Thursday, June 02, 2011


How Not to Get Promoted

I don't often read the Daily Mail but my eye caught an article useful for my research on 'ministerial promotion'. It's about Crispin Blunt (pictured) the prisons minister, who, it seems has allowed a prisoner to father a child with his partner via artificial insemination. According to the piece, Blunt is known as 'dead man walking' already as a result of his numerous gaffes since in office.

This latest is interesting as it was a gaffe politically, yet seems quite reasonable to those who think Article 8 of the Human Rights Act entitling prisoners to a 'family life' is perfectly defensible. Maybe morally and legally it was a decent thing to do but politically it was certainly something of a gaffe. Why? Because it violated the thinking of the splendidly bigoted readers of the Daily Mail to whom Tony Blair and his successor made such frequent obeisances. As the only newspaper in the last decade to continue expanding sales, politicians look to it as the mouthpiece of election winning voters. Blunt should have spotted this one coming and failed. This will almost certainly end his chance of promotion.

In a recent Radio 4 broadcast Michael Heseltine, talking about promotion, said:

You have to have a nose. You have to be able to spot, to smell the bomb to keep you away in these files. So there is no escape from hard work, if you try to skate over the surface something will blow up and it would be your fault and you can’t afford many of those. So, the nose for trouble!

Mr Blunt, it would seem would fail the Heseltine 'nose' test and I confidently expect him to be reshuffled out o office in the expected summer reshuffle.

"Morally decent and perfectly defensible?". Hard to see any sane person going along with that. Blunt is indeed dust in the next reshuffle.

When will soppy Liberals realise that cases like this only bring a confrontation over the ridiculous Human Rights Act closer? And any confrontation will not be to your advantage.

A Tory majority(and if the Lib Dems evaporate as now, and Ed Miliband's start is anything to go by, then this could not be that far away) would make the Human Rights Act unsustainable. To misquote the Nu Labor anthem, things could be about to get a whole lot better soon enough...long after the silly Mr Blunt has been relieved of an office for which he is obviously incapable.
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