Michael Gove, Minister for Environment Food and Rural Affairs, twice referred to a five year parliament as he started to backtrack on the Government’s austerity programme during this morning’s Andrew Marr politics show.
At no point did Andrew Marr pull the Gove up on his error.
This could have just been a double oversight on both of their parts – not that unlikely given the sheer incompetence emanating from the Tory party and the BBC right now.
But it could all just be more intrigue and subterfuge from a politician who, by U.K. standards is a well accepted as being as dishonest, self-serving and Machiavellian as they come.
Few politicians enjoy the degree of political protection that has been afforded to Michael Gove. The risk free environment in which he operates has convinced him – quite fairly – that he can actually do no wrong.
The man is a close friend of Rupert Murdoch’s and just as his fellow Brexiteer Boris Johnson’s sister Rachel writes for the Mail on Sunday, Gove’s own wife Sarah Vine is a columnist for The Daily Mail.
Gove himself returned to the Murdoch Times during his recent sabbatical when he managed to deliver the ‘Exclusive’ interview of Donald Trump from Trump’s palace in New York with his own boss and fixer Rupert Murdoch in attendance.
With Gove’s ex-Cabinet colleague former Chancellor George Osborne already editing London’s only high circulation freesheet, you’d be forgiven for contemplating whether the sudden acceleration of the pace of the revolving door be a signal of what anti-corruption expert David Whyte calls a “high degree of tolerance of collusive corruption in this country.”
Any honest journalist, unlike Marr, would have flagged as, in and of itself, the massive risk to UK Public Health that Gove really represents.
Some other interesting things about his interview.
Gove used the term 5 year parliament twice but was never picked up on this.
Gove’s appearance is supposed to reflect Tory backtracking on Austerity.
Damian Green implied there will be a U-Turn on University fees.
But Gove defended fees by saying it isn’t fair that those who don’t g to uni fund those who do. He didn’t go so far as to say that those who have been funding people to go universities deserve a rebate so it is a wonder whether he means anything he says.
The 1% public sector pay cap may go. There was the £1bn to Northern Ireland. Abortions. Same Sex marriage.
Gove was asked how he fel, as an individual, about austerity, to which he replied that he is not an individual – that he is a member of the government. He also told Marr that that Marr himself said that he has had to learn to keep his own views to himself. So here we had two men – both public figures – admitting to have no personal investment in their own words.
This reminded me of the scene at the beginning of Michael Lewis Liars Poker in which he said that banking was really all about people who didn’t know what they were buying buying from people who didn’t know what they were selling.