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Cheerio, Mr. Blair

Discussion in 'Sports and News' started by The Big Ragu, May 10, 2007.

  1. The Big Ragu

    The Big Ragu Moderator Staff Member

  2. Ace

    Ace Well-Known Member

    So that is one world leader who actually had some successes in office done in by the war in Iraq.

    Can we make it two?
  3. The Big Ragu

    The Big Ragu Moderator Staff Member

    Some successes? He is already acknowledged as ""the most successful Labour leader of all time," as several of the English papers described him today. He was sent off as a hero when he made his announcement and the papers today were hardly writing about a schlub slinking off in shame. It was mostly filled with his successes, how England has thrived, its economy and standing in the world in a much better place than when he took power. He was PM for 10 years--which is a pretty long time for a Western democracy--and he decided that that was long enough. He wasn't "done in" by the war in Iraq, even if it is not popular in England. The guy could still be PM two months from now if that is what he had wanted.
  4. Ace

    Ace Well-Known Member

    C'mon, Ragu. He is quitting before he is forced out. And Iraq and his Bush loyalty is the reason folks turned against him.
  5. The Big Ragu

    The Big Ragu Moderator Staff Member

    Why didn't this happen in 2004, 2005 or 2006 or earlier in 2007? Why couldn't the "cash for honours" scandal even do him him if everyone has turned against him--that would have forced out ANY unpopular leader? And why isn't that the story being written by any of the British papers today which are writing about him as if he is one of Britain's greatest leaders ever? And why would a paper like the Guardian report something like, "Blair is the first British prime minister since Harold Wilson in 1976 to leave at a time of his own choosing, rather than by losing an election or being forced out by the party."?
  6. Sit, poodle. sit. Good dog.
    C'mon, Ragu, you know as well as I do that, were it not for Iraq, he's still at No. 10. He's "choosing" to leave because he'd get the boot otherwise.
  7. The Big Ragu

    The Big Ragu Moderator Staff Member

    FB, He was under pressure because of the recent local election. But the results weren't so staggering (not as bad as the U.S. midterm elections, and mostly it was Scotland and Wales that gave up seats to the Conservatives) that he as going to get forced to do anything. He chose to step down. It's that simple. If he hadn't chosen to, he would have survived this too and remained PM. There was no vote of confidence--this doesn't extend beyond the Labour Party--and there wasn't going to be one. Next month, Gordon Brown is the PM and as far as Iraq policy goes that is the same thing as Tony Blair being PM. As unpopular as Iraq is in England, it didn't "boot" Tony Blair out (Why now instead of two years ago?), even though you seem as if you'd love to write the history that way for some reason.

  8. Oooh, we're playing the Olympian "Mine are the only pure motives" card again. It really is your cheapest trick. (Cue the "Why are you overreacting?" follow-up. 3...2...1...)
    He "chose to step down" because his popularity plummeted, became a drag on his party, and he chose to leave before a disaster became a catastrophe. All of that has its roots in Iraq and his image as Bush's poodle. He didn't walk away as PM for no reason -- and he didn't do it because it mysteriously was "time" for him to do it. He lost his effectiveness as a political leader because he hitched it to bad policies not his own.
  9. The Big Ragu

    The Big Ragu Moderator Staff Member

    Alrighty then. I am an Olympic Champion, I guess [/trained by JDV]! Just wondering why this didn't happen last year or two years ago or three years ago when I am sure you had all kinds of things to say about Blair's effectiveness and his poodle-like stature. When were all the votes of confidence?... And why is Gordon Brown, who is Tony Blair light, set to be PM in a month and a half, if lack of effectiveness and bad policy have created a disaster that is leading to catastrophe?

    I'd feel compelled to agree if the conservatives were stepping into power. Reading your interpretation, you'd think that is actually what is happening.
  10. OK, sport, then why is he stepping down?
  11. The Big Ragu

    The Big Ragu Moderator Staff Member

    Took me a bit to stop laughing at... sport. But here's your answer, sparky... I don't know why. The elections might have contributed. But when John Smith died in the early 90s there was a bit of a power play for leadership of the Labour Party and Blair won out, even though Gordon Brown was the more senior of the two. Blair was more charismatic and did a lot of backroom politicking. I think of him as sort of the Bill Clinton of Britain. But there has always been talk that Blair and Brown have had secret agreements in place in which Blair would eventually step aside and give Brown the reins. There was even a fictional book written about the deal between the two. Maybe now is just that time and some time as PM is Brown's reward for playing loyal soldier for 15 years?
  12. Football_Bat

    Football_Bat Well-Known Member

    Clinton ... Parliament ...


    Seriously ...

    This is barely news since it had been reported Blair was going to step down since well before the last elections, when Labour was predicted to keep its majority in the House of Commons but lose scores of seats. (That did happen.) I guess it's news since it's now official, but this is no shock.

    I've always kind of liked Blair, but his marching lock-step off to war with Dim Son was highly troubling.

    Here's how the UK Parliament works (this is long, but informative). It's not like the US Congress:

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