"I come from an ordinary family in an ordinary town..." - part of Gordon Brown's speech this morning when he finally announced the date of the General Election.
Gordon Brown was the son of John Ebenezer Brown, a Church of Scotland minister and Elizabeth Souter, a timber merchant's daughter.
According to some biographers he was encouraged to help local families made unemployed by local factory closures. Inspired by one of their father's sermons, along with his older brother John, he set up a tuck shop in the family's garage and started a newspaper, The Gazette, to raise money for refugees in Africa.
Now I have no problem with the 'good works' of the junior Gordon Brown, but I do have a problem with his statement of being from an ordinary family because it's untrue. He was as privileged as those he calls 'toffs'.
In Scotland he don't call anyone 'toffs' but of course Mr Brown wasn't talking to Scots, he was pleading with the tories in England.
I too came from an ordinary family in the east of Scotland but did we have a garage? In fact the only garage I can remember was the place 'rich' folks took their cars for petrol or repair. We didn't live in a house, we lived in a flat, along with at least 75% of the population of Dundee in these days. It wasn't until the 60s my father managed to buy a family home. Gordon Brown is of my generation and yet he talks about being from an 'ordinary' family.
Gordon Brown is desperate to play down his elite roots. Any Scot will admit the 'children of the manse' were to be slightly above the rest. They were part of always part of the 'elite' of Scottish society along with judges, councillors, what where considered as high profiled business people.
For Gordon Brown to profess he came from an 'ordinary' Scottish family in the 50s is a lie. One he wishes to pedal to those who don't know know about Scotland in the 50s and who believe his word. They can search on google and read the real history of Scotland in the 50s and find the Minister was certainly revered as part of the power in the community.
Time he stopped trying to claim he came from a working class background. He did not. To profess he did is appalling and an insult to those who did - and made good.