Magazine article Marketing

Politicians Teach Us It's Actions Not Words That Count

Magazine article Marketing

Politicians Teach Us It's Actions Not Words That Count

Article excerpt

There is something very disarming about Blair: he looks as if he believes what he says. Last week in Blackpool he put on a display of sincerity so plausible that even right-wing commentators like Simon Heffer of the Daily Mail were taken in. And the Old Labour (Old Danger) diehards in the audience had looks on their faces as much as to say: "OK, so he is about as socialist as Stanley Baldwin, but by 'eck he means it."

All this poses the intriguing possibility that perhaps he really does mean it. Perhaps Mr Blair is a freak, a politician who does not wear his integrity like cheap aftershave.

The problem ordinary people - or voters as we shall have to call them until the general election is over - have is that an open, conviction politician is so unusual a beast it is quite disconcerting to find out that he is not a museum dodo but, as looks increasingly probable, our next prime minister.

Mr Blair appears to be principled both in private and in public. He seems to be the same all the way through. Lady Thatcher was as tough as boots in public but was altogether more pragmatic behind the scenes.

Mr Major is the opposite. The private man is, by all accounts, decent, upstanding and surprisingly determined. The public Major comes across as a faffer and a fudger.

The problem which the messianic Mr Blair has is not one of principle, flair or promise. It is one of record.

There is almost no one in his front bench team with any ministerial experience. Labour hasn't actually done anything in the real world of national government for getting on for two decades. …

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