The Philosopher Kings


Do you know, said Nick Clegg, in an exclusive interview with me, that I often practice my best speeches in the bathroom. He smiled. You probably think that this rhetoric of mine is improptu. I wish it was but the art of appearing so has to be practiced. That is particularly true for me because, as you have probably observed, I have a natural fluency. This sort of gift can carry you away to places you should not visit. He laughed. I tell you what I’ll give you a taste of it. I recorded this the other morning. Here goes. My friends (comrades, brothers/any one of the three). I am a mere vehicle for political change, a guide and a mentor and as such your servant. I exist to bring to realisation the dreams we have shared for over fifty years to change society for the better, to move Britain to a fairer and more socially just Britain, a country we all yearn for. To be succint, to realise the Liberal vision nurtured in thousands of places of work and in Local Councils by you, yes by you , in every part of  our fair country. Any of you who seek revolutionary change, as I do, must accept that revolution requires cadres, natural leaders who can lead the movement for change. Many of these cadres will be discarded as and when they are no longer needed for governing for, alas,  the task is for the few. Think of it this way: we leaders are philosopher kings, wise men from distinctive walks of life, with leadership qualities bred in them from their youth. I do not know how many of you are familiar with the works of Plato – some no doubt. Well Plato tells us that the task of governing is not for everyone. The leader must have a true philosophical grasp of the times. He is educated for it. It is not for nothing that it is said that the rulers of the British Empire were schooled in their leadership qualities on the playing fields of Eton. As it was, it is now. Although in my case it was Winchester. There used to be a time when the right of the best to govern in the name of the many was questioned and people like me kept quiet about our birth-right. But no longer. You can be honest with me. Do you wish to be governed by yoicks from redbrick and whitetiled, so called ,universties or from the talented graduates of Oxbridge? Put that way I think I know your answer. This is what Dave, George and I have in common. We are schooled, versed so to speak, in the arts of government. Of course three is an awkward number. What we really need is two and then one if you get my drift. What you get my friends/comrades is me. So what do you think, Charlie? A bit rich! Over the top! Well you may be right. BUT it is the truth Charlie/friend/comrade. I can drown them in the truth. And he laughed. I enjoyed our chat. Let’s do it again some time.

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Filed under Coalition Government, Conservative Home, George Osborne, Guardian, Liberal News, Liberal Vision, Nick Clegg, Politics

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