Friday, 20 November 2009

And fleas shall have lesser fleas

Lady Ashton. Not a name that trips off the end of the tongue; certainly not a prospective 'I'm a Celebrity'. Until last night that is. However, the trusty internet shows she has quite a pedigree albeit the posts she has held seem somewhat exotic and maybe at the margins of everyday life.

The surprise of her victory throws light on just how undemocratic some things can be but still pass muster. The political commentators spent a lot of time on the question of Blair as EU King designate but missed her altogether. She was nominated by the Labour party. The sort of questions she was asked at her post-election news conference showed that hardly anyone knew what she would be doing in her new job. She herself was not sure or so overwhelmed by her success that she gave no really useful answer. This question should have been very easily dealt with. One assumes there was some sort of Job Description circulated in advance of nominations but we, the People, did not get involved in this. There is a definition on the Net and it all sounds very high level stuff. Setting her career details against the specification for her new job is not easy; hard to see what she may have gained from being a Governor at her daughter's school that fits her for the EU bear-pit. Maybe that is why she was given the new job - no real threat to the 27 Big Beasts of the Union. She has given a early interview to the BBC in which she insisted that the fact that she had never been elected to office would not be a disadvantage.
"I'm humbled by it, in that I'm very conscious of those who have been elected. It's why I spent a lot of time in the European parliament. It's why, when I was leader of the House of Lords, I was very conscious of the role of the House of Commons," she said. She also said that 27 elected heads of government had all had a say in her appointment "and they all decided on me". Asked if she was the best candidate for the job, she said: "Over the next few months and years I aim to show I am the best person for this job."
She clearly has had training in answering the question put. I do not want to wait the "next few months and years" for her to demonstrate she can do the job that faces her from Day One.
I am somewhat concerned at the failure of the 'experts' to flag up this woman. To be au fait with world politics requires tremendous dedication and we rely upon the commentators to give us digestible précis of things that should concern us. They are opinion formers - even if we disagree with them they make us go off and find out what there is to know.

However, whilst I have doubts and questions as to her being selected. I take nothing but the utmost joy that the carpetbagger Blair was shown out of the tradesmen's entrance. Good riddance.

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