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Meet Gordon Brown, comedian

9 June 2014

5:31 PM

9 June 2014

5:31 PM

You would normally have to pay thousands of pounds for the pleasure, but Mr S and the Westminster hack pack were treated to a Gordon Brown speech for free on Monday lunchtime. In a rare Westminster sighting, the former Prime Minister had his gawky fake smile glued in place as he reflected on his tumultuous relationship with the media while he addressed the Parliamentary Press Gallery about the campaign to save the Union. Brown has clearly seen that wind will blow the way of the No campaign and is getting involved late in the day – just in time to grab the glory. He once claimed to have saved the world, and saving the United Kingdom will nicely complement that honour.

Flanked by loyal lieutenants Stewart Wood and Alison McGovern, he was trying his hardest to be chummy and jovial Gordon, content in his post-power world, rather than the brooding and dour Brown who just four years ago clung on to the keys of Downing Street by his well chewed fingernails. But the mask slipped almost immediately as the BBC’s James Landale cracked a joke in his introduction that in Brown’s absence, mobile phone shops in SW1 had gone out of business; cue a vintage scowl.

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While a few Labour figures such as Michael Dugher, Chris Bryant and Geoffrey Robinson made the lunch, Brown’s enemies were out in force. David Davis was enjoying himself down the front, and the Downing Street press secretary (and former Sun man) Graeme Wilson was taking notes. The Tories’ head of press looked on while the SNP’s Pete Wishart came under fire: ‘Thanks for joining me. At least you’re not out of campaign trail!’

‘Don’t let anyone ever tell you that I did not enjoy my time in Number 10’ said the newly trained comedian. ‘Where else can you walk to work and get such cheap rent in Central London as I did.’ It was brave of the man who drove the economy into a brick wall to make wisecracks about money. On that very subject, Brown stood by his line that Labour had not overspent in office. ‘I don’t accept what people say’, without acknowledging that almost everyone except him is saying it.

The denial did not stop there. Perhaps the most funniest part of the whole comedy turn was where Brown was trying to be serious. ‘I have no great interest in reading these books,’ he claimed after being asked about his old spin doctor Damian McBride’s explosive memoir, published last year. ‘Who you’re talking about, I don’t know.’ he spluttered. ‘I knew nothing of the things you’re about to claim Damian McBride did.’ Perhaps realising how absurd this line sounds, he continued: ‘I have not read the book. If there are people here who he traduced there should be a direct apology. I was not aware.’

And with a ‘it’s lovely to see you but I have no desire to be part of frontline politics,’ that was that. Off Gordon went, back to his jet set world of international conferences and the speaking circuit, without so much as a speech in the Commons on behalf of his constituents in Scotland. Perhaps they will be pleased their local MP managed to pop into Parliament, all be it for a flying visit.

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Show comments
  • Terry Field

    Brown is, properly, along with Blair, loathed. But he is a lightening rod – it should be the nauseating New Old God Knows What It Is Labour Party that is universally loathed and eternally unelectable.
    Not the case though; the hordes of the ill-educated, almost entirely unemployable slobs who sell their votes for a state income will ensure that – Billimand is the next Asylum governor.
    The Scots will vote no; the West Lothian question will stay unanswered, and the hordes of the celtic socialist horrors will pack the House and impose unending socialism on England.

  • bugshead

    He is still a damned liar. He deserves the global ridicule which he gets from all quarters now. What a fool he is.

  • Dan Hardie

    ‘The most funniest part’? ‘All be it’? Shame the Spectator can’t find someone with even basic literacy to write its ‘Steerforth’ pieces. Wy duz this cuntry hav so menny kidz what cant rite? I blaim Layber.

  • Yorkieeye

    Old brown, brooding in his tree. Beatrix Potter wrote the best sketch of this misanthropic misfit years ago

  • Cornelius Bonkers

    Is it only me who hates Scotland and everything/body in it? Water, trees, nowhere to eat three days in every week, miserable petrol kiosk people, foul weather, midges, neds and so on and on. No wonder there are so many of them down here. Oh, and Gordon Brown, “an utter disgrace” seems a bit generous to me. I think he should be the beneficiary of habeas corpus for his arrogant stupidity. Lucky for him I don’t believe in lynching

  • Golben Amduke

    Could Broon please go up to Scotland and debate with Salmond. We need a good freak show.

