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Thursday, December 28, 2006

Tears Fears Smears As Blears Hears Cheers

Easy Rider - what's in your handlebars?Once again the media, led by the Trotskyite BBC, is at it with the smears.

This time the focus of their attention is a ginger-haired person of diminutive, but porcine, stature.

No... not me, but the MP for Salford, Chair of the Labour Party and Minister without Portfolio.

Regular browsers of politics on the web will know that my attitude towards Hazel has been ambivalent at best.

The late-lamented Councillor Bob Piper once wrote: "Luke Akehurst thinks that Hazel Blears should be the Labour Party Deputy Leader. Luke's only reservation is that Hazel might be some way to the left of him. Don't laugh...."

These acerbic comments resulted from a spoof posting by my alter ego, who tried to fool readers into thinking that I genuinely supported Hazel's campaign for the Deputy Leadership. The truth, of course, is that I took a far more balanced approach to her proposed nomination, moderated mostly by the general consensus that she would be the Labour Party official embarrassment candidate.

So what has Hazel done now to deserve the venom of the right-wing press and media? Murdoch's rag "The Times" started it all with the scandalous lie that we were offering hospitals for votes. As I explained at the time, the fact that virtually none of the hospitals scheduled for rationalisation are in Labour marginals is completely coincidental, as indeed is the fact that, of the proposed new hospital developments, almost all are in Labour marginals.

The fact is that although these planned closures and new developments are part of Patricia's remit, the decisions were made by the Departmental civil servants on a case-by-case basis and not by a collective decision of The Cabinet. Thus the decision to close Hope Hospital's maternity unit in Salford was not one made by Patricia and nor is it a decision subject to the rules of collective responsibility. And the fact that the Secretary of State for Health has the middle name "Hope" is just another one of those damned irritating coincidences.

Not a protest - more of a celebrity appearance

So there's absolutely nothing wrong with Hazel expressing her views in support of local constituents outside Hope Hospital. The media may refer to it in histrionic terms as a protest, but obviously Cabinet Ministers don't take part in anything so vulgar and Old Labour as a "protest". Hazel was merely making a celebrity appearance to show her support for local mothers (with any fees involved going directly to charity, of course).

The really sordid and offensive bit of the media attack on our Party Chairperson is the snide suggestion that her antics appearance may be in some way connected with next year's boundary changes and parliamentary selection process and the determination of Eccles Labour MP Ian Stewart to seek the Party's nomination to stand at the next election after his current seat is merged into the two new constituencies of Salford & Eccles and Worsley & Eccles South.

The outrageous suggestion being put about is that this sincere and genuine woman might fear a tearful outcome to the nomination battle and be taking populist action to secure the cheers and support of local electors and CLP members. Utterly ridiculous. What next? Someone will probably suggest that Tony Blair was seeking a sympathy vote by over-running the airport runway at Miami International Airport!

2 comments:

Reginald Ponsonby-Smythe said...

I say, I do fancy that chap on the motorcycle. Always liked a bit of ginger spirit with decent posterior springing, don't you know.

Praguetory said...

In Birmingham Edgbaston they're getting a brand new hospital. Clinical priorities, don't you know.