Monday, February 25, 2008

Nastiness Courtesy of Harriet Harman

This from today's Q& A with Harriet Harman in The Independent...
Question: As a feminist, are you proud of Margaret Thatcher?
Harriet Harman: No, because she was out to prove she was every bit as nasty as all the men in her cabinet.

Which part of that answer isn't nasty then? Harman and many so-called feminists like her, still haven't got over the fact that Margaret Thatcher got to where she did on her own merits. She didn't need an all woman shortlist or an A List. The frightening thing is, nor did Harriet Harman. Makes you wonder who she was up against, doesn't it?

UPDATE: Ben Brogan seems to share my view. And Dizzy has an erudite response too.

50 comments:

canvas said...

Margaret Thatcher never did anything for the sisterhood. That's a fact - it's hardly nasty.

Anonymous said...

She led the 'nasty party' didnt she?

Tom Hatton said...

If any woman in British politics has proved to men that women are equal, that woman is Lady Thatcher.

Harman isn't a patch on her!

Anonymous said...

Interesting that Harperson should imply all men are nasty! She wouldn't be sexist there would she?!?

javelin said...

That's right all women are angels all men are nasty. Let's all forget that women are more likely to physically abuse their children than men.

The feminisation of society has resulted in 99% of Sun readers (i.e marginal voters) looking at the consequences and wanted to bring back the death penalty. Bravo Harman. I bet you've never apologised to your husband either.

If they didn't have vaginas we'd have thrown them off cliffs years ago.

Anonymous said...

Oops! Wasn't that a bit nasty?

Anonymous said...

Being the niece of an earl may have helped Harman just a bit. Also, her father was a Harley Street surgeon and she had a lot of eminent political relatives.

Baldwin said...

Apart from the worthy Kate Hoey and Gisela Stewart, I find Labour women MPs an unimpressive bunch generally with Harriet Harman probably the worst.

I recall and interview about ten years ago claiming that Harman was less clever than she thought she was. No doubt this still applies.

Let face it, she's Old Labour with student grant opinions set in the seventies.

Archie Opterix said...

In the same interview, she was asked:

Fidel Castro: hero of the left, or dangerous authoritarian dictator?

Harman:
Hero of the left – but time for Cuba to move on.

Says it all, really

Anonymous said...

Iain, your devotion to the woman who happily ruined the lives of thousands of PEOPLE to keep interest rates etc favourable for City businessmen would astound me were it not symptomatic of the rosette you wear. As regards feminism, Thatcher hated the whole idea, and only got as far as she did because she more or less became a man.

Harriet - working-class hero said...

It's a shame that politicians of all colours cannot admire, or give any credit at all, to the opposition. I think that it was to Margaret Thatchers's credit that she did not go down the "sisterhood" route. Who would want to be given any job that they were not suited to, or not capable of, just because they are white, black, asian, male, female, straight, gay,blonde or ginger haired. Any job should be awarded on merit; not for "right-on PC" reasons; also, advancement should not be judged on sex, race or length of time-served.
Correct me if I am wrong, but didn't Harriet's sister Sarah pass confidential information regarding a child abuse case to Harriet, who then passed it on the Margaret Hodge?
Perhaps sisterhood only applies to biological siblings, or females of the same political opinion. I wish that my family had the same resources.
I don't know to what the "nasty" epithet refers, because (as far as I can see)most of the unpopular remarks/decisions of the Conservative Party of the 1990's made unfavourable reference to immigration, prisons andschool and NHS targets. Is this not exactly what the Labour government is doing today?

verity said...

Has Fattie Hattie Harman ever been to Cuba? If not - what is she basing her judgement on?

I've noticed that far from being jolly and contented, many fat people are actually very malicious and controlling. That would apply to Fat Harriet, as broad in the beam as she is narrow of mind.

Fat people have emotional issues.

Anonymous said...

Who are the impressive women in parliament - Ruth Kelly? Yvette Cooper? Caroline Flint?
Or would it be Anne Widdecombe, Gwyneth Dunwoody and Margaret Thatcher?
The work of the sisterhood has meant that some women have succeeded as a result of the numbers game, not merit - and all women have the suspicion of it hanging over them.

Anonymous said...

"keep interest rates etc favourable for City businessmen"

The depth of this kind of ignorance never ceases to amaze me. Strangely enough, the City wasn’t keen on the high interest rates that the monetarist experiment necessitated.

It’s a simple fact that interest rates are negatively correlated to share prices and – to spell it out – the City likes higher share prices.

Anonymous said...

Harman's comment on feminism in the same interview was telling:

"Feminism is about progressive politics and solidarity with other women."

