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Tuesday, 14 April, 1998, 13:39 GMT 14:39 UK
Ben tells Labour not to cool it
Oasis
The Gallagher brothers from Oasis have both visited 10 Downing Street
The stand-up comic and writer, Ben Elton, has criticised the Labour Party for trying to be too "trendy" while in government.

The writer of The Young Ones and West End shows, Popcorn and Gasping has been one of the party's staunchest showbiz supporters, but warned: "The most gruesome aspect of the current Cool Britannia thing is the way that politicians are trying to latch on to it."

"I don't mind Radio 1 trying to be trendy, but I can do without the Labour Party wanting to strut its funky stuff.

"I did not vote Labour because they've heard of Oasis and nobody is going to vote Tory because William Hague has got a baseball cap."

Writing in the Radio Times, Elton adds: "It's sad, it really is. Leaders should never, ever try to look cool - that's for dictators.

"The reason Saddam Hussein always wears combat gear is because he thinks it looks cool."

The Prime Minister, Tony Blair, has been criticised by some media watchers for inviting pop stars, comedians and soap stars to Downing Street for evening drinks parties.

A previous Labour Prime Minister, Harold Wilson, was criticised for trying to associate his government with The Beatles during the 1960s.

See also:

03 Apr 98 | powerhouse
Cool Britannia hits the street
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