Jeffrey Archer was educated at Oxford University. He has served five years in Britain’s House of Commons, fourteen years in the House of Lords, and two in Her Majesty’s prisons, which spawned three volumes of highly acclaimedPrison Diaries. All of his novels and short story collections---including Kane and Abel, Sons of Fortune, and False Impression---have been international bestsellers. Archer is married with two children and lives in London and Cambridge.
Question: Why is sex a taboo in politics?
Jeffrey Archer: I don’t think it is a taboo. I think it is a lovely front page story. I think what you are seeing in America today is your soldier, who is dieing in Iraq, not making the front page. You see the most important political fight, in my life time, between Obama and Clinton--whoever wins that, I believe, will win the election, and will be your President.
And yet it is the Governor of New York who is dominating every front page. That will go, of course next week, but you and I our countries have this in common, and I suspect many other countries, tittle-tattle about peoples’ private lives. So much more interesting, isn’t it, than actually solving the worlds problems.
Question: Does the public have a right to know about the private lives of politicians?
Jeffrey Archer: I think they should have the right, but I think papers should be constrained about how they behave. Particularly, when you see people on television, and you see writers criticizing, condemning, when often there own lives, don’t they are looking at.
Recorded on: March 15, 2008.