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September 09, 2004


They don't make 'em like they used to. Spats, that is. Today, two very different personal rivalries are jostling for space in the papers in the UK: Tony Blair versus Gordon Brown, and Lauren Bacall versus Nicole Kidman. The problem with each is different.

Firstly, Gordon and Tony: while there is no doubting the differences between the dominant political forces of the Labour party and a long list of well documented slights and petty tiffs, the current issue - the appointment of Alan Milburn to the glorious position of Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster - is being read very differently by all the political commentators because they have very little to go on. Is the split about the direction of policy? Some think it is. Is it about who leads the country? Others focus here. The fact remains that the reams of speculation are based very little information. Most are just guessing - 'Gordon won't be happy with this' and 'Tony will be relieved that...'

The other spat isn't, as far as I can tell, a spat at all. The premise of the headlines is Hollywood legend Lauren loathes current Aussie actress Nicole, snapping to journalists that Kidman isn't a 'legend'. Apart from the minor technicality/pedantry that neither are in the original sense of the word, not even Kidman would describe herself as one (who under 60 would?). Reading the stories further it become clear that both seem to have no quarrel with one another at all and indeed, rather like each other.

So what is the story? Bacall views journalists with contempt? That's a story so old you might call it legendary.

September 9, 2004 in Observations | Permalink


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