Friday, February 15, 2008

Telegraph Column: Boris Must Win!



My latest Telegraph column, discussing Boris Johnson's chances of beating Ken Livingstone is HERE. It begins...

Ken Livingstone is displaying all the signs of being the political equivalent of a paranoid schizophrenic. He's paranoid about his rival for the London mayoralty, Boris Johnson. Livingstone genuinely fears he will lose. When Boris was first selected, Ken (as we must call him) collared every Conservative he encountered, quizzing them about his rival. Instead of ignoring his opponent, as most incumbents would, Ken talks about Boris all the time. He launched personal attacks on him from the off. As an electoral strategy, it was bizarre.

He dubbed Boris a racist, yet the charge failed to stick. Why? Because no one who has ever met Boris, seen him on TV or read his books would ever believe him to be one. Ken failed to understand that, in Boris, he had met the Right-wing equivalent of himself - a politician seen by the electorate as independent of party politics and with a Teflon-type ability to deflect attacks. But there the similarity ends. Boris unites people, whereas Ken revels in division. His political strategy is based on class, and setting people against each other.

To read on, click HERE.

39 comments:

dozzy said...

Boris is a buffoon who pontificates on every subject under the sun from a standpoint of complete ignorance. Heaven help us all if he is ever given any position of real responsibility. I desperately want to see David Cameron win the next election, but for that to happen it is essential that (a) Cameron is never photographed with Boris, and (b) Boris loses. Vote for Ken, unless you want to see the Conservatives turned into a laughing stock overnight and utterly discredited.

asquith said...

So you didn't deign to mention Paddick? He'll make you regret it :)

antifrank said...

A small but important point, Iain. It is tasteless to use terms connected with mental health to insult one's political opponents. It trivialises serious conditions and it demeans your argument. I am surprised that your opening sentence got past the editor, and very disappointed that it did.

tapestry said...

Tell Dan Hannan not to worry about the EU wrongly accusing him of using the 'Nazi' Term.. Just do a Boris Dan. Get your message out, ignoring the lies and defamation of your opponents.

The Tory Troll said...

The problem that Boris has is that however much people like him as a character, nobody (not even you) really thinks that he is serious enough to be the Mayor. If he gets into power, all of the decisions will be made by the party machine with Boris as a frontman. As part of that machine you are probably quite happy with that but I don't think that most Londoners are dying for a stooge as Mayor. The best result for the Conservatives (and for Boris) will be a close-run loss which will rattle Labour without leaving a high-profile liability in power.

Anonymous said...

Arguments aside, I am really disappointed that you decided to use the phrase 'political equivalent of a paranoid schizophrenic.' Yet another example of stigmatic use of mental illness, which will no nothing to help the already difficult fight against discrimination and stigma.

Desperate Dan said...

Some time ago Ken admitted that he couldn't ride a bike and his excuse was that his family were too poor to buy him one. How utterly pathetic. Most boys of his generation got Saturday and holiday jobs to earn enough to buy their own bikes. Ken appeals to the self-pitying wastes of space like himself who can't do anything for themselves and who believe that if they don't own the latest designer clothes, consumer durables and large wads of disposable cash then it must be someone else's fault.

Tone made me do it - he's a bad influence said...

just in case anyone has missed this report from the united services institute:

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/7246085.stm

Our own liberalism is actually making us a target.

Strangly the BBC is ignoring it

Gary Elsby said...

Boris is independant of party politics?

Are you having a laugh, Iain?

Let's have a bit of proof.

Gary

Newmania said...

Quite so , quite so.Never doubted Boris myself

Anonymous said...

Is it August already? The silly season seems to be in full steam on this blog

Paddy Briggs said...

I will be voting without a qualm for Ken Livingstone for the positive reason that he has an excellent record and the negative reason that I can’t think of any pseudo-politician that I would less like to see in the job than Boris.

