“Tony Blair’s Fatal Flaw.” You won’t believe this …

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    Ban Blair-Baiting


    10th April 2010

    [Read my inspired bodice-buster, more or less, starting here.]

    Then again you probably will believe it.  It’s in the papers! Must be true. Blair’s “fatal flaw”?


    I kid you not. From Harry Mount, a “former leader writer” for  The Telegraph (oh, purLEASE) comes this gem – ‘Tony Blair’s fatal flaw – he doesn’t read novels’


    ‘My friend Daniel Hannan recently quoted the late Michael Foot saying, “Men of power have not time to read; yet the men who do not read are unfit for power.” And the men who do not read novels are unfit for examination of the human condition. The best novels are much better insights into the real thoughts of humans, than yet another book about the Third Reich.’

    Eccentric Hannan quoting Eccentric Foot. Hannan the not sure if he’s a Tory on Foot the not quite successful Labour leader.

    So now you know –

    • It’s not that Blair is now unreasonably, abnormally rich for a non-Tory sort.
    • Nor that he is the most successful Labour leader EVER. That’s EVER, EVER.
    • It’s not that he is a maniacally-deluded hubris-driven religious ass-kisser.
    • Nor that he’s a criminal type of chappie, unlike … er … this one
    • Nor is it that he tells fibs and things, unlike … er … this one
    • And it’s definitely NOT because the present Tory party’s leadership reveres Blair.
    • It’s because Tony Blair doesn’t read novels. Make-believe. Invention. Self-delusion magnified.


    In actual fact, Mr Mount, just for the sake of accuracy, Robert Harris says that he doesn’t think he [Tony Blair] reads novels” – which is somewhat different from saying he knows that Mr Blair doesn’t read novels. But what’s a little distortion of the facts between friends when it comes to thinking and knowing about Mr Blair? Anything that shows that he is not like the rest of us passes muster.

    Your insight below, Mr Mount, says more about you than it does about Mr Blair:

    Excerpt, Harry Mount:

    ‘Without the boost in imagination and human sympathy that novels bring, no wonder Tony Blair grew so detached and megalomaniacal.’

    If it’s of any concern of yours, Mr Mount, I don’t read novels either. Is that MY “fatal flaw” too? Or is supporting Tony Blair fatal enough?

    Since it seems you lead a dull life, you should know that politics is far more intriguing than make-believe and politicians are far more in touch with the ‘human condition’ than are those who write about them.

    And so the detached and megalomaniacal Blair lives his unreal and sort-of-pretend political after-life, disentangling himself more and more from others – as here, here, here and here.

    I suppose the pretend prime minister in Ghost, Adam Lang, didn’t read novels either? In the same way that he didn’t have an assertive, successful, (manipulative) wife? Nor did Lang have a long-term, attractive and loyal secretary. Nor did the PM support the USA in an (‘illegal’) invasion of Iraq.  Nor did he retire to write his memoirs to a country which LOVES him still. Nor was he pursued by the ICC on war crimes charges.

    Oh, sorry some of the above is TRUE – I mean isn’t true. But hang on – it must be true. It was in the book. And the film.

    Truer than true. A real insight into the human condition.

    In other words make-believe. Do you get it? Yeah. Me too.

    Confusing at times, when one depends on stories for one’s life experience.

    I think I may be finally getting to the bottom of this Harris/Polanski business. Especially now that Harris is practising his line of defence – just in case.

    Oh, I’m fed up with these two make-believers already. I’ll have to tackle them in another post, when I’m more in the mood.

    OK, hang on – I’ll get in the mood. Let me think. What will I call this work of fiction? –


    “It had been some time since they’d been locked in a room together. She gazed at his strong straight back. He stood still as night staring blankly out of the mist-smeared window, arms by his sides as though once again at a Remembrance Day Ceremony in Whitehall.  She recalled the last time it had been just them. It was prior to the 2005 election, and he was tired and low – lower than ever before.  They’d shared his famous sofa and a coffee while she’d cradled his head protectively, comfortingly in the crook of her arm.  She had often done that since they first met as 16 year-olds. He brought out the maternal in her. They both knew that he had this effect on women. That was one of the reasons he was still prime minister.

    This time there was something else. Like others who were close, she knew that the war weighed heavily on him. Now its repercussions or perhaps something else, were gnawing away at him from inside, despite his public shows of outward strength.  She approached quietly and stroked the back of his neck, gently at first. He stiffened, involuntarily. And then she massaged more intensely across his taut, broad shoulders, allowing her body to move glancingly across his back. He started to relax under her skilful hands and turned and looked silently into her eyes, a flicker of the familiar smile on his lips. She feared he would hear her deafening heartbeat.

    It was no more than a few seconds but felt like an eternity before he moved again, his eyes drifting from hers. He seemed to be searching, almost pleading for something to take him out of his present state of powerless power. Like a momentarily delayed reflex her lips brushed his cheek, gently, sisterly. Suddenly, he cupped her face in his hands and kissed her deeply, passionately. Fumbling like breathless, lovesick teenagers would have been improper. ‘It isn’t supposed to be like this’, she murmured as she stepped back from the warmth of his arms.   He smiled, remembering the last time. She wondered whose need was greater.

    They …”

    Right. That’s enough of that nonsense.

    You see? Imagination is far more rampant than real life.

    [Take me back to real life, please]

    Just for the hell of it I’ve used this in its own post here – À la mode of Harris & Polanski – FICTION – ‘The Prime Minister’s Mistress’

    Will add more if and when I’m ever in that kind of mood – the conspiratorial kind.

    What else!?

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