Gordon Brown: proletarian by New Labour standards

Submitted by Matthew on 9 September, 2010 - 12:14

Gordon Brown responded to the launch of Tony Blair's autobiography by announcing that he will spend his time on unpaid work for good causes.

As the press reported, this was “widely seen as a side-swipe at the millionaire lifestyle of Tony Blair”.

Brown still gets £66,000 a year as an MP. He is touting for trade as a paid public speaker to rich audiences, and will put the revenues in the bank account of a specially set up company from which he can draw in later years. For “good causes” he will be working with people like the Queen of Jordan.

By New Labour standards, all this seems proletarian.

Blair's main job is supposed to be as the representative of the Quartet (USA, EU, UN, Russia) in Israel/ Palestine - big success he's been there, eh? - but that is evidently not so demanding as to require him to take time off from promoting his book to turn up for work when Israel and the Palestinian Authority are in delicate and precarious negotiations.

Blair's excuse when asked about his constantly-growing stash of mansions and millions is that he has “130 to 150 people to support on his payroll”.

What those 130 to 150 do, we don't know, other than that Blair has seconded a contingent of them to staff David Miliband's Labour leadership campaign.

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