Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Brown set to miss Labour conference

I see Mr Brown can't even be bothered to meet up with his fellow members in Scotland. Perhaps he is running scared of their reaction to his part in the defeat by the Lib-Dems in Dunfermline. I enjoyed the following letter to the Herald.

Brown has failed crucial tests of leadership

THE Dunfermline and West Fife by-election result will send shock waves through Downing Street. Number 11 Downing Street. The chancellor, a resident of the constituency and MP for its neighbour, was in Moscow on polling day. His postal vote, personal prestige, his numerous constituency visits and ultra vires pronouncements on Forth Bridge tolls have only helped deliver this catastrophic result in his own Fife fief. If Gordon Brown can lose a seat where people vote Labour just as dogs bark, what chance has this dour Fifer of wooing women voters of a certain age in Middle England? Boasting "Britishness" and waving the Union flag cannot compete with the psephological charms of young David Chameleon (as we now must call the Tory leader). Sitting Labour MPs must be asking themselves the question: will this man lose my seat too?

The trouble with Brown is that he is really a very bright policy wonk and not a real leader at all.

Peter Mandelson got the message in 1994: Brown is a loser. That is why Mandelson, a man seriously interested in power, deserted Brown for Blair. Brown has failed crucial tests of leadership in government. Ability to delegate? Brown lumbered Scotland with Henry McLeish. Determination? Brown blinked first when Mandelson switched to Blair. Decisiveness? Initiative? Courage? For almost three years it has been obvious that the premiership of Tony Blair will end in contemptible failure. Yet Gordon Buggins waits his turn as viceroy in the twilight of a "Scottish Raj".

Gordon Brown is no longer even "Thane of Fife". That honorary title surely belongs to Sir Menzies Campbell. If his party has any sense it will now ensure his formal reign as "king hereafter".

Thomas McLaughlin, 4 Munro Road, Glasgow.

Scotsman.com News - Politics - Brown set to miss Labour conference

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