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Thursday, January 18, 2007

Breaking ranks

Coming back to the issue of collective responsibility I was intrigued by Peter Hain's latest audacious departure from the official party line in an effort to ingratiate himself with the party faithful.

Reports of his interview with the New Statesman have him describing President Bush's foreign policy as a failure 'wherever it's been tried'. He goes on to say that 'The problem for us as a Government was actually to maintain a working relationship with what was the most right-wing American administration, if not ever, then in living memory.'

The problem is that his government maintained that working relationship by effectively adopting George Bush's foreign policy en bloc. The 'failed' policies he refers to are also those of the Government he serves in and for which he has collective responsibility. Those 'failed' policies also include the war on Iraq, a cause which Mr. Hain actively and vocally supported publicly and which he defended to the hilt in interview after interview.

So the big question must be, who does Peter Hain think he is fooling? His attempts to distance himself from a government he still serves in are not convincing anybody.
Comments:
Paul Flynn in his book "Dragons lead by poodles" described Peter Hain as like Odo, the shapeshifter from Deep Space Nine. He's ultra loyal, and then suddenly amazes people by stepping out of line. Yet he seems to have been happy for the Blair-Bush love-in to continue.


I finally decided I wouldn't ever vote for him again, when, after the last General Election, he said that the government had been given a mandate for ID card. What, with only 21% of the entire electorate voting for them !?

Steve
Neath
 
Having watched Peter Hain career with bemused interest since he left the Young Liberals, I have to say who is the real Hain.?

Is it the one who was the activist in the Young Liberals who campagned against racist South Africa.

Or is it the Peter Hain that was almost a "Bennite" in the 80s.?

Or could it be the Peter Hain of the New Labour mould?

In the words of Eminem. "Will the Real Peter Hain please stand up! Please Stand Up?"

Or could it be that he has rediscovered his lost liberal youth?

Mike
 
To coin a phrase (based on lyrics by Edwin Starr) …

Hain – Good God Y’all What is Hain good for? Absolutely nothing Say it, Say it, Say it. Hain! Uh-huh – Yeah - Huh! What is Hain good for? Absolutely nothing ...
 
Some accuse Peter Hain of being a traitor to liberalism. I disagree. Since he admitted to being always a socialist, and joining the Young Liberals out of expediency, the worst one can accuse him of is being an entryist.

- Frank Little
 
Peter Hain, Secretary of State for Wales, has every right to defend himself against “downright falsehoods” (Western Mail, Jan 23).

But isn’t it true that Peter Hain was found guilty of criminal conspiracy and fined £200. He appealed against the conviction in 1973. The Court of Appeal dismissed his appeal with costs. As reported in the Daily Telegraph of 23 October 1973, the court said his conviction was "fully justified". Lord Justice Roskill said Hain had not elected to give evidence, adding that "He gave no explanation of his part over the incidents with which he was charged." (Source and quotes from: Wikipedia, the public online encyclopedia).

Of course Peter Hain will argue that the matter concerned a sit down protest at a tennis match, but the fact remains he was found guilty of criminal conspiracy and failed to get the conviction wiped from his criminal record.

Peter Hain stated in a BBC Radio 4 interview that he is still proud of his actions, which included gumming up the door locks in a hotel. Peter Hain said he still “supports the principle of potentially illegal direct action”. (Source: a BBC article published online on 10-12-2005).

What if there had been a fire at the hotel?

Regardless of the fact that the occupants were active participants in a Springbok rugby tour, the fact remains Peter Hain put human lives at risk.

The current Secretary of State for Wales should not remain proud of falsely imprisoning anyone against their will and exposing them to unnecessary risk.

If there had been a fire it is highly likely that Peter Hain would have faced very serious criminal charges.

What REALLY takes the biscuit is that Peter Hain is on record for stating that he would do it all again if he was 30 years younger.

At this juncture in Peter Hain’s life there is only one conclusion to make about this man. To wit, Peter Hain is not “fit for purpose” and should definitely not be supported in his obvious ambition to become the next Prime Minister.
 
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