Saturday, June 30, 2007

Put Simon Heffer out of our Misery

One of the good things about blogs in general is that they allow the punters to comment on the commentators. We don't have to just froth ineffectually at the wisdom of those that write in the mainstream media, we can also record what we think for all to see. So, to Simon Heffer, a purportedly right-wing columnist in the Telegraph. I say purportedly because Simon spends most of his time attacking the Conservatives and giving tacit encouragement to, well, anyone else. For example this is his view on the new Brown cabinet in today's paper:
The new, bright, shining, young, vigorous Cabinet that Mr Brown has just installed may well be as much of a crowd of charlatans as the last lot: but, unlike their Tory shadows, they know where they are going, and they know what they are going to do when they get there.
Utterly qualitative, not very insightful and with a central message that Labour may be bad but the Tories are worse. Simon loathes David Cameron, by the way, and even when the Conservatives were well ahead in the polls his bile knew few bounds. Now that Brown is benefiting from wall-to-wall media coverage and a collective relief that Tony Blair has gone he is positively gloating that Labour seem to have nosed ahead.
The veneer of magic Dave brought with him - and it was only ever a veneer - has cracked and is flaking off.
Anyway, having got that out of his system he moves onto the recent European treaty and Gordon Brown's attitude to it.
He doesn't want a referendum because he knows he would have to support the treaty, and we would defeat him heavily on the day.
Who is 'we', the Simon Heffer party of one? He can't be talking about those useless Conservatives whose leader, David Cameron, demanded a referendum in utterly unequivocal terms when Tony Blair presented the treaty to the House of Commons? There is of course no mention of that from Simon, who has a rule never to give David Cameron or the Conservative Party credit for anything. So who exactly does he think he is speaking about or for?

Now, most people in politics will have met people like Simon at one point of another, frustrated ideologues who are much more interested in the purity of their political thought than ever actually, you know, doing anything. They don't hold with things like building political support if that means watering down their views one iota, and they have nothing but contempt for anyone interested in moderation or consensus, or winning elections for that matter. Most of them adhere to fringe parties, if they can find a party that matches both their beliefs and lack of practical ambition. Most of them also jack it in when they leave university and collide with the real world, not Simon though who has achieved the dual feats of not only maintaining his narrow faith but also of persuading others to pay him not inconsiderable amounts of money to articulate them.

Otto Von Bismarck, who knew a thing or two, said that 'Politics is the art of the possible'. The trouble is that writing about politics clearly is not.

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