Maximum Impact 05.04.06

IF IT’S impossible or even very difficult to defend the message then try diverting attention by attacking the messenger.

PR people do this type of thing all the time, so it came as no surprise that David Cameron resorted to this tactic during a radio interview on Tuesday. He was asked about UKIP’s plans to press for the names of secret Tory donors to be revealed. The former PR man immediately went on to attack the messenger, describing UKIP as a "bunch of fruitcakes, loonies and closet racists".

It was totally the wrong way to handle the issue for a variety of reasons. Firstly, because this outburst guaranteed that the UKIP statement received vastly more media attention and coverage than it would otherwise have got. It meant that media people became more interested in the list of secret Tory donors. His response also demonstrated just how inexperienced the current Tory Leader is as a politician.

Having worked for UKIP for the six-month period leading up to the European elections in 2004, I got a very good insight into the party and never saw even a hint of racism. In the last two weeks, close "friends" have revealed to me the names of three secret Tory donors who have had their loans refunded. I would be only too happy to pass on my information to UKIP prior to the next election, but by then I’m sure the Conservatives would have long since brought out all of the names themselves — as is only fitting for the open, and healthily democratic, anti-sleaze Tory party that we now have.

I LEARNT this week that American Inventor, a programme I helped with the conception of, is at the centre of a bidding war between UK broadcasters — having been a smash hit launch in the US.

BORIS Johnson is gradually taking over the mantel of Alan Clark. No matter what Clark was thought to get up to with the ladies it never affected his popularity and appeal with the vast majority of the pubic.

The Blonde Bombshell is achieving that same relationship in spite of being caught out, yet again, allegedly playing away.

TALKING of bonking; Sven should make the best of the next couple of months. If the England manager ever had the perfect opportunity to play away without being turned over, now’s the time to do it.

Every editor I have spoken to has made it very clear that, short of having his way with the Queen, they would turn a blind eye for fear of upsetting our World Cup chances.

The fee for this column is donated to CHASE (Christopher’s) Children’s Hospital

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