David Blunkett was reviled as one of the most authoritarian and reactionary Home Secretaries of the post-war period, a reputation that owed more to his intellectual weakness and lack of nous than to a committed ideology. He was crap because he was thick. A position as minister of state was so far beyond his ability, and quite clearly so to many voters, that he himself contributed to the public's lack of faith in politics. The public wondered why a man clearly not capable of running a whelk stall was in charge of the Home Office and the answer was political cronyism.
Not surprisingly, time out of office hasn't increased his cerebral capacity. In a new pamphlet launched in the Mail this morning, Blunkett accurately describes the slow failure of British democracy and the alienation of the voter from the inward looking political class in terms that could have been lifted straight from this blog. Then he loses it.
Politics is necessary, he says, but should only be open to the big three parties. Good politics doesn't include allowing people to vote for George Galloway or Nick Griffin. Then the government must get closer to the people by becoming a State Consumer Organisation, advising householders which satellite company to sign up with, offering cheap pay-day loans and helping them transfer their bank accounts.
"British politicians have never been so ridiculed and despised" complains Blunkett. If this pamphlet is the best they can do, little wonder.