I’ve just watched Andrew Marr’s History of Modern Britain on the BBC and was thoroughly impressed by his succinct insights and straight proclamations of “truth”. This was the fifth and final episode in his mini series and I’ll quote the programme blurb here in case the linked page is pulled as it’s only a schedule.
In the final part of Andrew Marr’s epic national saga, Britain enters the uncharted waters of the post-Thatcher era. Many have done well in the end during the Thatcher years but now boom is turning to bust. Britain feels more vulnerable than ever to rapid international change – from the influence of powerful new global market forces to global warming. Just when many in post-war Britain are getting used to the good things in life, it seems we are going to have to start giving up our big cars and foreign holidays – or at least go back to some form of rationing. But who could persuade us to do this? Churchill had that kind of power in the 1940s, but which politician would we trust and follow today? Step forward the unassuming Brixton boy, John Major and New Labour’s smiling master of spin, Tony Blair. From Black Wednesday to war in Iraq, from the British inventor of the world wide web to millennium fever, this is Andrew Marr’s up-to-the moment story of Britain’s extraordinary transformation from Imperial Power to island at the heart of the global economy. [AD,S]
I wish I’d seen the rest of the series now. Even though it’s dated 2007 I missed the lot, probably more than twice! Also, inevitably, the show has none of the recent shenanigans about credit crunches, house price crashes and fuel price explosions.
Be that as it may, his analysis and commentary was exemplary, even including some self-deprecatory comment on himself doing a piece outside 10 Downing Street. I especially liked his bit on the Iraq War, the lead up, the reasons, the outcome etc. Foremost of all was his walk along some Oxfordshire woods where he described the events surrounding the death of the UK Government scientist, Dr David Kelly, was especially poignant, as was his prose he used to describe the House of Commons committees and later Hutton Inquiry. He somehow intimated the unease and distrust that the public now feel about all government inspired or backed inquiries…. He perfectly picked up the change in Blair from pink and fluffy optimistic lad to wrinkled and untrustworthy pawn to fate.
One day, hopefully, people will realise the wool that’s been pulled over their eyes and the things said and done in their name.
Good Show Andrew!