Political

Seven thoughts on ‘Bigotgate’

  1. Collectively we’re obsessed with American political culture, which is why pretty much everything gets the “-gate” suffix in homage to Watergate. Now if only Gordon Brown had slammed a gate shut on someone…
  2. It’s a very fine line between ‘rolling news’ and ‘rolling obsession’. I first noticed this during the first Gulf War when Radio 4 pioneered a rolling radio news service which at one point got obsessed with a pretty minor incident involving some dinghies. Why? Because it was rolling news. Which means you’ve got go keep on saying things. Even if there’s not that much to say.
  3. I bet that every journalist reporting on the story has thought “that person is a bigot” or worse of at least one person they’ve interviewed previously.
  4. Gordon Brown’s already been caught out once recently by a TV camera being live when he thought it wasn’t. What’s surprising is not so much that he made the mistake once (plenty of others have too) but that he’s made it more than once.
  5. Had the mike not been on, the reporting would all have been about how well Brown handled the encounter: he met someone who was unhappy with various policies and the final result was they parted on good terms with her thinking he should be Prime Minister.
  6. The real story of the caught comments shouldn’t be the use of “bigot” but rather the intolerance Brown seems to have for meeting people who don’t agree with him – even if, as in this case, they end up supporters of his. That fits in with many other accounts of his behaviour and matters because disliking people who don’t agree with you is far more dangerous – thanks to the group think mentality it encourages – than someone using too blunt language.
  7. The classic photo of the incident really sums up Brown’s campaign – especially the way the microphones hem in the slumping Gordon Brown.

3 responses to “Seven thoughts on ‘Bigotgate’”

  1. Collectively we’re obsessed with American political culture, which is why pretty much everything gets the “-gate” suffix in homage to Watergate

    Surely it should be “portcullis” in this country? Or “cullis”, for short. Bigotcullis, expensescullis… has a nice ring to it

  2. Yes, it’s his “You should have kept this woman AWAY from me!” stance that’s telling. It reminded us that this isn’t the jolly, rugged man of the people, but Brown the intolerant bully.

    When I first read the “bigoted woman” headlines I thought “stuff happens.” Then, when I listened to the actual sound clip, I thought – pure Labour.

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