Monday, 26 March 2007

Labour Future Tense

Yesterday, the Observer's headline, "Miliband Could Still Succeed Me: Blair", preceeded 800 breathy words on the Labour succession. In short, Blair thinks Miliband could beat Gordon, and Westminster is frothing with rumour and innuendo concerning the chances of Miliband standing.

Only problem is, Miliband ain't standing. Well, we presume he isn't, cos he ain't said nuffing.

Nuffing, that is, apart from his review of Tony Giddens' latest tome - a "review" which is actually only 1 part book review but 2 parts conference speech and 7 parts leadership manifesto. He's putting forward the "New Labour" stance, arguing against centralisation, paternalism and top down control (remind you of anyone?)

Word analysis:
"Brown" - 0 mentions
"Blair" - 1 mention
"Leadership" - 2 mentions
"Labour" 3 mentions
"New Labour" - 12 mentions

It reaches its shuddering climax thus (my emphases):

None will be solved without a different culture of politics recognising that while leadership comes from government, innovation and mobilisation comes from the bottom up. Devolution is not just a question of policy; it is the foundation for a renewed efficacy in politics. In the 1940s and 1950s, the dominant theme was 'I need'. Paternalist government was the result. In the 1980s, the cry was 'I want'. We all know what happened. In the 21st century, the driving ethos is 'I can'. People want to make a difference by taking decisions for themselves and with others. That is the basis for a new progressive project that builds post-Blair politics - bold Labour, not old Labour - of an exciting and attractive kind."

It's therefore just a shame that the Observer hacks didn't notice this bold and enlightened 900 word futurology. In their own paper. But after all, why would they? It was buried at the back of the Review section ferchrissakes and who reads that?

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