Will Gordon Brown return to No. 10?


I love newspaper headlines, the way that they shout at you competitively from the stand on a Sunday morning – imploring your attention like a bunch of gape-mouthed nestlings. I have always admired the art with which the headline writer will take the story before him and bleach it of conditionals, sharpening and condensing and pushing it to the limit of credibility so that the faltering fingers of the deluded consumer will feel unable to resist. And yet in all my years of knowing chuckling at the headlines, I don’t think I have ever come across such a brazen confection of suggestio falsi and suppressio veri as appeared yesterday in large print across one of the Sundays. “Brown on course to win election,” it said.

When I had regained my breath, I thought of some other propositions the headline writer might have touted – with an equal measure of foundation. How about “Pope on course to win Wimbledon”? Or “Simon Heffer on course to win Miss World”?

I have an answer for all those befuddled by the recent mutability of the polls. May I direct you to Betfair, a political betting website that in my experience is almost uncanny in its accuracy. Here you are looking at the predictions that people are willing to defend with their own money, and the money is still overwhelmingly on the Tories. The single most likely outcome – and you can actually watch as the bets go down and the stakes mount up – is that the Tories will have a comfortable overall majority, easily enough to govern for five years. As for the idea that Gordon Brown ‘s Labour Party could win the election, with an overall majority – that possibility has been flatlining for months at between five and 10 per cent. The reason I trust the punters of Betfair more than I trust a poll in a Sunday paper is that the punters have thought it through with the care of those investing their own money.

They have put themselves in the position of the tens of millions of sensible men and women who will be going to the polling stations in the next few weeks. The gamblers have focused hardheadedly on the reality of the choice.

There you are on May 6 (or whenever), pencil poised. Are you really going to give Gordon Brown another five years in Downing Street? This is a Government that has spent the past two years lurching disastrously from one abortive putsch to another. One by one, they have stepped up to plunge the rubber dagger into his impervious back, from Clarke to Hoon to Hewitt to Alistair Darling himself, while the atmosphere has become so poisonous that some talents – Siôn Simon and James Purnell, for example – have not only abandoned their ministerial careers, but given up on the Commons altogether.

Do we really want another five years of the holepunch-hurling horror of Gordon Brown’s management style? Do we want the Downing Street switchboard to be endlessly jammed with people bleating to some “bullying helpline”? Is this any way to run a country? And that is just froth compared to the real charges against Labour.

If Gordon Brown is on course to win the election, then Elvis Presley is on course to win The X Factor and Shergar to win the Grand National.

For more news, comment and to read this article in full go to The Daily Telegraph

17 thoughts on “Will Gordon Brown return to No. 10?”

  1. Actually i can see elvis winning the grand national, in fact i can picture it quite vividly…. where as gordon winning the election, even with my imagination i struggle to visualize that out take on the youve been framed of britain.

    What puzzles me is how the media seem to think it is a close race between the two parties? And to me it seems that the loonies of the labour party fully intend to to send our paper pm back for another round with the society that dreams of shredding him.
    Now everyone is turning on ole d.c and for what reason you ask, because the only thing labour have been succesful at during their time at number 10 is taking each and every oppurtunity to remind the public of how the conservative party did them wrong!
    Although what the public seem to forget is they are listening to the labour gospel not upon their own television but that of their parents as due to this red reccession they have lost their own set to the baliffs that came to see them a short while back! And just to add insult to injury they are not going home at the end of the programme, no the reccession also repossed thier car, they could of course jump on the bus but it would help if they actually had a home to go to!

    Funnily enough by pure coincidence i saw a broadcast today of what i thought was the current political news, only to find it was actually broadcast the day before tony the fony’s 10th anniversary at no.10.
    They spoke of gordon frown’s pending take over and i sat here pondering the idea of creating a time machine to go back and warn them before it was too late!
    They public look towards the past political leaders that we have provided them with and run back into the arms of labour.
    But at least we have not subjected them to the likes of ‘paper and paste’ who either tear at the first sign of a problem or stick themselves firmly to the rear end of george ‘dubbya yellow lines’ as they have no mind of their own. Sorry that is unfair of me Tony did not lack a mind , no he lacked sense, confidence and the ability to stand ans speak without causing the sound of nails on a chalk board to materialize out of thin air!