  • laurence

    The British taxpayer paid billions of poonds for the wholly dubious pleasure of having The Broon its unelected leader for three years. That’s not in the least bit funny.

    • telemachus

      Sorry
      By saving the banks he saved billions and saved us from economic collapse

      • Wessex Man

        do one slimball

      • madasafish

        SO his mantra “no more boom and bust” was lies for the dumb?…

      • Cogito Dexter

        Repeating yourself ad nauseum does not make you any less wrong.

      • saffrin

        Saved £billions did he?
        While I lose on no interest payments, Gordon Brown ducks his due taxes via bogus charities and offshore accounts.
        Not only is Gordon Brown a lying idiot, he is also a hypocrite.
        Typical NuLabour.

      • Terry Field

        totally untrue. You are Brown – scumbag!

  • Grey Wolf

    ”Off Gordon went, back to his jet set world of international conferences and the speaking circuit”

    Who are the fools and the mentally impaired who actually pay to listen to this loathsome guy?

    • Inverted Meniscus

      Absolutely. Who in their right mind would listen to this utter failure. He is also an arrogant, incompetent bullying coward.

      • telemachus

        But he did save the world banks

        • Grey Wolf

          He crashed the banks in the UK. He sold the gold at rock-bottom He saved nothing, not even his reputation

          • telemachus

            Excuse me
            Subprime blew in from the US
            US Lehmans triggered a crisis of banking confidence
            The US did not know how to handle all this Gordon showed them
            *
            He is in line for the Congressional Medal of Honour

            • Colonel Mustard

              He is not eligible. It is a military medal awarded for acts of conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of life above and beyond the call of duty.

              Even a sicko like you could not make a case for Brown on those grounds and your silly Lieborg fairy tale demeans those who have been awarded it and are better men than he.

            • Colonel Mustard

              You shouldn’t believe everything you read. Guardianista Keegan’s hagiography of Brown has been subject to objective revision. Here is one example:-

              http://sdj-pragmatist.blogspot.co.uk/2012/12/does-browns-story-improve-with-age.html

            • Inverted Meniscus

              Pathetic. Brown created the banking regulatory system that encouraged major US investment bsnks to write the riskier securitisation business out of a London. This was a self inflicted disaster by an incompetent scumbag and the rest of us have paid the price for his monumental hubris. He was leader of the party of lies, lying and liars.

              • Terry Field

                Who will be in power next time – that is one reason I do not live in the stupid place.

            • Grey Wolf

              Your mendacity knows no limits.

              You evidently are a financial markets illiterate. I could tutor you but I would require fee for that. The sub-prime was one reason for the crisis. The more generic reason was highly leveraged balance sheets of the banks and mispriced risk. RBS collapsed because of over-leveraging and inadequate risk management. Northern Rock had nothing to do with American sub-prime. It was creating its own though its own mortgage loans. Blair-Brown-Balls (the 3Bs of UK) effed it up.

              You are a moron using outdated talking points.

              • bugshead

                It is quite astonishing how stupid people are about the origins and development of the sub prime crisis. Broon and Balls, the two cretins who presided over and macro managed the UK financial collapse, did a marvellous job on shifting the whole blame onto the banking community.

                • Inverted Meniscus

                  Right on the money sir!

                • Grey Wolf

                  This guy Telemachus is a silly character.

                • Terry Field

                  He is Gordon Brown.

            • madasafish

              So RBS’s failure and Northern Rock ‘s as well was due to the US?

              Another credulous naif.

              • Inverted Meniscus

                No a propagandist on behalf of a Labour the party of lies, lying and liars.

            • saffrin

              Yeah, a chocolate one.
              He could wear it during his comedy turns.

            • Inverted Meniscus

              I think you will find that he was far too busy destroying the provision of private pensions. Or was it selling gold at rock bottom prices in order to fend off an earlier banking crisis which, had the warnings been heeded, might have softened the subsequent crisis. Or was he too busy running up the biggest structural deficit in peacetime history? Or was he plotting to unseat a duly elected Prime Minister? Whatever, he was too busy F****** up all and sundry to save stamps let alone the World.

