Friday, September 14, 2007

 

So What Kind of a 'Conviction Politician' is Gordon?

I'm sure Brown's staged meeting with Maggie( and God, don't they both look miserable old gits?) was a none too subtle ploy by both parties to de-stablise the Tories and bite a rancorous chunk off Cameron respectively, but the bit which concerns me is his contention that he admires her as a fellow 'conviction politician'. I'm sure no-one would challenge Maggie's claim to such a description- we heard enough of her ranting, strident assertions during the eighties for that. No, the bit I find hard to accept is the inclusion of Gordon in the same category. I've been reading Tom Bower's biography of Brown over the last 10 days or so (I'm a slow reader) and from it, it clearly emerges that:

*Brown was an unreconstructed Old Labourite along with John Smith throughout the eighties and the early nineties: public service funding would be vastly increased, privatisations would be renationalised etc, etc.
* After the traumatic loss in 1992 Brown began, influenced by the American economic model, to re-examine his economic ideas and came to accept, no embrace, the tenets of a genuine market based free enterprise economy.
* Along with Tony Blair, he led the 'modernizer' faction in the Labour Party to create 'New Labour': a centrist political enterprise which entailed convincing voters that 'New Labour' had exorcised every hint of socialism from its beliefs. Brown and Blair began their 'charm offensive' in the City.
*Once in power, Brown embraced many of the Thatcherite instruments including the Private Finance Initiative which has provided such huge benefits to big corporations.

And then we hear, yesterday, that Labour have engaged as advertising agents, none other than the hated Saatchi and Saatchi agency. 'You couldn't make it up' one is tempted to say.

So what kind of 'Conviction politician' are we talking about? Is Gordon still claiming to be a socialist? Probably not, but it would be nice to be told. So is he a New Labour sort of 'conviction' guy? But that would make him identical to the dreaded Blair person, so that can't be so either. So is he a Thatcherite? Clearly not in the sense of cavalier public spending and concern to redistribute wealth. So his convictions cannot be clearly identified, which I rather thought was the basic thing about being such a type of politico. I suspect that the major way in which he resembles Maggie, is an unstoppable thrust to achieve power and hang onto it for as long as possible. But you don't need 'conviction for that, only ambition and ruthlessness.

Comments:
Conviction? Undermining Cameron? Who cares? It's an outrage!
 
'the dreaded Blair person'

You know, it suddenly struck me yesterday how completely Blair has gone off the radar in such a short time.

And thank goodness too.
 
Agree re Blair though he has surfaced in reports of him trying to nudge warring factions in Middle East into talking to him. The other person who has been beneath the radar is our 'new' Chancellor Alistair Darling: where he?
 
Darling has, ironically enough, moved in to Number 10 - having swapped with Gordo.
 
Don't forget that Gordon Brown increased by about 25% the incomes of my parents-in-law and about 2m other basic state pensioners (not the noisy ones in pensioners' forums but the inarticulate ones who never earned enough to contribute to an occupational or private pension scheme). He's done similar quiet good for millions of families who really have no one to represent them – certainly not the unions.

In my view he's learnt to be a socialist by stealth. A brilliant strategy...
 
Hughesey
I don't deny any of that. And I remain a Labour supporter as the Conservatives would never have done anything like the good brown has done. But it's the description 'conviction politician' I'm trying to get into.
 
Am I missing something here? How can Brown possibly claim to be a conviction politician when he warmly and publicly welcomes that woman to Downing Street? Has Thatcher suddenly become an honoury ‘comrade’ of the Labour movement? He has either got a very short memory of her despicable government or has become too comfortable in his chattering class inertia. Brown, and his party, has become part of the establishment, swayed and influenced by the rarefied air of Whitehall and government. He has forgotten his heritage and the people he purports to represent.

Tony Woodley was right!!
 
He seems to have convictions that politics is about reality rather than theory and that socialism should be for the many not just for the articulate few. Unhappily many on the 'hard left' either deliberately or through naivety end up trumpeting fantasy policies which would anyway be for the benefit only of a chosen few...
 
Hughes Views – Do you imply that those who oppose Thatcher and everything she stood for are ‘hard left’? A bizarre notion if you do.

Brown’s concept of socialism is evidently not something I am familiar with. I wasn’t aware socialism meant funding public expenditure by taxing working and middle class families whilst allowing rich city speculators and asset strippers to have tax liabilities of virtually nothing. Fantasy policies, which benefit the chosen few, are not only being trumpeted but are being executed.

Don’t get me wrong; I would rather have Brown and the Labour Party in government anytime before Cameron and his cohorts but socialism! Don’t make me laugh.
 
"Do you imply that those who oppose Thatcher and everything she stood for are ‘hard left’?"

No I don't, if you inferred that then I'm a poor writer and/or you're a poor reader!
 
"No I don't, if you inferred that then I'm a poor writer and/or you're a poor reader!"

Obviously the former!
 
I've been reading Tom Bower's biography of Brown over the last 10 days or so

That book has a very negative on Amazon, claiming it is full of innacuracies (at least one of which is wrong, I think - Galloway is Catholic). Is it worth getting?
 
anon
I've nearly finished it now and can indeed recommend it. I've not noted any inaccuracies but I'm sure there are some- there always are. But Bower has a good reputation as a biographer and is criticised mostly by those whom he chooses to describe- so he pulls no punches. I'm going to post on the book as a whole in the near future, so keep checking my blog I suggest.
 
cHHTwe write more, thanks.
 
Magnific!
 
Wonderful blog.
 
Nice Article.
 
Nice Article.
 
Magnific!
 
actually, that's brilliant. Thank you. I'm going to pass that on to a couple of people.
 
Good job!
 
Thanks to author.
 
Nice Article.
 
Nice Article.
 
Thanks to author.
 
Hello all!
 
Energizer Bunny Arrested! Charged with battery.
 
If ignorance is bliss, you must be orgasmic.
 
A lot of people mistake a short memory for a clear conscience.
 
Change is inevitable, except from a vending machine.
 
All generalizations are false, including this one.
 
Magnific!
 
When there's a will, I want to be in it.
 
Please write anything else!
 
Save the whales, collect the whole set
 
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