So after Al Gore

viernes, febrero 16, 2007

profetising about the climate change, there comes Tony Blair -after leaving Downing St, of course-...

Well, he does. There is a far-advanced, detailed plan for his life after Downing Street, which he hopes will keep him in the spotlight and save his reputation. It has been quietly worked on for 18 months. Key meetings this very week will take it forward. But what, you may ask, is so momentous that it has the faintest chance of blurring, if not eradicating, the appalling and bloody disaster that has been Iraq? What is bigger than that? Africa? Northern Ireland?

No, the answer is climate change. Blair has told friends he will embark on a mission to save the world from global warming. Some of those close to Blair have urged him to devote his time to earning huge sums of money making speeches and sitting on corporate boards. But he has decided instead to use his personal contacts, his reputation in America, his undoubted energy and his experience in compromise-broking to help bring world leaders to "Kyoto 2", the carbon emission treaty needed to replace the partial and deeply flawed first attempt, which runs out in five years' time. It will be "Tony saves the world".


The idea is that as soon as Blair has finally left office in Britain, he will begin travelling. He remains popular in the US where he will be speaking to the likes of Hillary Clinton, Barak Obama and the rest of the developing Republican and Democratic field. Though Blair will never criticise his old friend Bush in public, his friends say he is well aware that the end of the "big oil" presidency is an opportunity to be grabbed. Whoever the next president is, it won't be a Texan oilman.


Those working with Blair on "the legacy" say that there are other things he still wants to do. He has not given up hope on personal work on the Middle East peace process, and wants to be remembered for Northern Ireland, too. On domestic policy, he has decided to do nothing that will be seen as a personal attack on Gordon Brown - though the diaries of some of his inner circle could still rock a boat or two.

So what do we make of all this? There will be hoots of derision in many quarters. Can some diplomatic shuffling in the US on "Kyoto 2" really make up in any way for the horror of Iraq? Isn't this just his attempt to mimic Al Gore's climate change reinvention, with a whiff of Clinton thrown in? Can we so soon forget Blair's stickily close relationship with the oilmen's president, however much he publicly repeats that they disagree on climate change? And, most crucially, if the beginnings of a deal really are formed among various US, Chinese and Indian politicians, won't it really be their show, not Blair's? Isn't it, in short, mere grandstanding?

Lucrative subject, eh? I would believe that they really believe in climate change the day they are not travelling in huge jets, driving expensive -and polluting- limousines/cars, etc. But I bet this people are the ones who throw the used batteries down the WC..

Technorati : , : ,
Ice Rocket : ,