…on BBC1 tonight must have been seriously uncomfortable viewing for the
Chancellor new PM.
There are some incredibly telling moments in the first program dealing with the relationship between Blair and Brown, which do not put Gordon in a very favourable light.
One thing is the sighing and the bodylanguage of Blair, when faced with direct questions about their run-ins from Times columnist David Aaronovitch. It’s telling, but then again only important for the partisan viewer. The same goes for the disagreements over policy, of course.
What’s truly uncomfortable however, is the descriptions of Brown’s style. The scheming, the hiding and the unedifying lust for power.
There’s nothing new there of course for anyone who’s followed politics for the last few years, but rarely, if ever, has it been presented so damningly as a matter of fact.
The timing for Brown is appalling, coming after a terrible week in which his control-freakery has surfaced with a vengance first with Lord Admiral West and detention, and then with David Miliband’s speech on Europe. His personal poll ratings have reached an all time low, and tonight’s program will have done his efforts to save a crumbling image no good at all.
A measure of how bad things have got, is an article in tomorrow’s Times, where Cabinet ministers are forced to deny that Gordon is a bully.
Well, even if you take their word for it, as you might have taken Number 10’s word for it during the Blair years, it’s a pretty sorry state of affairs when ministers have to rush to the media to deny that the PM is a micromanaging, interfering arm twister.
It’s hard to see how he can ever convince the public he is anything else.
(Then again, it makes great cartooning material, so by all means don’t change Gordon, dearest. Keep it real. Act natural.)