Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Brown and Presentation

A thought occurs to me. When Chancellor, Gordon Brown was famous for giving Budget Speeches that were all but un-repliable. Packed with statistics, sections on policy were delivered at breakneck speed so that it was very difficult to ascertain precisely what had been said. Time and again, however, detailed study showed that massive changes, some of them accidental and catastrophic, had been slipped out under the radar. For the first time Budget Speeches were examined not for what they said, but for what they implied, or didn't even mention.
Now that he is Prime Minister, will he stop doing this? He'll have to up to a point - Prime Ministers have the luxury of writing a set-piece speech setting out policy rather less than do Chancellors, and there's no room for that sort of style at PMQs. For all the current guff about 'Not Flash; just Gordon' Brown's image has always been as carefully managed as Blair's ever was. The difference is simply that Brown is less good spontaneously, less quick on his feet. He can't rely on boring the pants of everyone for two hours, then avoiding serious debate by making his speeches incomprehensible any more.

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