Let’s start with the positives. Livingstone has devoted his life to London. Shamefully treated by Margaret Thatcher in the petty and vindictive fight that she chose to pick over the role of the GLC Ken has risen from this setback to be the man who more than anyone has made London the great city it is today. Livingstone is the type of man who makes me think that politics can still be a noble profession. Why? Because Ken does things that matter and that make a difference. Unlike those in the land of the bland who need focus groups and advisors to tell them what to do Ken does it because he believes in it. He isn’t always right, of course – that’s the risk that conviction politicians have to take. But he is more often right than wrong. There are plenty of examples but the Congestion Charge is the best. How all of Ken’s enemies were standing on the sidelines (their customary position) to jeer in expectation of failure. How many Telegraph pieces and saloon bar gossipers were saying that it wouldn’t work, that it couldn’t work and that, as a result, the Mayor’s days were numbered. But it did work without a blip. Since the London plan was introduced, in 2003, vehicle speeds in the city’s central business district have increased by thirty-seven per cent and carbon-dioxide emissions from cars and trucks have dropped by fifteen per cent. One of the world’s greatest cities has a traffic management system that is the envy of the others– and without Ken Livingstone it wouldn’t have happened!

Now the negatives about Boris Johnson. Anyone, like me, who was privately educated and grew up in the post war years on a diet of Bunter and Biggles, knows the type. We didn’t have too many at my public school, actually – maybe it was too minor. But Eton turns them out by the Daimler-load. For years the Conservative party was led by these patricians – a long almost unbroken line from Salisbury to Home had the Noblesse that only Eton or Harrow or Rugby can bring. Sometimes there was a bit of the “Oblige” with the Noblesse - generally when an election was in the offing. And now, in the depths of their distress at being out of office so long, the Tories have reverted to type. The Bullingdon boys, Cameron, Osborne and Johnson are on the march! I don’t doubt that they are clever – if you pay £25,000 a year for your education that’s the least that a parent has a right to expect. But will the sensible British public be seduced by the fluffy hair and the well-modulated voices? Will they be fooled into thinking that the ability to govern in modern Britain is somehow helped by a privileged upbringing? Or will they feel, as I do, that what we look for in our leaders today is more than an easy manner and a patrician smile.

Noelinho said...

The only thing Boris unites people in is laughter at him because of his clowning around. I can't think of anything else about Boris that unites people.

Albert Shanker said...

you must be joking, boris couldn't run a bath.

Anonymous said...

Don't call him "Ken" - it makes him sound like a trusted friend. Which is exactly what he wants us to think.

He should be addressed as "the Mayor of London" or "Mayor Livingstone." He is a remote bureaucratic figure who is screwing up our lives.

David Boothroyd said...

When Boris' mate phoned him to get the address of a journalist he wanted to beat up, Boris' first concern was that the beating would not be too severe, and his second concern was that his name wouldn't be revealed. This is not the sort of man I want in charge of my police.

Iain Dale said...

Asquith, I did actually. They must have subbed it out.

Anonymous said...

Livingstone has just suspended Grasper, according to The Times.

Something is really up.

asquith said...

Sorry Iain, as I'm not familiar with journalism I didn't consider that what they publish might not be everything you wrote.

Good of you to at least hint that LibDems are not raging socialists to the left of Labour. If only some other folks would realise it!

strapworld said...

Iain,

I am amazed that you have ignored the most important story of today. Page One Headline and editorial in the Telegraph!

Iain, Not everyone lives in London. I did for thirty years. I don't now and it is no longer important in my life! BUT the joys of fishing in the River Dee are.

Miss Wagstaff said...

Boris would make an excellent frontman and let's face it - London needs a new face at the helm.

Chris Paul said...

What twaddle Iain. Spending a lot of time with doctors recently does not qualify you to make psychiatric diagnoses of this kind. "Paranoid schizophrenic"? - did no one ever tell you Tories that using such terms out of context is wrong?

You are wrong about Boris too. He is nowt but a toffee nosed bullingdon bullshitter. What he says clearly betrays his own unreconstructed pith helmet colonialism and it is tough to argue his utterances are not themselves racist. But whatever, they certainly appeal to racists in the audience.

Boris would be a disaster for London and that is why he must be stopped. I think you know that in your heart of hearts.

