Thursday, May 08, 2008

Feeling Sorry for Gordon

Simon Hoggart's sketch of PMQs yesterday ought to be required reading for all Labour MPs. Here's how it starts...
It was awful, and it's getting worse. When I was at secondary school we had a temporary teacher for a term. He was hopeless. There is no group more cruel than young teenage boys, except young teenage girls, and we treated him unmercifully. At the end of term a friend and I saw him cycling down our street, and, separated from the feral pack, felt great pity. We stopped him, apologised for our class's behaviour, and said we hoped his next post would be happier. I would have told us to go to hell, but he seemed pleased, which was more than we deserved. I haven't had that feeling since until watching poor Gordon Brown.
Read more HERE.

UPDATE 9.30pm: A parliamentary contact emails...
The analogy is wrong in one vital respect. GB isn't some hapless young temporary supply teacher. He has been the all powerful deputy head at the school for the past eleven years who has bullied all the pupils and the staff and plotted every day to remove the head. Having done that pupils and staff have discovered that he is nothing more than, to use the old Scottish expression, "a big Jessie." Hence with merciless desire for revenge the pupils are taunting him and the staff plotting to remove him. He deserves everything he is enduring!


Anonymous said...

As Brown was trying to improve his public image by appearing on the "This Morning" show. David Cameron and George Osborne were attending the funeral of Gwyneth Dunwoody.

Anonymous said...

Sixty+ million of us in this country and we get lumbered with Grim Gordon as our 'leader'. Surely we deserve a better person than him? It's the man in the street I feel sympathy for, with the cost of living now going into orbit. Gordon will do quite nicely whether he goes or stays.

Anonymous said...

As long as we avoid hubris ... which one has to say is difficult in the circumstances.

Tories should still remember that a week is a long time in politics. That aphorism came back and bit brown at the time of the Tory conference.

The reality is that the credit crunch and housing crisis may ease, may not melt down as we all fear - but the economy is inevitably going to be weak, feelgood lower than at any time the last 10 years.

The govts problem is that borrowing is too high to safely produce tax cuts to get the economy moving. Tories need to make sure they are not outflanked on any Labour stimulus package. They need to tune in to the growing realisation that tax and spend has hit its limits. They need to develop policies to do more with less, to help the low paid and get those on benefits into work.

Grimness rather than hubris.

Browns claim that 'its not all my fault its just 'events dear boy' must be countered by pointing out how unprepared we were to face these events.

Anonymous said...

think how bad he'll feel in future gatherings of PMs when he is the only one who was never elected.

The Gerald Ford of British politics. Just a sec - that chewing thing he does - maybe its why he cant think at the same time?

Anonymous said...

"Simon Hoggart"

Does anyone care what he says?

Anonymous said...

Brown the Clown, the laughing-stock leader. What a sorry mess this is country is in with such a weak, unstable PM. Roll on the general election.

Anonymous said...

You couldn't make it up could you. 1970's - Britain laughing stock, 1979 - new leader, new ideas and genuine reform and rebuilding of confidence and international respect and paying off of debt. 1997 New leader new chancellor - 2007 New Leader shed loads of debt, Britain again a laughing stock (economically) mind bogglingly in debt and a nutter as a prime minister, who history will judge was the worst Chancellor of the Exchequer since...Gawd I don't know when.

He is truly hopeless. For God's sake get him out of there and put him and us out of his misery.

Anonymous said...

Simon Hoggart is talking BS. The PM did OK yesterday. I am biased but I thought the tory leader did not get a scratch on him, despire what the media now want to re-write. And he will earn a fortune if he does resign, so I do not know why we need to feel sorry for him career wise.
I am not sentimental to the PM If he cannot win, then he will have to go eventually but he still needs to ride out the ecnomic storm so the next leader does not inherit that.
This insultsing of the PM is just done to demolarise labour activits we know what they are upto.

The PM is not charity case so why to sketch writers claim he is. I am not falling for this BS anymore from sketch writers.
Hoggart should not have misstreated his teacher in the first place. Bloomin yobs. Mind you atleast he apologised.

