Saturday, 11 April 2009

Smeargate: Prescott Is Quiet, Hannan Isn't

One must feel a trifle sorry for John Prescott. He has spent the entire week flogging what he thought was a live horse in Dan Hannan's comments on the NHS, only for it to be administered a lethal injection by the McBride/Draper/Noises-Off affair.

Whilst Prezza should be admired for his foray into Hazel Blears' bête noir (despite a distinct lack of written dexterity), he is very quiet on such an explosive issue for the blogosphere.

His recent target isn't though, as the US poster boy today points out that e-mails are almost as squalid when circulated at the EU.

There will be a big row in tomorrow's papers about l'affaire McBride. But I guarantee that there will be no fuss about the memo in the European Commission explicitly telling officials to disguise, in their emails, the extent that they are being lobbied by corporate interests. Its text is almost beyond parody. Having explained how to defy requests for information while remaining within the letter of the rules (for example, by denying that you have had representations from a named company when you have in fact had representation from a lobbyist acting on its behalf), it reminds Eurocrats that their emails might be published: "Don't refer to the great lunch you have had with an industry representative privately or add a PS asking if he/she would like to meet for a drink."

Labour seem to have targeted Hannan as a loose cannon (naively IMO), and after four days, Prezza had whipped up the frenzy amongst the blogging community into a mild tut. With Guido showing what political blogs can really do, Prescott has shown himself to be rather green in not reacting to the threat.

Hannan, on the other hand, shows a better understanding of the medium, and also innovation in his riding of the wave of opinion.

It'll be interesting to see what the Jagmeister comes up with once he has finished chomping through his choccy eggs.


Cate Munro said...

Love it! V. astute post Dick. It is indeed funny how Prezza's kept "Shtum" so far over "Smeargate." And yet he flogged Dan Hannan to a yawning death. Not very "on the ball" our John . . .but what do you expect! ;-)

DaveA said...

Two German words in a row from me re Dolly and McBride:

Uber Schadenfreude!

DaveA said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
DaveA said...

Have you seen this at Obnoxion the Clown, make sure you have an empty bladder.

banned said...

Re above link from DaveA
"Derek Draper said...
You've gone too far, you fucking clown! I'm gonna have you!
05-Apr-2009 14:44:00 "
Really does link from d'Rapers site, want a wanker.

Can't say that I take a lot of notice about what Prescott has to say though I expect Dan Hannan finds it quite amusing to be the subject of his inelegant hate.