Two years ago when Guido first asked the question “Is Brown Bonkers?“ he raised hackles in the unpopular parts of the blogosphere, Sir Michael White and others said it was an unpleasant smear and there was general condemnation for bad taste. Guido felt, once again, like the little boy who pointed out the emperor’s nakedness.
Yet senior Blairites were adamant, telling Guido that Brown was mentally unsound. In Westminster there was a muted but open debate in the margins as to Brown’s mental state; Was he autistic? Was it Aspergers? Did he have a personality disorder? Was he on medication? Even Andrew Marr asked him “Are you on drugs?“
Now Mandelson reveals that it was the view of Tony Blair, who had worked closely with Gordon Brown for two decades, that he was
“Mad, bad, dangerous and beyond hope of redemption… flawed, lacking perspective and having a paranoia about him… He’s like something out of the mafiosi… He’s aggressive, brutal…there’s no one to match Gordon for someone who articulates high principles while practising the lowest skulduggery.”
The national tragedy of Gordon Brown is two-fold; he blocked Tony Blair’s necessary welfare reforms not out of principle, but merely to frustrate Blair for his own personal political advantage. Secondly for purely political reasons he pursued Kamikaze economics that drove the economy into unprecedented levels of debt. The mad rivalry with Blair when the British economy was in the best shape to carry out the reform of the welfare state wrecked the best opportunity to ready Britain to compete in the global economy of the future.
Brown’s personality problems will be paid for over generations, this government is now implementing many Blair-like reforms that could have been carried out a decade ago when the economic conditions were far less difficult. The madness of Brown’s debts will be paid for by our children’s children.
Guido hears Gordon and Sarah have held another party besides the one at Labour HQ last night. This was held at London Zoo in the Mappin Pavillion overlooking the wallabies and emus. It was a thank you for campaign helpers. Sue Nye was there (without any bigoted women) as was Kirsty McNeill his 29 year-old lesbian chief-of-staff (a.k.a. Eva Brown since her speech writing days in the Downing Street bunker).
The zoo must be a favourite haunt for the Browns, the week before Sarah was there at an event as the guest of Lord Paul.
Next Monday the teaching unions NUT, ATL and NASUWT are organising a mass protest on Parliament, with teachers, pupils and parents sharpening their pitchforks over the Building Schools for the Future cuts.
The knives are out in her marginal Brent constituency especially, given that she is an education minister:
Reportedly Sarah Teather is privately “seething” about the school cuts, some have been lead to believe that this private anger could become very public on Monday after the union pressure. Some sources claim we could hear the first very public outburst from a Coalition Minister going off message…
UPDATE: Interesting to note that leading the campaign is Hank Roberts, an intriguing figure, who is technically a teacher, but does so much union activity he is paid by the council’s “utilities fund” over £50,000 per year not to teach. There is an irony in public money being spent organising a protest against making savings in public spending.
UPDATE: Hank wishes to point out that he is on £46,000.
Bollocks, bollocks, shit and bollocks. The mobile rang at 6 a.m. this morning and woke me up. I was hoping for the sweet, sultry Anglo-Français soothing vowels of Ellie, instead a jarring voice from the past made my blood freeze. “Hellooo, aahhm back in Westminster, ahh see you ahh struggling a bit. I’m going to help with your campaign. Meet me in Portcullis House at 11.00 a.m.” Shit, shit, shit. Shit. The last thing I need is Gordon “helping” with the campaign. Noooooooooooo!
(*As leaked to Guido)
With characteristically poor-timing, Gordon Brown showed his face in Westminster yesterday afternoon, just as the village had spent the morning digesting his less than dignified attempts to cling to power, as confirmed by Mandy in The Third Man. Naturally EyeSpyMP spotted Brown-in-town first.
So what was the burning issue that brought the Rt Hon. Member for Kirkcaldy and Cowdenbeath, who wakes every morning to fight for a fairer Britain, south to the Mother of all Parliaments?
He was all weird smiles at a drinks party in his honour at Labour HQ. Donors, Lord and Lady Prescott, Harriet Harman, Sally Bercow and the like were in attendance. His wife Sarah came too, which must have been nice for her after being dragged back up to Scotland. No expense was spared to honour the most unsuccessful Labour Prime Minister in the history of the party, though as a Scot you would hope Gordon understood the need for the cash bar to be in operation.
UPDATE: Tony Blair was not in attendance. Was he too busy globetrotting for cash or bringing peace to the Middle East. No, he was having a drink at Home House last night. Was he just having too much fun to pop over from SW1 to W1?
Hidden subsidies cost the taxpayers millions of pounds in order to finance the lifestyles of MPs, yet the fearless political reporters of the Lobby don’t seem too keen on reporting this hidden subsidy. Could it be because they too enjoy the taxpayer subsidised bars of the Parliamentary Estate?
The Speaker says he wants to bring prices in to line with High Street prices. In another piece of evidence based blogging you won’t see in the newspapers Guido has been fearlessly investigating what exactly are the prevailing market conditions around Westminster.
As the chart below shows, the average price of a pint of a Guinness is £3.45. MPs pay a mere £2.20 for a pint and the taxpayers make up the difference. Prices would have to rise 57% for them to match what the public pays in and around the Westminster area. They still know how to look after themselves don’t they?
MPs have no excuse for this subsidy and last Tuesday’s scenes of mass drunkeness hardly reflect well on Parliament. The first thing they should do to discourage that sort of behaviour is put the prices up to market rates, cheap drink has after all literally been their downfall. In these austere times of public sector cutbacks is it simply not justifiable for MPs to expect us to subsidise their drinking. Time please, drink up gentlemen, lets be having you…
Tim Hames, the Speaker’s unprecedented spinner, announced he was off last week. Which is unfortunate for the Squeaker as he looks like he could need someone to help with handling the press come Thursday night…
Question Time’s producers, ever in search of controversy, like to rile people with their choice of guest. This week they have a member of Ed Ball’s campaign team who failed to become a councillor invited on the show. She calls herself a “writer and broadcaster” these days, but Guido has only ever seen a blog post (about Balls) and an interview on This Week, not sure being on Twitter constitutes being a professional writer. It seems even Labour aren’t stupid enough to let the proven liability become an official spokesman. Burnham is on the same night…
Has she really done anything in her own right rather than as the Speaker’s wife? Perhaps some other failed council candidates, with Twitter accounts, backing someone in the Labour leadership, should ask to be on Question Time. That seems to be the criteria…