            • Terry Field

              Bull
              It did not ‘blow in’ from anywhere, idiot.
              A global loss of confidence in the silly valuation methods killed lending everywhere.
              The Medal of Honour!
              If that man had done to the USA what he did to the UK you would all have used the NRA’s favoured products to get rid of the monster.

        • Wessex Man

          do one slimeball

          • Kitty MLB

            Such eloquence, even when responding to the little wasp!

          • Inverted Meniscus

            Nice idea but he simply hasn’t got the brainpower.

        • Inverted Meniscus

          Yet another lie. He and Balls instituted a banking regulatory framework which heralded the first banking failures in 147 years. He is an incompetent, arrogant, bullying coward.

        • manonthebus

          Really. I’m sure Lehmans will be delighted to hear it.

        • saffrin

          Gordon Brown was and still is an idiot, in every sense of the word.

        • hugo761

          I’m new(ish) on here, but telemachus is an idiot, right?

        • Terry Field

          Really??????????????????????
          By mutualising the debt????????????????
          Selling the future for a consuming present.]
          Saving?????????????????
          I prefer the more enlightened economics if he great Depression’s ‘responders’
          And please, do not whine on about the ‘war’ and ‘Hitler’ – that would be idiotic.

  • rod robertson

    Probably only there to put in his expense claim,a horrible man and a disgrace to Scotland

  • dougthedug

    Brown has clearly seen that wind will blow the way of the No campaign and is getting involved late in the day – just in time to grab the glory.

    In 2007 Brown took over the running of the Labour in Scotland Scottish Parliamentary campaign.

    When the results came in on the Friday that the SNP had won enough to form a minority Government Brown simply disappeared.

    It was left to Tony Blair to make a statement to the media.

    When I say disappeared I mean disappeared. To this day no-one outside his close circle knows where he went for that week before he turned up the next Thursday in Westminster grinning and laughing on the front bench. Scots are still waiting for that statement from Brown about the 2007 election results.

    If Yes wins in Scotland Brown will disappear for at least a month, maybe even as long as a year. He’s always had an instinct to go to ground at the first hint of trouble.

    • manonthebus

      He wasn’t called Macavity for nothing.

    • RobertC

      Every cloud has a silver lining.

    • llanystumdwy

      No wonder they called him McCaferty Brown. He played the same trick after selling the country short of £12 billion when he sold off our gold. Yet, to this day, he has never been asked by any journalist to justify his action, probably because he knew how to use his practitioiners of the dark arts, like McBride and Wheelan, to keep them at bay. Meanwhile, the British public still deserves and awaits an explanation from this man.

    • bugshead

      Indeed that would be a blessing for all of us. If he went to ground perhaps he could just stay there forever

  • Swiss Bob

    I’ll find him funny when he’s six feet under.

    • bugshead

      He’s a dangerous damned f***wit

      • Inverted Meniscus

        And that is being too kind to the swine.

  • swatnan

    OK, if you’re so smart why didn’t you forsee the collapse of capitalism caused by over credit and sub prime mortgages. The point is, nobody saw it coming, and if they did they kept quiet about it. so, stop fingering Brown; it was the wretched Bankers across the world.

    • Swiss Bob

      I saw it coming, made quite a bit, nearly made enough to retire from oil trading but missed out due to inexperience and the markets and traders all being bent.

      Lots of people saw it coming, the first sign was the bond market going belly up in February 2007 and reports in the media, it just depended on whether you were listening and watching.

      • swatnan

        Good man. But you could have told me…. most of my money is tied up in the Coop Bank.

        • Swiss Bob

          Lol, I was telling anyone who would listen but most people did not want to know. So I put my money where my mouth is!

      • Inverted Meniscus

        Spot on. I was advised to cash out of everything in early 2007 and put it somewhere safe. I did.

    • Inverted Meniscus

      Firstly, capitalism did not collapse, it s still here today. His wholly inadequate banking regulatory regime allowed banks to transact high risk business which countries like Canada, Australia etc would not permit. Pretty much anybody with economic sense “saw it coming”.

