It’s not often I fisk the Times, aside from their seemingly ridiculous wish to give Michael Portillo some column space they usually provide an intelligent read for those of us wanting a bit more thought and intelligence than you see in say the Guardian.
Today however I make an exception because Peter Riddell, in the opinion of your erstwhile good Guttersnipe here, has just frankly got the wrong end of the stick and then proceeds to get more wrong as the column goes on.
“JOHN PRESCOTT is now politically irrelevant. Only he and a few friends do not seem to realise this. It is merely a question of how long he takes to accept that his reputation is tarnished beyond recovery.”
Well I would agree with politically irrelevant but the use of the word ‘now’ strikes me. This would imply that he was politically relevant at some time in the past. He wasn’t. He was a useless fat twat then and still remains so today. The only crumb of political use he has had is that he appears to be good at embarrassing the Labour Party far more than Blair does.
“Every new incident or allegation further erodes his position.”
Nope… every new incident or allegation leaves him in exactly the same place, as a trade-union thug who we finance to the tune of £2m and get nothing in return. If we really want to have talentless, brain-dead feckwits in our newspapers all the time we have the Big Brother Housemates, and we don’t have to pay them.
“This has been fuelled by the new world of political blogging, seeking to break stories that might not be covered in the mainstream media.”
Actually seeking to publish stories that the BBC sweep under the carpet, but I’ll let you off on that one.
“The latest stories about Mr Prescott’s stay at the US ranch of Philip Anschutz, who wants to run Britain’s first supercasino, represent a lack of judgment rather than outright scandal. I do not believe that Mr Prescott behaved corruptly, he does not have a role in decisions about who runs casinos.”
Here, Peter, you have misunderstood things. I believe the Prescott behaved corruptly. If he was on official business what was it? I believe he went over there to be wined and dined by an American billionaire at taxpayers’ expense. Anschutz needs something from the government (ie. Permission to have a casino) therefore it is Anschutz’s responsibility to come over to London and negotiate it. It’s not the government’s job to go out to America and ponce about in champagne receptions. Unless:
a) It was done to oil the wheels of the deal ergo Prescott acted corruptly
b) It was nothing more than a taxpayer funded holiday in the US ergo Prescott acted corruptly
From Day One Prescott has taken advantage of every ministerial perk that he can get his grubby hands on, including his diary secretary, taking the trappings of government without doing the governing and that in my book is abuse of position and therefore corruption.
“At present, some senior ministers are displaying an arrogance and ethical casualness, as Sir Alistair Graham, chairman of the Committee on Standards in Public Life, has said, much to the irritation of many in Whitehall. It is no good just believing your behaviour is above board. That needs to be demonstrated. Moreover, the arrangements for investigating allegations against ministers are still inadequate because it remains for the Prime Minister to decide whether to order an inquiry. “
Damn right there’s arrogance. The NuLabour ship is sinking so they’re all helping themselves to the silver now by sticking their noses in the trough and ploughing every little luxury they can.
“For Mr Prescott, the turning point was two months ago when he had to admit to an affair with Tracey Temple, his diary secretary. That left him looking ridiculous but, initially, he failed to recognise the extent of the damage. “
Oh he recognised the damage alright. He just didn’t care. Remember it’s all about what they can get now.
“Mr Prescott is a proud and prickly man, sensitive to slights and being patronised. He has played an important political role in the Labour Party, being a crucial ally to both John Smith and Tony Blair. That is why Mr Blair is publicly supportive now. “
No… Prescott is an embarrassing leftie thug who would have been fired from any other job if he had behaved the way he has done in office, imagine for a moment he was still the bartender on a cruise ship. How long would he last if he:
- Punched a customer
- Sexually assaulted and harassed the female members of staff
- Had sex on the Captain’s Desk
- Just took Thursday afternoon off work for a croquet game
The Perk-grabbing fat bastard makes me sick. Blair is supportive of him now because they come as a package and we all know full well that if Prescott goes he’ll take Blair with him.