    Have they forgotten Churchill?

    In regards to the labour party and the coming elections….
    we shall fight on the beaches,
    we shall fight on the landing grounds,
    we shall fight in the fields and in the streets,
    we shall fight in the hills;
    we shall never surrender, and even if, which I do not for a moment believe, this Island or a large part of it were subjugated and starving, then our Empire beyond the seas, armed and guarded by the British Fleet, would carry on the struggle, until, in God’s good time, the New World, with all its power and might, steps forth to the rescue and the liberation of the old.”

  2. There has been a good side to 13 odd years of Labour rule. If you are a masochist, it’s Disneyland.

  3. The hubris of the Conservative Socialist Party — in decreeing that its ‘traditional’ supporters shall, and assuming they will, vote for it regardless of its policies — puts me in mind of Agamemnon following the departure of Achilles (David Davis ?) from the field of battle. Who, I wonder, is to play the part of Thersites ? Nigel Farage ? Did the Mayor, whilst writing his piece, imagine striking Mr. Farage with his stick ?

    Homer’s tale ends in victory to the Achaeans but, as a friend politely reminds me, the Iliad is just the Archers for classicists.

    The Mayor says that the people has had enough of Mr. Brown and his corrupt administration ; perhaps but, if it can discern no difference between the Labour Socialist Party and the Conservative Socialist Party, what does he think will drive it to vote for the latter ?

  4. “….if it can discern no difference between the Labour Socialist Party and the Conservative Socialist Party, what does he think will drive it to vote for the latter?”

    If you run through Boris’s reasons for condemning the Labour Party, I don’t think any of them apply to the Tories.

    1) The poisonous atmosphere surrounding the Cabinet. As Boris pointed out once on Newsnight, David Cameron is more of a uniter than a divider. He has succeeded in pulling the Tory party together and even achieved an understanding with them all over Europe; according to Boris, it is years since such harmony reigned.

    2) The hole punching horror of Gordon’s management style, the bullying helpline etc. Cameron might lose his temper occasionally, but nothing like the nutso, psycho, paranoid, out of control behaviour of Gordon and his leather jacketed henchmen, Ali C., and the like.

    3) A Government addicted to regulation. David Cameron wants to get rid of all that. .

    4) A government addicted to politicial correctness. Nobody in the Tory Party would dream of having anything to do with all this PC stuff and the wacko ideas of Hattie Harman, certainly not Cameron. The Tories will definitely do things about the appalling state of education and Michael Gove has lots of ideas about that

    5) Their bankrupt economic policies. All you can say to anyone sorting that lot out is …. Good luck!

    6) Foreign policy. Everyone seems to hate Gordon, so Cameron has to be able to do better than that, so will Hague, a Foreign Secretary to be proud of.

    I can’t stand the defeatist attitude that prevails at the moment…… Oh they are all the same, there is no hope, they have no good ideas, nobody is worth listening to, we are DOOMED! Geez, why not throw in the towel right now!

    There is no denying that this is a crucially important election for the future of this country, but maybe we are on the verge of something great, who knows? Maybe if we, the people, get our acts together and get behind any good ideas and get our lazy butts down to the polling booth, it will all turn out just fine and dandy. And don’t forget our secret weapon, Pericles, we have Boris up our sleeves.

    You are cringing like a whipped cur and giving up the ghost before the fatlady has shown her face, let alone exercised her vocals.

  5. Gordon Brown has been exposed as a lying bully – http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1254304/Brown-bully-Key-No10-figure-tells-pushed-shouted-PM.html

    Edna, are you there dear? Mad dog Harriet Harman is going to introduce new strict school dress codes next month. The current school dress codes that force school kids to wear skirts or trousers will be banned on the grounds that they discriminate against their genders. Oh my world hasn’t she anything better to do? This country has gone to the dogs. Over to you Edna.

  6. As usual Boris right to the point and no messing.
    May I take this chance to say how well you handeled the BNP rep at your meeting today .
    He is living in a paralell universe and not the real world.
    My advice to all your readers in we can’t have you for PM the DC will be a close second.
    So you know where my vote is going.

