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Monday, September 29, 2003
The Deal

Conspiracy theorists will seize on the timing of last night's broadcast of Stephen Frears's 'The Deal', the loss of trust in Tony Bliar and the simultaneous rejuvenation of Gordon Brown. His speech to the Labour Party conference today was certainly that of a leader in waiting. Consider this paragraph:
Just as it is right to back our leader Tony Blair in his efforts today to bring security and reconstruction to Iraq - and I want to praise the professionalism and dedication of our armed forces - and to bring a settlement that ensures peace and justice in the Middle East; and it is right to seek international agreement as Tony Blair and John Prescott are doing to tackle climate change and global environmental damage.
Several points jump out: firstly there is no real 'so too is it right...' to balance the opening 'Just as it is right...' Secondly, it cannot be (strongly) argued that here is an unambiguous bid for the leadership of the Labore Party. The swift transition from talking about Bliar and the reconstruction of Iraq, with which few could disagree, to the praise for the armed forces presents something worth deconstructing. There’s not as much praise for the dear leader as one (TB) might expect, yet the criticisms, while muted, are still notable.

See the lack of endorsement for the war. Note too the tilt at the US administration: TB and the man with verbal diarrhoea (John Prescott) are trying to tackle climate change; TB is looking for peace and justice in the Middle East - both things where the US Hebrew Gog (anag.) and his administration are being extraordinarily recalcitrant.

In other words, big Gordon is trying to point out that getting involved with an America led by the shrub will bring no worthwhile dividend. Roll on Clark & Dean, the celebrated cinematic duo....

Lots of people, though, might have enjoyed it more had the speech contained the sentiment 'I come to bury Caesar Tony, not to praise him.'

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