An Apology 2256


I am so committed to getting my book finished I really don’t have time or energy to blog at the moment, and realise it has been very desultory the last few weeks. I am well and happy, it is just that writing a properly researched history is incredibly intensive. I realise there is much of great interest happening in the world, but I must sometimes cut myself off from it.

This is why I don’t ask for donations for the blog…


2,256 thoughts on “An Apology

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  • Ba'al Zevul

    Seem’s Tony’s having a struggle to attract anyone talented…

    https://www.charityjob.co.uk/jobs/tony-blair-institute/talent-acquisition-advisor/538201

    The model of ’employ Morgan Stanley wonks and anyone who licks your bum’ is evidently defective. However, the job description suggests that the not-for-profit TBI (not a charity, we emphasise) will shortly be recruiting large numbers of ambassadors for Tony, and we wonder if the £9m generously donated by Tony Blair Associates to the Tony Blair Institute last year will be sufficient to cover the wage bill for long. What used to be called an HR consultant gets £30-35K these days, and we can’t forget expenses, pensions (if any), foreign travel and accommodation, office costs etc, etc.

    So where’s the cash coming from? Is it creamed off aid budgets, or sourced from the luckless taxpayers of countries in whose governments the Teflon Cuckoo has nested? It certainly doesn’t come from TB’s speeches, even at his own premium rates.

  • Ba'al Zevul

    The Togo Tribune confirms our assessment of what Tony is up to there:

    …Acculé, le pouvoir en place multiplie et lance des projets pour divertir la population déterminée comme jamais. Et c’est dans cette suite qu’il faut percevoir les boniments lancés à l’institut Tony Blair.

    Loin de lancer un nouveau produit pourvoyeur d’emploi, le gouvernement va retirer par la main gauche ce qu’il donne par la main droite. En donnant quitus à l’Institut piloté par l’ancien Premier ministre britannique, le gouvernement entend profiter en retour de son carnet d’adresse pour échapper à la chape de plomb qui pèse sur sa tête par rapport à son refus de limitation de mandat présidentiel. Faure Gnassingbé est résolument à la quête d’un soutien dans sa course esseulée de rester ad vitam aeternam au pouvoir.

    Smoke and mirrors, to keep Gnassingbe in power.

  • Ba'al Zevul

    Still not a whisper outta your man on Trump’s Jerusalem initiative. We’ll have to make do with what he said last month:

    My only plea to President Trump, or whoever is the American president, is approach things in a way that keeps your allies with you and keeps the western world united because we’re going to need that as we go through this big geopolitical change…
    China’s got a right to take its proper place in the world, but just the consequences of this are so dramatic that we need that cohesive set of alliances staying strong and staying behind the values we believe in.

    http://edition.cnn.com/2017/11/16/politics/tony-blair-axe-files/index.html

    Are the values we believe in
    (1) Democracy and freedom for all
    (2) Is***l’s vis-a-vis its Arab population?

    Tony?

  • Ba'al Zevul

    Still nowt from Tony on the sensitive subject of the US embassy move to Jerusalem. On which, of all things, the former Quartet representative, confidant of sheikhs, advisor to royalty, winnet-licker to el-Sisi and nearly- kosher tapeworm in the intestinal tract of Benjamin Netanyahu…should have something to say, however vapid, and issued to all editors everywhere. Nowt.

    But, significantly, all editors everywhere – Daily Mail to local rags – have had a press release announcing the retirement of Tony’s intelligent big brother, Sir William Lynton Blair. And all editors everywhere are not known for their scrutiny of the legal career ladder, unless a rung is drawn to their attention. Neither do the legal institutions do much in the way of PR. The original source is this, it would seem.

    https://www.judiciary.gov.uk/announcements/high-court-retirement-of-the-honourable-sir-william-james-lynton-blair/
    Unlike his brother, Sir William hasn’t sought the limelight, and the above summary does him less than justice…sorry. The 2015 biography on the same site, eked out by Wikipedia, gives a better picture:

