Saturday, July 18, 2009

Jacqui Smith Admits She Was Not Up to the Job

"Jacqui Smith has admitted for the first time that she was not up to the job of Home Secretary. Reference

She said she was thrust into one of the biggest posts in Government without any training and called for MPs to receive help before they become ministers. She also suggested that any successes she had in her post were down to 'luck' rather than skill.

Her comments are sure to be used as ammunition by those who believe that too many of today's 'professional politicians' cannot run a department because they have little experience of management in the outside world.

Before she quit, Miss Smith was widely tipped to be demoted anyway following her dismal period in charge of the Home Office, marked by a series of blunders, including saying she would not feel safe walking in Hackney at night.

The former Home Secretary also faced strong criticism over her role in the arrest of Tory MP Damian Green in a leak inquiry, and when it emerged that one in five foreigners cleared to work in security jobs were illegal immigrants.

In March she was humiliated when it emerged she had used Commons expenses allowances to pay for her husband's porn films and a bathplug worth 88p.

Miss Smith's comments echo those of Estelle Morris, who resigned in 2002 as Education Secretary after admitting she wasn't good enough for the Cabinet role".

I commend Ms Smith for her honesty, but this is ammunition not just for those who believe that politicains have too little experience of management in the outside world. It is also a damning condemnation of Labour's policy of women-only short-lists. Such 'positive discrimination' has led to the over-promotion of under-qualified non-entities, simply on the grounds that they tick some statistical box with regard to race and 'gender' quotas.

How many of those fabled 'Blair babes' have actually risen to distinguish themselves in high office? Not a single one that I can think of. But not for the want of opportunity.

Just before anyone accuses me of misogyny, I do believe that women are capable of being good politicians, and I cite Margaret Thatcher, Barbara Castle, Betty Boothroyd, Shirley Williams and Anne Widdecombe as just a few fine examples. The difference is, these women had to get the job on the basis of merit. They didn't just have high office handed to them on a plate because they happened to be female.

History will remember the Blair Babes as a bunch of mediocre non-entities: if it even remembers them at all. After a few lacklustre years in power, those that were left decided that if they couldn't win the game, then they were going to wreck the chessboard.

The recent 'Petticoat Putsch' or 'Pygmies' Revolt' turned out to be a damp squib that failed in its clear attempt to topple the government. It was the women of the cabinet - feminists every one - who stuck the knife in. They even gave themselves a typically feminist name: “Women Against Gordon”, in ironic reference to the Wives And Girlfriends of English football.

Caroline Flint paraded herself around the media claiming that she did it because Brown is sexist and questioned her loyalty. "I resigned because he questioned my loyalty": I'm still trying to work that one out. I do not believe that Brown is 'sexist': Flint just didn't get her own way, and is now stamping her foot in petulance.

Hazel Blears had to tearfully beg forgiveness as she faced de-selection by her constituency. “Hazel Blears faces being ousted from her seat by Labour activists furious at the 'treacherous' timing of her Cabinet resignation. The former Communities Secretary was reduced to grovelling to save her skin in Salford". Reference

All of this should be a signal lesson in the wrong-headedness of positive discrimination.

While nobodies like Smith and Blears milk the expenses system, and Party apparatchiks pull the strings in these misconceived social experiments, it is the country which pays the price. While these second-raters preen and fiddle, the tax-payers are not receiving the quality of government that they deserve.

1 comment:

BrusselsLout said...

The central issue here is that the feminist policy of positive discrimination has been doomed to fail right from the start, and because of its out-of-touch idiocy. This is what Labour does not have the guts to admit. 2 possibities:

1. We will see more of this popping up in different forms and scenarios, at unforeseen cost to the country, before someone outside the men's movement finally says "hey, wait a minute".

2. Both government and media continue long and hard to cover up the fact that PD really is the core issue here.