The Gospel According to Tony

Glen Newey · Blair's Millions

And the Lord spake unto his good and faithful servant, saying, Thou art my son, in whom I am well pleased. And though there be some that pretend to adore Mammon through God; yet others cherish God, by the offices of Mammon.

Thou knowest well, my son, many there are that give by taking; and their name is Legion.

But twice blessed are they that take, by giving.

The whoremongers have scourged the righteous with kisses; but thou hast loved the children of the whore of Babylon, with fire from the heavens and the temper of thy sword.

Thou hast plucked out the heart of Mesopotamia, even from the Tigris to the Euphrates. Thou hast kindled fear with the banners of the Lord of Hosts and stricken thine enemies with the fear of the wrath of thy love.

Blessed therefore be the warmakers, for they shall be received into the bosom of the Church; their speech will be recompensed with gold; they shall be called the brokers of peace.

Blessed too are they who hide their bushel under the light of their tax-deductible charitable gift. For they shall see in their flesh, that they dwell among the elect, and their legacy shall grow tenfold. Verily, it shall grow an hundredfold.

And His servant answered Him, saying, I am ready to meet Thee, and to answer for all that I have done. And the Lord was with Tony, and he was a lucky fellow, all the days of his life.


  • 17 August 2010 at 4:42pm
    A.J.P. Crown says:
    This is a translation, the Lord and Tony converse in Latin.

  • 17 August 2010 at 6:19pm
    bluecat says:
    Sale of indulgences is no longer practised, surely?

  • 18 August 2010 at 12:15am
    pinhut says:
    There is no ethical means of spending blood money.

  • 18 August 2010 at 9:29am
    Joe Morison says:
    I often wonder what it's like being Tony Blair. Of course, on the surface it's all perma tan and smiles, and a life of jet setting self-congratulation; but i think if one could dig deeper it would be pretty bleak. He always seems to have had the ability to believe the lies it was politically expedient for him to espouse. Neil Kinnock recently called him a method actor; but with actors, the role comes to an end - Blair is trapped for life, the knowledge of the wrong he's done having to be constantly hidden from, and that must do terrible things to the psyche. It's nothing compared to immeasurable suffering his policies have caused, but i feel sorry for him.

    • 18 August 2010 at 11:59am
      A.J.P. Crown says: @ Joe Morison
      I don't.

    • 18 August 2010 at 1:49pm
      Phil Edwards says: @ Joe Morison
      Me neither. Actually I'm reminded of C.S. Lewis's definition of damnation as turning away from God forever, so that the sin becomes its own punishment. To be a conscience-trimming, charisma-whoring fraud for life seems like the perfect punishment for being a conscience-trimming, charisma-whoring fraud.

    • 18 August 2010 at 2:15pm
      Joshua Mostafa says: @ Phil Edwards
      So everyone always gets their just desserts automatically? Hmm. Spending the rest of his life behind bars would be, if not the perfect punishment, a more apt one, I think.

    • 18 August 2010 at 3:10pm
      Phil Edwards says: @ Joshua Mostafa
      I think everyone who lives a lie is punished for it (which is almost all of us at one time or another), and Blair has lived some pretty big lies. But that's separate from the question of holding him publicly to account for the effects of what he's done.

    • 18 August 2010 at 4:19pm
      Joe Morison says: @ Phil Edwards
      I agree with both your comments, Phil, but not your sentiment. Who is more worthy of our pity than the damned?

  • 18 August 2010 at 1:57pm
    ski says:
    No sorrow for Blair here. I used to believe he was a complete and utter fraud - the method actor as mentioned. Now I have moderated my opinion somewhat. I actually think he now, perhaps has always, believed that Iraq was right. And that for a long time he had been believing his own divine inspired judgements: he was, in short, a megalomaniac with funamentalist touch.

    • 18 August 2010 at 4:21pm
      Joe Morison says: @ ski
      I'm sure he believed that what he was doing was right. Monstrous things are so very often done by people who do.

    • 19 August 2010 at 7:38am
      Geoff Roberts says: @ ski
      Your last sentence could be applied to Hitler, Stalin and a few other twentieth century characters. A bit over the top? How would you describe GW Bush?

    • 19 August 2010 at 6:00pm
      Joe Morison says: @ Geoff Roberts
      I guess that both Bush and Saddam thought that what they were doing was in the best interests of Iraq: Bush believing that he would transform the country into a mini-West, all apple-pie order and dentally fixed smiles; of course, another 'good' outcome would be a safe oil supply for the morally best country in the world (which he clearly believes the US to be). Saddam would have thought something like, the only way Iraq can enter the modern world is for a strong man at the top: to keep the fundamentalists down, give women some sort of equality, stave off civil war it is necessary for me to impose my will - the executions and torture and personality cult are necessary, the alternative is worse (and from our perspective, hideously, one can see his point - one of Bush's most bizarre achievements was to create a measure of understandable sympathy for one of the world's least sympathetic people (after all, he did die well, didn't he?)).
      Thinking one is doing the right thing is almost irrelevant when it comes to censure. If someone believes that 'Jesus hates fags' (as their placards have it) and that God desires their lynching, that lynching condemns them as much as if they'd done it for fun. A person should be judged from how loving their actions are, not from whether they thought they were 'doing good'.

  • 19 August 2010 at 7:41am
    Geoff Roberts says:
    My take on Blair is a different one. He certainly uses his faith as a justification for his actions and decisions but the consequences are never predictable and may even have short-term positive effects. It's very difficult to assess objectively what a leader has done until the documents are on the table.

    • 19 August 2010 at 8:20am
      A.J.P. Crown says: @ Geoff Roberts
      Both Blair and Bush have strong Christian "personal" beliefs and they started wars in two Muslim countries. I don't tar all Christians with the "warmonger" brush, nevertheless it's not a coincidence. Next time Christians run for office, maybe pacifists should think twice before voting for them.

    • 19 August 2010 at 6:05pm
      Joe Morison says: @ A.J.P. Crown
      I don't think religious faith is the problem, i think it's moral certainty. A Christian like Rowan Williams sees his faith as a means to doubt and questioning; it's fundamentalists, whether atheist of religious, who can do awful things in the unquestioned belief that they are doing good.

    • 20 August 2010 at 7:41am
      Geoff Roberts says: @ Joe Morison
      I'd say that it's a potent mixture of faith and moral certainty, similar to the brew which motivates Muslims to carry out suicide bombings in order to punish the sinful Christians. John Updike's novel 'The Terrorist' was a not very convincing attempt to get inside the mind of a young Muslim and show his transition into a campaigner for moral justice.
      We simply don't understand the processes that motivate a young Muslim to attack a western icon or a western leader to attack a foreign land. The United States has been a major attacker of small countries for a hundred years or more. Didn't Nixon order the attack on Cambodia to show the Vietnamese that he was capable of anything?

    • 20 August 2010 at 12:01pm
      Joe Morison says: @ Geoff Roberts
      I think moral certainty is a form of faith. Look at the Sect of Revolutionaries in Greece: they're happy to kill innocents in their 'war on capitalism'.

    • 20 August 2010 at 2:33pm
      A.J.P. Crown says: @ Geoff Roberts
      I don't understand what changed Tony Blair from wanting to become a famous rock star into wanting to blow up people. I think he must have gone mad.

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