Many apologies for lack of posts during the silly season. Craig has taken leave of absence, which he assures me is only temporary, and I have to say that as I hardly ever watch or hear the BBC these days, anything I might decide to say is not necessarily on topic or of interest.
Talking of lack of new posts, it’s quite interesting that the critique of ‘The State’ on Harry’s Place, “Five Go Off on Jihad” has been top-of-the-page for four whole days and is still generating below-the line responses. Enid Blyton would be proud.
One thing I did listen to the other day was a couple of mid-morning programmes on Radio 4. The reunion - the Wapping Dispute episode, with Sue McGregor of the near-perfect radio voice, and a mixture of Fleet Street union activists and bosses who were ‘there’. The other programme was Reflections with Peter Hennessy and Harriet Harman.
The Wapping lot were entertainingly combative and the politics was fascinating. The unions’ militant reaction to ‘progress’ (they didn’t think much of it) and the reasoning behind their resistance - redundancy meant they would probably lose their homes as well as their livelihoods - pitted against the inevitable march of technology seemed all but irrelevant now that print media seems quaint and old fashioned and in imminent danger of dinosauring itself out of existence altogether. Those were the days my friend, when militants were proper militant. It was good radio though.
Listening to Harriet Harman (aka Harperson) was a bit of an eye-opener. I’ve seen quite a lot of her recently as she’s been doing the rounds, presumably trying to promote her autobiography “A Woman’s Work.” I guess the BBC was happy to cooperate with that enterprise.
The main thing that struck me was her claim that the ‘men’ in politics were dismissive of womankind, regarding them collectively as ‘not leadership material.’ Since Margaret Thatcher was the Prime Minister, one couldn’t help wondering if it could have been Harriet Harman in particular rather than the sisterhood in general who wasn’t thought of as leadership material.
She certainly sounded self pitying and shallow.
There is a lot of amused chatter about Laura Pidcock and her silly statement about never ever wanting to ‘be friends’ with a Tory. Well, what about Harriet’s bizarre tale about “not wanting Margaret Thatcher to set eyes on her baby”. (She hid her baby and darted into a side room when she saw the PM bearing down on her in the corridor) narrowly avoiding an evil glance or a wicked spell.
These ladies’ childish and asinine declarations do them little favours. Are they expecting people to think of them as leadership material?