Party Spin Doctors Are the Real Leaders of the Commons

The Birmingham Post (England), July 26, 2000 | Go to article overview
Save to active project

Party Spin Doctors Are the Real Leaders of the Commons


Sir, - I'm not surprised Betty Boothroyd has resigned. This Government has successfully destroyed yet another British tradition by making Alastair Campbell and his team the real Speakers of the House of Commons. Betty's role as supreme head of Parliament has been usurped and Campbell's puppets dance to his tune on New Labour's front benches.

I watched the BBC2 portrayal of how a supposedly democratic government operates and my stomach churned with disgust. Campbell's manipulative success even envelopes some of the hardened political reporters. It was Campbell himself who decided which of his 'pet' reporters should ask a pre-arranged question to get Tony Blair out of a tricky situation during a spin and hype session with the media, this shows how weak our elected Prime Minister really is.

The editor of a popular daily tabloid admitted feeling 'honoured' to have been invited to Blair's inner sanctums of No 10 and Chequers. Now we know why his editorial tones down the facts written by his own political reporters.

The next day we read in the press that in place of a body of learned, patriotic men/women elected by, and working for, the people we have instead a bunch of 'special advisors' in No 10, increased since New Labour came to power, from eight to 25, but in Whitehall the total has gone from 38 to 70 - at a cost to the taxpayer of a further pounds 4.6 million.

After the debacle of the TV programme and its analysis in the press the following day, we get yet another 'leaked memo' from No 10's spinnerama of a poor downtrodden lad let down by his colleagues - who will do better before the next election. We've heard it all before!

Verdict: nice boyish looking young man with an infectious smile, a very good actor who learns his lines well, but of an insincere character and a lousy representative for the British nation.

JAMES H ALEXANDER

Symonds Yat,

Herefordshire.

Vote wisely for

next Speaker

Sir, - Betty Boothroyd has been an outstanding Speaker and we should all wish her well in her retirement.

The next Speaker will need to follow her example of independence for the rule of Parliament.

A number of names have already been suggested as her possible successor. One name which causes me concern is that of Liberal Democrat MP 'Ming' Campbell. Mr Campbell is a pleasant enough man but he is a Scot, representing a seat in Scotland which already has its own Parliament. Worse however is the fact that Mr Campbell is a staunch Europhile who wants to see Britain join a Federal Europe.

The next Speaker must be someone who will stand up for the United Kingdom and Parliament, I fear Mr Campbell is unlikely to stand up for Parliament against the takeover of Britain.

I hope all MPs will use their vote wisely when they elect the next Speaker. Their vote may well determine the very future of the British Parliament.

DAVID CHAMBERS

Conservative Prospective Parliamentary Candidate,

Wolverhampton South West.

Crumpled display

is work of art

Sir, - In my letter of June 12 about the swing-bridge leading to the Tate Modern, I implied that Tracey Emin's artistic prize-winner My Bed - with its dirty knickers, vodka bottles and a used condom - was displayed in that gallery and I dismissed it as junk.

I was wrong on both counts. Tate Modern has just tried to buy it from another Tate, but failed and Charles Saatchi has paid pounds 150,000 for it, so it cannot be junk.

Now, my unmade bed sags a bit where I am in the habit of sitting on it, it has a non-allergenic pillow and a rumpled duvet. I am prepared to consider offers over pounds 10,000. When in Rome. . .

PETER HILL

Tanworth-in-Arden.

We must applaud

our successes

Sir, - Recently an England cricket XI defeated the West Indies by ten (yes, ten) wickets, a weakened Great Britain athletics team won (yes, won) the Bruno Zauli Cup in Gateshead, Lennox Lewis beat (yes, beat) a South African in the second round.

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
Loading One moment ...
Project items
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited article

Party Spin Doctors Are the Real Leaders of the Commons
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

While we understand printed pages are helpful to our users, this limitation is necessary to help protect our publishers' copyrighted material and prevent its unlawful distribution. We are sorry for any inconvenience.
Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.

Are you sure you want to delete this highlight?