Friday, 30 April 2010


Just watched the interview that I had hoped would be the clincher that finally ended the Brown nightmare once and for all.

Initially, I was encouraged by Paxman's enthusiasm in pursuing Brown on his lies about, well, just about everything, and his terrible record everywhere. Then, after Brown did his usual trick of attacking the interviewer for not asking him the right questions, I really thought Paxman would lose it and go for the jugular. You know, a Howard moment, which he could have done with a question like "You say you take responsibility for the things you think you are responsible for. Name them." Something like that, or better (he was in a massively target rich environment about ten minutes in). But he didn't - and I was pretty unimpressed.

Then, once the whole, sorry spectacle of wriggling, delusion, desperate, hate-filled divisiveness and contemptuous revisionism was over, I realised what Paxman had really done. In fact he hadn't suddenly decided half way through, for some perverse personal, politically motivated reason, to go easy on Brown. He'd done precisely what everyone else has done when it comes to this useless, troubled man, including the editors of the Guardian (laughably).

He'd just given up.

And that was more damning than a hundred Howard moments, and it sealed Brown's fate in just the way I had hoped - finally and permanently - but not quite in the way I'd imagined.

So - and I never thought I'd be saying this - well done Paxman. You've finally done your compatriots a genuine service.


  1. This critique is an absolute travesty of the truth of the Paxman-Brown interview. Brown was stastesman-like, reasoned,and very well-informed. I'm sure Paxman would agree.

  2. Narcissist but ever such an 'umble one

  3. I was doing something more edifying... watching Battlestar Galactica on Blu-ray!

    Maybe I'll catch it on iPlayer.

    If I can summon up the interest in Brown any more...

  4. Lol @anon 1. A Labour troll. How touching. I must have nailed it!

    @anon 2: rofl (I think ;)

  5. Tony: Ordinarily I'd recommend a bit more Sci-Fi escapism on a Friday night, seeing as all the pubs are bankrupt and closed thanks to Labour. But this time - no, 'fraid not. Do watch it.

    I'd value a second opinion - especially yours :)

  6. I think Cogito Dexter had the right idea. Perhaps Brown is really Gaius Baltar...

    Mind you, even Iain Dale thought Brown did well; so I must check this interview out for myself when it appears on iPlayer.

  7. Brown was statesman-like you say Anon (no wonder you fail to reveal your name ... for fear of ridicule no doubt). Well, if he was it must be the first time ever. I've never come across a less statesman-like figure than that fool.

    I imagine that the BBC bosses made it clear that they will have no truck with people making any more of an arse of Mr Brown than he does himself. Doubtless words were passed like contract and renewal and stuff like that.

    Didn't watch it. Got some dishes to wash. BTW the New Quiz on Radio 4 was excellent listening tonight.

  8. John, I can see I might have lost this one given, as you say, Iain Guru Dale has called it differently.

    But, you know, I call it as I see it - and I found Brown's performance, well, totally appalling. Paxman's sudden change of tack, after having manipulated Brown so expertly and so closely to a position of fleeting self-realisation and honesty, was initially bewildering.

    I just tried to make some kind of sense of it, without being mean to the Pax, whom I have secretly admired for a long time in spite of his mysterious personal politics.

    However, I'd value your take on it enormously.

    And, of course, objectivity has not always been my strongest point when it comes to that Brown creature :D

  9. Top comment, tris. Enjoy the washing up ;)

  10. everyone knows it will make precious little difference who wins the next election. I actually thought Brown's 'performance' with Paxo was commendable, given that we now appear to have to judge politicians on their media skills. The idea that Paxman deliberately let Brown hoist himself on his own petard is a nice fantasy, but actually Paxo became a weak parody of himself many years ago, just like Humphries. He thinks he's greater than his subjects, and assumes that his posture of weary disdain amounts to something profound. But the point is that the current economic crisis would have been not one iota less severe had the Conservatives been in charge - this is a crisis of global capitalism, the seeds of which were sowed with Thatcher, the 'big bang', neo-liberalism and all the rest of it (deregulation of the finance sector, de-industrialisation, de-nationalisation etc etc.). This is not a critique of Thatcherism and all that followed - in many ways they were needed. But the Tories are by defintion less-interventionist (economically as well as socially) than Labour. The Conservative's even more pronounced laissez-faire capitalism and surrender to market forces would in no way have averted the crisis. In short, each of the three main parties have bought into the same system, complete with its inevitable cycle of boom and bust: these 'differences' we are asked to choose between in the polling booth are in some cases not unimportant, but none of them have anything to do with the big picture. The long crisis of the Left has left it with no real answers to the crisis of capitalism; Cameron's civil society sounds jolly pleasant but will change nothing fundamental. What we probably need is an emergency 'war cabinet' at this time, not some illusory 'choice' on election day.

  11. Now, as comments go on this blog, anon, (and they are pretty thin on the ground usually) that's one of the most rambling stream of claptrap I think I have had the misfortune of having to read.

    I'm not going to run through things again - you've obviously swallowed Brown-Labour's mindless, mendacious propaganda hook, line and sinker, even to the point that you feel the urge to repeat it, poorly.

    As I will say to all Labourists, especially Brown, on May 7th, I now say to you: "Goodbye. Don't come back."


Any thoughts?