« Graeme Archer is unwell (Christmas shopping) | Main | Andrew Lilico: Things to believe and to disbelieve about climate change »


Moral minority

"We seem to be in singularly un-visionary times, whether here in the UK, or in the US, or in Europe. We have branding campaigns, and policy-tinkering, but no mission. Many will think this a good thing. Missions and visions can do great harm as well as great good. The last thing we want is a revolution when things are pretty much ok as they are."

He's right about vision but people no longer that things are okay. If Cameron wants to hammer Brown and the new Lib Dem leader, he must offer an alternative vision. So far, he has tried to be the heir to Blair, the liberal Conservative and the Lib Dems' future ally. That is reacting to our opponents' and the BBC's agenda rather than setting our own.

David Cameron must show real leadership and set out a new positive vision that will excite voters. Faced with a future Conservative government and the need for exclusives, the leftist media will be unable to be so hostile.

Posted by the REAL Moral minority, not the Lib Dem impersonator.

Malcolm Dunn

I've a lot of sympathy for your view Stefan. The long and the short of it appears that most people appear to be satisfied with Britain as it is and politicians mostly appear not to want to frighten the horses and adopt a steady as she goes course. Things may change quite quickly if we go into a recession and we may see much of the anger that was directed at us in the 1980's and 90's may be now directed at Labour.
Personally I hope that we do possess a strong sense of mission, that our commitment to social responsibility becomes a reality rather than a phrase and that the dead hand of the state begins to recede at last.
However 'missions' are easier to sell when in government rather than in opposition.

Tony Makara

The next election will be about two visions. The Labour vision of the top-down big state approach and the Conservative vision of power being devolved to communities and independent groups. We can be certain that if Gordon Brown were to win a mandate he would see that as a green light to push ahead with far greater levels of statism than we are seeing even today. The next election will determine which path our country is to take, more state or less state. More government or less government. The voting public must be made to see this at the next election.

Moral minority

How is the Priority List compatible with "Conservative vision of power being devolved to communities and independent groups"?

The Party does not even trust its own local officers and activists to choose the best candidates (who are, in fact, not on the Priority List). There is massive interference from the Candidates Department.

Cameron needs to practice what he preaches!


I suspect that if it is handled right over the next couple of years, localism will be a big issue, especially with the local authority taking around 10% of people's income (rule of thumb averages)

People will expect to have a far greater say, and far more visibility in how, why and who the tax is raised from and wehere it goes.


"We seem to be in singularly un-visionary times, "

No, its just that it isn't taking place within Political circles. It seems to me that the political parties are fighting over stale ground while the debate has shifted focus, eg the issues of environment, housing and pretty much everything else comes down to over population, yet there isn't a political party wanting to raise the issue, probably because they are all locked into one or other vested interest groups, eg CBI, EU, internationalism which the result that they don’t engage in the debate and the issues they do engage in makes one feel that they are failing to get to the heart of the issue, yet out side the Westminster village the debate is being had, for any phone in program, letters pager of the newspaper, or message board you will find people are out there having the debate, in fact I get the feeling the debate is almost over, for the argument that there should be a population policy is pretty much won, unfortunately Westminster hasn't begun to think about it.


Iain (Dec 17, 2007; 03:17 PM), you have raised a recurrent theme of divergence between the public declaration of what they see as in need of attention and what the politicians think are of concern over a number of issues. Your criticism of the politicians’ failure “to get to the heart of the issue” is probably a result of the custom to sanitise controversial debates and dilute any solution in deference to wider sensitivities.

Perhaps there is a lack of conviction, or courage?

David Belchamber

Stephan, maybe the big vision for the tories is to think small, not only because it would be diametrically opposed to Brown's vision (if any) but it would also put into practical effect the dictum of that great political commentator, John Cole, who said:

"Politics is only important through the effect it has on the lives of ordinary people".

If the tories look at the least advantaged people in our society and say:

"those who have advantages at the moment will not suffer, if we ignore them for a few years and just concentrate on the 5 to 8 years olds who can't read, write or count properly.
If we give the FSA the task of acting against irresponsible mortgage lenders, if we simplify the tax and benefit system, so that people are encouraged to earn sufficient to cover their basic needs without having to seek benefits, if we give local authorities the responsibility for managing their community, if we follow Sir Gerry Robinson's example in reforming the management of hospitals etc etc".

Obviously the work of government cannot escape dealing with the big issues as well (climate change, threats of terrorism, the EU etc) but working from the bottom up would I think strengthen and increase our lead over Nulab and see off any strong challenge from the Libdems, who would be more likely to ally themselves to us in the event of a hung parliament.


Tony, I think this is a good bet: "The next election will be about two visions. The Labour vision of the top-down big state approach and the Conservative vision of power being devolved to communities and independent groups."

If this becomes a clearly and strongly communicated vision, it would certainly get me excited. It needs some real propulsion. I know it's what we conservatives tend to think, but it needs to be made concrete and convincing. It needs to add up to a real shift of power. If 2008 could be about this, I would be happy.

Moral minority

I think that localism is a distant prospect. Britain, after the signing of the Lisbon Treaty this week, will be run from Brussels. The EU Super-State is here now.

Our Parliament will merely sign off legislation required by EU directives. The EU will by-pass Westminster to impose its will through Edinburgh, Cardiff, Belfast and City Hall, London.

If you want localism, Britain must leave the EU. Only a truly sovereign Westminster Parliament can devolve more powers.


Stephan (Dec17, 2007; 07:52 PM) might it not be that political plagiarism, such as that seen famously with inheritance tax, be a retarding effect on the desire to bring forth distinctive and much needed new approaches to matters such as the benefits system and the NHS?


Yes, Teck, it's a good point, but you have to get around that. You can't accept that limitation, otherwise you couldn't engage in real debate at all.

The comments to this entry are closed.

  • Tracker 2
  • Extreme Tracker