Josefin Malmqvist

Blairs buy £4 million mansion

4 kommentarer

The former PM Tony Blair and his wife have bought former actor Sir John Gielgud’s 18th century estate. This is the couple’s sixth property so you naturally understand that they needed another one… ”They also have two in London, two flats in Bristol and a home in Mr Blair’s old constituency in Co Durham” the Sun reports.

Those of you familiar with Swedish politics recognise the concept of former Labour Prime Ministers buying large country side mansions after retirement, or planing for retirement as was the case in Sweden. Article in Aftonbladet about the large estate, from 2005. Picture from the Swedish State Television (SVT) of Persson’s mansion below.

The similarities are stiking. What I don’t understand is that they don’t realise how this undermines their credibility, in wanting to represent the working class. The Socialists are no longer the party of the working class, that is for sure. The Conservatives are now, across Europe, the credible and responsible party for hard working citizens.

This was one of many factors that contributed to people’s loss in confidence in the Swedish ”Labour” party in 2006; that may also become the case here in Britain.

On a slightly less serious note, I just remembered the campaign film recorded by MUF Sthlm in the election campaign in 2006. You’ll see the house in the background. (Unfortunately, it’s in Swedish) Daniel Somos and Astrid Grufman ligger bakom den om jag inte minns helt fel.

4 tankar om “Blairs buy £4 million mansion

  1. Maybe it would be a good idea to separate ”socialist ideals” from ”socialist politics”. Theory and practice don’t exactly match, and I am not very surprised.

    Quoting U.S. satirist Ambrose Bierce (1842-1914):

    ”Politics: A strife of interests masquerading as a contest of principles. The conduct of public affairs for private advantage.”

    In any case, if I remember right, Tony Blair is now working at JP Morgan for 1 million a year, so it’s only 4 years of salary to buy that house. And I would add that he has no credibility left anyways, so he might at least lead a pimp lifestyle if it he wants it that way.

  2. But isn’t that part of the problem? When we simply say that ideals and practice are incompatible? Pehaps everything is not possible to fulfill, but you should at least be willing to stive for it. The Socialists, at the moment, don’t even show that.

    And for Tony Blair you’re right; the former (S)wedish PM has a job at JKL for similar money.

  3. Democracy is a wonderful idea, and as a most wonderful ideas, it does not work very in practice. Democracy is only possible when the voters are:

    – intelligent and well-educated
    – able to think for themselves
    – able to understand the reality.

    The so-called ”Socialists” represent today NOT the workers, but rather the triumph of image over substance: the victory of unfeasible promises, over achievable goals. Tony Blair is a perfect example of that.

    In the real world, few people are actually able to reason on their own. The signal-to-noise ratio is extremely low in the political arena. Moreover, humans tend to be gullible due to their tendency to opt for emotion over rationality.

    We are living in a fast-paced world these days… who has the time to do proper research on a political candidate’s program?? Hardly anyone. As such, people are forced to choose based on ideology (which is somewhat of a dead concept), ”gut feeling”, or whatever.

    I see the Sun move around in the sky every day: it goes from East to West. Therefore, I have a gut feeling that the Sun orbits around the Earth. However, I am wrong. If I did my research, I might have a chance to be right.

    I don’t see magic solutions. If people are inherently foolish and corrupt, the government (which is composed of people), will be foolish and corrupt as well, and it will have access to power. A dangerous combination. I would say that less state would be good, in order to minimize the damage the government can cause. Moreover, it’s time for people to stop living in fantasy worlds: don’t count on the government to take care of you when sick and old, take the responsability to change your life to your own hands, and do the best you can.

    If all people were moved by the genuine desire to solve problems, there would be no ideology. Ideology is more about seeing the way thing are VS seeing a fantasy world. Ideals don’t solve problems. Studying in great depth a given problem, proposing solutions and implementing them is what solves problems.

    I would go for practice over ideals. Good practice… not what politicians do today. Corporations strive for maximum efficiency. Politicians seeks the least efficient solution, because the work that needs to be done is not popular.

  4. Blair’s never had any egalitarian credentials, so there’s no tension at all (for him).


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