20 March 2009

Mesmerised by Campbell

Various blogs and commentators are falling over themselves to heap praise on Alastair Campbell who has guest edited the New Statesman.


I thought I was looking at the cover of a football magazine when I opened the web page.  Cleverly done to make the magazine stand out.  For the rest Campbell throws his contact book at the NS and twists a few arms for articles to fill out the pages.

Daniel Finkelstein says he read the Ferguson article twice.  Well I suppose the failed former strategic advisor to the Tories has little else to do these days.

I skimmed read few articles, not having previously read the NS for years, and his strongest point, and even this was fairly weak, was what Campbell said on the Tories:

What talents do they have? David Cameron who is good at pictures, William Hague who is good at jokes, Ken Clarke who is good at being blokeish and lazy. What else? Chris Grayling? Oliver Letwin? George Osborne and Andrew Lansley? Running a country?

We can expect Brown to pick up on this, although Labour are seriously underestimating Cameron.

Why is the media still so taken in by Campbell?  OK , he may be advising Brown, but his real influence and power belong to another era.  At the next election we are deciding the future direction of the country and who should lead us.  There is little point Labour giving so much space to Campbell - I am sure he would not have started his blog without some prodding - and John Prescott, who does not even write his own.  The electorate want to hear from and be influenced by present and future leaders not old Blairites that belong to yesteryear.

Campbell and Prescott are living an illusion if they both think the electorate still listens to what they say and do.  We have moved on, so should they, and the media has to even if it is still mesmerised by the man who did so much to destroy Blair's credibility before and after the Iraq war.

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