Even as Downing Street has let it be known that Bill Bratton, former head of the NYPD and LAPD, will not be considered for the role of Metropolitan Police Commissioner, there are still calls for him to be appointed. Nile “Chauncey” Gardiner was typical, while the Maily Telegraph, which hosts his tedious blog, was reporting that it wasn’t going to happen.
But perhaps the most vocal supporter of Bratton, or indeed of not having anyone from the UK’s established Police forces, being given charge of the Met is the Daily Mail’s talentless churnalist Richard Littlejohn: not content with being paid close to a million notes a year for two columns of fact free drivel a week, Dick wants to show that he’s got influence.
Research, guv? Costs extra, innit?
Sadly, though, he can’t be bothered to do any research, so as usual his ranting unravels in short order. After bemoaning the state of the UK and its law enforcement agencies – an interesting experience for someone sitting by his Florida poolside armed only with the Daily Mail for background reading – Dick asserts “Labour politicians were queuing up to consult Bratton a few years ago”.
Like who? Tony Blair? Nope. Gordon Brown? No. Jacqui Smith? No, although the press was championing Bratton to replace Ian Blair. Jack Straw? Well, he met Bratton in New York in 1995, hardly a “consultation”, and hardly “a few years ago”. But wait – yes, there is one Labour politician who consulted Bratton, and that was David Blunkett, in 2002, although yet again this stretches the definition of “a few”.
Not much of a queue there, then. But Dick’s not done yet, and asks “why did Red Ken hire the head of the New York Subway to run the London Underground?” to which the answer is that he didn’t. Bob Kiley had left that job eleven years before he took up his post in London. Anyone bothering to do some research could have found that out.
But Dick knows what the problem is: “the Police ‘service’ worships at the altar of yuman rites, elf’n’safety and diversity” he moans. So what is he doing championing Bill Bratton, who tells that NYC and LA benefited from forces that “reflect the ethnic make-up of the city”? This is someone who also, in Littlejohn’s words, “worships at the altar of diversity”.
And Dick admits the real reason for his rant: “In the past few days, every gob-on-a-stick has been wheeled out on the airwaves to give their perspectives”. Yes, he’s been left out of the pundit-fest and he’s sore as hell.
Never mind, Dicky Boy. Just keep counting the money.