Thursday, May 24, 2007

The missing phone call

Both on Sunday AM (on Sunday) and the Jeremy Vine show yesterday Scotland's SNP First Minister Alex Salmond highlighted that the had yet to hear from Tony Blair. This is just unforgivable discourtesy.

I accept that Blair will not be happy with the result in Scotland and that Alex Salmond probably wasn't who he wanted to see occupy Bute House, however he should have phoned by now to congratulate (even through gritted teeth) the democratically elected First Minister of a constituent nation of the United Kingdom. Not doing so is just an example of the petulance that I have come to expect of our soon to be departed PM.

The PMOS said yesterday that:

"as he was aware, phones were two-way communication devices. He was not sure whether we had received an approach from Mr Salmond's office either."

So he's going for the mature approach then. He has also said in the past week that the "Prime Minister had been to Washington and Iraq, and therefore had been rather busy" and they weren't interested in "gesture politics". Here's a couple of points - I'm sure in this day and age the PM's plane has an airphone. Even on the rainbow tour he can make a thirty second call. And some gestures are actually just good manners - John Major left him a bottle of champagne and a note in number 10 in May 1997 as nothing more than a gesture and to wish him luck.

Blair is always happy to talk about the respect agenda but until he learns some himself he has no right to lecture me on it.

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