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Tuesday 9 October 2007

Who Is Gordon Brown?

Who Is Gordon Brown? Who is Gordon Brown? Is there really a difference between Brown and Blair? Various debates on the new PM and his leadership style are ubiquitous. Since 1997, Gordon Brown has been considered by some as the “PM in waiting”. So can Gordon Brown really change the face of British politics after Iraq war, terrorism, house price increases and other matters affecting Britain? And most importantly would he be the man you want to lead Britain? If we were to compare and contrast the leadership qualities (or flaws) in Gordon Brown and Tony Blair; Blair portrays a friendly image, even appearing on comedy sketches to appear like a “normal” member of the public, whilst Brown reveals a more serious side to his character. Somehow I couldn’t imagine him following in the footsteps of Tony Blair on Catherine Tate Show. Unfortunately for Gordon Brown, his first month in office was testing; the crisis of floods in England and terror alerts at airports, it is difficult to tell what type of leader Brown might eventually make. The ultimate question is would he make a better Prime Minister than Tony Blair? If Brown is to gain respect and authority as Prime Minister of Britain then he must offer something new; but he can do that only by distinguishing himself from the New Labour practices Blair introduced. After all, he wasn’t chosen as Prime Minister, or was elected by the British voting public or even the Labour Party. Which may be the reason why Brown wanted his new cabinet revamped, reflecting the new “change” within the Labour Party. Although Blair’s government can be commended with Britain’s rapid, yet steady economic growth allowing the tax revenue generated to be used in education and the National Health Service, this has come at a high price. Inequality amongst the population which sees incomes below the poverty line increased from 13% in 1997 to now 20% in 2007 reflecting the rapid increase of poverty within Britain.*
But can Brown show that he is really so different from Blair? Perhaps the most notable mistake of Blair’s rule as Prime Minister was the Iraq war going against the publics’ decision not to be involved. So far Gordon Brown’s decision to withdraw 500 troops from Basra is “not a defeat” (his own words). BBC correspondent stated that Brown’s decision was a "highly symbolic moment, marking the end of Britain's physical military presence in any Iraqi city".** Although some may feel that Gordon Brown’s pledge to end Tony Blair’s former approach for “war on terror” is too late, only time will tell if Brown is capable of undoing the last seven years of Blair’s govern in Britain.

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