Re: After Big Brother by Andy Newman

Howard Fuller


Like most people my mouth dropped when George Galloway appeared on Big Brother on the opening night. I was speechless.  My first thought was “What on earth was he doing there?”. This in itself became an object of fun, not only for a large number of PCS activists, but also a large number of union members who watched in utter disbelief to the farce that opened in front of their eyes.

Andy Newman is right to point out that the Press and Politicians were always going to give Galloway a hard time, but his article misses completely the impact his subsequent behaviour had on the “general public”. It might well be that appearing in a leotard and impersonating a cat (which made everyone cringe) were part of the game, but the lingering images of George in Rula Lenskas lap will not just go away, and will always remain an object of derision no matter how much Galloway protests about Labour MPs on junkets. However its’ not just that which turned those who watched against him.

In the first week, Galloway took part in what can only be described as a “kangaroo court” against Jodie Marsh, a woman whose personal demons had got the better of her. She was bullied, pure and simple. What was Galloway’s response? To call her a “trollop” in the Diary room. Dreadful. No other word for it.

The problems did not end there. He came over as distant, very “conservative” and quite out of touch with young people whom he stated he wanted to get in touch with. Preston sussed him out early on, losing any “respect” he had for the man and led Chantelle to declaring that his organisation should be known as DISRESPECT. Galloway broke the rules three times and on the last when his so called “rights” were taken away was seen to be fuming and promising retribution against those responsible. How would he react to the ref sending him off the pitch? To top it all the final big argument where he attacked Preston as “exposed as a liar and a plutocrat to the whole nation” followed by an assault on Michael Barrymore, that was frankly below the belt enamoured him to no one.

It was no wonder that he came out the house to constant booing. He has made himself not just a laughing stock, and more to the point extremely unpopular. Most people would not want him as an MP. He was clearly disturbed by the press headlines he was shown, and his failure to appear on the reunion on Sunday lunchtime due to a “heavy cold” ( which no one believes), was probably due to the fact he cottoned on to the fact that his Big Brother appearance has backfired big time.

I wouldn’t like to be a RESPECT supporter at the moment. The lone SWP paper seller who turned up on our picket lines on Thursday was suitably embarrassed and got the mick taken because of Galloway. He’s never been that popular amongst TU activists, but now any respect he may have had has been sorely spent.

Goodbye George. And don’t forget to turn the light off in the RESPECT office, no one will be needing it any more.




Feb 2006

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