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What is a shadow Cabinet secretary?

The shadow cabinet is a group of politicians of an opposition (i.e. non-governmental) party whose job is to scrutinise, criticise and ministers of the governing party. Each minister has his critic/opponent from the other side, called the shadow. Home Secretary is the minister responsible for internal policy in a country (ie Police, drugs policy etc). I can't seem to work this in with the text, though. Maybe we need a Structure of British politics page. GWO


28/7/2001

While the 'rebranding' may have fooled some of the population, it should be noted in the interests of balance that the Blair administration was responsible for the loss of serious amounts of public money in (for example) the [Millenium Dome]? fiasco, and that charges of 'croneyism' are never far away when one of Tony Blair's political allies (more or less inevitably) lands some plum job or other in the British administrative process.

I don't think this is a very fair comment for an encyclopedia. A link to croneyism would be fair because there are frequent charges on this score but it is endemic in British political life, especially in the awarding of peerages.

Also the idea of "fooling" the nation should be reserved until there is enough historical hindsight to determine: a) whether the Labour Party was intent on delibrately misleading the nation and b) whether they were successful.


What was the purpose of rebranding? It was to present an image (spin, etc) to persuade the British electorate that the Labour party were electable, and that things would improve with them in government. They succeeded in their aim, i.e. the rebranding worked. How much of what was being put forward was based in actuality?


Very little. Most of it was/is gloss and sheen. Things are no better in Britain under this lot than the last lot.

Subjective, and not neutral point of view

Crime rates continue to rise

Not true. Crime down, but violent crime up.

taxes also; social conditions worsen.

Evidence? If you backed any of these statements up with facts, it wouldn't just look like party political venting.

M'lud I would suggest that a highly elaborate con was (again) perpetrated on the British public.

Yes you might. But it shouldn't be mistaken for anything factually supported.

I suspect that you might also get a similar response from the millions who stayed away from the last election.

You may well suspect that. Doesn't make it true.

More people didn't vote for Blair and Labour than did, and yet he/they are still in power.

Straw Man. Who would you suggest won the last election?

You're also suggesting that several hundred million pounds of taxpayer's money wasn't thrown down the drain?

On the Dome. The Dome that was John Major and Heseltine's idea. Such avoidance of the facts does not make neutral point of view, it reads like a Daily Mail editorial.

Or that all political appointees above a certain level aren't vetted by Alastair Campbell et al?

Name me one political leader who appointed their enemies to positions of power GWO


I see the apparatchiks are up and doing. Mustn't tarnish St Tony's gilded halo, must we...

So what's better? Railways? No. Traffic? No. Street crime? No. Pensions? No. NHS? Much worse. Policing levels? down. Taxes? Up. State bureaucracy and political interference? Up. I'm running out of things to be critical of. See if you can think of any positives. I live in one of the nicest areas of Britain, and it's a ****ing war-zone at night.

Personally I'm glad crime is down at the expense of violent crime, it makes me feel so much safer that I know that I'm less likely to be burgled but more likely to be burgled with violence...

IfI'd been Blair, I'd have scrapped the Dome on coming into office and called a white elephant a white elephant. The Tories are culpable as well, but they didn't control the finances at the time...

I can think of several political leaders who appointed enemies: Ken Clarke offering the olive branch to Portillo being but the first that leaps to mind.

PS I forgot to mention '2 Jags' Prescott, Peter Mandelson, Keith Vaz, the disgraceful treatment of Mo Mowlam, the Hinduja affair, the arms deal fiasco with the IRA.... sjc


Here is the suspect text. Change it to something that is from the neutral point of view (recast your partisan take on things as "one view," then cite an opposing view or views), then repost it:

Elected using the reformed election rules he had helped to bring in, Blair and Brown set about changing the Labour Party, modifying its constitution away from committments to public ownership, focusing on presenting itself as fiscally competent (after the failures of the previous Labour government) and "rebranding" itself as New Labour. While the 'rebranding' may have fooled some of the population, it should be noted in the interests of balance that the Blair administration was responsible for the loss of serious amounts of public money in (for example) the Millenium Dome fiasco, and that charges of 'croneyism' are never far away when one of Tony Blair's political allies (more or less inevitably) lands some plum job or other in the British administrative process.
Although it attracted much criticism for its alleged superficiality from both political opponents and traditionalists within the party, the glitzy transformation was nevertheless successful. Aided by a Conservative government split over policy toward the European Union and tainted by allegations of corruption, "New Labour" achieved a landslide victory over John Major in 1997 and repeated the success in 2001 defeating Conservative leader William Hague and Liberal-Democrat leader Charles Kennedy with the overall loss of only one seat (see British Elections 2001). It should, however, be noted that this was the lowest percentage turn-out in a British election in living memory. The second victory was historic as Blair became the first Labour Prime Minister to achieve two terms in office. It was also the biggest majority ever achieved by a party already in government.

--LMS


Why not add this bit too: " Following crushing election defeats by Margaret Thatcher in 83 and 87, Blair aligned himself firmly with the reforming tendencies in the Party, headed by leader Neil Kinnock who gave Blair his first cabinet post, and worked to produce a more moderate, and electable party." --if only because what is electable is of course a matter of opinion, subject to hindsight bias. If you don't believe me, then ask Ross Perot. ;-)

I don't understand this comment. Can you elucidate? GWO

I just mean why blather about what's electable or not? I doubt everyone here would agree about it, nor would everyone voting, nor (obviously) would everyone running for office. I should probably have just removed ", and electable" without commenting on it, now that I think about it. :-) --KQ