  7. Angela :

    I infer from the vehemence of your invective that you are a member of the Conservative Party, perhaps even an ‘activist’ ; you describe me as defeatist, as were I a member or even one of its leaders. I’m neither ; whilst it might be misconceived, any advice I give to the party I offer in good faith but as an outsider (and with no real expectation that it will be followed).

    You will see that what I wrote in response to the Mayor’s article takes the form of several questions.

    As examiners have been moved to comment on many a candidate’s script, you have provided answers … unfortunately not to the questions set.

  8. @Pericles: Alright i must admit i havent the great knowledge of the classics that you posses but in answer to your question

    The Mayor says that the people has had enough of Mr. Brown and his corrupt administration ; perhaps but, if it can discern no difference between the Labour Socialist Party and the Conservative Socialist Party, what does he think will drive it to vote for the latter ?

    I am guessing that as the public rate Boris very highly amongst our political practitioners… that they will (hopefully) remind themselves that Boris was a member of the conservative party, and in one interview when he was asked “will you be running for a second term as mayor” he carefully avoided the question and in doing so i got the impression that he may well be thinking of re-joining the conservative party. If this is possible and actually does happen then i can see the party quickly replacing D.C with himself as the occupier of good ole no.10. In fact i am secretly praying night and day for this to happen!
    Many of my friends have no interest in politcs and believe all politicians are corrupt …although.. they actually like Boris.
    Boris has a natural flair for leadership and holds an amount of charisma which exceeds that of well, anyone i have ever come across before in my lifetime. so maybe the public will vote for the conservative party in hopes of seeing Boris at no.10?
    (that’s what i’m doing anyway)

    And in regards to the school uniform situation well….
    i ask do they labour party have a pedophile in the ranks?
    if she is not going to let school children wear skirts or trousers then is she supposing that they should go to school in their underwear??? 🙂
    (The reference to h.h being a sex offender was said purely in jest i don’t not wish to to receive any invitations to court cases thank you!)

  9. Hahaha Pericles, you are funny, so a brownie point for you.

    If I gave answers but not the right ones, must have been listening to too much Boris. At Mayor’s Question Time, he showed he was a past master at doing just that, and mightily hilarious it was too. Before I cause him to be accused of time wasting, may I say Labour Assembly Members were trying to bounce him into immediate decisions and he would not be bounced.

    Must reread your post, which I don’t have time to do now and answer the right questions, but I was really responding to the general doom and gloom of your post.

  10. Mmmm Pericles’ other questions. Who else could be Achilles? Norman Tebbit? Who is Thersites? Nick Griffin?

    The people can discern no difference…. Think I answered that bit.

  11. Getting back to the plot after a slight detour into Greek history, I actually think Brown stands a chance(as much as it pains me).

    I blame Cameron for this. The core of the conservative party are Eurosceptic and that’s why UKIP are gaining favour through defection.

    If the unthinkable happens and Brown gets in then the conservative party should split into two different parties, one pro-European superstate and the other should be predominantly Eurosceptic so this is put to rest once and for all.

    If Labour does win or we have a hung parliament, I hope you all have made provision for a currency collapse.

    Holding Sterling may not be so attractive leading up to the general election so a few hedges may be in order or just opt out of the currency altogether.

    But if the swingometer begins to point towards a Tory victory and George Osborne grows a pair and makes the necessary cuts to the public sector then it could be an idea to immediately liquidate those hedges and buy a rather large cigar.

  12. p.s.

    On the subject of Pericles this is my favorite description written about him.

    “he kept himself untainted by corruption, although he was not altogether indifferent to money-making”


  13. @The Economic Voice: i understand you point but there will not be a day when i would willingly substitute the pound for the pathetic euro, not once ounce of craftmanship went into the making of the coin!
    At least with the pound you can tell how much wealth you hold in your pocket by weight.
    I could only refer to the euro as a weight of paper rather than a paper weight.Even the note i fear was designed by school children (this purely from the view of a collector of currency).

    As for the idea for celebation upon the conservatives repossession of number 10…
    Mines a Romeo and Juliet!

  14. @Janina Davison-Forder

    I also wouldn’t touch the Euro with a barge pole. Funnily enough I have been looking into Gold sovereigns if the polls take a turn for the worse.

    Tax free!

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