“Guys, we’re going to need money. And a message. Attractive people would be good. Not you. Or you, you or you. And a leader, who’s the leader? You got a leader? The one down there now with the teeth and the finger jive? The eight-year-old? Okay, we’re going to need the army as well, does that work over here? Can we get the army? We’re going need the army.”
There are some out there hoping the American will make Ed Miliband into Obama. He made a start today. In the tributes to fallen troops he pronounced lieutenant as lootenant.
A journey of a thousand miles starts with a single stumble.
Oh, it’s a long way to go. Obama has a gift for elevated sentiments, if nothing else. That’s what got him into the White House. The audacity of soap. Big language. Soaring thoughts. Ed Miliband lacks the audacity of soap.
The Royal Mail sale, for instance. “Everything about this privatisation stinks,” he said. Stinks. Everything stinks. It’s the language of a disappointed child.
He had some debating points, including a joke – the man who ran the lucky hedge fund which got 20 times the shares of anyone else – he’d been George Osborne’s best man. How was it decided who got what?
It’s a good question, and would have gained purchase with a cool manner and forensic pauses. But Miliband prefers to go through his question-cycle in a fixed crescendo heading for his great climax: “Everything stinks.”