Thursday, July 12, 2007

Paddy Ashdown on Bosnia, Iraq & the LibDems

Earlier today I interviewed former LibDem leader Paddy Ashdown. The bulk of the 50 minute long interview concerned his career since he left Parliament, but in this ten minute long clip he talks about LibDem politics, the attempt by himself and Tony Blair to realign the left of British (he blames Gordon Brown for its failure) and the challenge now facing Ming Campbell. He says he believes Gordon Brown's attempts to build a government of all the talents were "genuine".

If you enjoy the clip, click HERE to watch the whole interview, in which we cover Bosnia, Iraq and his new book SWORDS AND PLOUGHSHARES.


Chris Paul said...

Gosh. I'm going to rush out and buy that tedious book, not. Did AC refuse to do the couch at Doughty? He must have to be getting such a bitter review from you. But Pantsdown is still rueing having to turn Brown down. Don't you think?

Fantastic! Ming is locked in for aaaages.

Anonymous said...

Ashdown seems all over the place. AC/DC on Brown certainly. And yes Ming is locked in. He would be off to government as soon as they sacked him and the rest would scatter.

Broon 10 The Rest 0

Tapestry said...

Interesting that Ashdown describes the failure by Blair to achieve the Lib Dem Labour amalgamation, as being down to Gordon Brown (and Prescott).

And it's odd that Brown is trying to achieve the amalgamation of Lab and Lib now he's the main potential beneficiary of the strategy he blocked when Blair was the one who might have benefited and achieved an extremely powerful position.

Blair's ambition to enter the Euro was also blocked by Gordon Brown.
Ashdown seems to have little time for Brown, but Conservatives must be grateful for his stopping these two policies.

My impression is that Ashdown is complacent, and not too worried about the future of Lib Demmery's national share. He wants to be nice to Ming, and focus on preventing a right wing takeover of the Party I would imagine. He looks like yesterday's man which he is.

Anonymous said...

And Ming has come up with tax cut proposals-at last!

Anonymous said...

Chris Paul doing overtime at Labour HQ...why don't you do us all a favour and have a lie in tomorrow, you cretin?

I love the way he added an anonymous comment four minutes after his first comment...VERY convincing I don't think.

I am a Tory(albeit disaffected) and have never liked Ashdown. But he clearly made his own decision.

Seriously Chris Paul has got well past the novelty stage and his presence is a more convincing argument for censorship with every day. Iain, do we really have to put up with Brown sock puppet and his feeble aliases?

hatfield girl said...

'he [Brown]'s the main potential beneficiary of the strategy he blocked when Blair was the one who might have benefited and achieved an extremely powerful position.

Blair's ambition to enter the Euro was also blocked by Gordon Brown.'

Tapestry, you have voiced (admittedly in separate paragraphs) a scary thought; Brown sees no need for a referendum on the Berlin EU Constitution accords, ie., he's determined to ratify them.

Perhaps we are closer to joining the Euro than is admitted now. It would result not just in the abolition of the separate Scottish coinage, a symbol but powerful none the less, and access all the powers of the Eurozones working that are currently UK excluding, and GB likes power more than anything.

Anonymous said...

Absolutely brilliant

Anonymous said...

Prsumeably Ashdown's faith in Brown's sincerity is due to himself being offered a cabinet job. To those not in the circle Brown's 'change' is utterly bogus.

Anonymous said...

Is there any more juicy news from Ealing? Weren't we promised more defections by councillors - and aren't there more fake comments being posted?

Anonymous said...

Totally off-topic Iain, but your blog seems to take longer to load each day.

Anonymous said...

Was that the same Cap'n Paddy who deceived both his wife over his mistress and his Party over his dealing with Tony Blair?

Seemed to do a reasonable job in Bosnia and probably would have made a good stab at Northern Ireland (anyone better than Hain!) which makes you wonder why was he NOW (turning down GB's offer)bothering to be loyal to the Party which had found him out over Blair so he jumped before he was pushed?

Anonymous said...

blog is loading fine for me...

Anonymous said...

Lots of probs loading it earlier. Fine now.

Tapestry said...

Yes hatfield girl. It was always possible to explain Brown's supposed euroscepticism as a determination to frustrate Blair so that he would became the EU gauleiter, in Blair's place.

Now he's got the power he craved, he knows that he will acquire more through brazen treachery and he has no 'Brown' to stop him.

He has the media onside not seriously challenging him over any EU dealings. The EU Competition Commission is threatening Murdoch with a review of his monopolistic privileges, and thereby they will ensure that Sky, ITV, ITN, The Times, The Sun etc are unlikely to seriously challenge Brown - if he's willing to act as traitor to this country and sign us away with a vote to the Constitution.

The BBC is already fully penetrated by europhiles, and needs no strongarming into line.

The Conservatives are lining up to resist the transfer of powers to Brussels under Cameron, but where might Brown's Achilles heel lie. The only part of his power structure that might stop Brown selling us out would be Parliament - if enough labour MPs were to rebel. Many have said they will - possibly 50 or more. It could be the 'thin red line' that saves us. Brown is not home and dry yet.

Once inside the Constitution it would only be a matter of time before the Euro was imposed. As the Euro's getting close to collapse, that would be most unfortunate.

Newmania said...

