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Annabel Herriott

Graeme, I have a book - "Islam" which goes from Medina in 622. Get any book like that, the spider's web across the mouth of the cave, illiterate Mohammed having dreams and relating them to his literate wife, the battles to increase the spread of this new religion - b y the sword, and you will understand them!

Tony Makara

Gordon Brown like most of the Labour leading lights is a reactive politician. He is the type that flourishes in opposition, very effective when having something to aim at, to criticize, to attack, to destroy. However the art of politics and particularly of government goes beyond destruction. It is also about creation, having ideas, replacing that which has been destroyed. That is where Labour and Gordon Brown have failed. They were effective as the great iconoclasts, tearing down the Tory power structure, but once they donned the crown themselves they found they didn't know how to rule. Gordon Brown is, in effect, a nihilist. He is a force for destruction. Search and destroy. The Dalek tag suits him perfectly.

David Sergeant

"Stay angry until this man is no longer Prime Minister" Exactly.

We seem to have a media, particularly the BBC, which seems unable to separate right and wrong from bullying spin. New Labour did well because their rediculous pronouncements were repeated by the media (Including "serious" media like the Times and Telegraph)as serious and factual when they were wishlists or just plain lies.

Blair managed to get away with it but Brown can't because he is more interested in destroying than building. His record is utterly appalling and any decent person should hate him. However, I can say that as I have moved among older people, they really do hate him. So much so I suspect that in an election Brown haters will turn out determindly to vote Tory and opinion polls seriously under estimate this effect.

Blair, Brown, Sudan. We treat them with a sort of respect. We think they are mistaken or disproportionate, we don't look at something despicable and hate it, we pretend they make some sense. I'm afraid we must learn to hate otherwise things will just get worse.

Brown is becoming a figure of fun when he should be hated. While we are having a jolly time reading about North East businessmen no one is drawing attention to our Primary schools falling from 3rd to 19th since 2000. Now that is a monumental disaster that makes Black Wednesday look a triumph demonstrating that Labour is only interested in spinning propaganda and couldn't give a toss for public service consumers and it isn't at all funny. It's hatefull.

Malcolm Dunn

First class article as Graeme. Agree 100% with all of it. The situation in Sudan made me furious too. As I said on another thread I hope when Gillian Gibbons is home and other British nationals have been told to leave that the Government takes totally 'disproportionate' retaliation. No aid, no diplomatic relations, no travel arrangements and arms and training to Darfuri rebels. Then we can watch the sometimes ludicrous Rowan Williams bleat.


Enjoyable article as always Graeme, I have to admit that despite the other meatier political subjects you touched on, the story of flying over the Atlantic gripped me the most.
Why? Because as I get older I get more and more terrified of flying, the butterflies set in with a vengeance about 3 days before I get near the entrance of the airport.
Flying recently, a friend was impressed with my calm demeanour and commented on it. I simple reminded them of the placid duck that glided across the pond looking relaxed while they peddled hard underneath the surface.
Anyway some big girls blouse behind me screeched so much that I was forced to show I was made of sterner stuff, no one noticed I read the same paragraph of an article in the Spectator 15 times in an attempt to focus, sorry Fraser!
The last time we flew with the kids was across the Atlantic, the touching scene of me holding the youngest hand upon take off was spoilt when they complained I was squeezing it too hard. And the in flight entertainment, forget it, I watched that little dot on the stationary screen that was our plane praying for it to move a bit faster!!

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