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Portrait in courage

In a piece of character assassination on Cherie Blair in the Observer (one so comprehensive that she would almost certainly describe it as ‘misogynistic’, if it came from a male writer), Catherine Bennett makes at least one palpable hit. Forget the inane boastfulness and obsessive self-justification against every suggestion of venality:

She complains how the Daily Mail ‘ratcheted up its attacks on me’, demanding to know – though Mr Blair could have answered just as well – if Leo had had the MMR. Doctors were also keen for the Blairs to help subdue a scare which threatened public health. Now she discloses that Leo had, indeed, been vaccinated, though she would not save lives at the time if it gave ‘the press chapter and verse’.

I wonder, though, whether it is not even worse than that. It is possible that the Blairs might have withheld the information, not out of genuine concern for their family’s privacy (effectively discounted by the present revelation, as Bennett points out), nor out of pique at the press, as in Cherie Blair’s current account, but for political reasons: that they preferred to keep silent, and thereby to encourage the spread of dangerous infectious diseases against which they had quite properly protected their own infant, in order not to cross the noisy anti-vaccination lobby.

Since we saw them use family events to political purpose at much the same time, it would be entirely consistent with their known behaviour. The Blairs have never avoided telling other people what to think when they stood to get a tactical political gain, or when they believed it necessary for their great projects for the world. But concealing an actual belief in vaccination looks like sacrificing other people’s children to calculation of the most self-regarding kind.

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5 comments to Portrait in courage

  • Millie Woods

    Anyone who has ever spent time in an all female school, college or university residence knows the Mme Blair type well. Hillary Clinton and Nancy Reagan are of the same ilk. They are toxic females perpetually promoting their alleged intellect and sexual attractiveness while relentlessly putting down the genuinely brainy and attractive representatives of their own sex. They are in essence wannabe playgirls of the month without any hope of gaining that questionable status and the rest of us are made to suffer endlessly to feed their illusions. BTW add Michelle Obama to that list.

  • renminbi

    I know our rulers,in all the democratic countries, are vile,but I am always surprised at the infinite ingenuity with which they find new ways of being so. Now if some of this cleverness could be used to rule honestly,why that would be the wonder of the world.

  • Monoi

    I am not sure how you reconcile a libertarian viewpoint with saying that she “sacrifices other people’s children”. Apart from the fact that using the word sacrifice is a tad strong, aren’t we supposed to make up our own mind as adults ?

    There are plenty of things to say about her, I do not think this is one of them.

  • Gib

    Most Libertarians would agree that the power of the state should not be used to make up people’s minds for them on matters such as vaccinations.

    However, it is entirely fair for the public to take other members of the public or government to task when they show a callous disregard for the truth and other people’s welfare. In fact, under a limited government, as Libertarians desire, it is desired that the public police these things more.

    She is sacrificing other people’s children. And deserves public ridicule as a result.

    As a Libertarian, I just don’t think that the government should punish her. (Although as a rational person who doesn’t like seeing kids die of preventable diseases, I’d probably turn a blind eye.)

  • occasionalblogger

    Cherie Blair/Booth gave a lawyer’s reply to whether Leo had had the MMR jab in saying that he had been vaccinated – but didn’t say what with. It may have been so that he doesn’t catch his elder brother’s “illness” which caused him to collapse in a London shop doorway (and the mockers suggested he was drunk – how could they?). For most of the time she spent (sorry, that’s the wrong word as she never spent a bean on anything if she could blag it) lived in Downing Street she had the opportunity of being a role model, albeit an ugly one, to other mothers and giving the truth about the jab would have given others the impetus to have their offspring vaccinated. However, why should she give anything away when she can put it in a book and gain a million quid, like a true Socialist!