With comedians a sense of timing is vital, it appears to be the same with memoirs. As we see HERE Gordon Brown is still typing his and, recalling those speeches by Tony Blair, the ones he peppered with pauses for dramatic effect, perhaps his typing stops dead now-and-then too, for the great big book from Blair is rumoured to be still months away from publication. If as reports suggest Brown is typing 10,000 words a day, although the man was prone to fibbing, all eyes will be on the work by Peter Mandelson. For his book is the first to appear, first past the post if you like and no, this is not, for once, the main point. What is of real interest is the length of it and the estimated speed of typing, as the question must be-"when did he start writing it"?
Maths is a funny old subject, it has many enemies, usually this anti feeling starts at school and continues into adult life. There is the joke: “if I try to do mental arithmetic it makes my brain bleed”. But many people do excel at this subject, Alan Turing was exceptional. His progress through school and beyond was in fact hampered by this ability as it drew unfavourable comment from the masters. It also stood in the way of him getting a place at his first choice of college at Cambridge.
However, soon this very same ability allowed him to study in the USA and in the summer of 1938 he obtained his PhD from Princeton. Turing began work at Bletchley Park upon the outbreak of war and was involved with their work, but not always at Bletchley, until the war was over.
Bernie Ecclestone; where to start? The recent remarks by Ecclestone, his fondness for Hitler, will have for many people confirmed their loathing of Formula One, a sport not as popular in the wider world as imagined by either itself or its fans. Is Ecclestone a true representative of F1, or is he just crazy? You may say the whole world of F1 is crazy and the most expensive dull 'sport' known to man. Was it ever thus?
In one respect modern motor sport has a direct connection back to its earliest days, it is very expensive. Most other comparisons on a then and now basis will show that there have been huge changes; however, even F1's most ardent fans will admit that it's not always been for the good.
One man and his vanity, that's how many people would describe the G20. It was wall-to-wall publicity for Gordon Brown (as a juvenile below right) and this jamboree but not always for the right reasons. The memory of the death of Ian Tomlinson during the G20 will endure long after even the most nerdy of political junkies has forgotten the substance of the concord that was dished up at the conclusion of the event.
Before anyone had time to catchtheir breath Brown is back in the news. This time, following the departure of PC Bob Quick for flashing, that is showing off his top secret papers to the Northern Hemisphere, he has picked a fight with Pakistan. Never mind, there was a raid, but well ahead of the planned date, on a number of locations in the UK. Arrests were made and lo, to the astonishment of only the foolish, a link was established between those in custody and Pakistan. Then PM Brown, perhaps rather too gruffly, points out that this happens a lot. You may imagine that the Pakistanis are not best pleased, even though this is true. As Nulabour has been in power for so long, when there's a problem perhaps they could try blaming themselves for once.
So, not too many days ago we have had Brown posturing with the great and the good, or at least the world's richest nations. This is Brown at his best, the sort of thing he does well.
Ten good reasons to like Alistair Darling anyone? Five then? Two? OK, there's one good reason and it's that Darling is saying no to Lord Peter Mandelson's car scrapping scheme. Following slavishly in the footsteps of his old EU chums the Germans, who do this, Mandy is keen to see such a scheme included in the upcoming budget. The Times has its version of these events HERE
The story is credited to both Suzy Jagger, Politics and Business Correspondent, and Francis Elliott, Deputy Political Editor. This is reasonable as the basic policy behind it is neither wholly politics nor business. It is a mishmash of 'me-too', following our EU partners and hence political in nature, while also giving, or trying to give, the nod to business. This lack of clarity is very Nulabour and more than just another internal spat; this one between Darling and Mandy, the Treasury and the Department for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform. Cynics will immediately spot that Mandy's fiefdom has the longer title. So it, one assumes, (he assumes?) appears sassier, more vital, urgent and modern; while Darling has just one word to describe his day job, how dull and boring, staid, conservative even.