Alastair's Blog

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Copenhagen really matters. Guardian front page sets scene well

Posted on 7 December 2009 | 10:12am

A surprisingly impactful front page of The Guardian today, given that the headline is a non-screaming quote from their own editorial and the only picture an unrelated head and shoulders shot of Helen Mirren advertising Christmas wrapping paper.  Back in my day (writes a middle-aged old fart) front pages were hidden away till as late […]

Four years on, what do we think of Cameron’s leadership?

Posted on 6 December 2009 | 1:12pm

Today is the fourth anniversary of David Cameron’s election as Leader of the Conservative and Unionist Party. I think we should all just have a moment’s reflection, and ask ourselves what we consider to be the most telling moment, thought, image or (honestly, come on, let’s try) ‘policy’ of those four years. For me, I […]

Boris and Waddles, an everyday tale of Tory croneyism

Posted on 5 December 2009 | 9:12am

If you want another angle on how ‘modern Toryism’ might look in power, study the tale of Boris Johnson and Veronica Wadley. Most of you know who Boris is by now. Old Etonian (oh sorry, not allowed to say that), ex Telegraph journalist, funny on quiz shows, blonde mop, became London mayor …. … with […]

The Speaker’s wife is a credit to him, and spot on about Cameron’s Toryism

Posted on 4 December 2009 | 10:12am

I bumped into Commons Speaker John Bercow at a charity do the other night, and we had a little chat about the need for politics to do a better job of defending itself against media negativity, and about what it’s like living with strong-minded women who don’t always agree with everything we say and do. […]

PMQs win for GB was a direct result of Cameron’s strategic failure

Posted on 3 December 2009 | 8:12am

So GB trounced Cameron at PMQs yesterday. That was the word used by my taxi driver, who had been listening on Five Live, and by plenty of others who texted, called and variously communicated the view that GB had been on form and DC on the floor. I subsequently watched it myself – don’t you […]

Cameron’s conkers add to his problem with serious opinion

Posted on 2 December 2009 | 10:12am

I was up in Bolton for a mental health conference yesterday, then out at a dinner, and so missed all the news all day and by the time I got in, I just wanted to get to bed. But I was aware that yesterday a very important political leader had made a very important speech on […]

Sarko at risk of riling Obama and GB. Cameron on conkers

Posted on 1 December 2009 | 10:12am

A couple of weeks ago, a French magazine asked me to write a piece about the relationship between Presidents Obama and Sarkozy. We might like to think that politics and diplomacy is all about issues, policies, ideals, and there is a fair bit of that. But there is no point pretending personalities do not come […]

The life and death of the man who made the link between exercise and health

Posted on 28 November 2009 | 11:11am

Until yesterday, I had never heard of Professor Jerry Morris. Yet a fascinating obituary in The Times made me wish I had. Maybe it is because I am now on the back nine of life, as over 50s golfers call it, that I read obituaries more than I used to. It is also – another […]

Even top Tories think Dave and Co can’t do piss up in a brewery

Posted on 27 November 2009 | 8:11pm

Can’t wait to see what prominence the Dave C fanzines give to the views of Mr Stephen Greenhalgh in the morning press. This is the man who suggested that the inexperience of the current shadow cabinet is so serious that they have not even run a piss up in a brewery. So what, you say, […]

Mind Mental Health Media Awards

Posted on 27 November 2009 | 9:11am