Out of time
According to the Devil's definitive study, Edinburgh MP Nigel Griffiths is "a deeply unpleasant, authoritarian cnut".
But back in the 70s, ah, such plans! Such dreams! He was young, idealistic, fresh up from under Gordo's Auld Reekie Rectorship. Thus inflamed, Nige would have grooved to New Wave band XTC: with their political songs and coming from Swindon, they'd definitely have hit the spot. Late at night, you can bet he still grooves to Making plans for Nigel.
Why the sudden interest?
Well, today I heard Nige attempting to defend this shattered despicable Labour government after their worst electoral humiliation since the last one. And I heard a desperate cry for help.
Here's a man for whom the real world has now become so painful, he's constructed an entirely imaginary world in its place. And in Nigel's imaginary world, Labour's been a huge success.
How? Well, er... student numbers have soared. And for 11 years Britain has avoided recession, unlike say, the US, France, Japan, and most other countries. And anyway, the Tories are committed to high interest rates, inflation, and unemployment.
This poor chap really is in a world of his own. It was the Tories who did most to boost student numbers (see this blog); neither the US nor France have experienced a recession since 1997 (see here); and during their period in office, the Tories virtually halved interest rates (6.5% vs 11.7% - 3 month Libor), and cut inflation by three-quarters (2.6% vs 10.7% - RPI).
The real plan for Nigel is that his paper-thin majority of 405 vaporises in 2010, and he's cast into oblivion.
PS Do Labour activists all think it's gone well? Do they really think it's been a decade of success temporarily blown off course by factors beyond their control? Do they all live in this fantasy world? The scary thing is that they probably do.