When I read about David Blunkett allegedly telling the former Head of the Prison Service to use "machine guns" in order to retake a rioting prison I can't deny I had the Harry Enfield character's voice going round my head saying "that's blokes a nutta!"
Thankfully the other voices managed to cast Enfield back to the pit of my subconscious and I was able to read on and see Blunkett was maintaining that his diaries were an accurate account of the time.
With that I recalled Sir Humphrey Appleby's observation that any statement in a politician's memoir represents six levels of reality:
- What happened.
- What he believed happened.
- What he would have liked to have happened.
- What he wants to believe happened.
- What he wants other people to believe happened.
- What he wants other people to believe he believed happened.