Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Cognitive Dissonance Alert ...

Liberal Conspiracy on Andrew Marr's (IMHO disgraceful - I agree with Nadine Dorries) 'are you a loony or what' questioning of El Gordo, 28th September 2009 :

... right-wing bloggers kept questioning Gordon Brown’s sanity and calling him ‘bonkers’, demented and other names for partisan reasons. They justified this on the basis that some others within the Labour party had apparently also started these rumours. But no evidence is offered.

Then some national journalists referenced ‘internet rumours’ to repeat that smear, which was then used by the same bloggers to declare that they were justifed in their smears because it had reached national press and so it must be true. And so the BBC’s Andrew Marr bought into that feedback loop and asked a classic variation of: ’so when did you stop beating your wife’.

.... this incident illustrates that most right-wing bloggers come from the same stock. The ‘bonkers’ meme has been viciously repeated by right-wingers to undermine the PM. There is no evidence to it. The PM could be attacked in other ways – through his policies for example – but these people are only interested in character assassination. And yet only a few months ago they screamed hysterically about how the left was beholden to vicious rumours and chartacter assassination. Now they’re saying nothing other than cheering Marr on.

Damn right-wing bloggers, eh ?

I think they must have got the idea from that vicious right-wing Liberal Conspiracy site, 10th September 2009 ?

We have no way of substantiating this rumor, but let’s for a moment run with the assumption that Brown is taking anti-depressants.

My response? Good. Great. If the Prime Minister of Britain is suffering from depression or some other mental health condition, which given the stresses of his current position seems highly likely, then I’m glad he’s getting treatment for it. I’m glad he’s man enough to admit that he might need help.

Anti-depressants are used by millions of people in this country, although the stigma attached means that many of us don’t talk about it... It takes courage to go to the doctor and say that you have a problem...

I only wish more politicians would follow his example – after all, it’s not as if mental health difficulties in government are unheard of. Some of the greatest leaders the Western world has ever seen had serious mental health difficulties ... Winston Churchill ... Lincoln was also chronically depressed and anxious...

So is the ‘Prime Mentalist’, as he has become known, a person who has mental health problems? It certainly seems likely . Would that fact, by definition, make him unfit to lead the country? Absolutely not.

Not only have plenty of great statesmen and women had mental health problems, the experience of overcoming those problems and playing to one’s strengths may even be an advantage in politics – as it is for many people who, like myself, battle mental ill health.

I said at the time that this "isn't it great that the Prime Minister is mentally ill ?" approach romped home in the With Friends Like These Stakes.


David Gillies said...

The question could have been phrased a little more felicitously, but isn't the health (mental or otherwise) of a Prime Minister at least worthy of some discussion? That's not to say every aspect of Brown's medical history should be laid bare, but aren't we entitled to have some idea of whether he is competent to discharge his duties (inasmuch as he ever was)?

JuliaM said...

I'd say so.

Martin said...

It's difficult to know where that buck stops.

As far as Marr is concerned, in his book 'My Trade' he admits having suppressed a story about a personal friend. Whenever a journalist's uses the phrase 'public interest', they mean whatever is in their propretors' interests, or their desire for higher ratings, or what they want the people to know - not what they don't want them to know.

TDK said...

This is the standard argument: Liberals care, Conservatives hate.

Moriarty said...

Occasional depression in a government leader is probably common enough, under the circumstances. What worries me far more about Brown is his reputed party tribalism and temper tantrums, both of which should disqualify anyone from running a country IMO.

Oh, and the real irony here is that Marr got a court injunction not so long ago to stop anyone from reporting some rumour about himself. (see latest Eye)

Mark said...

'isn't the health (mental or otherwise) of a Prime Minister at least worthy of some discussion?'.

One of the reasons our elites dislike the internet is that we plebs can horn in on discussion (gossip if you prefer)hitherto restricted to those 'in the know' via the Westminster/MSM rumour mill. In the pre internet 1950s Eden's abusive relationship with Benzedrine was common knowledge in Westminster & Fleet Street -the rest of us only got to know about it years later.

Having said that, Jug- Ears's attempts at airing the rumours about Broon in a Sunday breakfast TV chat with him does seem inappropriate- and 'ironic', given his record of keeping mum when it suits himself.

Sgt Troy said...

You only have to look at the mad bastard to see that he's a thoroughgoing mentalist. After all Charles Clarke said as much a few years ago. Frank Field said that having him as PM would be "akin to letting Mrs Rochester out of the attic".

I noticed that on 19th century census forms there was a box for "lunatic, imbecile or idiot"

The Prime Mentalist ticks all 3

A former Cabinet Sec also described it as a "Stalinist control freak"

Sgt Troy said...

Generally I would say that the agenda of the demented Harperson has to be resisted.

Look at Blunkett. He was responsible for one of the great fiascos of post-war education within the general lunacy; that of "inclusion".

A former NASUWT Sec. described this as an absolute disaster, it will be recalled that children with special needs were shoehorned into the mainstream to the general detriment.

Blunkett forced this through on the basis of his own life experience. It is however readily apparent that anyone in a position of this responsibility should be able to see what they are doing, to be able to gauge the body langaguage of those they are dealing with

Of course the cyclops Prime Mentalist also had a very bad bang on the heid at 15 playing rugger.

Anonymous said...

I would say that the PMs mental condition is cause for concern because

1] it seems the job is the cause of his depression, not an escape from it.

2] it maybe he is taking strong mood altering drugs to suppress his negative feelings.