Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Cameron and the Tories

Well the Tory party nationally under David Cameron seems to be all things to all people these days. With the right wing rhetoric seemingly calmed down for the moment, hog a hoody, save the planet and caring Dave seems to be the order of the day. The Conference speech day was another illustration of that, lacking in substance of course but then again like the last Tory manifesto which David Cameron wrote (and was the shortest ever), being light on policy is one of his traits.

With the Tory party, allegedly on an agenda of modernisation, is his party really behind all this change? The reaction on the faces of some of the Tory faithful to his remarks on civil partnership in his speech probably sums up many of their true feelings. A friend of mine who had the misfortune of attending Tory Conference because of work, told me that he was shocked with the age of the representatives attending conference and some of their views. While Cameron may seek to build a party representative of modern Britain, judging by his observations he has a long way to go, the blue rinse brigade was certainly out in force at Bournemouth. Going through the various tory blogs this evening is also an interesting experience, as it is clear that Cameron and Maude have provoked a large amount of negative reaction, indeed the decision not to announce tax cuts is pretty unpopular. Along with the A list candidate controversy which seems to have turned into a bit of a disaster along with looking like more and more like a PR stunt rather then any serious attempt at getting more women and ethnic minorities into Parliament. The rumblings are bubbling away and the reaction of some to a speech by Francis Maude about candidate selection the other day shows that many are not behind the strategy.

How do I rate Cameron? He is certainly an improvement on recent Tory leaders (though the competition was not up too much) and even he recognises that the Tories needed to change if they are to be electable again. He should not be underestimated and I do not believe anyone in the Labour party does, but before long he will have to answer the tough questions on what they actually stand for (which seems to be very little these days). The Tories cannot go on forever being a policy free zone or adopting policies by jumping on any popular bandwagon, which seems to be passing like what happened in the past and may happen again if they are not doing too well. Many of his predecessors since Major started with talk of modernisation, but when the polls did not start to go their way they soon retreated into their old reactionary ways.

I believe that any of the serious candidates for Labour leaders will be formidable opponents and be more then a match for David Cameron. Indeed, Tony Blair is still streets ahead of Cameron as a leader and has already been more then a match for Cameron. The other question is how long the loony right in the Tory party will stay quiet, maybe they are no so desperate for power that they will keep their true views underwraps, somehow I doubt it and indeed the sniping from the right has already started on a range of issues including tax. The current opinion polls for David Cameron do not make good reading(level pegging, one point lead in the two most recent polls) and they have a long way to go to getting anywhere near winning an election.

Like Merton Council politics, we are in for interesting times ahead and time will tell whether David Cameron becomes merely another footnote in Conservative history.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Since the miseries of Thatcher-promoted rampant individualism has been thoroughly exposed, Cameron is cleverly putting on a "social" gloss to suite the times.

But as a typical Tory, he is SELFISH to the core! (And he is not clever enough to disguise it.)

He is keen on public sector NHS. Why? -- Coz his own son, who very unfortunately suffers from cerebral palsey, directly needs its regular support and it'd likely to be too much for the Camerons to pay for the treatment. For the same reason he is keen to support schools for children with special needs.

But Cameron is not otherwise keen on public sector education : understandably because his rich family can afford the public school fees for his other kids. -- Typical Tory selfishness!

1:35 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Since the miseries of Thatcherite individualism has been exposed, Cameron is cleverly trying to put a "social" gloss.

But at core he is a typically SELFISH Tory. (And he is not clever enough to disguise it.)

Cameron is keen on public sector NHS. Why? -- Coz of his own kids, who very unfortunately suffers from cerebral palsey, needs regular NHS support and it'd be very likely too expensive to privately fund his on-going treatment. For the same reason Cameron is keen on public sector schools for children with special needs.

But Cameron is not otherwise keen on public sector education. Understandably coz his rich family can afford the private schooling fees for his other kids. -- A typically selfish Tory!

1:54 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Unfortunately for Cameron I can see his renewal of the tories falling flat on its face. They haven't been out of power for 18 years so he has to give the party something. I reckon that will be tax cuts.

12:05 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Cameron WON'T fail within his party and his rightwing will keep quiet on tax cuts just to seize power (as the Labour Left swallowed Clause 4 abolition). Soft socialists need to work hard (instead of wishfully thinking Cameron will fail) to expose Cameron vigorously, I'm afraid!

8:37 pm  
Anonymous Adele said...

Hmm and we will expose him. I just think the right wing are baying for blood. It all depends on how desperate they are for power.

10:17 pm  

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