Paddick is a better vote for serious people on the right. But Ken is the man. He has done a good job. Contrary to what you say he unites the majority of Londoners and stands up to the government and Lib and Con Town Halls too.

Boris has been told to keep his head down and that's because he is a serial gaffer. He has just been caught "fair dodging" by Channel 4 factcheck by the way.

Unsworth said...

Apparently Lee Jasper has been 'suspended' whilst the police are 'investigating' his activities. Of course he's had ample time and warning to destroy the evidence - sorry, to investigate and review the paperwork - so that should make their task somewhat easier. And Livingstone will protest loudly that he was unaware, that he has been grossly deceived etc etc etc. Yet two weeks ago he was vociferously declaiming that a full audit had proved these claims to be unfounded and so on. Still, it's entertaining to watch the rats at each others' throats. Naturally Livingstone will now hide behind the old sub-judice non-excuse, carefully ignoring the fact that until charges are laid before a
court nothing is sub-judice.

For Boris the problem will be the short-term memory failure of the electorate. It would be as well for his aides to ensure that the list of transgressions and policy failures remains up to date and prominently displayed.

Anonymous said...

GRASPER SUSPENDED...

Await further news...

But probably not from Dale...

Julian the Wonderhorse said...

David Boothroyd doesn't want "someone like that running the police", but Ken Livingstone and his cronies (don't question me, you racist) are fine are they?

Jasper et al have been lining their pockets ever since this bureaucratic monster, the LDA, was created, achieving nothing on the ground.

I suppose David Boothroyd lives somewhere lovely like Dolphin Square. Try living in Lambeth, where "community cohesion" is getting worse and worse

Oscar Miller said...

It is tasteless to use terms connected with mental health to insult one's political opponents.

Wot - even when they're mad Antifrank?

Anonymous said...

I can't wait for Boris to start doing the Borick Obarmy thing and singing 'Yes we can !' and saying 'Briefs we can change into !', as well as telling us that 'They said I couldn't do it - and they'll still be saying that when I get into the White, sorry, 'Glass House'...'

But please spare us the YouTube videos where he makes like a preacher, thumping the lectern, hair out of control..

'I have a dream ! That one day, little black children and white children will be travelling in people carriers WITHOUT having to pay a congestion charge..!'...

Or starts being a rapper busting some rhymes and singing 'Pump up the volume of votes, Turn it out'..

Anonymous said...

PS a rather discouraging daily quote for a verbose blogger such as you from Brainy Quotes today "The less you talk, the more you're listened to. - Abigail Van Buren"

sockpuppet said...

We didn’t have too many at my public school, actually...

we had plenty at mine. They are usually dully competent, have nice table manners, would rather commit seppuku than say "serviette", and there is almost always a scandal in the background concerning a Younger Boy that you can use for blackmail when they get too big for their boots.

In short, they are ideal politicians.

And, unlike KL, they don't make one feel sick.

Newmania said...

‘Let’s start with the positives. Livingstone has devoted his life to London’.

Rubbish he has devoted his life to Ken Livingstone and the only politics he can do which is City hall intrigue . He tried to be an MP and failed because he is like a shoddy conjuror who cannot bear any scrutiny.
He is in power for much the same reasons as George Galloway , because he sucks up to Muslims , practices none too subtle anti Semitism ( as did his early political friends ) and employs a weird cocktail, of Communist anti British and far left groups that thrive in the blighted inner City and were the only people with the machinery to run for the bid.
That is why, a Capital with close links with the EU and US has a Mayor who visits China and Venezuela .Can you seriously imagine him talking to London’s real business partners ? . That is also why he hates the outer London Suburbs which he does not to visit. That is why he is determined to build the English middling types out of the rest of London by bullying the Boroughs with New Labour targets for so called social housing. This is why slum after slum has been erected. That is why London is suffering a pell mell emigration of the only people in it that held it together and that is why black people now have worse outcomes than their grandfathers if they are lucky enough not to be shot in the street.

