Dear Chief Secretary to the Treasury,
I'm afraid to tell you there's no money left.
Signed, Liam Byrne

(Outgoing Labour Chief Secretary to the Treasury. May 2010)

Thursday, 20 May 2010

Ellie has a short memory.

Ellie Gerrard that is, yes, this one. Mrs R found her thanks to reading about her on various blogs including Uncle Marvo's place, but she's writing because of this piece by CF which prompted a little stroll through some online archives.

As CF points out, Bevanite Ellie seems to change her mind quite a bit. First there's this piece about that Labour Leadership Contest that never was and the fallout from the Glasgow East by-election in 27 July 2008 ...
Here's my ideal scenario for the coming months. Brown accepts that too much damage has been done and while I feel sorry for someone who has waited so long for a job which he has done averagely and been slaughtered for, I care more for our party and supporters. Alan Johnson takes the reigns. If we rely on another Blairite, wet behind the ears and a propagator of policies and a Labour party that has failed then we will die, and will deserve to. Johnson is politicallly astute, personable and above all passionate. He is committed to socialism and a staunch trade unionist thus would hopefully unite our party which needs to be stronger than ever today. A general election would come sooner rather than later with change of leadership and we would fight in on tough policies, left wing ideas and real issues. not pandering to any conservative measure or media giant. The Labour party in it's purest form, for when our party is distilled it is deadly. Win or lose such an election we will know where we stand and will be in a stronger, and prouder position to reignite the flame of which mere embers remain today.

In short, Brown (although I had high hopes and don't burden you with total responsibility) get your coat, time's up. Our party is worth fighting for, and I know as long as there's breath in my body I will fight for us.
Only a year later on 27th July 2009, and on her old blog, Ellie was discussing MPs favourite viewing. She noted that
Alastair Darling - Yes Minister never fails to make me laugh. Although it's less comedy, more documentary. oh, and black humour - it's kept us going over the last two years at the treasury (bless)

Margaret Beckett - The Last of the Summer Wine
(Jesus wept) makes me laugh a lot. Have I Got News for You is also quite funny. But I don't like it when it gets too cruel. (Paul, Ian, I do hope you're listening, Margaret would like you to tone it down)

Alan Johnson - Blackadder, Fawlty Towers ... make the Johnson's laugh.
(AJ, I expected a few more 'hip' choices considering your cutting edge taste in all things musical).
Ellie wasn't impressed and said so
I do hope you're thinking the same as me. Did these people stop watching TV in 1975? A little mention for 'In the Loop' would have gone far in this selection. People say MPs are out of touch, for God sake peeps, don't fuel it.
So, maybe that made Ellie think Alan Johnson was too old fashioned and too out of touch with her generation to lead her Labour Party?

Oh, and Ellie doesn't like Shami Chakrabarti either. Ellie thinks she's a
... blusherless faced, crop haired, Tory sympathiser

Well, with that we'll move forward another year to when lucky Ellie found herself launching Labour's election campaign (18 April 2010) and, naturally, she changed her mind - again ...
I don’t have to make the case for Gordon Brown on here, he’s done that himself. All I’d say is that this is a man of substance that we not only want, but need, leading us into the challenging, but potentially exciting, future which awaits us.

Less than a month later, on 17th May, Ellie got herself all in a tizz about the impact of Dear Gordon resigning stepping down as leader. Here's why ...
one thing worries me, the calls for a snap leadership election. I think those calling for a quick transition are, perhaps inadvertently, suggesting Gordon was the reason we lost, that the electorate’s issues with the Labour Government didn’t go deeper. He wasn’t and they do. It was not an awkward smile, or stiffness on camera which made the semi-skilled workers of this country desert our party, as potential leadership candidates are now writing daily, it was that they felt ignored. That we were no longer on their side. That hard reality is crucifying to those of us who joined this party to protect the exact voters who abandoned us
And now, today, 20th May 2010, Mr Balls has got the lovely Ellie has got a spot on CiF, where she writes:
I am well aware that Ed Balls is not the most popular candidate for Labour leader. Vilification by the rightwing press has led to an image of Balls which many who know him personally, many of whom I've spoken to, do not recognise. This will be an opportunity for the public to see the real Ed. Quite simply, it will be a cold day in hell when Labour party members choose our leader based on his popularity in the sections of the media we rightly loathe. Ed has the hunger, the drive and the fire in the belly to lead our party back into Downing Street. It is perhaps just that which the rightwing media fear.
So, it looks as if Ellie loves Alan, Gordon, Ed - and she knows he's a nice person because she's spoken to 'many' of his friends!!

Mrs R will say one thing for Ellie - she really doesn't mind changing her mind, and she'll back anythingbody she thinks will win.

Trouble is that people who keep doing it, and maintain their own record as proof, tend to come a cropper - especially if they're in the Labour Party. McBride and co make a living from eating people like Ellie for breakfast, Mrs R thinks she'll go a very long way in the Labour Party - but maybe not as far as she hopes. Labour likes loyalty to the Party, and Ellie has that in spades, but she's shown she changes her mind and leaves online records of changing her mind, and that's something they don't like.

So, Ellie, wearing your heart on your sleeve whilst you're strolling round Paris bemoaning the lack of a French 'welfare state' (- maybe Ellie hasn't heard of the time when France got rid of its nobility and became a truly egalitarian country) might be fun but, errm, the party you adore and give your wholehearted support for likes you now - but they'll discard you if you haven't backed the winner, so don't start counting on your MP's expenses just yet.


Corrugated Soundbite said...

I keep trying to make myself hate Eleanor, but it doesn't work. I just end up spitting vin rouge all over my keyboard and thinking impure thoughts whenever I read what she has to say.

But then again, she'd hate that. And if not, Harperson would. Looks like I'll just have to keep doing it ;-)

Anonymous said...

I have to say that I find Ellie extremely annoying and frankly fatuous. For anyone to change their mind quite as often as she does indicates a lack of either direction or understanding, or both. Surely Labour could find a better advocate for their future, or is she trying to appeal to the confused vote? perhaps they don't care.

Mrs Rigby said...

@ CS - I don't have that problem, and there are members of the Rigby family who are far prettier.

@ Mud in the Blood - Yes, extremely annoying, almost to the point of being infatuated with 'the Party', but to keep changing her mind suggests immaturity. Let's hope she isn't planning on getting married.
The girl is being used - she's young, vocal and 'loyal' and is flattered by the attention. Let's hope it doesn't end in tears when somebody like Georgina Gould reappears.