    Sir William Blair graduated from Oxford University, and practised at the English Bar where he specialised in the law of banking and finance, appearing and advising in many domestic and international disputes and matters.
    He became a Queen’s Counsel in 1994, and was Chairman of the Commercial Bar Association between 2003 and 2005.
    He was appointed a High Court Judge in England and Wales in 2008, and is one of the nominated judges who sit in the Commercial Court.
    He served as Chairman of the Qatar Financial Centre Regulatory Tribunal until March 2011.
    (and appears to have been involved in Qatari matters since 2006 (- Wiki and BZ)
    He became President of the Board of Appeal of European Supervisory Authorities in 2012.
    He served as a member of the Board of Trustees of the British Institute of International and Comparative Law until 2015, and is a member of London’s Financial Markets Law Committee.
    He chairs the Monetary Law Committee of the International Law Association (MOCOMILA), which brings together leading people in the financial law field.
    He is a Visiting Professor at the London School of Economics.
    (and at the Centre for Commercial Law Studies, Queen Mary, University of London (since 1999). He has also been, since 1999, an Honorary Fellow of the Society for Advanced Legal Studies (1997), and an academic adviser to the Asian Institute of International Financial Law.(-Wikipedia & BZ))
    He chairs the Law and Ethics in Finance Project, an informal group concerned with standards in the financial sector.
    He is Judge in Charge of the Commercial Court.

    Heaven forfend that the career of either brother had any bearing on that of the other. We were unable to discover the award date of Sir William’s knighthood: Wikipedia doesn’t have it, and neither does judiciary.gov.uk. We’re sure it is of no relevance whatever.

    Even if it were, we would not wish to deflect attention any further from the opinion of Tony on the further de facto annexation of Jerusalem. We’re still waiting. All editors, please copy.

  • Ba'al Zevul

    The Fragrant Consort missusblaired in Hong Kong over the weekend:

    http://summit.yidanprize.org/agenda/

    …what we are currently observing is the trend toward shrinking education funding in many major economies. Given continued high investment in the military and heavy industry it seems like endless and pointless war became top priority for many governments, while the education field is being neglected.
    How could we make governments reconsider the value of education? Taking up this challenging task Cherie Blair Foundation for Women raises awareness to such issues as technological literacy and access to education bringing it to the attention of those who have the resources to make changes.

    Can a divorce be in the offing?

    (Still nothing from Tony on Trump’s move to draw a line under any possibility of ME peace. Nothing on Twitter, nothing on Facebook*, nothing on the inspirational Tony Blair Institute for Tony Blair website, and zilch from all editors, Oxford Mail please copy. Nothing.)

    *At least, nothing from the three or four ‘Tony Blairs’ we looked at. There are others.

  • Ba'al Zevul

    We seem to have lost a couple of posts. We’re sure we put them down somewhere (searches pockets), and they contained nothing the rabbi would find objectionable, either. Here’s the gist of one of them:

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-5169523/Did-moneybags-Blair-bail-son-Euan-600-000-loan.html

    But the answer may be no. Either Valery Kisilevsky, Euan’s co-director in White Hat or Aaron Etingen, Kisilevsky’s associate and boss in GUS, may be mug enough to subsidise an outfit currently running an expenses debt of four times its annual income. Or they may not.
    Euan restructured the company’s shareholding last month, and it looks as if he’s relinquished 20% of his interest.

  • Ba'al Zevul

    Belatedly -very – while we covered Tony’s manifestation at the Johannesburg Mining Indaba in 2015, (although that was just before we occupied the An Apology Territories and it will take a while to find) marking the first indication of his interest in applied geology, we missed Cherie at the 2016 Mining Indaba, giving it emotive wellie on the subject of corporate responsibility. Apologies for the omission.

  • Ba'al Zevul

    A disappointing week, Blair fans. But The Mouthpiece of Blair, aka The Guardian, did manage to obtain an audience with the global flanneler today. The intro was irresistible, we have to admit: two years after leaving office the former prime minister resembled nothing so much as Francis Maude done up as a drag queen. Plucked and buffed, caked in makeup, his whole face gurned and twitched, the eyebrows and teeth performing a bizarre kind of eightsome reel. The man’s discomfort in his own skin was disturbing to witness.

    But this was just a ruse to suck us into Deborah Aitkenhead’s interview, which while mildly sceptical, didn’t raise any difficult questions, and was quick to imply Tony’s utter sanity on this occasion: The facial dance has vanished and he is strikingly composed; performative agitation has been replaced with centred gravitas. The cadence of his speech has changed, too; the curiously verb-less sentences are gone, along with the faux glottal stops.

