You don’t often find me agreeing with the Tory party, but one of their accusations against the Tony Blair government was his habit of placing style over substance. The Blair regime had a nasty habit of making big slick policy announcements of good news, often repeating the same good news multiple times, but then burying bad news on a busy news day.
However over the last few years the Tory party has if anything out spun the Blair spin masters. For example, despite all the evidence which shows that the bulk of immigrants to the UK are only here to work, pay taxes and contribute to the UK economy, they have gone to great lengths to crack down on such phantom threats to the UK, purely to appease the UKIP bigot brigade.
And more recently the Tories have been talking about withdrawing from the European convention on human rights to keep the head bangers happy. While they have attempted to put a democratic spin onto it, by suggesting that parliament should have the right of veto over the courts. This ignores the fact that the whole point of a human rights act is to stop politicians meddling. After all, what’s to stop a bunch of politicians scared by tabloid headlines into voting to approve torture, or delay an election indefinitely until the present crisis is over. Anyone with a vague understanding of how democracy is supposed to work would understand this.
The recent cabinet reshuffle is yet another example. The Tories have long polled badly with women voters, particularly given recent policies such as child benefit caps, which is hardly surprising for a party of conservative old men. So in that context one can see why Cameron suddenly felt compelled to promote so many women into cabinet. As I’ve pointed out previously, the Tory party has long been not exactly pro-women. Of course that said, given that Gove is sufficiently incompetent to lock himself in a toilet, its hardly a huge surprise Cameron wants him to go.
And then there’s the thorny issue of the Scottish question. As Ive pointed out in prior posts there are many good arguments before and against independence, but the Tories have chosen to fight this referendum on wishy washy matters, such as this week promising to build a space port in Scotland (beam me up Scotty ;D).
This incidentally is an absurd suggestion. The best spot to launch a payload into orbit is as near to the equator as possible as this afford maximum benefit from the earth’s rotation and thus a much higher payload. Given how expensive space launch is, its always going to be cheaper to simply ship a satellite to a site such as Kourou or Florida, than launch it in the UK. The only benefit of having a launch site in the UK is national pride.
It might be sometime to go before the election, but clearly the Tories are already on the campaign trail. Expect a give away budget (and a rise in the deficit which the Tories justified their cuts to reduce) and more of the very Punch and Judy politics that Cameron bemoaned Blair for.