Comment at end
Watch live video of Iraq Inquiry. WARNING!!! No LIVE Hangings. Sorry.
7th September, 2008
It’s my party and I’ll cry if I want to
Cry if I want to
Cry if I want to
You would cry too if it happened to you
Nobody knows where my Johnny … er … Tony has gone …
And it didn’t rain on their party parade? Well, it’s rained on most of us in Britain today and for the last several. Personally I experienced much of it in the West Country and in Wales over the last week or so on a few little away days.
But hey! I could have made that little party in Buckinghamshire if I’d been invited! Especially if the torrential stuff hadn’t left the roads and railways completely unusable. Must’ve been the ‘right kind‘ of rain falling on Mr Blair’s Buckinghamshire home and the gathered faithful.
Oh what fun!
‘A HOUSE-WARMING WITH NO SIGN OF GORDON’ SAYS THE MAIL
Tony and Cherie Blair yesterday staged a house-warming party at their new £5.75million stately home – complete with a B&Q-style small white tent on the lawn to keep the rain off food and drink.
There was no sign of Gordon Brown or his wife Sarah among the 50 guests at the late actor Sir John Gielgud’s former mansion.
Those who did show up at the Blairs’ seven-bedroom country residence in Wotton Underwood, Buckinghamshire, included Peter Mandelson, John Reid and Lord Falconer, once a flatmate of Mr Blair.
Olympics Minister Tessa Jowell attended without her estranged husband David Mills – and managed to lose her way on the country roads as she left later.
Despite frosty relations with Cherie, Mr Blair’s ex-gatekeeper Anji Hunter was also there.
Earlier, Mr Blair’s former communications chief David Hill, his wife Hilary and former Downing Street aide Kate Garvey were seen wandering the paths.
Braving spitting rain too were Mr Blair’s brother Bill, a High Court judge, and his wife Katy Tse.
The sight of leading Blairites, including Tessa Jowell, Peter Mandelson and Anji Hunter arriving at Mr Blair’s £4 million Grade I listed manor house in Buckinghamshire immediately increased suspicion in the already febrile Labour Party.
The event was described by a flustered spokesman for Mr Blair as a “staff party”.
But it appeared to be more than that as senior MPs, ministers and former Downing Street advisers descended on the seven-bedroom house in Wotton Underwood, the former home of the actor Sir John Gielgud.
While guests mingled in the ornamental gardens, sources close to Mr Brown said they had been tipped off about the party and were suspicious about its timing, at the end of a week in which he has suffered sustained attack including from the former home secretary Charles Clarke.
The gathering also came after a poll showed that Mr Blair was the only senior figure in the Labour Party who could revive its fortunes.
One senior Labour MP said: “It’s obvious the Blairites are plotting because they keep having drinks parties. You see it all the time now.”
Mr Brown will face fresh criticism this week over his approach to immigration. The Labour MP Frank Field will launch a report calling for a limit to be placed on the number of people permitted to live in Britain.
He will say that lower-paid British workers have borne the cost of an unprecedented wave of immigration, with access to good schools, hospitals and housing all put at risk.
While agreeing that immigration has brought some benefits to the economy, Mr Field and a new cross-party group on the issue will say that immigration is currently out of control. Ministers say the number of illegal settlers is 430,000, but the report says it is probably between 500,000 and one million.
Large scale immigration is placing new pressures on schools, the NHS and the police as well as straining community relations, it will say.
Large numbers of pupils do not have English as their first language and extra resources are required to help them.
Need any policy suggestions, Blairite party-goers all? Next time you need to get away from it all, to chew the fat, talk politics or the British weather, pick neutral ground where you won’t be noticed. Do get in touch. Discretion guaranteed.
Who said anyone was plotting? It’s the rain one is concerned about, that’s all. One needs to sort it out. Quickly. Before Mr Brown claims success in putting an end to it!
Of course Mr Brown could always try singing along with these two:
POSSIBLE TOPICS OF CONVERSATION OVER THE BURGERS, CHICKEN & ROAST NUT CANAPES
Wonder what the party-goers could have been discussing, after sorting out the weather, of course?
- Scotland and Independence if the Tories win the next election?
- Cameron’s reported tempting of former Blairites into his “big tent”? Such as Matthew Taylor, head of the Number 10 Policy Unit under Blair, Professor Julian le Grand, former adviser on NHS policy, and Ken Anderson, a health expert are all said to be talking to Mr Cameron. How can this be prevented? I wonder.
- Labour is despairing of Brown but where is this year’s Brutus to do the dreaded deed on last year’s Brutus?
- Or perhaps a little chat – off the record, of course – on how to open up the Tories to real political scrutiny? Not difficult, I’d have thought! Right now they are getting away with murdering debate.
- Or perhaps some talk of a New, still NEWER ‘New Labour’ strategy and policy-making under Blair .. I mean … a new leader?
- Oh, and a little bit of discussion as to why Blair SHOULD take a peerage, even if it is against his inclinations?
- And was there a touch of “what does he mean by that” as Mr Blair insisted over a glass of wine that colleagues should not get excited about the recent poll? A columnist with a declared ear to the ground says, ‘Mr Blair knows he has “run out of road”. Mind you, I’ll bet you he’s smiling.’
I also bet that some are asking how many more poll points it’d take to persuade him back on that rocky road again? For the sake of the party, you understand!
BEFORE & AFTER BECOMING PRIME MINISTER
A POLITICAL DEATHTIME LATER
And what of Mr Brown? On a purely human level you have to feel sorry for him. It took Blair years AS PRIME MINISTER to age markedly (see pictures below).
Blair 1994/2003 – BEFORE/AFTER the stresses of holding Prime Ministerial office
With Brown it has taken ONE year to look rather wrecked! One year and a political lifetime, or deathtime later.
The job is wearing, we should be in doubt.
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