Not so much, Prime Minister

by Stephen Tall on September 25, 2006

Something about Gordon Brown’s speech today rang a bell with me… See if you agree. Here’s an extract from Mr Brown’s cliché-ridden opus:

So as a Party and a Government we have climbed a huge mountain. But we must now climb many more and even more challenging mountains ahead. The next ten years will be even more demanding.

And because the challenges are quite different, the programme for governing will be different. And as the tasks of government change the way we govern must change, not just new policies but a new politics too. A new politics founded on responsibilities as well as rights. And our starting point must be the concerns, the struggles and the hopes and ambitions of families in every part of our country. …

And as we listen to and seek to answer their concerns we the Labour Party do so from and must apply an enduring set of values that put the needs and concerns of the British people first.

And here’s an extract from the Yes, Prime Minister diaries, when Jim Hacker is preparing the script for his first ministerial broadcast:

… they slipped in an optimistic bit about me and the future… this is an improvement on saying negative things about the past:

We want to build a bright future for our children. We want to build a peaceful and prosperous Britain. A Britain that can hold her head high in the fellowship of nations.

I thought it was rather good. I asked them where they had got it. It turned out they’d taken it from the last Party Political by the Leader of the Opposition. We’ll have to paraphrase it.

(Yes, Prime Minister (Vol. 1), p.99)