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About me

Adios, Anthony – It wasn’t all bad


Warning: This post was published more than 9 years ago.

I keep old posts on the site because sometimes it's interesting to read old content. Not everything that is old is bad. Also, I think people might be interested to track how my views have changed over time: for example, how my strident teenage views have mellowed and matured!

But given the age of this post, please bear in mind:

  • My views might have changed in the 9 years since I wrote this post.
  • This post might use language in ways which I would now consider inappropriate or offensive.
  • Factual information might be outdated.
  • Links might be broken; embedded material might not appear properly.

Many thanks for your understanding.

The Blair Years

Everybody with the ability to communicate appears to be commenting today on Tony Blair’s legacy today, after he announced that he would resign on 27th July.

It’s easy to point out that he’s buried bad news to the end, choosing to use the day of an interest rate rise to announcing his ‘departure timetable’, something perhaps more familiar to a steam train than a politician. Not to mention the burying of the news that the cost of the ID card scheme has increased by £840m.

It’s easy to point out that he’s the King of Soundbites to the end: “The best nation on Earth”.

It’s easy to point out that his departure had the same theme tune as his arrival, Things Can Only Get Better, and wonder when it was most true.

It’s all-to-easy for people like me to knock Blair’s achievement. We can criticise him for his sofa-style of government, his five wars, his failures.

But for all his faults, he is the first Labour Leader to secure three successive election victories. He has introduced policies which have made the country better – the minimum wage being a case in point. He is the first ‘celebrity’ Prime Minister. And he’s a very successful politician.

His legacy will be the war in Iraq – his biggest failure. His defence of his less successful policies – “I did what I thought was right” – reveals, perhaps, his biggest failing: Government should not take decisions based upon the whim of the Prime Minister – however well intentioned – but on the facts, considered opinion from experts in their field, Cabinet discussion and debate, and Parliamentary process.

It’s a legacy, but not, I think, the one he wanted.

This 1,129th post was filed under: News and Comment, Politics.

More posts worth reading

What I’ve been reading this month (published 4th March 2017)

What I’ve been reading this month (published 6th February 2017)

What I’ve been reading this month (published 31st December 2016)

Review: Digital Fortress by Dan Brown (published 19th December 2012)

Photo-a-day 274: The Queen (published 30th September 2012)

First Anniversary (published 7th May 2004)

Light blogging (published 19th June 2008)

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