The BBC have an interesting article on Tony Blair’s religious convictions, but it’s this quote from Menzies Campbell that particularly catches my eye:
The public might have been less willing to give him the triumph of three consecutive general election victories if they’d known the extent to which ethical values would overshadow pragmatism,” Sir Menzies said.
Weird thing to say. Aside from the underlying assumption that it’s only the religious who have strong ethical values, is he suggesting that doing the right thing should always come second to doing the practical/easy thing? Possibly not, but that’s the way it’s presented.
It’s odd that this is perceived as something the public would see as a bad trait – I’d have thought a politican who says he’ll always do what he thinks is ethically right would actually be more popular1. Tony Blair’s suggestion that the public would have labelled him a ‘nutter’ if they’d known he never went away without a Bible is far more likely to be true.
- not trying to specifically defend Tony Blair here, I just mean in general [↩]