Saturday, August 02, 2008

Polly Toynbee comes out in support of Miliband

The David Miliband CiF piece which launched his 'leadership bid' received over 850 comments, nearly all negative. The polls say Miliband would be less popular than Brown. As I've already said, Miliband is one of the the few people compared to whom GB looks like Mr Ordinary Bloke.

Now Poll Pot has come out for Miliband, sounding pretty much like she did a year ago, coming out for Gordon Brown. Perhaps more breathless and girlish, if anything :

Suddenly everything changed. The burst of optimism was so startling it dazzled those too long trapped deep in a dungeon. In that one moment it was all over for the old leader who had plunged them into these depths. Suddenly here was the chance of escape everyone was waiting for.

David Miliband stepped up as the man with a plan to take the fight to the Tories, the man to free the party from the bondage of disastrous leadership. With the deftest of brush strokes in his Guardian article, he painted the policies of optimism ... here was a sketched outline of radical policies. Judging from an avalanche of emails pouring in, out there Labour people are ready to return if the party offers something better.

He set a small stone rolling down the hill, its effect unpredictable: already it has become a boulder. His press conference and performance on the Jeremy Vine Show gave his party the chance to look at him in a new light. His breezy ease ... he dismissed suspicion that this silver-spoon-fed political princeling hadn't the guts to reach for the sword in the stone, nor the muscle, the will or the street-fighting canniness for power.

Downing Street's crude retaliations - "immature self-serving traitor" - were tossed away with a smile.
Blimey. A new champion steps forth. Dungeons, princelings and swords. Who is that lonely maiden in the tower, her fair hands embroidering a Trades Council banner ?

Polly, Polly, let down your long hair !

Sometimes a troop of damsels glad,
An abbot on an ambling pad,
Sometimes a curly shepherd lad,
Or long-hair'd page in crimson clad
Goes by to tower'd Camelot;
And sometimes through the mirror blue
The knights come riding two and two.
She hath no loyal Knight and true,
The Lady of Shalott.

But in her web she still delights
To weave the mirror's magic sights,
For often through the silent nights
A funeral, with plumes and lights
And music, went to Camelot;
Or when the Moon was overhead,
Came two young lovers lately wed.
"I am half sick of shadows," said
The Lady of Shalott.

A bow-shot from her bower-eaves,
He rode between the barley sheaves,
The sun came dazzling thro' the leaves,
And flamed upon the brazen greaves
Of bold Sir Lancelot.
A red-cross knight for ever kneel'd
To a lady in his shield,
That sparkled on the yellow field,
Beside remote Shalott.

Or maybe :

O young Lochinvar is come out of the west,
Through all the wide Border his steed was the best;
And save his good broadsword he weapons had none,
He rode all unarm'd, and he rode all alone.
So faithful in love, and so dauntless in war,
There never was knight like the young Lochinvar.

As usual the comments are the best. This one is perfect :

If one believed Pollyana, (a far-fetched notion, I admit), Brown was a winning combination of Solon, Merlin and Max Planck. I and many others at the time pointed out the absurdity of Pollyana's analysis. That Brown was just more of the same. He was a man who had marched in lock-step with the discredited Blairite Project every inch of the way. But, alas, Pollyana was giddy with love and wouldn't listen.

Now the scales have fallen from her eyes to reveal...another set of scales. Is there any limit to this wretched woman's foolishness?
Doesn't seem to be, does there ? I do start to wonder if the CiF writers are just in it for the page reads now - under orders from the editor to attract as many hits as possible by writing indefensible nonsense - thus attracting a swarm of angry comments.