    Our conclusion is that either he is on medication or that he has had a refresher course at RADA. His responses to the underarm bowling of Aitkenhead (probably a condition of being interviewed at all) indicate the latter.

    They form, unsurprisingly, yet another emotional appeal to overturn the clearly expressed will of the electorate and return to the bosom of the EU. And his rhetoric is unchanged; he retains the infuriating faux-demotic and slyly-considered involvement of his audience: ‘we should’ this and ‘you have to’ that.

    Evidently Blair has been getting his inspiration at the feet of Egypt’s al-Sisi – “Guys, come on! I mean, what the hell are you in politics for? Of course, you’ve got to listen to people, but you’ve also got to lead them. You’ve got to be a bit more robust.”
    And yet: So given a straight choice between stopping Brexit and getting Labour elected, he would choose the former? “I’d like to see a Labour government in power. But I think the key national priority right now is stopping Brexit. I would put it above everything else right now for the country.” Very hard to lead robustly if you’re not in power, Tony.

    The interview modulates back to the Guardian’s core position, which is that centrist globalists are lovely people. Aitkenhead: ..Blair cast as the selfless politician willing to sacrifice power for principle, and Corbyn the power-hungry arch-triangulator…> is ironic, but Tony does self-deprecation, and Corbyn isn’t around, so hardly ironic at all. After some overdue acknowledgement of Blair’s attachment to US presidents, including the present incumbent, the interview sails safely into the harbour of Remain, as we knew it would: What makes his campaign against Brexit feel very different, and compelling, is a sense that it has little to do with him, and everything to do with the issue itself.

    That’ll be right, Debs. Nice of you not to ask him about African dictators, corrupt Balkan leaders, Egyptian miners or an income breakdown for his company.
    https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2017/dec/16/tony-blair-the-whole-country-has-been-pulled-into-this-tory-psychodrama-over-europe

    All editors please copy. Oh, I see you already have.

  • Ba'al Zevul

    While Tony harangues his three remaining Guardian readers, Cherie aims for intellekchuals in the Times HES:

    https://www.timeshighereducation.com/news/social-mobility-law-worse-1970s-says-cherie-blair

    …conveniently overlooking the complete destruction by her husband and his successors of free or even cheap access to higher education. Or the simultaneous rise of meaningless degree courses to ensure that 50% of the population paid through the nose to graduate with a qualification they couldn’t sell, even supposing the economy hadn’t crashed just as Tony departed the scene.

      • Ba'al Zevul

        No doubt if he had done it without Parliamentary approval, he would have been in greater legal jeopardy now. He would still have lied.

        As you will see further above, Blair is about much, much more than Iraq. Indeed, I’ve never been too optimistic about bringing him to book on that. The money trail is much more interesting, as is his peddling of influence.

  • Ba'al Zevul

    Those evil Brexiteers using a title to which they are not entitled:

    https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2017/dec/16/brexit-institute-for-free-trade-dispute-name-companies-house

    Use of the title (‘Institute’) is protected by law and reserved for established organisations “that typically undertake research at the highest level, or are professional bodies of the highest standing”. It can be used only after permission has been granted by Companies House and Greg Clark, the business secretary.

    Although the Tony Blair Institute is registered as such at Companies House, the Tony Blair Institute for Global Change – exactly the same outfit – isn’t, and Tony trades under the latter cognomen. We await the results of an FoI request with interest:

    https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/does_the_institute_for_global_ch

    Has the use of the title (“Tony Blair) Institute” been approved by the Secretary for state…?. The petitioner has the details slightly wrong, but it’s an interesting question.

  • Ba'al Zevul

    We don’t make a habit of hobnobbing with the ancient aristocracy, but we did once meet Lady Margaret Wake, the wife of Hereward, 13th Baronet Wake. She wore the title lightly, and excelled in fishing for char with parachute flies, we recall.

    Her son, the 14th Baronet, has just died – by all accounts a chip off the old block (that of the first Hereward the Wake, from whom he claimed unbroken descent). According to today’s Times (paywall), he was often invited to Buckingham Palace garden parties. ‘Arriving with Lady Wake one year…he was asked by one of the Palace staff if he would like to be introduced to the Prime Minister, Mr. Tony Blair. To which he replied, “Certainly not.”

