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John Rentoul

John Rentoul is chief political commentator for The Independent on Sunday, and visiting fellow at Queen Mary, University of London, where he teaches contemporary history. Previously he was chief leader writer for The Independent. He has written a biography of Tony Blair, whom he admired more at the end of his time in office than he did at the beginning.

"The Independent's must-read man" - Daniel Finkelstein

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Did Tony Blair decline a peerage?

Posted by John Rentoul
  • Thursday, 25 June 2009 at 08:46 am
Another day, another Guardian correction of an untrue report about Tony Blair.

In a report, The £7,000 roofing bill two days before Blair left office, we said that Tony Blair declined a peerage on stepping down as prime minister and as an MP in 2007 partly to protect his post-Downing Street finances from scrutiny. This was untrue. Peerages have customarily been offered to prime ministers on leaving the House of Commons, but Tony Blair's office has informed us that having neither sought nor been offered a peerage, he has not declined one to protect his finances from scrutiny (19 June, page 4).

No apology, you notice. And it is at least possible that one of Blair's reasons for not wanting to go to the House of Lords ("not my scene") is that he didn't like the idea of making his finances public. But at least The Guardian does correct its mistakes, unlike nearly everyone else.

Thanks to Blair Supporter, one of "we happy few".


Iraq enquiry
bobbellinhell wrote:
Thursday, 25 June 2009 at 09:28 am (UTC)
I'm looking forward to Blair being forced to give evidence on oath during the upcoming enquiry into the invasion of Iraq. Will he admit that he agreed to the invasion because Bush said "God told me to do it"?
Re: Iraq enquiry
blairsupporter wrote:
Thursday, 25 June 2009 at 10:36 am (UTC)
You're most welcome, John. I was alerted to it by another Blair supporter, btw.

I can feel a post coming on about the so-called "apologies" from the press - or lack of.

Can you remind me how many apologies you now have to Blair from the papers and the link url where you have them listed? Thank you.

To bobellinhell,

Now I wonder who could have suggested to your malleable mind that Blair would act for that kind of reason?

The Guardian?

The Independent?

Or was it written between the lines in one of the many press reports on Bush's reported remarks? One of the "poodle" references?

You should at least TRY - I know it must be hard - to read between the papers' lines as well as those of politicians.

Re: Iraq enquiry
quietzapple wrote:
Sunday, 28 June 2009 at 06:49 am (UTC)
Happy to help, Blair Supporter, but, as you know, I remain more generally committed to Gordon Brown's leadership, but they both contributed to the generally good state of the Uk today, as set out in Polly Toynbee's blog this week (Comments curtailed at 67, I wonder why???):

"Here is the good news: more people than ever say they are happy with their area – satisfaction at 80% is up five points on 2006. Ratings on antisocial behaviour are improving quickly, with 12% fewer worrying about drug users and teenagers hanging around, though anxiety about street drunkenness stays high. Police and local authorities have targeted antisocial behaviour and new youth services are finding better things for teenagers to do. Concern about rubbish and litter in the streets has dropped 6 points to 39%.

"The NHS has never had such high ratings, with GPs scoring 77%. Worry about education is at its lowest in 25 years. Worry about crime has fallen from a peak two years ago, and only 3% mention taxation as a problem. Not surprisingly, the economy dominates anxiety.

"So who do the citizens thank? If they hate an unpopular Westminster government, surely their councils – mostly Conservative – deserve recognition? No, they get no praise either. Satisfaction with councils has dropped eight points to only 45%, the lowest for more than a decade. In despair, the report finds: "Local government is doing a good job on quality of life and key measures of antisocial behaviour and liveability – but … it is rated worse than ever. It simply doesn't get credit for improvements that residents … the Audit Commission and others have noted." "
Time for an Inquiry into pervs like Bobby in Hell
quietzapple wrote:
Saturday, 27 June 2009 at 02:17 pm (UTC)
Are you really one of these nazis who disbelieves that Dr Kelly and others working for the UN found various SCUD2 missiles and other WMD materials and destroyed them?? Do you still plot the local flying saucers from your bunker?

And you're thieving from the rest of us by NOT paying your TV licence?

Sooner or later you will get caught for something and be imprisoned I expect . . .
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