Richard Ingrams: Resigning can be the prelude to glittering success

Notebook

Share
Related Topics

David Cameron has suffered a telling blow with the loss of his much cherished press adviser.

But in a world where nothing succeeds like failure, Andy Coulson has no reason to fear for his future. He should take heart from the example of his labour predecessor Alastair Campbell, who ended up resigning but who is now riding high, publishing books and even appearing regularly on the BBC, an institution which during his career at Downing Street he did more to damage than anyone else in our time.

Or let Coulson reflect on the career of his fellow former tabloid editor Piers Morgan, also forced to resign, in his case after publishing fake photographs of British army atrocities in the Daily Mirror. Morgan, just like Coulson, had seen two of his reporters put on trial and one of them sent to prison, not for phone hacking but for profiting from the buying and selling of shares which they themselves were tipping in the Mirror's City pages. And, like Coulson, Morgan insisted that he hadn't known what was going on even though he had bought the shares himself. And in any case, he insisted, the authorities had cleared him of any wrongdoing.

Today Piers Morgan is also riding high, publishing books and diaries (just like Campbell) and appearing on TV on both sides of the Atlantic to the acclaim of all the critics. Coulson maybe downhearted right now but all the signs suggest that he could have a shining future ahead of him.

Be prepared for the cyber war

While generals and politicians argue about the future role of our armed services, a few clever men have been quietly suggesting that the wars of the future will not be fought on the battleground but in cyberspace.

Not too much attention is currently given to these prophets of doom. But when one also reads that whole areas of our life, like the supply of energy, are nowadays entirely controlled by computers, it isn't hard, even for those of us ignorant of the science involved, to see how vulnerable we are to hostile interference.

Not much attention, either, has been given to the news that the cyber war has in fact already started. It has been reported, if not officially confirmed for obvious reasons, that American and Israeli scientists working side by side have managed to introduce a computer worm known as Stuxnet into the computers being used to create Iran's nuclear enrichment facility, thus causing it to malfunction. If the Iranians can produce a nuclear bomb, as is claimed, they can presumably knock out a few computers without too much difficulty. And the UK, which has very publicly allied itself with America, and also with Israel, could well become a prime target. And it won't wash to complain about the war, seeing that it was our side that started it in the first place.

Still refuse to believe all the hype

I have made it a rule in life to assume that when everyone is agreed that such and such a play, a film or a book is an undoubted masterpiece, it won't be any good and should therefore be ignored.

I have seldom come across such general unanimity as there is at present about the film The King's Speech. Not only have all my friends and colleagues already been to see it, they all of them have nothing but praise for the story, the stars and especially the Bafta nominee Mr Colin Firth.

How is it that a film about the late and distinctly uncharismatic King George VI, and his struggle to overcome his stammer, can be of any special significance compared with all the other stories you could make a film about? Is there perhaps an element of snobbery that explains the appeal of this film? Such considerations are irrelevant considering that my main objection to the film is just that everyone thinks it is brilliant.

And you haven't even seen it, my critics will say. I have to agree but I will only remind them how right I was last year about Toy Story 3. Because here again was a film about which everybody, the critics especially, raved. But because I had so enjoyed Toy Story 1 and 2 I broke my rule and saw it. And it was all a terrible disappointment. I should have known better.



React Now

Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Guru Careers: Software Developer

£35 - 40k + Benefits: Guru Careers: We are seeking a Software Developer (JavaS...

SThree: Trainee Recruitment Consultant / Resourcer

£18000 - £23000 per annum + Commission: SThree: As a Trainee Recruitment Consu...

Ashdown Group: UI Developer - (UI, HTML, CSS, JavaScript, AngularJS)

£25000 - £40000 per annum: Ashdown Group: UI Developer - (UI, JavaScript, HTML...

Ashdown Group: Graduate UI Developer - HTML, CSS, Javascript

£25000 - £30000 per annum: Ashdown Group: Graduate UI Application Developer - ...

Day In a Page

Read Next
 

The 10 biggest myths about abortion

Ann Furedi
Students protest outside the University of London on 9 December 2010 against government proposals to let universities triple tuition fees  

'I’m gonna kill this lot', and other things a police officer shouldn't be saying during a protest

Hannah Dee
Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Dominic Rossi of Fidelity says his pressure on business to control rewards is working. But why aren’t other fund managers helping?
The King David Hotel gives precious work to Palestinians - unless peace talks are on

King David Hotel: Palestinians not included

The King David is special to Jerusalem. Nick Kochan checked in and discovered it has some special arrangements, too
More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years

End of the Aussie brain drain

More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years
Meditation is touted as a cure for mental instability but can it actually be bad for you?

Can meditation be bad for you?

Researching a mass murder, Dr Miguel Farias discovered that, far from bringing inner peace, meditation can leave devotees in pieces
Eurovision 2015: Australians will be cheering on their first-ever entrant this Saturday

Australia's first-ever Eurovision entrant

Australia, a nation of kitsch-worshippers, has always loved the Eurovision Song Contest. Maggie Alderson says it'll fit in fine
Letterman's final Late Show: Laughter, but no tears, as David takes his bow after 33 years

Laughter, but no tears, as Letterman takes his bow after 33 years

Veteran talkshow host steps down to plaudits from four presidents
Ivor Novello Awards 2015: Hozier wins with anti-Catholic song 'Take Me To Church' as John Whittingdale leads praise for Black Sabbath

Hozier's 'blasphemous' song takes Novello award

Singer joins Ed Sheeran and Clean Bandit in celebration of the best in British and Irish music
Tequila gold rush: The spirit has gone from a cheap shot to a multi-billion pound product

Join the tequila gold rush

The spirit has gone from a cheap shot to a multi-billion pound product
12 best statement wallpapers

12 best statement wallpapers

Make an impact and transform a room with a conversation-starting pattern
Paul Scholes column: Does David De Gea really want to leave Manchester United to fight it out for the No 1 spot at Real Madrid?

Paul Scholes column

Does David De Gea really want to leave Manchester United to fight it out for the No 1 spot at Real Madrid?
Season's finale brings the end of an era for top coaches and players across the continent

The end of an era across the continent

It's time to say farewell to Klopp, Clement, Casillas and Xavi this weekend as they move on to pastures new, reports Pete Jenson
Bin Laden documents released: Papers reveal his obsession with attacking the US and how his failure to keep up with modern jihad led to Isis

'Focus on killing American people'

Released Bin Laden documents reveal obsession with attacking United States
Life hacks: The innovations of volunteers and medical workers are helping Medécins Sans Frontières save people around the world

Medécins Sans Frontières's life hacks

The innovations of volunteers and medical workers around the world are helping the charity save people
Ireland's same-sex marriage vote: As date looms, the Irish ask - how would God vote?

Same-sex marriage

As date looms, the Irish ask - how would God vote?
The underworld is going freelance: Why The Godfather's Mafia model is no longer viable

The Mafia is going freelance

Why the underworld model depicted in The Godfather is no longer viable