    They’re not all bad…

  • Ba'al Zevul

    His constant desire to be in the public arena assorts strangely with Tony’s growing furtiveness between revelations to the world’s media. And we haven’t a clue where he has by now gone for his usual sunsoaked festive break. But El Gouna’s nice at this time of year, we hear; Orascom’s (prop. Sawiris) soulless aspirant-tourist trap on the Red Sea. Also, the papparazzi don’t seem to have found it yet, and we may be spared the spectacle of Blair’s pendant moobs in the Daily Mail, this time. Here’s hoping.

  • Ba'al Zevul

    This should go in a Christmas cracker, though:

    Tony Blair: To combat populists, governments need to manage migration

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/theworldpost/wp/2017/12/20/border-control/?utm_term=.cb28ac683d47

    Like Tony’s did, obviously.

    Anger over mass immigration was a major reason why so many of Labour’s working-class supporters did not vote at the last election.
    They were not alone in their verdict. An intriguing opinion survey found that, when the public were asked what they regarded as the greatest failures of Tony Blair’s time as Prime Minister, 62 per cent pointed to the fact that immigration had reached unacceptable levels — even more than the 56 per cent who chose the invasion of Iraq.

    https://www.migrationwatchuk.org/press-article/83

    Now why’s the old fraud revisiting the topic? On the one hand, the WaPo is paying for this drivel, so it’s presumably for US consumption, and shapeshifting Tony is perhaps implicitly endorsing building a wall to keep out Mexicans, in the hope of attracting Trump’s benign regard.

    But on the other hand, Tony has been for some time characterising populists as the spawn of Satan, and Trump’s the pure paradigm of populism. As, indeed was Tony, circa 1996, with much the same message of ‘we’re gonna change EVERYTHING, guys’. Combatting populists?

    He probably needs a holiday.

  • Ba'al Zevul

    Bless. He’s calling it* ‘revolutionary centrism’, now, and is preaching it to the converted in the globalist Project Syndicate. Oxymorons have never bothered Tony. Feel free to find it yourself: we never advertise. A succinct rebuttal (anticipating the blairing, yesterday) may be found here:

    https://www.thepileus.com/uk/trying-resuscitate-centrism-wont-solve-problems/

    …the “centre”, is a rather arbitrary concept. If we take the centre to mean “the equidistant place between two end-points”, then centrism is entirely dependent on where our end-points lie.

    The fact is that successive UK governments have lugged our Overton Window so far to the right that, even when we place our feet squarely in its centre, we find ourselves embracing frothing, boggle-eyed, right-wing political ideas and calling them “moderate”.

    * the well-worn old marketeering guff

  • Ba'al Zevul

    Tony successfully solicits (fnaaar) the endorsement of elderly ducking-and-weaving porn entrepreneur Peter Stringfellow: ” I now genuinely believe that Tony Blair is the man of the moment and before it’s too late we should have another referendum !” he gushes. (All remoaning editors, please c&p). Passing strange, since in 2015 Stringfellow, a staunch Tory, was endorsing a UKIP candidate in the London mayoral contest. Apparently he now believes Brexit is a mistake. Perhaps the supply of luscious French lovelies for his lap-dancing squad would be threatened? Whatever his motives, political insight and social concern are qualities he appears to have developed rather recently.

    Nothing yet heard from the Cherie Blair Foundation for Women, champion of wimmins’ rights and deplorer of gender stereotyping, sexual exploitation, etc, etc. But perhaps even as we type, the Foundation is launching an initiative in, say, Macedonia, to mentor wimmin planning to open their own strip joints?

  • Ba'al Zevul

    The problems with education in Rwanda – not enough teachers, poorly-trained teachers, poorly-supported teachers, obsolete teaching methods, teachers with poor English ( the language of instruction beyond infant level), a boom in youth numbers and widespread rural poverty. See:

    https://www.usaid.gov/sites/default/files/documents/1860/Rwanda_CDCS_2015-2020.pdf
    …which tactfully accepts president-for-life Kagame’s own glowing account of life in Rwanda, but wasn’t born yesterday.

