Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Damian MacBride doth protest too much ...

Since he is a former spin doctor who was forced to resign after Guido Fawkes obtained emails showing he was plotting to plant disgusting sexual smears about senior figures in the Conservative party - and their spouses - Damian McBride may consider himself an expert on smears such as the one in a certain book from which the Daily Mail has been publishing extracts this week.

However, there are a couple of problems with his analysis in the Guardian today here.

First of all, the story which has been spread about David Cameron's student days, which I will not dignify by repeating, is extremely similar to the smear in a famous anecdote about former US President Lyndon Johnson - a similarity which has struck almost everyone who has written about it because the LBJ anecdote has been quoted in the vast majority of reports in the MSM or the blogosphere about the PM's time as a student over the past few days.

And the point about that anecdote is that when he was told that the story was untrue, LBJ replied that of course it was, but he wanted to force his opponent to deny it.

I strongly suspect that the Prime Minister, or his advisors, or both, are equally determined to deny the author of the present smear story that satisfaction.

The second problem with McBride's analysis is this - how can anyone in their right mind imagine that someone who was caught planning to plant similar disgusting smears against Conservative targets, with David Cameron being one of the people he was planning to smear, can possibly be impartial, objective, or trustworthy on the question of whether other smears against him are true or not?

Damian McBride is just about the last person on the planet I would trust to objectively and impartially evaluate whether or not a smear against any opponent of his former boss Gordon Brown, and particularly David Cameron, was true or not.

When I read McBride's assessment of Downing Street's response to this week's allegation, my reaction was, in the immortal words of Mandy Rice Davies,

"Well, he would say that, wouldn't he?"


Jim said...

This is one of the problems with high level government positions. I mean we have all done stupid things in our time, myself more so than anyone. I often amaze myself by the fact I'm still alive.

But anyway, yes, the problem with the high level government job is that its such a high profile, highly scrutinised position that only a complete nutcase would apply for it.

I have said this for a long time about the job of "president of the USA" but as people have access to more and more information, its getting more and more true this side of the pond too.

Chris Whiteside said...

Yes, I'm afraid that is very much a problem.

Even at a level well below that of Prime Minister, I have spent a vast amount of time and money campaigning for public office, and so far as national level is concerned I have gained absolutely nothing except the satisfaction of having stood up for what I believe in.

I don't resent that, because it was the result of my free choices and the electorate exercising their democratic rights, though I do very greatly resent the fact that my children, who are not responsible in any way for my beliefs, were teased at school because I stood up for what I believe are the best policies for Britain.

But the more senior the positions you stand for, the more flak you get, and this has to have an effect on the choice available to the electorate. And not in a good way.