So Peter Hain, the great survivor, has finally fallen on his sword and resigned, which rather leaves Gordon Brown with a dwindling choice of vaguely intelligent MPs for the top jobs in Government. And who’s to say that Harriet Harman won’t be next?
Dr. John Reid has announced he is stepping down as an MP. Who can blame him when being Chairman of Celtic football club is an even more lucrative career move than being a Government Minister.
Teflon Tony of course left the job as Prime Minister at just the right moment and is now earning a £1 million a year or more doing what he does best, being abroad and is likely to become European President, a role worth £squillions for the right man and who else but Tony could do the job while he’s waiting for a vacancy at the Vatican?
Let me think? Stephen Byers, David Blunkett, John Prescott, Charles Clarke? If you suffer from insomnia, just try counting the number of Labour Ministers caught-up in scandals over the last ten years? In contrast, the last days of John Major’s Government pales into near insignificance.
What you might notice from the sidelines, is now that the writing is firmly on the wall, the game is up and so on in cliché terms, there is a sense that Labour’s elite are looking to their retirement plans outside Parliament as the party faces being kicked-out at the next election by a country sick of crime and spin and deceit and suffocating under red-tape and political correctness.
In ten years, what is really better and what really works? Hospitals, Schools, Defense. Gordon Brown has taken the credit for an economy driven by the monetary policy of an independent Bank of England and the most powerful financial centre in the world, the City of London. Remove both from the equation and what’s left?
As the months pass, watch to see how many of the Labour Party ‘elite’ show signs of bailing-out into a comfortable consultancy role in the private sector. It’s always been the same. Historically, Conservative MPs have come from business and the professions but Labour hasn’t and this is plainly evident when you listen to the quality of debate from both sides of the House of Commons. With a spell in the wilderness approaching and a possible loss of a Parliamentary seat, Labour MPs, many of whom started as career politicians, will have to start wondering what they will do once the monthly salary stops. Go back to being a businessman an author or a barrister? Possibly not in a great many cases.
A good friend of mine left Parliament at the last election. Not a Conservative MP I should add. He saw the light and now holds a senior role in one of the world’s largest IT companies. Looking back on the last two years I doubt he has any regrets either!
It's all rather like the plot of 'The New Statesman' with MP, Alan B'stard, in the Labour Party instead. The game’s is surely up but looking at the mess the pitch is in,(such as Northern Rock) I don’t envy any Government of the future having to play on the surface that’s been left behind, do you?