    The solution for education in Rwanda is, of course, to hire another suit to advise whichever minister happens to be running education this week, in impenetrably corporatist language, that money (including USAID cash) should be diverted to his department from, say, sending hit squads to SA to slot political opponents in exile. Cue Tony:

    https://www.charityjob.co.uk/jobs/tony-blair-institute-for-global-change/strategic-advisor-to-rwanda-s-ministry-of-education/545905

    The advisor will assist MINEDUC and other stakeholders in delivering on their Education Key Performance indicators/targets and will advise user departments that take part in planning and budgeting process. S/he will work in close collaboration with other concerned staff to ensure that relevant data/reports are collected, monitored and evaluated to support the Ministry in its mandate. Based on identified needs, the expert will also assist the Ministry’s counterparts to support partner / client organizations in their planning function and advice (sic) the Ministry’s management on planning issues.

    Goes right to the heart of the problem, doesn’t it? Rwanda, meet Tickbox.

  • Ba'al Zevul

    Decided smell of fish here. On 17th December, one George Rosenberg submitted an FoI request:

    Dear Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy,

    The former Prime Minister Tony Blair has recently established something he calls the Institute for Social Change. Has the use of the title “Institute” been approved by the Secretary for state and if so what information was provided by the applicants and what correspondence was there before approval was given. Please provide a copy of the application any subsequent correspondence and the approval.
    Yours faithfully,
    George Rosenberg

    The response?
    Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy did not have the information requested

    The term ‘Institute’ cannot be registered in a business name unless the organisation using it fulfils set criteria* AND this has been approved by the Secretary of State. (We don’t know how the other mandatory condition, that it is approved by Companies House, works, but the TBI is registered there as such.)

    If the DBE&IS had even received such an application, there would be a record of it. Either Tony didn’t even apply or the Department has a data problem. Which?

    * Debatable. Reminder for Tony:

    65. Institute / Institution

    Approval to use this word is normally only given to fully functioning established organisations that are already functioning as an institute, but operate under a different name. The range of activities may vary, but institutes are organisations that typically undertake research at the highest level, or are professional bodies of the highest standing.

    The factors we take into account include:

    whether there is a good reason for establishing the institute
    whether the activities are regulated or unregulated
    whether the organisation already exists in some form
    the nature of any work it provides for other organisations
    the relevance and nature of support from existing organisations
    whether the institute offers training leading to its own qualifications
    whether the institute provides training or activities that support qualifications provided by other bodies such as universities or colleges
    whether the institute’s activities are supported by or associated with activities undertaken by a government body, an independent organisation established in the field or a funding organisation

    To support your application, please obtain the views of one or more relevant bodies and include a copy of their response with your application. All applications are considered on their merits. But, if you aren’t an established body, you may wish to consider the option to register under a different name and re-apply later.

    https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/incorporation-and-names/annex-a-sensitive-words-and-expressions-or-words-that-could-imply-a-connection-with-government

    • Ba'al Zevul

      More detail will take time, but we can note that TBI did not previously function as an institute, and its predecessor was very differently constituted. TBI was registered on 01/12/16, and the resolution to wind up the components of Tony Blair Associates’ scrutiny-proof structure was not taken until 04/12/17, over a year later. Tony has just shifted the registered office of this last to KPMG in Canary Wharf, now the capital has been removed.

    • Ba'al Zevul

      1.Was there ‘ a good reason for establishing the institute?’
      That would depend on whether you think that globalisers are or not sufficiently capable of promoting their product without the aid of Tony.
      It would also depend on whether the stated aims of the TBI are in any substantial way related to its actual activities. Which are, for want of better words clandestine and opaque.

      2. Are the TBI’s ‘activities … regulated or unregulated?’
      That depends on what its activities are. Which are not in all cases known. For instance, has the securities trading component of Firerush Ventures been retained within the new TBI? Is Tony conflating his formerly registered charities, which were subject to regulation, within the new TBI, which is not a registered charity but a nonprofit? A can of worms, here.

  • Ba'al Zevul

    Meanwhile, you just missed Tony in Las Vegas, on the 6th, blairing his hackneyed platitudes valuable insights at the assembled great and good of the hearing-aid industry. The Starkey Hearing Foundation’s annual overhyped bash, in fact. As previously noted Starkey has a keen interest in the African market, especially in overseas aid-funded projects supplying earpieces to the underprivileged deaf. As (supplying less tangible products) does Blair. This year he was accompanied by Condi Rice and George W Bush in eulogies to all things Starkey*. We were simply overwhelmed by the scale of the revelations on offer:

    >“A good culture yields success. And a culture can’t be based on an individual. It has to be based on the team.” – Former Prime Minister Tony Blair
    https://twitter.com/johnsheehan10?lang=en

    However, it was the individual who got paid for that gem.

