Thursday, 10 February 2011

Gordon's Crash

Knowing of my attitude towards this country's most recent former Prime Minister, someone cheekily gave me "Gordon Brown Beyond The Crash" for Christmas. By this morning, I'd only managed to wade through to page 50, as I tend not to dwell terribly long in the only place I could bring myself to store and read this particular opus. So I felt it was time to celebrate with some of my early reflections on the tome.

The cover is perhaps the most insightful aspect of this book so far. It is appropriate that Gordo's name appears in red, since this reflects his political bias, his obvious fondness for that side of the accounting ledger, and the state in which he left the country's finances. The grey background connotes Brown-blighted Britain's economic gloom. And the running together of author and title clarifies that it's more autobiography than observations on economic or political theory.

The contents itself draws a very thin veil indeed around the revolutionary idea that globalisation requires international governance (I know, I'm just amazed the idea never occurred to me before reading this book either). Key features of this 'veil' are the liberal use of the word "I" and saccharin praise for dozens and dozens of staff members, advisers and others who drank the Kool-Aid - so many, in fact, and so saccharin as to be patronizing. Which I guess is the point. Ultimately, these people lost Gordo the war, not him - an attitude we saw exemplified in his handling of the infamous exchange with a certain resident of Rochdale: "Who put me in front of that woman?"

Anyhow, having deftly skirted the reasons why the UK's banks were permitted to become under-capitalised in the first place, I'm up to the part where "As I arrived back in London on Saturday morning I went straight into the office to meet Alistair, who was planning to announce the nationalisation of Bradford and Bingley..."

I can't wait for another bowel movement.


Adrian said...

A fifty page stint in the smallest room? Respect.

Pragmatist said...

Ah yes, I see the sentence did tend to suggest that (adding new meaning to the expression "haste makes waste"?). Now amended to clarify that I've only managed about a page a day since Christmas. Which is kind of handy.

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