    • bugshead

      Crikey, of course, Gordon Broon the Iron Chancellor never saw it coming (through his one good eye).

      And wooowoooo it was all the fault of the big bad bankers (unregulated by the Iron Chancellor’s FSA of course) who were merely doing what bankers do with excess liquidity – find a way to make a profit.

    • laurence

      ‘fingering Brown’ sounds like a LibDem sort of activity.

    • mattghg

      Yep, it was the bankers that sold off the national gold reserve at the bottom of the market … it was the bankers that raided the pension reserve … wait, what?

  • MirthaTidville

    Aye he was a comedian all right wasn`t he..

    • HookesLaw

      Its the way he told ’em. Or in the case of the story about the man who sold all the gold, the way he gave away the punchline.

      • MirthaTidville

        Then poured the abuse on his audience hecklers

  • Barakzai

    Comedian? Oh, right, like Russell Brand’s a comedian.

  • DaveTheRave

    How did he last three years?
    And how did he make it in the first place?
    Such facts make you realise the general malaise of modern politics.

    • HookesLaw

      How can one man be so wrong headed about everything?

      • Wessex Man

        I dunno, ask Call me Dave.

        • HookesLaw

          Poor effort. For a start look at all the public sector jobs that have gone and are going. What’s wrong headed about that?
          What’s wrong with capping benefits or the so called ‘bedroom tax’? What’s wrong with cutting the top rate of tax? What’s wrong with free schools?

          And to cap your poor effort, the only PM who said ‘call me…’ Was in fact Brown himself. Even Blair was not guilty of that.

          Poor efforts though are your forte.

          • Wessex Man

            We are dragging ourselves out of the chaos that Brown caused and Call me Dave has nothing to with the recovery, in fact if he hadn’t been there the recovery would be a lot quicker, Bury your head in the sand if you like, the electorate will give you their answer next year.

            • Kitty MLB

              OH yes they will, no more coalitions as they are not in the national interests and most certainly not a Labour government.
              So who is left I wonder.. Oh yes purple power.!

      • Fergus Pickering

        Just be Labour. That will do. What makes Milibum and better? And I can’t forget it was Brown that kept us out of the Euro. He should get a peerage for that.

        • Inverted Meniscus

          The funny thing is he did it to spite Blair as he wanted to be the PM who took us into that disaster. Small mercies I suppose. Certainly nothing to do with that amoral scumbag acting in the public interest.

          • Fergus Pickering

            I don’t give a toss why he did it. He did it. Arise Lord Brown.

  • goatmince

    Now, again, I find it difficult to believe that anyone on a Spectator blog would listen to what that pillock Broon had to say. So why dig him out, even if the intel was, as asserted, free?

  • Mark1984

    Gordon Brown, what an utter disgrace. I’m surprised the pro-independence ‘yes’ side haven’t plastered their flyers with his face, saying: “votes yes to boot this taxpayer-funded, financially-delusional, tax-dodging parasite out of office and onto the dole queue”. I think that could be enough to swing a yes vote…

    • HookesLaw

      On the other hand, ‘vote yes and get this man as your next prime minister’?

    • DaveTheRave

      Yes, the absolute epitome of what’s wrong with Westminster… in more ways than one.
      If I was a Scot (or indeed English living in Scotland) I’d vote ‘Aye!’

      • Chris Morriss

        I fear that the Scots will vote no. It’s not that I would not prefer to keep the union, but that a no vote and ‘devo-max’ will allow them to take even more of the English public purse and squander it as like never before.

        • DaveTheRave

          I concur.

          • DaveTheRave

            And by the way, we English CAN have devolution, as long as we agree to balkanisation, the creation of several superfluous EU inspired bite-sized chunks of what used to be England.

        • stephen rothbart

          I thin I am favour because I don’t think Labour could ever win a majority again if Scotland leaves the Union. Generally the English vote “other” and Scotland saves Labour for another day.

          Ironic that it was Labour that started the rot by giving them devolution in the way they did.

    • HJ777

      I think that you have forgotten that Gordon Brown was easily the most popular politician in Scotland for many years.

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