The piece was pulled after the early editions. The waters are predictably muddied about how and why that happened, but neither require much imagination: the malign influence of this degenerate Peer was, at the height of his corrupt power, dangerously widespread.
Today – barely ten weeks since he was focused on one last grubby bid for a share of government – Peter Mandelson launches his memoirs. So far, I’ve seen various extracts (serialised in a paper owned by a company which in April he accused of trying to subvert the BBC) and it’s hard to reach any other conclusion other than this: either he was lying then, or he’s lying now. (He may have been lying on both occasions, but I’m a softie about such things, and thus would prefer to give him the benefit of whatever minute scintilla of doubt remains).
Consider: on the Andrew Marr Show in February, Mandelson sat with his bare face hanging out and told us that Gordon Brown was a great man….despite the fact that for much of the previous fifteen years, he had slagged the bloke off as a seriously mentally flawed individual. (When I presented evidence to support this in September 2009, Mandelson branded me ‘an extreme right-wing blogger’.) Now – just nineteen weeks the Marr cameo – Mandelson has Brown back in the box as a headcase, with lots of quotes about mad, bad and dangerous.
Even Blair – who once said he’d die happy if the Labour Party learned to love Mandy – is reputedly incandescent with anger about this flagrant piece of disloyal, money-obsessed opportunism. But having said all that, the Lord of the Ring is not the worst villain here.
The truly, madly, deeply guilty party in all this is a media set which would limbo dance under a scorpion’s midriff to get a readership-boosting scoop. And we surely are not surprised to see that the conglomerate slithering beneath the Cancerian belly is Newscorp, home of the world’s only human multinational, Rupert Murdoch.
How horribly apt it would be if Peter Mandelson were to undergo some kind of twisted operation, and give birth to a Newscorp heir. A strange hybrid Thing – Pervert Mandoch – devoid of mercy and ethics, able in the future age to take up whatever editorial position each tailored target audience wanted to hear, but this time excellent at making money, rather than borrowing or begging for it.
No hang on – it already exists. Sorry. I forgot about Tony Blair.