‘Since the London plan was introduced, in 2003, vehicle speeds in the city’s central business district have increased by thirty-seven per cent and carbon-dioxide emissions from cars and trucks have dropped by fifteen per cent. One of the world’s greatest cities has a traffic management system that is the envy of the others– and without Ken Livingstone it wouldn’t have happened!’


You are quoting the GLA`s rubbish produced at our expense and as carefully managed as the rest of the propaganda output we now realise Ken has got us paying in amongst the rest of his corruption. The congestion charge has actually been a failure and a catastrophic waste of money . It never had anything to do with congestion anyway which obviously finds it sown level
The rest of your typically vapid clap trap is just standard class resentment which is of a piece with the efforts of the Livingstone hard left’s efforts to generate class and racial war in London. You say Boris is privileged , well he got scholarship to Eton made has made his own living ever since .Ken Livingstone has lived at the public’s expense his whole life and has never excelled at anything

WE need more than a refugee from the 1970s London left radicalism . London , and the coutry needs to come together and the divisive hate filled antics of Ken and the hoards that depend on his corruption have to be fumigated.
You idiot Briggs for all you know someone might take your ill-informed vapid buffoonery seriously , unlikely as it seems .

Newmania said...

But Ken is the man. He has done a good job. Contrary to what you say he unites the majority of Londoners and stands up to the government and Lib and Con Town Halls too.

What a staggeringly stupid and self contradictory remark

Ken has been useful to the Labour Party because he has helped them hide their housing policies from local people.He has done nothing for London but ruin it.he is a fawning agent of the state .
Anyway what on earth would you know about it Chris Paul? You are a chattering Northern monkey .
Ken Livingstone is , I assure you utterly detested by many in London , in fact everyone who is not looking for free housing , benefits , on the take or corralled into some victim group or other by his network of GKLA hirelings .The only reason he can persist is that London is not actually a community and much of it has nothing to do with the demographic majority. Ordinary people have voted , like me , with their feet , and are doing so in terrifying numbers . Are you aware that is many boroughs in London children who speak English as a first language are in a minority . This is what Ken wants he wants to ethnically cleanse London of its kulaks and run his own hard left mini state from there.


The Labour Party is nothing like Ken Livingstone now and its opportunistic support for this conman is only in the absence of better ideas. I don`t think any half decent Labour Blogger would feel the need to fall in with this shameful farce . You do have a mind of your own don’t you?

David Boothroyd said...

'Julian', I live in Paddington in an area where the majority are muslim, and represent one of the most culturally diverse wards in London on the council. We are delighted for our safer neighbourhood team and need more police here, which is why Boris would be a disaster. Not only is he pledging to cut the police, the example he sets of facilitating the beating up of people who offend your friends is exactly what we can do without.

sockpuppet said...

Newmania, old chap, public schools are awfully multi-ethnic, which is what people usually mean by 'multicultural.' Most English people can't afford them.

They're not multicultural, of course, as the sort of people one meets tend to have pretty similar interests. But I bet you a pound to a cracked pisspot there are more nations represented at, say, Rugby, than there are in, say, the Grauniad offices.

sockpuppet said...

'course, the comment that referred to is now deleted so it looks like a massive non-sequitur.

ach weel

Newmania said...

You been deleting my comments Iain ? Spoilsport.

Ron Knee said...

I would like to see Mr Livingbone beaten - not by Boris though, but with a croquet mallet....

Guessedworker said...

Ian,

Why would Boris be a racist if he objected to foreigners race-replacing the English of London? Why is it, apparently, not racist to race-replace another people in their own homeland - or to shout down and morally stigmatise righteous indignation among the victim people?

Most of all, why do Tories like you and Boris play the left's game and allow the racist jibe to stand? Deny its validity, please. Wake up to the rights and interests of your own people, and defend us - not the invaders - as a Tory should.

NorthernMonkey said...

Come on Iain, even you realise that that complete plonker Boris Johnson doesn't have a prayer.

Ken's been a great Mayor for London and he'll comfortably win a third term.

Anonymous said...

Paddy Briggs said...

"Ken has risen from this setback to be the man who more than anyone has made London the great city it is today."

London is now a cesspit that most English people strive to flee from unless they are so rich they are insulated from real life.