I am fed up to the back teeth with tories and skethc writers trying to demolarise the Labour activits with their new ways to put down the PM.
If you don't like him admitt, if you thin he is not up to the job admitt it, but do not claim he is someone to feel sorry for, as he is not. Atleast not in his career.

Anonymous said...

DES - Interesting point - feeling sorry for the PM.

Well actually I do. He has wife and kids who know him and think he's a hero. Any decent Dad will tell you that the last thing that they will do to any other Dad is to belittle them in front of their family. Decent Dad's know this is not on. Brown is a Dad. I don't know whether or not he's Good Dad (the odds are that he probably is) but personally I find myself in a dilemma. I want him excoriated and punished for the scandalously profligate way he has run the economy and the deceitful way he has done it. At the same time I genuinely worry about the affect of all this approbrium on his family and his children.

He is clearly not up to the job, and never was. He is not leadership material and never was. He was a very bad chancellor in a fiscally. A brilliant chancellor politically. But that's ultimately no good as your fiscal errors will always find you out long after the politics have been forgotten - or worse yet remembered.

So the solution to both of our dilemmas - mine for worrying about his family and his for being NBG - is to resign. Now.

Anonymous said...

Nobody should feel sorry for Brown - all his present troubles are of his own making. For years we had to endure endless paeons of praise from the media that he was the "best Chancellor" this country had. Absolute rubbish. His one "good idea"(which was Blair's and Mandelson's original concept) was to grant the BoE independence. Other than that he raided the private pension funds which resulted in the closure of the majority of final schemes and turned what was one of the world's finest private pension regimes into the worst; he sold gold at bottom of the market; he has stifled enterprise under a welter of red tape and increased the burden of taxation to the highest level in Western Europe( you could perhaps forgive him that if the monies raised hadn't been wasted); he has tried to socially engineer the country by re-distribution of wealth and has mounted continual attacks on the "middle classes" ; he has had the mother of all sulks for a decade or more and went out of his way to obstruct Blair's policies at every turn whilst encouraging his supporters to de-stabilize Blair's leadership because he thought that the Premiership was rightfully his although he even bottled that decision at the infamous "Granita Agreement".

The sheer irony and delight is that when he actually got to be PM he was found to be totally unable to actually do the job.

So save any tears for Gordon - the sooner he and the Labour Party face their nemesis at the polls(hopefully suffering a rout as the Conservatives did in 1997) the better for the country and the electorate. Good riddance.

Anonymous said...

Dirty E S

Do you have a spellcheck?
Or were you just pissed?
These must be depressing days for you, so don't be ashamed of the extra dram to keep the black dog at bay. Finish the bottle and, who knows, you may start to like Dave and George.

Anonymous said...

Dirty European Socialist: "I am fed up ... with tories and sketch writers trying to demolarise the Labour activists "

Punching them in the teeth, you mean?

Anonymous said...

Dirty Socialists are really cross because not only have they lost London and the local elections, but they can't even drown their sorrows on the tube any more, thanks to Boris. Still, they'll soon be able to join the chief clown in his Brown study once he's booted out by the electorate.

Astro-Turf Lawnmower said...

What Hoggart and his mates did to the teacher was cruel. The teacher was just trying to help them learn.

He was not taxing them into penury, with a particular focus on the poorer children. He was not trying to intern them for 42 days without charge. He did not have his finger on the nuclear button. He was not making them a laughing stock in the eyes of the world.

Mocking the teacher was cruel. Mocking this Prime Minister is a national duty.

Anonymous said...

"The PM is not charity case so why to sketch writers claim he is. I am not falling for this BS anymore from sketch writers....demolarise the Labour activits with their new ways to put down the PM...If you don't like him admitt, if you thin he is not up to the job admitt it..."

LMFAO! This troll is cute! You should keep him... ;)

Anonymous said...


I care deeply about what Simon Hoggart says, if it's all the same to you.

