He's the man(dy)

Peter Mandelson - World Economic Forum.jpgWell, well, well. Who would’ve thought it. Everybody loves Peter Mandelson.Cases in point…The Federation of Small Businesses (FSB), the Engineering Employers Federation, the British Chambers of Commerce, the Confederation of British Industry – all the lobbyists who normally give nothing more enthusiastic than a luke-warm half-smile verging unashamedly on sour - are raving on about welcoming him and being encouraged that he’s returning.A joyous John Wright, FSB chairman, says: "This shock return is no surprise to us given Mr Mandelson's previous tenure at the DTI and his current position as European Commissioner for Trade. His experience will mean that he can do away with the probationary period and get straight into the business of dealing with the current credit crunch.”Even Tory papers such as the Telegraph are describing Gordon Brown’s decision as “a dazzling sleight of hand, political prestidigitation of the first order.”The FT – in it’s subtly-titled article “Mandelson’s return is a ‘no-brainer’”– produce a piece that is made up almost entirely of Mandy quotes. Leaving little room, then, for any kind of criticism. In fact, more or less a piece of pure Mandelson PR, straight from the horse’s mouth.And, according to the Mandy machine, things will soon be rosy for entrepreneurs – oh happy happy day! He’s stated that his number one priority is to help businesses, particularly small and medium sized enterprises, through financial difficulties. “It’s at the top of the in-tray,” he said. “A lot of small businesses depend on payments by the government for their cash flow. That should be an area we can work in.”Looks like it’s smiles all round then.(A quick word of caution – whilst it’s great that Mandelson’s saying he’ll focus on small businesses, let’s not forget that he is the original king of spin. He’s broken promises before, and it’s not so very implausible that he’ll do it again. Don’t go getting his name tattooed on your backside quite just yet.)(Image: World Economic Forum at Flickr)

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