About me
Archive
About me

Soulless

close

Warning: This post was published more than 11 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 11 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  • Factual information might be outdated.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.

Watching the Prime Minister on Sunday AM this morning was depressing. If you think you’re up to it, you can watch the interview here on the BBC site. To think he was just eight years ago the fresh-faced everyman who would change the face of politics – a pretty straight sort of guy – is nothing short of tragic.

This morning, he stumbled over even the most simple questions about his innermost beliefs – clearly not struggling to express himself because of enthusiasm, but struggling to remember the prepared answer the focus groups told him he needed to spout. When faced with the tough questioning over Iraq, he largely ignored the questions posed in order to give his own egotistical speech. He looked disinterested, bored, and above all, exhausted. This is not the ‘Great Leader’ elected in 1997 – this man could hardly be further than that. He’s not even effectively manipulating the media any more – when questioned about stepping down, he replied (I’m paraphrasing) that he knew what he was going to do, but he wasn’t going to tell us lowly mortals. Eight years ago, he wouldn’t have dreamed of making that so obvious – he’d have given a crowd-pleasing non-answer, not taunted the interviewer.

The questions about the BBC’s coverage of Hurricane Katrina were met with the worst of all answers – He could have easily stuck to the ‘private conversation’ line, he could have given a flattering answer about the Beeb not covering things as he saw it, but the Beeb being impartial and him perhaps being more personally involved, or he could have simply chosen not to answer at all, saying that it was not his place to comment on the Beeb’s editorial decisions. Instead, he chose the worst bits of all of those options, saying that it was a private conversation but then divulging details of it anyway, and openly criticising the BBC all at the same time. That’s not the Blairite way.

Of course, there could be greater forces at work here, with the PM intentionally being painted as weak and over the hill in political terms, so that Gordon Brown’s confident conference speech will make him look like the natural successor. That’s one suggestion I can’t even entertain. Mr Blair couldn’t play down the statesman in himself intentionally even if he wanted to. He thinks he’s bigger than his party, and certainly his place in history is more important to him than the future electability of his party.

So what’s going on? Blair’s lost his touch, he’s drained, and ultimately, his eight years at the top have left him completely soulless, more a creation of spin-doctors than a real human being. He climbed the ladder for what he saw as the good of the country, attempting to be the great saviour. But he lost himself along the way, and allowed the advisers with which he surrounded himself destroy his very person. How very Shakespearean; how very tragic.

This 735th post was filed under: Politics.






More posts worth reading

What I’ve been reading this month (published 3rd April 2017)

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

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

Hang on a minute, Britain (published 3rd January 2005)

Photo-a-day 68: Dog fouling doodles (published 8th March 2012)

A Week in My Life: Friday (published 4th February 2005)

Swinging for the first time (published 6th April 2005)


Comments and responses

No comments or responses to this article have been published yet.

Compose a new comment



Comment

You may use these tags: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong> .

If you would like to display a profile picture beside your comment, sign up for Gravatar, and enter your email address above.

By submitting your comment, you confirm that it conforms to the site's comment policy. Comments are subject to both automatic and human moderation, and may take some time to appear.



The content of this site is copyright protected by a Creative Commons License, with some rights reserved. All trademarks, images and logos remain the property of their respective owners. The accuracy of information on this site is in no way guaranteed. Opinions expressed are solely those of the author. No responsibility can be accepted for any loss or damage caused by reliance on the information provided by this site. This site uses cookies - click here for more information.