Gordon has been busy wielding the reshuffle knife with real aplomb. Despite the "pyschological flaws" or maybe because of them, Gordo has taken admirably to the shedding of Bliarite gristle and fat. TB never could cut and slice with any flair and preferred mincing his way through serial reshuffle failures (to whit, Mags Beckett as Foreign Secretary). At least, GB has disposed of the hapless Beckett. It seems like a relatively "new" Cabinet has just about slithered into sight. Or has it?
Someone called Jacqui Smith, formerly the Chief Whip by all accounts, is now Home Secretary. David Miliband becomes the youngest Foreign Secretary since the appointment of the 38-year-old Dr. David Owen in 1977 (we all know how well that ended up). Darling's the Chancellor of the Exchequer (more like Co-Chancellor given that GB won't be sacrificing any Treasury turf). Brownite lickspittle Balls is to head up the newly-created Department for Children and Schools. His missus, Ms. Cooper also has some kind of role as Housing Minister, without full Cabinet rank. Hain and Johnson have been shifted sideways. Ruth Kelly and Blears (against all the odds) remain in the Cabinet. A former, cough, BBC man, James Purnell becomes Culture Secretary. Benn the Younger is promoted to Environment. The Machievelli of NuLabour, Jack Straw stages something of a come back. Fine.
But what in the name of God is Geoff Hoon (see here, here and here ) doing back in the Cabinet as Chief Whip and why is Des Browne (see here , here , here) still Defence Secretary? Where are "all the talents" with that pair? Everyone thought that these two co-conspirators in NuLabourism were serving out their last days on political death row. Gordo says he is all about change. Don't believe the hype.