I have to agree it seems ridiculous that we have Chris Paul commenting as if he was a member of the public (Like me ) , when in fact he is obviously a Labour Party employee. His sheer output is ample evidence he does not work quite apart from the evidence of psychological difficulties I have no special objection to a Government mouthpiece , however moonbat loopy de loop , appearing but it should not be under false pretences.
Tapestry I think Browns change of mind on the Lib Lab pact has come about as he realises he is likely to be in a minority in England trying to rule with Scottish votes . Similarly his laughable belated commitment to Great Britain. PR may be the price he will pay for continuing to run the UK.. Joining the EU fully and becoming regions and nations of the EU( England are regions) would also avoid this problem. Labour is not wanted in England and Brown will cheat lie and sell out the country and its constitution before he sees Labour eclipsed forever South of Hadrian’s wall.
The Liberals will behave with their usual squalid disregard for the voter and lie about the deal they are prepared to do The Voting public must be aware that a vote for the old Scot is a vote for Labour .Are the Liberals really so lacking in any principle that they will support an authoritarian statist Party ? I think so but not all .
There are many Liberals who will wonder why they continue to support a power worshipping dishonest statist illiberal Party. They will vote Conservative.
I see everything Brown does as an attempt to combat the shrinking .Labour vote in England and as we see it is shrinking far faster than the boundary commission can keep up with. I see Constitutional crisis as Brown attempts to brazen out a voting change with no mandate .

Anonymous said...

"Are the Liberals really so lacking in any principle that they will support an authoritarian statist Party ?"

No, that is why they will stay away from any party supported by crudheads like newmania, who is obviously a trot 'front' or 'spoof' devised to make neutral people shun the political Right.

Tapestry said...

I am not one to engage with trolls myself, while Newmania obviously has more energy and occasionally offers a clue as where some of the contributors on this site are really coming from.

The amount of effort being put in by activists from Labour on this site is increasing since comment moderation was switched off by a too busy Iain.

The service Iain provides is clearly seen as threatening to Labour judging by the amount of effort they are putting in to sabotage the comments sections of successful Conservative blogs. Dizzy should take note and calculate why so much effort is being made if, as he says, blogs are not all that significant to the world of real politics.

We should all congratulate Iain for constituting a sufficient threat to the Labour Party machine to warrant so much attention, and it is clear that blogs can be extremely influential on party morale and as a way to clip the media's wings.

I fear Iain is getting overstretched between his TV commitments and this blog, and I feel he should request party funding/contributor donations to fund troll patrols and carry out site maintenance efforts.

But most of all he should be congratulated on his success....on the other hand the contributions from trolls can be most revealing, and show where we are hurting Labour the most.

Anonymous said...

A few stories that Iain has conveniently forgotten to mention on the blogg

: Lib Dems Tax cutting announcement

: Casino U Turn.

: Embarrassing Spat between the Tories and Digby Jones.

: Michael Goves dreadful performance on C4 News last night.

The Hitch said...

Chris Paul?
I say let him keep posting , he is a marvelous parody , then again I am the type of person who would pay good brass to go and poke luntics with a stick (through some safe bars)
Ashdown , a commited socialist who spent part of his youth shooting Malaysian socialists ,I can never look at him without thinking psycho games/geography teacher , the sort who gets you out of bed at 6 am and throws you into a stream.
When he was caught with his kit around his ankles who was it with,
Samantha fox?
Linda Lusardi?
No it was with Miss Marple!
Being a Libdem its a suprise that it wasnt with Mr Marple.
I think that he should p*** off out of politics and go and do some modeling for those catalogues aimed at older sprightly folk that like to tramp around the lake district in synthetic fibres , Paddy could do the butch 1000 yard stare pose.
Ming could do the comfy shoes with velco fastenings pose.

Anonymous said...

The deranged writings of Chris Paul are too prolific to be created by one individual - I suspect he isn't a real person, more of a pseudonym or persona used by a number of NuLab astroturfers.

Tapestry said...

anonymous 4.33, why would Iain report on stories covered elsewhere?

The Lib Dem situation is in many ways the most critical electoral story - and the depth Iain can deliver through doughty st interviews as with ashdown is unique. As with any successful operation, work out your USP and build your strategy around it.

(Unique Selling Point)

Anonymous said...

Chris Paul makes me think of a small, excitable, argumentative, peevish schoolboy who has got himself worked up into a passion contradicting the grown-ups and doesn't know how to stop. And if he's told off he goes into a massive sulk and nurses imaginary grievances for ages, reiterating them in thread after thread.

You just know that whenever Iain posts anything, Chris Paul will pop up shrieking "Yah boo sucks! Oh no it isn't! Oh no I'm not! You shouldn't be saying that! It's all lies! Unfair!" and so forth. It's just so tiresome. He should get out in the fresh air and sunshine and kick a ball around for a while, meet some real people and try to relate to them. That kind of thing.

Madasafish said...

I don't see why you lot criticise the LibDems for having no principles.

I remember Iraq.

And what is current Conservative policy on Iraq?

Absolute blind muppets .. you could not recognise a principle if it hit you on the head:-)

After IDS, I have a grave suspiciion of Conservative foreign policy.

Anonymous said...

Iain - I am the guy who criticised you for using internet space to dwell on the junior nobody reshuffle amongst Tories and accused you of seeking a seat and hence becoming a rah-rah page for CCO. Clearly no Dale-sycophant I (and your responses were robust BTW!)

Given this, let me surprise you by saying 'thank you'. I found this a really interesting, insightful, measured and grown up piece of VT.


TONY @oakroyd said...

What's another dead Iraqi?