This strikes me as an astonishing appropriation of a broad-based movement to a particular political agenda. Is it not possible to be a feminist who is out for herself, or who has right of centre views?

Also interesting:

"I just don't believe women are less committed, less hard-working or less able than men. So they shouldn't be paid less."

The sentiment is admirable (and there clearly are large disparities based on gender rather than other factors) but the actual logic is faulty. One could, for example, say the same of people working in the Third World. Or someone working for a charity, compared to a hedge fund manager. Does she really think these different groups should have their salaries levelled out? How does she think pay is set?

It's a different version of the government's habit of judging by inputs rather than outputs.

Rohan said...

Harman is but a footnote in history. A nobody with no idea. Who cares what she thinks? Soon she will be gone and forgotten about. But I suspect we all will still be debating the impact of Mrs T for a while yet. Unlike the bedsit radicals of New Labour she really was a revolutionary.

Man in a Shed said...

I couldn't care less what sex Margaret Thatcher was. She was the greatest prime minster Britain has seen since Churchill.

Britain stood on the brink of collapse into the pit of anarchy, poverty, despair and destruction that the likes of Harriet Harman and her current husband Jack Dromey (whose surname she is doesn't carry) wanted, in their socialist spite, to plunge us all into.

She was our saviour, our leader, and one of the bravest politicians to ever live.

She was also the only scientist to ever be PM. ( Probably a more important factor than her gender ! ).

The left have been driven out from the body of British politics and driven into outer darkness from wince they came.

She's my hero.

On the other hand Harriet Harman is the personification of the token woman.

verity said...

8:35 - I also hate the idea of feminism. It's a lefty social-engineering construct.

nigella dumpster said...

Feeble try Iain, yours is still the nasty party. Cling onto the memories dear boy they're all the Tories have to look forward to...

Unsworth said...

Unlike Harman, Thatcher was nasty and competent.

Frankly I'd sooner have a nasty party that actually got on with the job than a cretinous party who, although portraying themselves as 'nice' are actually bleeding useless at governance.

What does the inept Harman understand the word 'nasty' to mean anyway? Anything to do with a bit of bother over mortgages or peculiar 'donations'? That can be quite 'nasty' I understand.

She, at her advanced years, needs to grow up a bit. Politics is a rough trade - or is this yet another thing she hadn't noticed?

verity said...

Lefty women are often more vicious than the men. More controlling. There's a special rogue gene - the bossy gene - that lefty women are born with.

JamesK said...

I'm not sure it's entirely right to imply that Thatcher's gender was entirely unrelated to her career progression. Macmillan only included in her in his government because he needed a female member, and a similar logic explains Ted Heath's decision to appoint her to the Cabinet (and keep her it). Even though she had a fairly ambivalent relationship with her gender, it nonetheless helped her up that greasy pole.

Alan Douglas said...

Harman dislikes Thatcher because Mrs T had something useful between her ears - a brain.

Whereas Harman actually campaigned for her current deputy leader job by promoting that she had something useful between her legs. And no, it is not a displaced brain !

She is disgusting.

Alan Douglas

Anonymous said...

i. Margaret Thatcher was no feminist; she certainly did not promote more women.

ii. Many people see her as nasty; and have many good reasons for doing so.

Holding these views does not make you nasty; Harriet Harman has been quoted out of context and somewhat in jest when she suggests that all men are nasty.

Although the comment by javelin does nothing to counter this. Javelin starts off by saying how men are nice, and ends by advocating the mass murder of half of the population if they did not provide the sole function of sexual pleasure. This is gross.

Anonymous said...

aaarrrrhhhh menion the T word and you come from under your rocks.

T is of power nearly 20 years, get over it.

I would if I was you

T is a by word for c**p everywhere but in the hard core tory ranks.

Go ahead adhore your historical matriarch..

Brown will be deligthed
Yes the Tories havent changed one bit since 1989

You love her so much, she hasnt been invited to a tory conference in years

Rush-is-Right said...

The ghastly women this Labour government has thrown up are even worse than the men. Never mind utter nonentities like Harriet Harman, Margaret Hodge etc. What about Margaret Beckett for God's sake? Serially incompetent, mentally challenged and an ugly dog to boot.

And these scum have the EFFRONTERY to criticise the best Prime Minister we've had in my lifetime?

Quite breathtaking.

Anonymous said...

What struck me was the answer to the question about her proudest achievement as an MP. Her reply: Being part of the Labour team that kicked the Tories out in 97.

Er...so that's it, is it?

Not becoming a Cabinet Minister straightaway? (oh yes, she was fired).

Not resurrecting her career? Not doing no doubt
endless good things for her constituents?

How about becoming Deputy Leader of her Party? Doing virtuous work on behalf of women? Becoming Leader of the House of Commons?

