Wednesday, September 20, 2006

The Enforcer

Yesterday, there was a brief moment of elation in the hamster household when I saw this link on BBC News Online:
Reid: I've no ambition to be PM
The thing is, John Reid really does scare me silly. No joke. Some of the things he's done, particularly during his time as Defence Secretary and now as Home Secretary, curdle the blood. His ability to "think the unthinkable" (that's "defend the indefensible" to you and me) coupled with his steely determination make him the most dangerous politician the UK has seen in a very long time. He's certainly the only current MP who manages to outBlair Blair, a Herculean effort if ever there was one. He would be a bad Prime Minister.

Obviously I was delighted to read that he'd ruled himself out. But then I read what he'd actually said. He was asked if his next job would be in Number 10 Downing Street:
I've been very privileged in the number of posts I've had, and I have no personal ambition, seriously, no personal ambition to attain any other high office.
Oh balls! You don't need to know that Reid is an ex-communist to spot that he hasn't actually ruled himself out at all. "No personal ambition"?

So the Reid announcement will be something like this:
As you know, I had not intended to run for this position. In discussions with my party colleagues however, many have expressed their view that my leadership would be of great benefit to the party and the country. And as Gordon Brown would be an ahem dreadful Prime Minister, I see no alternative but to put my name forward.
That'd do it.

To be clear, I'm not saying that he'll definitely run; I am saying that he hasn't ruled himself out. He could just as easily have said "I absolutely will not run for that position". But he didn't. The elation was brief, as I said.

Earlier this year, Reid infamously said "We hope we will leave Afghanistan without firing a single shot". More than 400,000 bullets have been fired since he made that statement and the troops have had to issue desperate pleas for reinforcements. The traditional New Labour "hindsight defence" is as vacuous as ever; they were warned in advance just as they were in Iraq. To commemorate this gross negligence, I'll be using the good Doctor's full name whenever I mention him from today until the moment he leaves politics in disgrace. That's John "We hope we will leave Afghanistan without firing a single shot" Reid.

Now, John "We hope we will leave Afghanistan without firing a single shot" Reid has decided it's time to do some good old New Labour blaming of others. Obsolete and Bloggerheads have the lowdown.

"We hope we will leave Afghanistan without firing a single shot" Reid seems particularly determined to transfer all blame for the recent rise in islamic extremism away from the government he belongs to. And if the suggestion that Muslims are not doing enough to combat extremism stokes the fires of Islamophobia, well that'll just make it easier to sell the "war" on terror to the 22% "majority" which keeps his party in power. It's a win-win situation.

John "We hope we will leave Afghanistan without firing a single shot" Reid must never be Prime Minister.

As an aside, who thinks Guantanamo Bay, extraordinary rendition, "alternative" interrogation procedures, the farcical Forest Gate raid, or the shooting of Jean Charles de Menezes are things which encourage concerned parents or others in the Muslim communities to report possibly suspicious activities to the authorities? Anyone? Anyone at all?

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