'The Blair Years' Is Way Too Long. Here Are 'The Blair Minutes', Brought to You by the Reduced Shakespeare Company ; CAMPBELL CONDENSED
Reed Martin & Austin Tichenor, The Independent on Sunday (London, England)
Are we going to read 'The Blair Years?' Come on! Who has the time? Alastair Campbell goes on and on. Hundreds of pages. Thousands of paragraphs. Three amusing anecdotes. But it's a go-go world, and Tony Blair has been out of office for literally days. Get over it! What's past is past. Frankly, it's time to move on.
And yet for those of you who insist self-examination (doctors recommend it every six months) we will yield slightly. We will recap the Blair Years, but there's no need for an entire book. We'll do it Reduced Shakespeare Company style. Here are all 10 Blair Years in 200 words. Call it The Blair Minutes.
John Smith dead. John Major too, virtually. Gordon Brown to Tony, "You go first." "Thank you, I will." Blair elected. Diana dead. Hm. "People's Princess" makes Blair popular (Diana, not Mandelson). Devolution. Ho hum. Good (sadly, not Great) Friday Agreement. Hereditary Peers screwed (most action they've had in years). Millennium Dome; brilliant planning; sign of things to come (unfortunately). …