Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Winning Ugly

Punch and Judy
A win but no knockdown
A win's a win, and most seem to have chalked today's PMQs up as a win on points to Cameron, but it wasn't an especially good showing.

He gave his opponent too much latitude to manoeuvre back onto safer territory on the hospital questions.

He needed the EU referendum attack, one that is to all intents and purposes indefensible by Brown, to consolidate a comfortable but unspectacular win. As strong as the EU line is by Cameron, he can't use it every week.

If it wasn't for basic incompetence by Brown, he might actually have managed to have given his troops something to cheer or jeer about spontaneously, but in the space of a few minutes he managed to:
  • Exhibit basic dishonesty by referring to Cameron as an economic advisor to the Norman Lamont, in order to try and score some additional 'Black Wednesday' points, whereas every biography going into details describes his role as being a political adviser.

  • Show that he has not the slightest self-knowledge of his weaknesses by completely stuffing up two simple jokes

  • Ironically make a hash of his pre-prepared soundbite about Cameron's supposed love of pre-prepared soundbites.

  • Succumb, after Miliband's schoolboy whining yesterday, to wishful thinking by referring to William Hague as Foreign Secretary.

  • Demonstrate an inability to think under pressure, by continually making jibes at the Liberal party, unrepresented in the current parliament, rather than his intended target, the Lib Dems.
Overall though, Cameron is on the right lines. One person who does have some work to do on the Conservative benches is George Osborne. In the attacks Brown made on the Conservatives, only one was not based on a dubious regurgitation of ancient history, that of the alleged £6 billion 'black hole' in funding Tory plans. How he used it - it seems to be the only punch the great clucking fist has to throw at the moment.

If Osborne's team can either restore faith in his original funding proposal, or find some other revenue source that would receive popular support, they will have dealt the Prime Minister another body blow, and leave him almost completely out ammunition.

On a more consensual point Brown offered very sincere sounding congratulations to the England Rugby team, and best wishes for the final. I will try and put aside my scepticism about to what extent our Scottish Prime Minister will truly be rooting for Vickery and the team at the weekend, even in view of this fine article from the Times on NuLab's inverted snobbery about any sport other than chavball.
In a recent article on the Foreign Secretary, David Miliband, The Observer's political editor Nicholas Watt, made great play of unearthing the fact that as an 11-year-old Miliband was a terrible goalkeeper who once let in seven goals in a schoolboy match.

He goes on: “Cabinet colleagues have rallied to Miliband's defence. Aware there is no place in the New Labour tribe for non-footballers.” So there it’s official, you can’t help run the country unless you’re into football.


Maybe one day we’ll have politicians with the courage to openly admit their preference for rugby over football – just don’t hold your breath!

Source: The Times

I can't remember which blogger made the comment about New Zealand Prime Minister, Helen Clark's joyless, miserable face when attending the France v All Blacks quarter-final, even before her country's team began its familiar choking routine (no, not the haka).

To whoever it was, I am the bearer of bad tidings. It has been confirmed that Brown's miserable mug will be putting in an appearance at the final.

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