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This weekend's scandals

First up, the generally tiresome Rory Bremner's entrapment of Beckett. Not something I approve of, and generally in the same league as any other hoax phone call. However, what is significant is this: "Last night Beckett condemned an 'unprincipled and unpleasant breach of privacy', adding that she did not remember the conversation". (Source). If she really cannot recall a 10 minute conversation, then I worry about her ability to deal with the detail of the Foreign Office portfolio.

Michael Foot's apparent track record as a swordsman rates with Major / Currie for the unexpected. His official biographer reports he had a mistress in the early seventies, but dismisses Foot's claim that he and Barbara Castle had a thing going on. I presume it must have been his role as Secretary of State for Employment which turned the lady's head.

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Anonymous swift said... 2:32 pm

These people never remember things that incriminate or embarass them. Mandelson, Blunkett, Livermore, now Beckett; if their memory is as bad as they claim they shouldn't be in the jobs they're in.
Beckett also sounds like an awkward teenager in the transcript - endless 'I mean' and 'you know'. Was she like this in the past or has consciously made herself sound more like Tony?
And I love her modesty too: "we've got the first meeting of the parties for the Kyoto protocol, so that's a big thing in the autumn, where of course we'd be leading for the EU and also on the Doha round. So there's a huge amount coming up in the next six months or so, which, you know, as I say, all the rest of Europe is sort of confidently looking and saying, literally, you know, we're leaving that to Margaret."  

Blogger Croydonian said... 3:46 pm

Swift - good spot.  

Blogger The Hitch said... 4:02 pm

Our glorious leaders really are banal mongs aren't they?
No wonder everything is falling apart.
So much for grand conspiracy theories, most of these fuckers probably cant even do up their own shoe laces.  

Anonymous verity said... 4:17 pm

Margaret Beckett is elevated way, way beyond her competence. She has the soul of a medium-sized town Labour councillor.

She's also a liar. She missed some critical vote in Parliament because she and her husband were caravanning somewhere in Britain. Some newspaper got it wrong and said she'd been caravanning in France.

In a TV interview - can't remember the programme - she said something to effect that she had been accused of missing the vote because she had been caravanning in France. The interviewer said something along the lines of "so you didn't miss the vote because you were caravanning"?

"Absolutely not!" she neighed. "All these tales that I missed the vote because we were caravanning in France are complete lies." She manipulated the question and manufactured misleading answers to the question as to whether she was off caravanning and missing an important vote into "caravanning in France". "It's ridiculous! We definitely were not caravanning in France." This went on until the interviewer gave her a carrot.  

Blogger Croydonian said... 4:39 pm

And she has been quite the vicar of Bray too.

An ancient tale bears re-telling, as I cannot find evidence that I have posted it here:

Way back lost in the mists of time, Paxman was grilling Mellor when Secretary to the Treasury and Beckett his shadow, and Mellor was declaring 'Margaret thinks this, Margaret thinks that' etc etc, whereupon Paxman interrupted, 'Wee-ell, let's get it from the horse's mouth'.

Matinee idol Mellor had a fit of hysterics, Paxman became very interested in his shoes, and Beckett looked like she had a mouth full of sloes.  

Anonymous verity said... 4:56 pm

Oh, God, that was funny!  

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