Anonymous said...

Okay, DES, next time I see a Labour activist (although they are conspicuous by their absence in my very marginal Tory constituency) I will certainly 'agolopise for demolarising theme', and will in fact offer to do their canvassing and delivering for them - which I am sure they would do for me.

Because let's face it, why should there be more than one Party, it is SOOO divisive, isn't it? After all, who could have any political ideas different from those of the Great Leader.

Anonymous said...

Anon 6:35 "His one 'good idea'(which was Blair's and Mandelson's original concept) was to grant the BoE independence".

Yeah, but he didn't even get that right.

I see no reason to feel sorry for Brown. He's bullied his way into a job for which he isn't even barely competent.

It looks like he may not even be qualified to be a waxwork dummy at Madame Tussauds.

Anonymous said...

lola I htink he is a good leader. He is just no good at the spin. Look at Bill Gates V Bush in presidential election. Bush would win but Bush is a moron.

Sniggering Tory You are the one who is pissed. And what does it have to do with you how well the PM does. Will you get his job I doubt it. The PM wuill just be replaced by another labour leader so big deal.

archroy Who got punched in the teeth.

It's cruel to gloat I do not drink alacahol.

JuliaM I am not a troll I am opionater.

judith Good of you to sense.

Anonymous said...

I want to develop this 'feeling sorry for Gordon' theme a bit, if you will indulge me.

The thing is he has fallen into the same trap of all Socialists. That he can re-engineer human nature with tax and spend. Taking cash away from one set of citizens and giving it to another. And seeking to 'narrow the gap between rich and poor'. This latter point is in socialism – the politics of envy - as much about making the rich poorer as it is about making the poor richer. This is entirely flawed thinking. This 'socialist' administration has done this by deceit and stealth and has taken mostly capital from the rich (and not so rich) and spent it. Not as Brown would have it 're-invested' it, spent it. This is always impoverishing for all of us. Also it is what all, but all socialist administrations have always done in every country the experiment has ever been tried. Most notably in the USSR which from 1917 to 1989 spent down the capital of its society, failing to add value anywhere. To illustrate the truth of this I give you the Lada and the Mondeo.

Now Brown, I genuinely believe, cares for the 'poor' and the 'single mothers' and all the rest of it. He is I understand underneath it all a sensitive man. But his solutions are Wrong, with a capital R. But he is also a bully and a sulk. I have observed a petulance in all he does. He seems unable to accept that anyone knows more than he does, even though they are not as clever. It's a flaw. His second flaw is deceit. He knows, or seems to know, that no-one will accept his tax and spend policies unless they are packaged as nothing of the sort. That tax can be raised and no-one will lose out. That he is the best and only arbiter of the allocation of capital. Every extra tax policy he has propounded, every announcement on tax he has ever made has been announced as a cut. All the statistics he quotes are selective and selected. He double and triple counts, repackage and recounts. This is deceit on a grand scale, and he has been found out.

He is also incapable of sound fiscal management. He has borrowed money for current expenditure, and necessary fall out from this policy is his next failure, administrative incompetence. It is clear that he has no ability to run any successful large organization. The act of throwing large, as in humungous, amounts of our cash, at unreformed state monopolies was ever and always doomed. You just never do that for any organization. You analyse, observe, cull and reorganise and then spend the money.

On interest rates and the credit crunch a large dollop of the blame rests with him. His partial privatization of the B O E was excellent, but inadequate. He required the place men of the MPC to track his favoured inflation measure, the CPI. This is not suitable for the UK economy and in fact just tracking one indicator is inadequate. This lead to negative interest rates and money being too cheap, which again leads to speculation in asset prices, hence the house price boom. His solutions for his clients – Key workers ( a deeply offensive term) – is to offer shared equity schemes at our expense. This is also very bad for the buyers, trapping them into houses they cannot afford and negative equity.

The we have the politicking. Of this I am not qualified to comment and I have no personal knowledge, only what I read and see. And as I never believe more than one tenth part of that, well….Nevertheless his body language at one party conference when Blair was speaking was very revealing.