Can anyone honestly imagine any Tory in 1990 (the equivalent time since gaining office) saying their biggest achievement as an MP was 'kicking Labour out'.

She has unwittingly (not surprising: she hasn't got much wit) admitted what we all know. Labour in the mid 90s became a formidable, unbeatable opposition...and then, er......that's it.

Oh, forgot to mention the sleaze she's mired in.

How on earth do we end up with people like this running the country?

Tom FD said...

What Harman means is that Margaret Thatcher never used the fact that she was a woman to score "sympathy" votes like she did.

(How revealing that she also describes Fidel Castro as a "hero" in the same interview - really shows where her priorities lie when it comes to character...)

verity said...

9-40 "Margaret Thatcher was no feminist; she certainly did not promote more women."

For which she should receive a medal. You don't appoint or promote "men" or "women". You appoint the most appropriate brain and character to the job and the situation surrounding it.

"Harriet Harman has been quoted out of context ... when she suggests that all men are nasty"

Maybe all men are nasty to her.

Yak40 said...

Man in a shed Britain stood on the brink of collapse into the pit of anarchy, poverty, despair and

Sounds about like today, or maybe tomorrow. So who will save us this time ? Dave?

John M Ward said...

I think Anon @ 8.52 pm has struck a significant chord. Who are the memorable female MPs, whether or not Ministers? Yes, Thatcher, Widdecombe, Dunwoody and not forgetting Hoey (I don't really know much about Gisela Sturat, so cannot comment).

The "Blair Babes" and other female Labour MPs have tended to be non-entities in practice -- those already mentioned in these comments plus the likes of Primarolo, Jacqui Smith and the rest of 'em.

Harman certainly isn't anywhere being in or even near the same league as the best, but probably imagines herself to be; and perhaps that is the problem here -- perception clouded by a false perspective.

I also notice that the Labour trolls are here again, predictable as ever -- and frankly boring.

I Lewis said...

Wasn't Harman behind a recent report endorsing ethinic minority shortlists? Fine by me. Why don't we start with her consituency of Camberwell and Peckham - surely one of the most ethinically diverse and deprived areas of London? Didn't she beat Redwood in the by-election that brought her to Parliament in '82? If a good independent candidate (whatever their race) emerges then the Tories and the Lib Dems should have the courage to stand down and let them fight her at the next election. Let's begin a campaign to get her out...

Anonymous said...

verity said...
"I've noticed that far from being jolly and contented, many fat people are actually very malicious and controlling. That would apply to Fat Harriet, as broad in the beam as she is narrow of mind."

Verity, if you describe Harman as 'fat' then I must assume that you are anorexic (or blind). She may be narrow minded but she is certainly not overweight.

red baiter said...

If a man is judged by "the company he keeps", perhaps a female Labour MP can be judged by her choice of husbands.

In the case of Harriet Harman, step forward "Grunwick Jack" Dromey.

Quite possibly the most naive and inept Treasurer any political party has ever had.

He never knew where all the multi-million pound loans came from, nor did he work out who was funding his...er....wife's deputy leadership campaign. See no evil, speak no evil etc....

Both are political lightweights, whose grandiose self-opinion far outweighs their real relevance.

Who cares what either of them think? They're both busted flushes.

verity said...

11:18- "Verity, if you describe Harman as 'fat' then I must assume that you are anorexic (or blind). She may be narrow minded but she is certainly not overweight."

It is easy to fool men. She's fat and squidgy and has a backside like a tanker. She wears scarves and things draped around her neck to raise the gaze from her figure to her face and loose jackets to hide the fat, but the woman's a porker. Have you ever seen her in a fitted suit? No. Everything's always loose, to hide the lard.

John M Ward - would you imagine any woman who allowed herself to be defined by giving ownership to the leader of her party - Blair - and allowing herself to be called his "babe" was a ... how shall I put this? ... thinker? And to agree to be in clutch, as though in a henhouse? And this was for a a career in Parliament? What trailer trash they all were. They were probably all called LuAnne or Billi-Jo. Or some other trailer trash name. Cherie or something.

Anonymous said...

[Verity]: "What trailer trash they all were."

Trailer trash? Harman?

Parents - father a surgeon, mother a solicitor.

Uncle - a hereditary peer.

School - one of the top girls' public schools (St. Pauls).

University - law degree.

Occupation - lawyer.


You have heard the expression 'trailer trash' somewhere but you have no idea what it means.

rupert tube said...

Nobody has yet mentioned that we are talking about Harriet Harman QC.

QC!!! A rank, now suspended, which used to take a top flight barrister twenty years to reach.

