Coffee House

Michael Gove’s not-so-gentle reminder to Ed Miliband

27 August 2013

2:46 PM

27 August 2013

2:46 PM

Surprise, surprise — Michael Gove doesn’t think much of Ed Miliband. To keep up the momentum on Labour’s summer of discontent, the Education Secretary gave a speech at Conservative HQ this morning, focusing on Labour’s troubled relationship with the trade unions — again. He was clearly enjoying himself as he compared the Labour leader’s present position to two of the party’s moderate forces:

‘And if anyone thinks I am asking too much I ask simply this – what would Blair do? Indeed, what would even Kinnock have done?

‘The sad truth is that – charming, intelligent, eloquent, thoughtful, generous and chivalrous as Ed Miliband may be – in this critical test of leadership he has been uncertain, irresolute, weak. To the question – who governs Labour – his answer would appear to be – increasingly – the unions.’

There wasn’t really a great deal that was new in this speech – indeed, it reminded Guido Fawkes of one he gave in March 2010. The references to Tony Blair and Neil Kinnock’s deft handling of the Militant tendency are present in both. Today’s speech was destined only to keep Labour’s union problems in the Westminster mindset and reinforce the perception Labour are still struggling to set the agenda. With the TUC’s annual meet-up in two weeks, Miliband will have little choice to but address both these Tory attacks, and the concerns of the unions.

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No one could think of much to ask him about the unions so using the WWTBD line (what would Tony Blair do ), Gove was probed by the press on the Syria situation, given Blair’s piece in the Times (£) today. The Education Secretary gave no hint of whatever he may personally believe, pointing out he isn’t a member of the National Security Council (his brief is education after all) and has no inside track on what is happening. Instead, he robustly backed David Cameron and William Hague. With Parliament recalled for Thursday, Gove may be one of many ministers flying the flag for the government’s motion in the next few days.

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Show comments
  • anosrep

    All Gove achieved by opening his mouth was to make Miliband slightly less of a joke and himself even more of one.

  • Abhay

    What would Tony Blair do?
    Seriously…what would Tony Blair do?!!
    Gove is a wannabe neocon, only a less favoured one but he didn’t have to stoop this low.
    What compelled him?

  • Cuse

    I’ve never understood why the Spectator is so vehemently in Gove’s camp. I find him utterly charmless.

    I never trust anyone who uses 30 words when 4 would do.

    • Iain Hill

      Charmless is not te first word that comes to mind. Dangerous? Deluded? Retarded? Poujadiste?

  • Mr Arthur Cook

    One could point out the tendency to “fiddle with a flourish” of Mr Gove as his ministerial brief falls into chaos like a little wannabe Nero.
    But for the ever ambitious Mr G “the media is the message”.
    Like Barnum he believes that if you chant nonsense loud enough and long enough then the plebs will believe it.
    Unfortunately the leadership polls of the Tory party seem to say that apart from the Tory drudges of the Daily Mail all of the thinking Tories have seen Gove for what he is ……. a pretty crap right-wing dodgy firework with lots of crackle and pop but no bang!

  • David Lindsay

    Who asked him? And Miliband must be doing something right, to be attacked from that of all quarters.

    Michael Gove doesn’t know much, but he certainly knows about entryism. He is an outspoken admirer of Tony Blair and of Blair’s veteran Trotskyist bag men, Alan Milburn and Stephen Byers, of whom the latter ended up tarting himself as a “cab for hire” during the last attempt to sever the Labour Party’s trade union link, an attempt which saw Blair interviewed under police caution inside Downing Street.

    Fresh out of Oxford, Gove applied for a job with the Conservative Research Department. But it turned him down, being unable to find any evidence that he was a Conservative, or even political at all. So he joined The Times.

    Yet look at him now. And still having frequent, off-the-record meetings with Rupert Murdoch. Rupert Murdoch, another of whose Times boys has just been given a peerage.

    • telemachus

      Alan Milburn had more fresh innovative ideas on Health than most and unlike Lansley, actually cared.

      • David Lindsay

        And now he has lived to see their implementation by a Government of which, as an old lifestyle Trot, he actually approves.

        • telemachus

          In truth not
          Alans proposals did not have provision to let the private sector take over and clean up

          • David Lindsay

            No, he preferred for the private sector to take over and leave the place filthy.

            • Wessex Man

              “I believe in angels in everything they say”

              • David Lindsay

                The British do. As good as unanimously.

                • Wessex Man

                  only when you write that they don’t because you want them all for yourself comrade!

            • telemachus

              Milburn was the true believer in egalitarian health and social care provision
              We have been poorer since his departure

              • David Lindsay

                He hasn’t.

                • telemachus

                  Hasn’t what
                  He may be advising the current shower but no-one is listening

                • David Lindsay

                  He hasn’t been poorer.

                • telemachus

                  We all have to earn a crust

                • David Lindsay

                  He’s done well for a man whose only job outside the political machine had been running a Trotskyist bookshop called Days of Hope, known to its clientèle as “Haze of Dope”.

    • Wessex Man

      now look here Dave you really do need to do serious research for you book about it all or it will just gather dust!

      • David Lindsay

        It isn’t doing.

      • Hexhamgeezer

        Is that his book on the 7 deadly sins and how they need re-written (as everyone knows) like?

    • Holly

      ‘Miliband is indeed doing something right, in the national interest, and for the benefit of Britain’s future…..

