Friday, November 30, 2007

The Dreadful Harmans

As a deputy leadership candidate, Harriet Harman made much of her alleged closeness to Gordon Brown. It was, indeed, her only selling point, so useless is she otherwise as a politician. A poor debater, a lamentable minister in the past, a humourless, shrill, self-serving daughter of the upper classes who brings nothing of value to the political world, this awful woman's loyalty to her leader has now been quickly ditched as she seeks to escape the consequences of a dodgy campaign donation. (And if you think that's harsh, read Quentin Letts' assessment of Harman here.) The Guardian this morning is just one of the papers to carry the story of a 'Harman-Brown' split. Brown himself must regard the possibility of being untied from the woman as maybe the only bonus to this whole affair.

Then there's wretched Harman's equally unpalatable husband, Jack Dromey. A senior union leader, Dromey has also been Treasurer of the Labour Party since 2004. But does he know anything about Labour finances? Dromey is normally first out of the starting gate when it becomes necessary to deny knowledge of the latest sinister source of Labour funding. Thus, Dromey was quick to tell us that he was wholly in the dark about the donations for peerages scandal. And, of course, he is equally ignorant of the donations of the mysterious Mr. Abrahams. Just who does handle Labour finances if not the Treasurer?

Harman is a lodestar for those who think women shouldn't be involved in politics, but watching Caroline Flint - a whiny, uninteresting and desperately one-paced Labour minister - or the ineffably smug Sarah Teather on Question time last night I was left wondering if there are any women of quality active in British politics. Switching to Newsnight didn't help, for there was the Tories' Theresa May, another painfully unlistenable to politician who lacks the initiative to move from her prepared script. Please, please - where are the genuinely able, charismatic women politicians?

4 comments:

i spy strangers said...

Perhaps I might tentatively nominate Miss Widdecombe? (Though even she's standing down and her "charisma" is something of an acquired taste.)

Otherwise, talent is sparse - and you're right to suggest that the Tories are in no better shape than Labour. For instance, having heard Caroline Spelman and Julie Kirkbride first-hand, they're just as underwhelming as Teresa ("nasty party") May.

consultant said...

They're all off running organisations like Liberty. When the only major role model for a successful female politician is Margaret Thatcher, can we really be that surprised that "genuinely able, charismatic" young women are turned off entering politics 'proper'?

David Carnell said...

Has Paul Dacre suddenly bought this blog and replaced Giles with Peter Hitchens?

Or are you letting Sixth Formers write on this thing now?

Come on, this is the type of thing I would have written! And that is not an endorsement.

GM said...

I once had a chat with Peter Hitchens about a news item he wanted to write - a thoroughly pleasant, gentleman journalist I may say!