DfID Hypocrisy of SNP and Blair

Yesterday the usual suspects could be found railing against the news of a merger of the Department for International Development and the Foreign Office. Ian Blackford in particular treated us to one of his typical never-ending faux-pompous outrage performances in the Commons, saying

“In a time when we should be standing with the world’s poorest, acting as a beacon of hope, the Prime Minister is playing politics… This is shameful and is not in our name Mr Speaker”

If Blackford had done his reading, however, he would know the Whitehall shakeup is being done explicitly in the name of the SNP. The party’s 2013 Guide to an Independent Scotland” details the party’s proposed Government structure post-independence, in which:

The Cabinet Secretary for International Relations will have responsibility for relations with the rest of the UK and Ireland, the EU, and the wider international community, and will be supported by a Minister for International Development.”

“Scotland’s international development programme will be delivered as part of an integrated approach to international relations.”

Precisely the structure and goals Boris wants to see from the new merged FCO-DfID department…

Blair also kicked back against the move, saying via his institute he is “utterly dismayed by the decision to abolish DFID. We created DFID in 1997 to play a strong, important role in projecting British soft power. It has done so to general global acclaim.” Again, his own words come back to haunt him. In his 2010 autobiography, Blair wrote that after creating DfID:

“It was not popular with the Foreign Office, who thereby lost control of the largest slice of their budget, and some of their objections gained my sympathy over time… it resembled an NGO inside government and this caused significant problems”

The changes will not end the 0.7% GDP target, and are designed to enhance UK aid abroad. Opposition for opposition’s sake is obvious and soon creates a boy-who-cried-wolf situation…

mdi-timer 17 June 2020 @ 11:30 17 Jun 2020 @ 11:30 mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-comment View Comments
Happy Birthday Tony Blair

67 years young today. Although it has taken him a decade, it looks like he’s finally getting his party back…

mdi-timer 6 May 2020 @ 16:34 6 May 2020 @ 16:34 mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-comment View Comments
Brown Calls for Global Governance, Blair Doing Media, Cameron Showing Off Tan, Major Only Ex-PM Not to Wish Boris Well

Since leaving office, Gordon Brown did a better job of keeping his head down than his predecessor, generally only popping up during major disputes such as the Scottish and EU referendums. It appears he’s now trying to use Coronavirus to confirm his elder statesman status, taking a lead in urging world leaders to both create what the Guardian headlines as an ominous-sounding ‘global government‘ and calls to create a $193 billion fund to tackle the pandemic. Fortunately so far it doesn’t seem like anyone is listening…

His rally for a multi-billion dollar economic rescue package was supported by fellow former PMs Blair and Major. Whilst Major took the time out to back Brown’s initiative, he’s been noticeably silent on another issue. Wishing Boris well in his recovery…

Over the last couple of days we have seen well-wishes from almost every living former Prime Minister:

Theresa May

David Cameron

Gordon Brown

Tony Blair

However, one living PM has not said a word – John Major. It is known Major resents Boris for winning the Brexit referendum, though even Tony Blair managed to put political difference aside to wish the PM well. Not Major’s finest hour…

mdi-timer 8 April 2020 @ 10:36 8 Apr 2020 @ 10:36 mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-comment View Comments
Blair: PM Should Be Perfectly Able to Lead Country From Isolation
mdi-timer 29 March 2020 @ 10:24 29 Mar 2020 @ 10:24 mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-comment View Comments
Blair Offers Government ‘Constructive Advice’
mdi-timer 29 March 2020 @ 10:19 29 Mar 2020 @ 10:19 mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-comment View Comments
Blair Transgender Agenda is for Losers

Tony Blair warns…

“You have got to distinguish between the advocacy of things that are right — gay rights, transgender rights, whatever it is — and launching yourself politically into a culture war with the right. If you go, ‘Transgender rights is our big thing,’ and the right goes, ‘Immigration controls is our big thing,’ you’re going to lose that. You’re not going to be advancing any of the things you want to do… If you’re going out there and trying to advocate things in a finger-jabbing, sectarian way — ‘If you don’t sign up to what I’m saying, I’m going to come and disrupt your meetings and shout at you’ — you’re not going to win that battle. You’re just going to put a whole load of people off.”

mdi-timer 20 February 2020 @ 13:41 20 Feb 2020 @ 13:41 mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-comment View Comments
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