Thursday, March 27, 2008

Lunch With Ed "Me Myself I" Balls


I've just comeback from a lobby lunch with Piers Fletcher-Dervish Ed Balls. The lovely, nay vivacious, Julia Hartley-Brewer invited me to listen to the great man and I must admit I came away rather more impressed with him than I have been in the past - mind you, he was starting from quite a low base. He was quite funny and self deprecating and even told a couple of jokes at the expense of Gordon Brown, which in a room full of wizened old hacks (plus Julia :) was quite foolhardy brave.

His biggest laugh came at the end of this anecdote. Gordon Brown rang him one morning and said: "Ed, you may like to know that you are Number 2 in the Economist Top 100 Policymakers". "Great", said Ed, obviously preening himself. "It's a bit odd, though that I've been placed at Number 19," continued the then Chancellor. "I can see why Tony Blair is above me, but it's even odder that Margaret Beckett is above him." Balls then proceeded to get a copy of The Economist, found the article and rang Gordon Brown back. "Gordon, the reason Margaret Beckett is above you and Tony is that the list is in alphabetical order!" Maybe you had to be there but I can assure you it was funny when he told it!

Mr Balls really must stop making speeches most of which revolve around "I", "me" and "myself". He even said at one stage: "And this week I gave xxxxxx £750,000..." What he meant was that his department, or the government, or the taxpayer "gave" the money, but it was all about him. I suppose this should come as no surprise. It's what politicians do. I dare say I have been guilty of it myself (surely not, I hear you all cry in unison).... Did you see what I did there? Two mentions of "I" and one "myself" all in the same sentence. Ed Balls must be a fellow fan of Joan Armatrading. It was she who sang "Me, Myself, I".

10 comments:

David said...

There we have it - actual proof that Gordon Brown doesn't read things properly. Be it a newspaper article or, you know, inflation figures - he doesn't pay attention.

The Creator said...

Iain!

Cold shower at once!

You are being suckered in.

Balls is nasty, dangerous and relentless.

Don't fall for it!

jafo said...

I expect it's "me myself I" who is paying the mortgage on that expensive second London home too - rather than him and his wife Yvette Cooper both claiming second home allowance for the same property from the taxpayer!

He appears to think the taxpayers' cash is his to do what he likes with. Can't wait to see the Balls household's expenses published.....

Rosie said...

oddly enough just checking out Joan Armatrading's greatest hits there are a number of songs that could apply to Balls, Brown and NuLab.

Down to Zero
Drop the Pilot
Show Some Emotion
The Shouting Stage
Me, Myself,I
I'm lucky
(I love it when you) Call Me Names
The Weakness in Me.

Anonymous said...

Armatrading grew up in Birmingham in the 60s apparently. Given her general depressing lyrics am guessing she was heavily influenced by OldLab politics in her neighbourhood.

Broon's Talking Bawgie said...

So what?

Travis Bickle said...

Good grief, an hour long lunch date and you come down with Stockholm Syndrome.

Anonymous said...

In that photo on the left, he looks like he's straining at stool.

Richard Dale said...

Any time you hear Ed Balls, just thing "so what", for two very good reasons!

Of course one of those reasons is the words apply as a good filter to anything any leftie says.

Chris Paul said...

Having heard this anecdote several times I can only say that I'm surprised you missed the real punchline Iain. Perhaps Balls has freshened it up? Ms Beckett isn't usually in it ...