Found a BBC article From soapbox to


.  It's a good read.  Winston Churchill never gave a TV interview, Harold Macmillan had to do an image makeover, and Harold Wilson studied John F Kennedy for how to behave on TV.  Margaret Thatcher gave a pre-PM interview holding a calf in a field.  It also has this quote from Tony Blair:

So, why were he and Campbell said to spend their whole time trying to spin the news? "It's just modern government now," Blair replied.  "There's a 24-hour-a-day news media.  If a story comes out that says something and you haven't got the capacity to get on top of it and say: 'look, sorry the facts are x and y,' And, as you know, it's not as if these stories don't take a life of their own and then start running away into the far distance.  And then the public thinks: 'oh, my goodness, why on earth are they doing that?' when you are not doing it at all.  So you need to be able to get on top of the news, in so far as it's possible.  But what matters to me most are to do the things that are really for the country... that's what I spend my time thinking


Modern government is about controlling the news?  I don't like that idea.  Who runs the country while they're running the news?  Some committee I bet.  That explains all the camels in the National Health Service (aka "We won't kill you, but the wait might!  And that'd save us a bunch of money!  Yay waiting lists!").  The wait didn't kill me, but I had to have twelve weeks off work because of it, after the week of morphine-on-demand, the scans, x-rays, and other tests, and the "we're just going to take a look inside" that turned into a multi-hour clean up operation.  That phrase is on my top ten list of things you never want to hear in hospital.

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