Thoughts on politics and life from a liberal perspective

Friday, 16 July 2010

Everyone is a liar apart from Ed Balls apparently

Ed Balls was the Labour leadership contender guest last night on BBC's This Week programme (viewable here for the next week or so - see 24:45 onwards for 5 minutes).

Andrew Neil gave him a grilling about his behaviour as referenced in various memoirs and political books including those by Alastair Campbell, Andrew Rawnsley and Anthony Seldon. In each case it tended to be related to how badly behaved Balls had been and also how rude and disrespectful he was alleged to have been to Tony Blair. It was also about how he was supposed to have been involved in the plot to oust Blair in 2006.

Balls' response was to flatly deny every one of the several allegations put to him by Neil and alleged by the various authors. When pressed as to whether those writing these books were lying he even said yes a few times. So effectively what Ed Balls is saying that within a number of recent memoirs/books from a number of different (in some cases very widely respected) authors allegations about him are complete lies.

When things are denied by active politicians from memoirs, I always find it funny how many of them turn out to eventually be true when the record is written by their contemporaries and even their friends. The dysfunctional relationship between Blair and Brown was always poo-poohed by the protagonists themselves and spinners like Campbell and Mandelson and yet, lo and behold when their books come out they are jam packed with examples of how the rumours were largely true. We have even seen recently that some of the allegations in Rawnsley's book "The End of the Party" that only a few months ago Mandelson was being deployed to silkily deny are now confirmed by his own tome.

I am afraid that I find Ed Balls' contention that he is telling the truth and everyone else is a liar difficult to swallow. And the more books that come out claiming these things, the less and less credible his position will be.

No wonder so many of Labour's opponents want Balls to win the contest to succeed Brown.


Mrs B said...

Ace photo!

Sol said...

Andrew Neil made him look a bit of a muppet.

Invictus_88 said...

Ha, just seen it myself. Poor Balls. And with Burnham putting in a good showing on Question Time, not great for his campaign!