All of this, and more, is why he is now, not to put to fine a point to it, in the shit. It is all his own fault. The trouble is he has dragged the UK down with him.

So why should I feel sorry for him? But I still do, in the eyes of his family. We all have failures and mostly we keep them private and only our loved ones know. We are given the blessing of anonymity to sort it out and adjust. His total and complete failure from 1997 until now is revealed for all to see. His family will not be able to protect him from the storm that will engulf him and the judgements of history.

I repeat his best chance of some dignity is stand up in the Commons, say I am sorry and I resign and go. Now.

Anonymous said...

DES - "no good at the spin" You are 'avin' a larf arnt yew? He's been spinning like a bloody top since he got to No. 11. One of his problems is too much spin, and its associated deceit. Cripes, please not more spin. And BTW I don't like Tory spin either.

Anonymous said...

lola : No socialism does work. Look at Scandanaiva which was a successful socialist economy. Look at free market extremism in Russia, in Russia in the nineties which led to the population declining and massive economic loss, comparable to some of the worst execesses of the red terror.
Look at the fmaines in the Briths empire in Ireland and India under free makret extremism compared to regulated agriculture systems run in the private sector.
I am not a communist I support the mixed economy which does better than extreme capitalism or extreme commuinism.

Anonymous said...

Gordon Brown is the man who has unashamedly used devolution and his Scottish constituency votes to impose higher stealth taxes onto English citizens, whilst our elderly, sick and dying the same life and sight saving drugs which his Scottish constituents enjoy for much cheaper, or for free.
This is the man who abolished my nation and foisted Regional Assemblies on us, in a blatant attempt to justify Scottish rule over England.
I hate him. He should he apologising for impoverishing us and denying equal democratic rights in Britain.
Feel sorry for him? Never. The man has not yet suffered enough. Labour should be hanging their heads in shame. May they all dwell in the shadows of obscurity forevermore.

Anonymous said...

DES you]re confused again.

Russia post communism was not and
is not capitalism. It's gangsterism. Capitalism, or rather anglo saxon libertarian democratic free maket capitalism wih compassion, has other criteria including the rule of law which makes it work. There was no effective rule of law in Russia and to some degree there still is not.

I do not know enough about the facts of the Irish Famine to comment efectively, but my guess is that there was some eqivalent failure of compassion or the rule of law. What I have read suggests that there was sufficient food in Ireland but that individuals did not have the money to buy it. This may have been the result of extreme laissez aire which some advocated folowing Adam Smith. Even AS did not advocate total laisez faire. So perhas the fmaine was the result of economic ignorance - that is society was not yet sophisticated enough to understand that everyone is a neighbour.

As far as Scandinavia is concened I agree that the vey high level of internvention has seemed to work, but again I dot know enough about their particular circumstances to comment.

The fact is the more you do for people the less they will do for themselves, it's human nature. The surprising cororally is thet the less you the better they will do it for themselves - up to a point. For example the State (or perhaps better local authorities) has a role in education and health care. This is part of the infrastructre and is necessary to create the conditions for successful economy. But this is need not be under the current system of a state monopoly, it could be as a facilitator, funder and checker of standards.

Socialism is an ism. Capitalism is not an ism. It's not a philosophy, it's description. It just is. Socialsim seems to think that people are inhereently not social. This is daft. We are the most social and interdendent species on the planet. We all need each other. We do not need to be told to do this. Similarly no politician takes the same care with tax money as an individual takes care of his on money. And consequently Socialism destroys capital. And that is ultimately bad for everyone.

Anonymous said...

Why is the PM allways seen as a bully.
Is thi just an anti scottish thing where people think he is scottish so must be a nutter.
Charles Clarke is referred to in this artcile as a bully.

The tory leader is referrred to in this article as a bully.

So where is the evidence.

Anonymous said...

lola said...
"..the worst Chancellor of the Exchequer since...Gawd I don't know when."