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Theo Walcott, bless him: why’s he in the squad? Even in the match that we didn’t need to win, Sven didn’t dare field him. Selecting Theo got some good headlines, but at the expense of capacity. Very New Labour.

Gordon Brown's personality will always let him down.

He has a constant need to be big deal, because inwardly he lacks confidence in himself. He has little sensitivity to people, and has negative expectations.

His signature should be shown again as it shows these characteristics. The huge G for Gordon at the beginning (look at me please) becomes a tiny Brown as he fades away into tiny letters by the end (how he really sees himself).

He slopes backwards (negative expectations) - and has nothing below the line (sensitivity).

He cannot look at a situation without the most important factor being him. Anyone or anything that threatens his desperate need to be important will be bitterly attacked. No amount of money, resources of any kinds will ever be enough to feed his hungry ego.

I haven't seen Cameron's signature yet, although I have met him for about ten minutes. He comes across as sensitive to people, confident in himself and quite content with life. He won't need to always be the focus of every situation. He'll be happy enough to let others shine without feeling personally threatened, and won't mind being seen as a human being by others.

The best Conservative strategy would be to stop taking Gordon Brown so seriously, and start seeing him as the next Prescott - completely ludicrous. He's bankrupted Britain, and personally he's an inadequate with a mountainous chip on the shoulder.

Cameron seems natural alongside him. If anything, he could do with a little more gravitas. That will come. Compared to Brown he's a breath of fresh air.

I have a hunch, and it's only a hunch, that in fact these opinion polls are wrong and Gordon Brown will be much harder to beat than we expect. I am utterly convinced that he will call an early election, only months after becoming Labour leader. We must be very cautious.

I agree with Henry @11.10. We could well have an election with Brown as leader of Old Labour/Nulab within a year. Whatever DC's team says about policies, we will need a raft of good strong ones to put into a manifesto by then and we will also need a whole shadow cabinet (not just a charismatic leader) that has made a strong and favourable impact on the electorate.
What I shall be looking for will be signs of competent management, both people and systems, particularly in the economy, NHS and education.

"There don't appear to be many forward options for Gordon Brown. It may be the econorooney or bust."
I agree that there does not appear to be many options left to Gordon Brown on how he will be able to "renew" a tired and incompetent Labour government. Unlike John Major he is much more closely associated with the present administration, and in effect has been a passenger/backseat driver in many decisions.
Do people feel better off and confident about their own personal finances in the present economic climate?
Gordon Brown might try and cut and run by calling an early GE when elected Labour leader in the hope that it will give him a clear mandate to govern.
But I don't think that even if he won that it will be with the kind of majority he would have been hoping for even 18 months ago. I am not sure that just having him at the helm will be enough to persuade the electorate that this is a new Labour project full of promise or that it will be a matter of "steady as she goes" with the economy.
He runs the risk that the conservatives might have done enough to give the voter's the option to punish Labour for the scandals and incompetence of the last few months. Just remember the difficulties John Major had with a small majority, so falling out with the left of the Labour party might not be a luxury he can afford.

There is nothing that Brown can do that will alter the fact that he's a grim, dour-faced, wretchedly barely-human Calvanistic strangler of any optimistic endeavour. The only tangible gift he's given the country is the horror of means-testing, something his decent-minded predecessors would have marched against. Did he really think that just because the girning puppet Blair makes us sick in the stomach that the nation would rise as one and celebrate the arrival of Mr Authentic? I'm sure he is authentic; he's just authentically repulsive.

I have been catching up on newspapers, and have come across an interesting article in the Daily Telegraph, Friday June 21st. It was entitled, 'Chancellor is pulling the Bank's strings'.

The article is fairly alarming, but I think also gives an indication as to the direction that Brown is going to go when/if he becomes leader (I use that word on purpose!).

To begin with he apparently turned up, as he has before, dressed in a grey suit, when everybody else was in 'black-tie', a small think you might say, but for someone who has been a pains, just the last week or two, to show how English he can be, he is not about to compromise at this most English of occasions, at the Mansion House!

Earlier this week an economist called David Walton died at the early age of 43yrs. He was a very well thought of member of the Bank of England's Monetary Policy Committee. His death leaves two vacancies.

This article illustrates that the Bank of England is not as totally independent as Mr. Brown 'likes to trumpet', at least every bit has to be fought over, and the article goes into some detail about that.

To sum up, I think the 'suit', which you could say is Mr. Brown clinging to his low church Scottish principals, and the inability to refrain from interfering with Bank policy, gives a fairly clear picture of how Mr. Brown's influence as Leader would affect this country!!! More taxes, more control - Cromwell.

I don't really see the point of Bank or Public Holidays or of any restrictions on Trading Hours - why not abolish all the regulations on such things? They just increase bureacracy merely to stop people from shopping when they want to and traders from opening when they want to.

With regard to the War in Iraq the thing to do is the right thing not what is considered a matter of short term political expediency, in the short term Iraqi Security Forces are beginning to take total control of some areas of Iraq, starting from next month and with and another one or two in following months it is quite possible that by the end of the year rather than redeployments inside Iraq there could actually be reductions in British Troop numbers overall, in just under 3 years time when the most likely time for the General Election is it could well be that Iraqi Security Forces are in control of most of Iraq and only a fraction of the current number of Coalition Forces remain.

I think in 20 years time although the Rumsfeld Strategy will be even more than now be held to have been too complacent with regard to committal of forces and an after war plan, that overall the war itself whatever anyone thinks about the legality will be said to have been a great success and Iraq will have a successful economy and a stable government seeking to govern broadly in the national interest (certainly the current government is but it still has a way to go before it's hold on Iraq is secure).

Iraq almost certainly needed more forces from earlier on. We should have followed the McCain strategy and may still have to.

A west country friend with no political affiliations, but a very shrewd skill at people analysis has this to say about Gordon Brown:-
A passive/agressive queen who has married power and who accrues it to herself, but is incapable of going out and grabbing it, as we have seen.
So in a way, GB is happiest when he is in his current position - "married" to King Tony, but feeling he has power over him. And he creates a fuss when he doesnt feel he has that influence.
So come the transfer of power, it might not be too hard for another agressive male to elbow Gordon out of the way. In his heart of hearts, GB may not mind too much, as long as he can remain the power behind the throne.
I still think he will be PM however, though I think he is too divisive and petty to do a good job.
He's the Tories best hope of winning an election."

Dont shoot the messenger, I'm only repeating what he emailed to me a few weeks ago.

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