    *Without emphasising the quality of the product. This might be why –
    https://www.consumeraffairs.com/hearing/starkey-hearing-aids.html
    And carefully note the prices quoted.

  • Ba'al Zevul

    Yesterday, in Abu Dhabi:

    http://www.gulftoday.ae/portal/38cec628-c597-4997-b190-f0c7abe75e27.aspx

    Here appearing with Fox News spin-doctor fattie Frank Lunz. Who?

    Sample: In December 2008 to January 2009, Luntz wrote a report titled “The Israel Project’s 2009 Global Language Dictionary” that has been used by the Israeli government to defend Israeli policy in the Israeli–Palestinian conflict. The report, commissioned by The Israel Project, advised media spokespeople to use specific language that Luntz believed would create a more favorable impression of Israel in the United States and the rest of the international community. For example, when discussing the contours of a two-state solution, the report advised describing Palestinian negotiating points as “demands” because Americans dislike people who make “demands.” (Wikipedia)

    Tony waved his arms and emoted on the subject of world interconnectedness and how “we” need to be open-minded and not closed-minded. Though Luntz’s record suggests that he is perhaps not a disciple of this doctrine.

    • Ba'al Zevul

      We were worried that this might be Tony’s only engagement in Abu Dhabi, and that he would have to do without a free dinner before moving on. But our fears were groundless. We had overlooked Tony’s very close connection with AD’s royalty, and its sovereign wealth fund. Hotel manager leaving? Request a benediction from Fr. Tony…he’s staying here…*

      http://www.hotelandrest.com/en/tourism-news/article-38486/

      *Almost certainly not in an ordinary double room @£532/night. So common.

  • Ba'al Zevul

    So tight is his security (or so boring his agenda) that we confess we do not discover all of Tony’s multifarious nefariousness until long after the platitudes have been blaired, the standing ovation has been delivered, the expensive dinner devoured, and the world’s media permitted to photograph The Teeth. Or indeed, for months afterwards.

    In November a blairing occurred at the Paris Research Centre for Energy Management, part of Europe’s most managerial management school, ESCP Europe: the second Ayming (business performance consultancy…suits – BZ) Business Performance Awards took place there on 28 November. It seems to have had little to do with energy or management: Brexit is a profound mistake for Britain and for Europe…. Mais oui, Toni. One would encounter many fewer Europeans prepared to pay for one’s thoughts, n’est-ce pas?

  • Ba'al Zevul

    HOW ARE THE MIGHTY ETC.

    “Is there any way, any way at all, I can get a slot on the BBC? I mean, y’know, I have a family to feed and the gas bill’s overdue…?”
    “Sorry, Tony. Even we can’t give you the 24-hour coverage you deserve, someone might accuse us of pro-Remain bias”
    ” Oh, pleeeease….”
    ” There’s just one thing you could cover, come to think of it. Ed Doolan died.”
    “Ed who?”
    ” Regional radio presenter – ok, not everyone’s heard of him and we don’t remember if he was pro-EU or not – but we’d give you exes for a fifteen-second eulogy. Think he interviewed you once. Best we can do, sorry.”

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/av/uk-england-birmingham-42719234/tony-blair-pays-tribute-to-bbc-wm-presenter-ed-doolan

  • Ba'al Zevul

    The fatcatfest at Davos is almost upon us again…

    Where else would you find “Princess” Beatrice (“The Princess of York”…sic), Tony Blair and Donald Trump on three adjacent lines?
    Mind you, only Tony has a season ticket.
    https://weforum.ent.box.com/s/jsw4wp3v2suwsov81uhvpvgwo6faa6tn

    The list (of public figures attending) contains no other former office-holders and no-one else who has just founded their own personal institute.
    Mandelson usually manages to put in appearance, but we haven’t found him yet. Tony’s best African pal, Paul Kagame, will, as usual, be there, as will Azerbaijan’s Ilham Aliyev. Edi Rama and Liam Fox too. Tony won’t be too lonely.