One of her teachers at St Paul's Girls School said she was barely bright enough to be a solicitor.

Harriet Harman QC. Probably the most dispiriting oxymoron since "social justice".

Anonymous said...

rupert tube said...

"QC!!! A rank, now suspended, which used to take a top flight barrister twenty years to reach."

No longer suspended. 175 QCs were appointed recently.


"One of her teachers at St Paul's Girls School said she was barely bright enough to be a solicitor."

Have you ever read what Churchill's teachers said about him?

David Lindsay said...

Thatcher was repeatedly promoted because successive Tory Leaders had promised at laest one woman at this or that level, and she was the only credible candidate.

So yes, she was the only credible candidate. But even so, the requirement had specifically been for a woman. Repeatedly.

jafo said...

Harriet Harman proved she's every bit as stupid, useless and greedy as the men in her Party. That isn't the kind of equality I had in mind - but it suits Harriet, doesn't it.

verity said...

8:34 - Did I call Harman trailer trash?

No.

I referred to "Blair's Babes" as trailer trash. Not Harriet Harman. We all know, but thanks for the reminder, that her father was a Harley St consultant, etc.

I was discussing "Blair's Babes". The clue was when I said they were probably all called LuAnne and Billijo. I have never heard of trailer trash called Harriet, have you? I can see that you might get confused because the two subjects were in the same post, which may have made it rather taxing for you.

Yes, indeed, I heard the term "trailer trash" years before anyone in Britain heard it and started using it imperfectly. I do understand what it means, but you don't. As with so many American terms, the British adopted it without understanding it.

Back to Harriet Harman. She's fat, smug, greedy and stupid.

verity said...

8:35 "Trailer Trash? Harman?"

No. If you follow the words on the screen with your forefinger, you will see that I used the term in conjunction with "Blair's Babes".

Yes, I do understand what it means, actually, although you probably don't. And I was using it for years before it made its way - only half understood as so often happens with phrases copied from the US - over to Britain.

Anonymous said...

verity said...
8:35 "Trailer Trash? Harman?"

No. If you follow the words on the screen with your forefinger, you will see that I used the term in conjunction with "Blair's Babes".

You ignorant, offensive old fool. Harriet Harman was one of the 1997 intake of female Labour Mps known as "Blairs Babes". Therefore your collective insult includes her.

verity said...

8:49 Hmmmm ... Angry, abusive old jerk writes: Harriet Harman was one of the 1997 intake of female Labour Mps known as "Blairs Babes".

Hmmm ... Google informs me: "Harriet was first elected MP for Peckham (now Camberwell and Peckham) in 1982.") I think that was around 15 years before the malignancy known as Tony Blair got any "Babes". Ref: http://www.harrietharman.org/about_harriet.html I make that 25 years.

Referring to her supposed entry into Parliament as a proud Blair's Babe, you write: Therefore your collective insult includes her. One does one's best.

You might like to save the link as it has a rather unappealing picture of your heroine on it. Personally, I clicked off it the minute the black candle had burnt down.

verity said...

I note in Harriet Harman's photo she had the same hairstyle 25 years ago that she has today. This is astounding. A woman who never changed her hairstyle or colour in 25 years? This would seem to indicate either a disconcerting degree of self-satisfaction or a plodder with no imagination.

Come to think of it, it's a kind of schoolgirl look. I'll bet her mother gave it to her back in the Fifties.

Anonymous said...

Re: Blair Babes.

Verity said "Hmmm ... Google informs me: "Harriet was first elected MP for Peckham (now Camberwell and Peckham) in 1982.") I think that was around 15 years before the malignancy known as Tony Blair got any "Babes"."

Yes, Harman was originally elected in 1982 but "Blair Babes" were the 101 female Labour MPs (including Harriet Harman) who were elected (i.e. newly elected or re-elected) in 1997.

See http://tinyurl.com/yovjj9

Anonymous said...

Re: Blair Babes

Also, look up "Blair Babe" on Wikipedia

Verity said...

[9:24] Oh, certainly! I would be intrigued to eagerly research the life of a porky, bossy socialite accused of using a less than honest measure regarding her expenses.

Life's too short to wait until the fat lady sings. Also, every time Harriet Harmon opens her mouth, she is a perfect emetic. They should market her as a Sunday morning remedy to New Labour's town centre Saturday nights!

Anonymous said...

Verity said...
[9:24] Oh, certainly! I would be intrigued to eagerly research the life of a porky, bossy socialite accused of using a less than honest measure regarding her expenses.

From 8.49 and 3.27 and looks like you have already done so.

Anonymous said...

verity said...
"8:49 Hmmmm ... Angry, abusive old jerk"

OLD? Where do you get tha idea? I am probably half your age.