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Archive for the ‘memoirs’ Category

New Labour Spin Twins: currently out-lying each other

Hardly surprising, I know, but since they have not been entirely well-received by his own party it was necessary for Mandelson to spin his memoirs for all he was worth upon their publication today in the face of what I predict will be pretty poor sales – and some reasonably tough questioning from Evan Davies this morning.

Even so, to hear Mandelson actually trying to spin his own, printed words from his own, conceited book – to hear him attempt the epistemologically impossible and wriggle and squirm as he did so – was a source of some pleasure for me as I battled my way into work through sheets and sheets of West Wales rain.

Doesn’t he realise we stopped believing anything he says long ago? Davies made the point quite well: something like, don’t you think the public will find it quite annoying that only three months ago you were telling them to vote for what you now call a ‘dysfunctional’ prime minister and party. Mandelson had no convincing answer to that, at least, not convincing enough for any potential readership, I would say.

But is this a case of one spin operation too far for the Prince of Spain (sic)? I suppose it’s inevitable, actually, that spinners end up spectacularly but stubbornly contradicting themselves. After all, ‘spin’ is merely a euphemism for ‘lie’. And Mandelson, after Alistair Campbell, is the biggest spinner of them all.

The only important thing about this book of Mandy’s is that it represents the first shot in Labour’s latest civil war, a war which, with enough luck, should keep them away from office – and us – for a generation.

So well done he. Sort of.
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Jackie Ashley, in her piece in the Graun this morning that’s basically a 1500-word moan about why-oh-why the Labour party is imploding and so many people are ‘abusing’ the party’s record in government, describes Mandelson’s new memoirs as “bank-swelling”. I’m not sure I agree with her about that. Beyond all the MSM political hacks who must buy it (assuming they’re not given free copies), the professional bloggers (one of whom probably helped to publish it), MPs and former ministers, (who’ll all be desperate to see if they get a mention from the oily old pocket-liner) I have a sneaking suspicion that very few people will be remotely interested enough to shell out their hard-earned on such an artefact of conceit.

You see, the thing Labour people like Ashley don’t seem to grasp is that contempt for the Labour party and all its works has gone well beyond mere abuse now. Try as she and her BBC husband might to talk it up, the fact is that people have moved well on from the Labour narrative and are comfortable with the new, Tory/coalition one. So comments like this from her, let’s face it, pretty desperate piece…

Somebody needs to fight back against the hysterical torrent of abuse being poured on Labour’s economic record, which after all included a decade of good times, the rebuilding of public services, and successful action to stave off a full-scale collapse in the banking system. It may be too early: the self-righteousness of the Labour-haters now matches the self-righteousness of New Labour in its pomp. But the time will come.

…sort of pretty spectacularly miss the point. The “hysterical torrent of abuse” would not be the relevant thing even if it actually existed (it doesn’t), the outcome of the general election is, with millions of people deciding, not as “self-righteous Labour-haters” (a rather feeble example of the sneering hyperbole I’ve often heard from self-righteous Tory-haters like her), but as ordinary voters, to reject Labour and its pisspoor record. You know, in their self-righteous Tory-hating, which shields them from all conceivable criticism, I think Labour-losers still really haven’t understood the fact that they have lost the argument – comprehensively and conclusively – and that they are, consequently and with increasing shrillness, talking to themselves.

The sales of Mandelson’s new novel, the serialisation of which is safely hidden behind a Murdoch paywall, should provide a fair measurement of just how irrelevant Labour have quickly become, and just how far the country has moved on from them and their sorry tale of failure in government.

Me? I expect to see it in the bargain bins within weeks, along with Mandelson’s memoirs.

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