      He has never, not once wavered from knee jerk reactions, or feared bandwagon jumping, even though he ‘falls flat’ in the eyes of the voter, or tried to hide what a useless leader he is/would be.
      Long may it continue….At least he’s being true to himself and has not tried to portray himself as someone who thinks things through, leads his own party or has any solutions to any problem this country faces.
      Idiot boy has done loads of things right, just not to the advantage of the Labour party, or his chances of becoming the next PM.

      Oh and he put Ed Balls in the Treasury….Burnham in Health….

      Need I say more.

  • London Calling

    The Union Party….A yoke around Labours neck……….

  • London Calling

    The Union Party….A

  • Nick

    I do apologise for posting this YouTube clip again.But whenever Ed balls is mentioned I think of this clip…Sorry….

    http://www.bing.com/videos/search?q=ed+balls+dancing&view=detail&mid=A2CE73D5F091CC76EE5DA2CE73D5F091CC76EE5D&first=0&FORM=NVPFVR

    • telemachus

      As I said to you last time he has a great sense of rhythm
      With such a mover the country cannot go wrong

      • CharlietheChump

        This is not the Central Committee line, frivolity in all forms is not acceptable, bend over and take 10.

        • telemachus

          In 19 months you can rejoice with us in this kind of victory dance

          • Wessex Man

            “I believe in angels, in everything they say.”

            • telemachus

              You better believe this

          • CharlietheChump

            your 9-year-old triumphalism is what we expect from committee’s junior minions

      • Nick

        But he needs to do something about his pecs and six pack 😉

        • Wessex Man

          come on be fair that’s a thirty pack!

          • Nick

            Well normally I would say,’but it’s all paid for’.
            But as he’s an MP,I guess we paid for it.
            And what about those budgie smugglers?

      • chudsmania

        Still trolling ? Not resolved the problems in the bedroom dept yet ? 😀

    • Wessex Man

      Classic, do you have anymore far better than trying to raise a joke with Dave Lindsay and telebunkum!

  • Russell

    With the strike happy teachers union as opposition. Gove makes mincemeat of them as easily as he snaps a Twigg.
    The best performing Minister with the worst opposition other than Balls, Cooper, and the rest of the proven totally incompetent shadow front bench.

    • telemachus

      Add Andy to Balls and Cooper and you have the charismatic trio to take us forward to true prosperity

      • Hexhamgeezer

        Is that Andy ‘Bed Clearer, Morgue Filler’ Burnham?’ or some other Android?

        • telemachus

          The good Mr Burnham who recognised the problems and ordered the first inquiry which eventually led to the exposure and breakup of the Stafford Trust

          • Wessex Man

            you are beyond help you sick wacko, thousands died needlessly!

            • telemachus

              They did
              But the point is Andy began to sort it

              • Hexhamgeezer

                No he began to create a figleaf.

                BTW – when will you be promoted from threadworm to tapeworm?

          • Hexhamgeezer

            He’s called ‘good Mr Burnham’ by undertakers the length and breath of the land.

            Nice to see ‘Bed Clearer and Morgue Filler’ Burnham has support from the right sources though.

            • telemachus

              Infinitely preferable to smug Hunt who despite Francis has failed to get a grip and hold those responsible to account
              Nicholson is still in harness

  • asalord

    I believe Gove considers himself to be a witty,urbane and intellectually disposed individual.
    Thus I believe Gove to be the brittlest of politicians.

    • telemachus

      I read on another thread the threat
      “Message to the twin idiots Cameron and Hague. You are there to serve the interests of the British people first and foremost. Start doing it or you might find yourself facing an English Spring.”
      I truth Gove is the politician most likely to face an English Spring

      • Holly

        IF this ‘FABLED’ English spring some folk dream about ever happened, it would more than likely descend into violence, and those folks at work, (remembering there are more in work today) wouldn’t stand it for more than a few days, resulting in those participating in the ‘fabled’ English spring to scream blue murder at police brutality, government heavy-handedness and all the other rubbish they continue to scream.

        We are far too English to destroy our own country…
        We leave that to the Labour party.

  • John Steed

    What Would Blair Do? Probably find a superyacht somewhere…

    • Iain Hill

      You mean buy?

  • telemachus

    Disingenuous

    Kinnock managed the Great Militant Speech

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bWLN7rIby9s

    only because he had been set up by the inducement of Foot Failure by Jenkins, Owen and co

    • telemackus

      I, like you, believe that Gove is the future. Our greatest Education Secretary ever since Margaret Thatcher, he relives those dark days under the Kinnochian tyranny when all hope was lost and we had to rely on John Major to save the country.

    • huktra

      Brilliant speech.
      Pity about Sheffield.

      • telemachus

        Look at the grey eminence you got instead of Neil
        Maastricht Major

        • Hexhamgeezer

          So says our very own eminence grease.

    • CharlietheChump

      don’t bother, no-one cares

      • telemachus

        Oh but they should
        Neil showed the way and Tony and Gordon profited by avoiding his mistakes

        • Wessex Man

          and brought our country to it’s knees and lying to take us into a war that’s cost a million lives mutton head!

        • Holly

          You mean like filthy rich Blair who got out just before the s*** hit the fan,(under the ruse of being booted out by Bozo & Co) who now sits on his yacht laughing at all those who fell for his lies?

          Or Bozo, who booted out Blair, turned out to be completely out of his depth, and now seethes at all those who didn’t fall for his lies?

          Life is a funny old game eh?

        • CharlietheChump

          yeah but no-one cares

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