The story that is getting the silly season treatment is the leadership "ambitions" of Peter Mandelson. There was a time when most Labour members hated Mandy so much that he was regarded as Public Enemy Number One. It seemed that people like me had a higher regard for him than the socialist brethren. Mandy was regarded by the his Neanderthal comrades as the person who dumped all their cherished beliefs in the socialist utopia, and in the process made them electable (but also devoid of political content). Now, it seems, the socialist dinosaurs love the guy. Labour's Atavistic Tendency is out in force and Mandy is their new pin up.
But this passing love affair is destined not to last. Nevertheless, the media have grasped hold of it by the short and curlies and have blown it into a story of Mandy for PM. The difficulties of dumping his peerage and getting back into the Commons would, you would think, have deterred the media from this daft story, even assuming the Labour party successfully prised Gordon's fingers off the keys to Downing St (and so far every attempt to do so has failed).
Yet, even the return to the Commons of Mandy has been plotted out by the media in the form of the retirement of Hilary Armstrong, the hereditary socialist MP for Durham North West. The former Blairite chief whip, who inherited her seat in the Commons from her father, has announced her retirement at the next general election. The speculation is that she will resign her seat in September to create a vacancy for Mandy's return. It reads more like the storyline of a Jeffrey Archer novel rather than a future reality. But it certainly makes for an interesting silly season!
Brown however has Mandy where he wants him: on side to deter the Blairites from challenging (other than the hamfisted attempted by the Blairite B Team of Blears and Purcell). He is also imprisoned in the House of Lords. You have to credit Brown with something (though not much). He may be an appalling communicator with a temperament totally unsuited to the role of PM, but he certainly has staying power within his own party. The people in the general election however may not care to continue with Brown as the boss. Don't however underestimate Brown. He will do anything required to stay at the top.
Meanwhile, a wild deer has just trotted past me and it's time to go back to picking raspberries (and to blow one at the whole Many as PM story!)
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