In a Newsweek interview that has left him facing accusations of megalomania, Tony Blair vowed to set up an exclusive leaders club of ex-statesman.
Apparently dismissing any need for democracy, he described his ideas of leadership as being ‘close to a benevolent dictatorship’.
Mr Blair also plans on sticking around a good few years yet….Is he panning on ruling the world?
The Mail Online reports:
The ex-PM said he wanted to create a ‘cadre’ of former leaders to advise governments, saying: ‘You can get some of these guys who are fantastic executors. Why not use their talents and their experience?’
He added: ‘Why not come and help the president of this country or the prime minister of that country?’
In the profile in the American magazine Newsweek, Mr Blair also praised the authoritarian military regime in Egypt, which has been accused of human rights abuses, saying: ‘Yes, democracy is important, but democracy is not on its own sufficient. You need effective government taking effective decisions.’
The article – which described Mr Blair’s ideas of leadership as ‘close to a benevolent dictatorship’ – added that Mr Blair had concluded from the foot-and-mouth crisis of 2001, when the army slaughtered ten million sheep and cattle, that soldiers were better at emergencies than governments.
When asked about his future work plans, he grandly announced: ‘I’ve done British. I suppose where I think I can make most difference is on a global level, working on things that had interested me as Prime Minister but that I was not able to devote myself to.’
Mr Blair, who made his first intervention in the Election campaign last week with a speech backing Ed Miliband and warning about the risks of leaving the European Union, said that he hoped to stay active in both politics and business well into his 90s.
Explaining why he had no plans to retire, Mr Blair said: ‘I’ve got decades. I want to be seeing someone when I’m 91 after having had medical tests which show I’m getting younger. The thought of actually retiring is not… look, you have got to have some self-awareness of these things.
And I just know that if I do that, it would literally take me about three days before I was bored out of my mind. Took to drink or something.’
The 61-year-old has been working as a Middle East peace envoy while picking up international consultancy work that earns him millions of pounds a year.
Talking about the group of ex-leaders he hoped to deploy in his business, Mr Blair suggested that only those who had risen to the top of their countries could properly relate to each other.
He said: ‘The moment I’m talking to a new leader and I’m describing what I felt and what the challenges were, there’s a total and instant empathy, an immediate locking on to each other… and I know what it’s like because I’ve sat in the decision-making seat.’
Last night, Tory MP Andrew Bridgen claimed that Mr Blair’s words suggested he has ‘completely lost the plot’. Mr Bridgen added: ‘David Cameron recently announced that he would not serve a third term, on the grounds that all prime ministers go a bit mad after ten years.
‘It is becoming increasingly clear that Mr Blair’s decade in Downing Street has indeed left its mark, and he is now displaying the distinct signs of megalomania.’