  • Ba'al Zevul

    Warming up for Davos, and as many photo-ops he can inveigle the WEF-approved hacks to grant him, we learn (all editors, c&p The Word of Tony Blair) that the great man considers the Labour Party to be in some sense worse now than it was under Foot/when it was run by Militant (it was never run by Militant)/ China under Mao Zhedong….we didn’t scrutinise the obvious press handout because our bile was rising uncontrollably.

    Blair is now pushing the ragged edge of what he can say in public about a party of which, however ludicrously, he remains a member, and, in heavy quotes, a supporter. It is no coincidence that this outburst follows the transformation of the National Executive from a business-friendly hologram with a rubber stamp, whose members would be no different in the Liberals, into a genuine alternative to the globalist orthodoxy currently poisoning the lives of the disconnected masses. When will Blair realise that the rest of the brigade is in step, and that it is he who is handicapped by having two right feet? The answer to that, of course is when they put Blair in his box and the TBI is taken over by the CBI.

    Out of Europe, Blair has no power: his business is built as much as anything on his European connections, and as a former Clintonite*, he’s not got much leverage in Trump’s America, which he might once have considered as an alternative market for his imaginary goods. His main hope for ignoring the freely expressed will of the UK public and remaining in the EU lies in fostering Remainers in the Labour Party, which will then (hopes Tony) block the parliamentary process of getting out. He won’t accept that he is not and never has been a democratic socialist: that for him is an irrelevance, like any other matter of principle. He has formed a large and copiously-staffed PR organisation specifically in order to counter Labour Party policy and the party’s current leadership. The funding of this body is completely obscure, his known backers are predominantly dictators and hereditary autocrats. He should be expelled immediately.

    *we note that he no longer emphasises this, despite the crucial help of the Clinton Foundation in launching Tony’s post-parliamentary career.

  • Ba'al Zevul

    THOUGHT FOR THE DAY ™

    Rather a good analysis of Blair, and why he’s yesterday’s man, here:

    http://averypublicsociologist.blogspot.co.uk/2018/01/tony-blair-and-collapse-of-centrist.html

    Unfortunately, there is a market for advertising one’s irrelevance. Blair’s niche is less a challenge to Corbynism – he has proven singularly incapable of doing that. But he does offer that most powerful of salves: nostalgia. And I’m quite happy for Blair to pop up every few months with his sage words for the dwindling faithful to lap up. It means he and his are leaving the field clear for us to remake Labour politics in our image and in our interests.

    Possibly too optimistic: it’s not just Blair and his expensive PR operation (with resources and contacts Labour can only dream of), but a whole slew of vested interests, with and without party affiliations, who are actively seeking to destroy any expression of the popular will. Still, as ‘Phil’ says:

    Blair and his elite support are paid up members of the ruling class party, albeit the one now utterly marginalised in a Labour Party which, for the first time in its history, is seeing proletarian politics asserted. The dogmatism and bewilderment that has greeted this shattering event, its pathetic expression in the shallow alphabet soup of pro-EU hashtags, the yearning for Macron, the tiresome shenanigans and bad faith briefing, and the totally clueless response of the Tories are the entirely understandable consequence of a politics in crisis, and one not knowing where it’s going to end.

  • Ba'al Zevul

    Currently doing his Ancient Mariner act at Davos-

    It is an Ancient Minister
    And he stoppeth one of three-
    Though not Bibi or yet Macron…
    Or Abdel al-Sisi…

    Abdel isn’t at Davos, which would account for that. He’s preparing for election to his second term; a process which appears to be largely complete since arresting his main opponent, at which the remaining dissident terrorists tactfully withdrew without further hints being needed. Sisi got 97% last time, convincingly better than Tony’s first election…and with Tony paid to advise Sisi, we expect 110% this time.

    https://www.reuters.com/article/us-egypt-election/opposition-withdraws-giving-egypts-sisi-clear-run-to-presidency-idUSKBN1FD1B0

    However, Naguib Sawiris, Tony’s flight provider and Africa tour guide, seems to be out on a bit of a limb. A Coptic Christian, his own party seems to have abandoned him due to his known disappointment with Sisi ( whom he supported during the coup)

    http://www.copts-united.com/English/Details.php?I=2064&A=33588

    Sisi or Sawiris, Tony? Looks like decision time.

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