Gordon Brown’s eye troubles….
I was a little dismayed that this was the top story on both Politics Home and the BBC when I flicked to both their web pages. The fact that it was says little for the journalistic quality of either; this kind of thing is expected of the likes of Guido Fawkes and it would equally be expected that right-wing blogs would make an issue of it. No doubt the likes of Guido would admire Winston Churchill but conveniently forget that not only was he a notorious alcoholic but also waged a life-long struggle against depression (his ‘black dog’). Guido’s constant questioning of Brown’s health (mental and physical, he broke the eye story) is an example of political blogging at its absolute worst. However, for both of these mainstream services to ‘big-up’ the story and make it their main one does neither any credit. You would have thought the BBC would have especially learned its lesson after the justified bashing it received following the Andrew Marr show.
What is most depressing about these stories is not that they are likely come from or egged-on by opposition sources but that they most likely come from hostile sources within the ranks of the Labour Party. Put simply, the Conservatives have little to gain from Brown’s resignation and everything potentially to lose given the brittle nature of their support. Sad that Labour can’t manage a proper rebellion and ironic it should be a Labour Prime Minister given that last time it was the turn of the Conservatives Sir Anthony Eden who resigned on January 10 in 1957 on the grounds that;
“his health will no longer enable him to sustain the heavy burdens inseparable from the office of Prime Minister.”
Nothing in Brown’s health makes him unable to do the job of Prime Minister; what makes him wrong for the job is politics, policies not his physical or mental state. Stories questioning his health are covert and rather underhand political attacks; it is depressing to see the BBC and the likes of Politics Home give them so much credence and coverage.