Friday, June 09, 2006

David Blunkett protects his good reputation

David Blunkett - parodied left - obviously goes to great lengths to protect his good reputation. There are some things he quite rightly will not let be said about him, some slurs and slanders he cannot let go unchallenged whenever and wherever they arise. It’s instructive to consider what they are.

Remember, this is the former Home Secretary who specialised in cheap rhetorical attacks on civil liberties, and openly pandered to racist sentiment over asylum. If anything, he revelled in the resultant adulation in the rightwing press.

Want to see the right to trial by jury eroded, or the traditional prohibition of double jeopardy undermined? Need a fast-track visa application for your mistress's nanny? Blunkett’s your man.

As Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, he headed the department charged with cracking down on claimants doing cash-in-hand work.

That didn’t stop him breaching guidelines on second jobs for politicians, or buying £300,000-worth of shares in a company of which he was a director, paying just £15,000.

Possibly the one-time working class hero had lost touch with working class reality to the point where he genuinely believed nobody could possibly think he was doing anything wrong here.

But please, let’s get one thing straight. Never … ever … accuse David Blunkett of having an affair with an estate agent. Got that?

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