Mayor’s Press Conference at City Hall, with his tirade at an Evening Standard journalist still fresh in everyone’s minds. This was a Ken masterclass in how to try and front down the massed ranks of the media and win the day. He didn’t quite make it – not because it wasn’t a masterclass in political dodging and weaving – but because his fundamental, stubborn refusal to at least ‘regret any upset he had caused’ just came over as a spoiled child.
What did astonish me was the depth of vituperative attacks on the media and particular individuals. Even if warranted (and Ken’s version of history is not always correct) it was wrong for him to have let rip in such crass style. Ken said, in response to the almost astonished gasp at his outbursts, that that is why the public love him – ‘cos he says what he thinks.
What a shame that someone who is in a way so talented is also so flawed.
The Olympics were rather shoved into the background and the only other ‘announcement’ was about the capping of Oyster Card. Hurrah! Let’s be clear (because I have been lectured very soundly by Jay Walder – finance head for TfL) on promoting the wonders of Oyster card and not being a mean, nasty critical politician. So hats off to Oyster. I do believe it’s the future – but capping has been a long time overdue.
Up until now people making lots of journeys have gone on being charged so that their daily tally could add up to lots more than the most expensive travel card. This ‘capping’ will now mean that you will never pay more than the cheapest way of making your journeys. So – at last – well done.