate the chaos of our changing world, our media will offer more credence to those who entertain or offend in favour of anyone with genuinely shrewd insights. Count Binface’s appeal is that his experiences have laid the foundations for a compelling narrative. An outsider living amongst the political elite, his story draws many parallels with pop icon Sting, notably in his reggae chart-topper Englishman In New York, or that giant of political reporting, Alistair Cooke.

Cooke’s Letters From America BBC radio series detailed a life amongst the political psychodrama of our stateside cousins, offering compelling reports from a viewpoint untainted by allegiance or pretence. “Sometimes, if you can offer a fresh angle, it’s exactly what people need,” posits Count Binface. “It takes someone else to point out that what’s going on with your planet is just a little bit stinky. Being a bin-like lifeform, I’m the perfect person to recognise rubbish when I see it and take out that trash.”

He tells me he’s a big fan of MPs like ‘Mr Cor-Bin’ and our Caroline Lucas, and many of the nascent policies outlined in the book focus on redistributing wealth and giving citizens a sense of agency. There’s an ambition to donate Royal palaces to the homeless and refugees, doubling council tax on second homes, keeping MPs’ pay in line with that of nurses and the taxation of books which sit unread on bookshelves. “I don’t think your Earthling politicians have the gall to start this kind of stuff.” It’s a stirring train of thought, blending compassionate politics with a level-headed approach to making Britain greater.

I speculate that some of his strategies for improving Britain might be drifting into the arena of populism. After all, humanity hasn’t the best record of dealing with strong, charismatic leaders who appeal to the masses with promises of empowerment. “I would like to draw a line between populist, as in that Trumpian kind of nutter with their dog-whistle politics getting a certain side of the electorate onside, and popular – which is me. I’m just slightly cool, and I say the right stuff. I just tell it like it is, and that’s what brings people to the Bin-man.”

Count Binface sprang onto the global stage when he stood against Boris Jonson in Uxbridge and South Ruislip during 2019’s general election. With fate and the unbridled weight of the Tory Party’s wealth pitched against him, he was unsuccessful in toppling the then Prime Minister. But managed to set a precedent for aliens standing for high office. Undaunted, he stood in 2021’s London Mayoral Election, finishing ninth out of 20 candidates. It was a contest notable for several comedy candidates, including Shaun Bailey, Jeremy Corbyn’s slightly odd brother and someone previously married to Billie Piper. “I do defend their right to take part. You always get a few of them, making a right tit of themselves. Fair play to them. The point of democracy is that they should be allowed to have a go.”

He hugely benefited from the proportional representation system being used in the vote, winning 92,986 first and second choice votes in the contest. “We have a similar system on Sigma 9. I obviously don’t need that, because I’m a benevolent dictator. But it’s called the Alternative Victor. I believe you people proposed something similar about 11 years ago. The problem was, the Earthling who proposed it was someone called Nick Clegg. I’ve done my research on him, and everything he says the opposite happens. If you humans come up with an alternative system which doesn’t involve him, it might stand a chance.” Unfortunately, HM Government is now legislating so local mayoral and police commissioner elections will use the First Past the Post system – meaning outliers like Count Binface have an added challenge in their mission of change. “I think the politicians are running scared. They are worried that the tide of history is starting to turn.”

Changing the terms of suffrage is very much on Count Binface’s radar.

He advocates for lowering the legal voting age to 16 so they can have a say on their futures, while capping the upper limit at 80. “Let’s be honest, those are the guys who screwed it up for everyone in the first place. I’m sure they’d much rather sit at home, watch Countdown and leave the politicking to everyone else.” In a masterstroke, he intends to legislate for cruises to only be permitted during election times, so older people could be distracted from the campaigns and won’t realise what they’re missing.

The decision to relocate to Britain came after some extensive research using his super-computer, BARRY. “The first SOS I received was from the UK. This was in 2017, when Thresea May called an election. I was getting all these messages about there being a lack of decent opposition. The UK is the most deranged country on Earh. You guys don’t even write down the rules for your own system. Then I find out that any lifeform is allowed to stand for an election. Firstly, that needs celebrating. Secondly, that needs defending.”

While he’s clearly an immigration success story, bringing people together and sparking new interest in politics amidst a grey and uninspiring landscape, there have been a few less receptive potential voters. “I was having a chat with an old lady recently. She kept asking where I was from. She was clearly mad, and wouldn’t give me the time of day, because she thought I wasn’t from the same class as her. There are some very ingrained problems. Because Britain is an island, people get a little fuelled when someone comes here who hasn’t always been on the island. If you only had the people here, who had always been here, you wouldn’t have very many people at all.” He’s obviously pro-immigration, and puts lots of effort into changing preconceptions about the free movement of beings. “I hold my hands up, if I come into power, you might see a few more Recyclons on your shores. But is that a bad thing? Tourism is a huge industry, but Earth is not a hot-spot for the rest of the Ominverse…. Because Earthlings are, you know… whatever word just came into your head…”

Count Binface has demonstrated that aliens can clearly thrive here. Attracting visitors from outer space could see a massive boom in the travel and hospitality industries, but Count Binface tells me about the pervasive issues with the way our planet is perceived in the wider universe. He reads out our only review on Startripadvisor, which was left in 1982. ”Lost my friends. Couldn’t phone home. Caught hypothermia by a river. Got experimented on by the locals. Nearly died. Rubbish.” Earth could be an intergalactic Ibiza, and that is ready to be exploited. “I want everyone to see you as the stinking, booze-ridden, fight-filled club that Earth really is. There’s money to be made.”

On a mission to save the UK from self-destruction, Count Binface must surely be the most earnest and honest politician to grace this island. 

Along with his laudable policies, it makes him stand out in a crowded field – although the number of other bin-shaped items we have can make this difficult. “That’s why my policy platform is quite important. While you do have a lot of bins on Earth, there’s only one Binface. It’s taken me five years since I landed on Earth to reach this totemic moment of having a book where you can see my full manifesto. What you mustn’t do is use the tendency to stand out to become even more extreme. That’s what you see on that internet and the social medias. I’ll bring back Ceefax, the greatest information news service in the entire Omniverse.”

Politicians need to be confronted with reality, and we seem to have shied away from trusting experts and those with real experience in our search for easy answers. At the next election, it would make perfect sense to form a Government of Galactic Unity with Count Binface as its head, which may be the only path to him becoming PM. But does he display the correct qualities to lead us?

“You do have to be a bit of a maniac, which I am, so I’ve that in my favour. The politicians have been making a mockery of politics for far too long. It’s about time the voters made a mockery of the politicians. And the best way to do that is to get Binface in!”

Published by Quercus Publishing, Count Binface’s What On Earth? is out now, and available from all good bookshops. And Amazon.

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