Friday, August 31, 2007

What Boris Johnson really said

Today's Evening Standard has a report by Andrew Gilligan about the supposed Compass Dossier on Boris Johnson including a section on what he really said compared to what they said he said which I have selected from below. The rest of it can be read on the Standard's website.
What they said he said:
"That is why it is so important to persuade the public to snap out of their current curmudgeonliness [towards the prospect of war]."
What he said:
This phrase is actually part of a strong attack on the "cynical and ludicrous" attempts by the Government to "persuade the public to snap out of their curmudgeonliness". It condemns the use of "Whitehall-generated drum rolls of alarm" for which there was "no evidence whatever" and continues: "If we are really concerned about the weapons of mass destruction, then let the UN process work itself through."

What they said he said:
"America's performance in Iraq was formidable, and made Europe look ridiculous."
What he said:
This is taken from an article expressing concern about the consequences of American global dominance. The full quote is: "America's performance in Iraq was formidable, and made Europe look ridiculous. But in the hearts of many moderate people, the very lopsidedness of the world demands some sort of compensation."

What they said he said:
"After it [the deposing of Thatcher] was all over, my wife, Marina, claimed that she came upon me, stumbling down a street in Brussels, tears in my eyes, and claiming that it was as if someone had shot Nanny."
What he said:
The quote actually reads: "After it was all over, my wife, Marina, claimed that she came upon me, stumbling down a street in Brussels, tears in my eyes, and claiming that it was as if someone had shot Nanny. I dispute this."

What they said he said: "Not only did I want Bush to win, but we threw the entire weight of The Spectator behind him."
What he said:
As the use of the past tense might suggest, this is actually an extract from a piece in which Johnson bitterly regrets his support for Bush, describing him as a "cross-eyed warmonger" and "serially incompetent ... maniac" whose re-election was "the most dismal awakening of my life".

What they said he said:
"That is why we must explain to them [tax collectors] that their dismissal could be good not only for the economy as a whole, but also for themselves."
What he said:
This sentence is actually about how large-scale public-sector job cuts are supported by both Labour and Tories. The quote continues: "It should be explained, first, that the notion of weeding out some of the new public-sector jobs is accepted across all parties, and the loss of some 80,000 posts is envisaged by Labour's Gershon review."
Who'd have thought that they would take him out of context in such deliberate ways? Anyone might think that they're scared of him or something?


Mountjoy said...

It's pretty clear that Labour certainly are scraed of Boris. I would be too if I were them. RedKen is going down and there's nothing Labour can do about it. Except smears.

Thing is, it just won't wash.

Anonymous said...

As I said in my post when this compas report first came out;

Definition of compass: a couple of pricks going round in circles.

Enough said.

Anonymous said...

So, a left wing organisation is trumpeting that Boris is not left wing?

Are we supposed to take that sort of criticism seriously? Is that reallyall they've got?

Anonymous said...

probably more "scared" than "scraed" (last line), but I could understand it if they were scraed as well.

Anonymous said...

The concerning thing is though how this report was picked up in the local media, I remember seeing quite a number of small, local newspapers in southwark carrying quotes right from this report.
Sadly in some respects the damage has already been done. The question is how to successfully rebut the claims.

dizzy said...

*yawn* dizzy did a typo. I think I will pick up on it because no one on the Internet has EVER done that before.

Anonymous said...

I think this Compass lot are in the wrong business. They should be copywriters for theatre billboards. The latter are world renowned for misrepresenting the comments of the theatre critics!

Newmania said...

I missed this this evening Dizzy its really damning isn`t it . Private Eye have started a collumn about Compspart and their ludicrous mis quotes ( by ommission) the way my effoirts to tell them my views about their lies have thus far been blocked ont their site .

Oh I `m going to pinch this BTW ...

Chris Paul said...

Compass are in fact pariahs according to most of the left right and centre of the LP!

I take this post from Dizzy to mean two things:

1. All the other Bozzer quotes doing the rounds, about Africa and lost empire, watermelons, piccanninies, Liverpool, Portsmouth, Guppy, and heaven knows what else are bang on;

2. Tories would never do anything like this quote wise. Looks to me like Compass may have got some of this stuff second and third hand ... can't believe that they'd attempt to mislead anyone. Boo wise they don't, goose wise.

Boff is far more threatening than Bozz who will be dismantled pretty easily, without any help from Compass outriders.

Broad Left editor said...

Some of the response to this Compass report from supporters of Johnson seems to be extremely muddled on his actual stances. Today's launch showed that Boris Johnson has made so many U turns and contradictions that it is no wonder he has such a clearly well merited record for ‘buffoonery’ - managerial and policy incompetence.

Boris Johnson now states that he will not get rid of the congestion charge, while previously he totally opposed it, writing: “In these dark days of the New Labour tyranny, when the maniac Ken Livingstone is charging you an extra £1,200 for the privilege of using the Queen’s highway”. (Life in the Fast Lane p185)

He now claims ‘I will be the greenest Mayor, far greener than Ken.’ (Evening Standard 3 September). A claim that is ridiculous given than he opposes even the Kyoto treaty on climate change: ‘But of all the tough-guy acts that Bush has performed in his first few months, of all the pieces of exuberant Reaganism, nothing has so intoxicated the world with hate as his decision to scrumple up the Kyoto protocol and use if for putting practice in the White House…

‘Because we still need a rich, confident America; not just to provide the cash for the global military leadership that the United States has to give from the Gulf to Kosovo, but also to keep the world economy moving…. If America were to meet its Kyoto targets now, it would require a cut of 30 per cent in emissions, and how, exactly, is that supposed to work in the current economic downturn…. It would exacerbate the recession, and when Bush says no, he is doing what is right not just for America but for the world.’ (Lend Me Your Ears p318)
He now declares that he strongly supports Crossrail, London’s most vital transport project, but he failed to participate in the vote on it in Parliament.

He strongly supported the Iraq war before deciding later to change his position – after tens of thousands of people were dead.
He supported the election of George W Bush in 2000 and his re-election in 2004 – now he thinks it was a mistake London has no need of a Mayor who takes wrong decisions and then has to change them, but one who takes the right decisions at the time they need to be made – as Ken when he supported Kyoto, opposed the Iraq War, supported congestion charging.

Boris Johnson is not simply extremely right wing. He is also incompetent.

dizzy said...

That didn't sound like a Mayoral press release at all now did it?