'4. Brown often swore about having to meet foreign dignitaries. "'Why the fuck are you making me do this?' he would complain to [Tom Fletcher, his foreign policy adviser] before almost every such meeting," Seldon and Lodge writeWhy should Gordon Brown have got it, he never seemed to get it
Polite chap wasn't he, must be the influence of his upbringing as a son of the manse...
6. Ed Balls is reported to have said: "Every appointment that Gordon has ever made on his own has been a disaster." Seldon and Lodge quote this in relation to the appointment of Stephen Carter to Downing Street.
Was Ed Balls appointed by Gordon Brown?
7. Brown is not able to read newsprint easily. According to Seldon and Lodge, he has to rely on others to keep him informed about what's in the papers.
So at one point we had a blind Home Secretary and a one-eyed poor sighted Chancellor...
8. Brown tried to get parliament to vote for 42-day pre-charge detention to please the Murdoch press, his colleagues believe. "Blair made it very clear to Gordon that he had to come across as tough; the News International people would worry if he was not. That is why he did 42 days," Balls told the authors.
This is the man of principles is it?
9. When Brown met Obama in Downing Street before Obama was elected president, Brown's sons were brought in to extend the length of the meeting because Brown wanted to keep Obama in No 10 for as long as possible.
10. When Harriet Harman stood in for Brown during the summer holidays in 2008, she was overheard telling a cabinet colleague: "I don't know how Gordon manages to make this job seem so difficult."
Harriet Harman the perfect advertisement for sexual discrimination against women
26. Brown stopped speaking to Mervyn King, the governor of the Bank of England, towards the end of his premiership because he thought King was taking a political stance in the argument about deficit reduction.
Another example of Gordon Brown's famed maturity...
27. Nick Macpherson, the permanent secretary to the Treasury, despaired of Brown's refusal to accept the need for a tougher stance on reducing the deficit. "He just doesn't get it," Macpherson often told colleagues.'
Thursday, 23 December 2010
30 new facts about Gordon Brown
The Guardian has gleaned 30 new facts about Gordon Brown from Anthony Seldon's biography. Do take a read of them all, here's a few to whet your appetite (my comments in italics):