Friday, September 4, 2009

Why is this man in charge of the government?

There are quite a few contenders for the reference in the subtitle of the previous post, but one I had in mind was Gordon Brown. The man is clearly mentally ill, and has been for years. And he is not a leader of anything, not of the country, and not of the Labour party. Who would look to Gordon Brown to guide them in moments of doubt, to define their beliefs, guide their actions, give them that sense of justification and confidence that true leaders inspire in those who follow them? Who has ever thought, 'We need Gordon to get us out of this, to think of something fun, to tell us what to do, to make it all possible?'

No one. Ever, I should think. When Gordon sat round with his friends as a lad, assuming he had any, did they turn to him instinctively when they were bored or they wanted to try something rdaring? Was he the one whose company people sought, whose group they tried to get into, whose clothes they copied? Was he the first to get the school tart behind the bike sheds? The first to get a nipple piercing? The first to ride a motorbike down the High Street late at night? Was he captain of the rugby team? Has he ever been acknowledged as a leader by anyone who didn't expect a payoff?

He is a plastic leader, the kind who the real leaders have allowed to call himself leader for the day, and then have to tell him what to do, the kind who is grudgingly allowed to decide the teams because it's his ball, the kind who doesn't realize nobody is obeying him, and they are only listening to him for a laugh, like Sancho Panza in the Ínsula Barataria. That is the man who is supposed to be running the country.

I mention this now because Not Born Yesterday has a detailed and careful post on the subject of Brown's fitness to govern, not a politically inspired rant or the ramblings of some bloke in the pub, but a series of observations and argued interpretations leading to a tentative conclusion. I found it via Old Holborn, to whom a tip of the spines. It's worth reading carefully, not least for the speculation about the role of the Tories in his continued presence.

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