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« Tory hypocrisy on CAP | Main | Only the "nasty party" would oust Michael Howard »


Adrian Owens

Add Burma and Zimbabwe to the list from an international perspective.

...and on the domestic front, we could do worse than adopt Maurce Saatchi's own proposal to massively increase the income tax personal allowance. Paying income tax at less than £100 per week only to see this money recirculated in the form of "tax credits" through expensive state bureaucracies is not only inefficient - it's morally indefensible.


Means testing pensioners before they can receive their benefits. Stressful and difficult for them to understand, plus vastly expensive.


Parking tickets when you only nipped out to buy a paper.

Machines that don't give change.

Beer not making you thin.

All injustices that need changing.

James Hellyer

I think you're being a little hard on Lord Saatchi, Tim. He talks a lot of sense in his pamphlet and offers a very good analysis of what went wrong with the election campaign strategy. Also his key point that we should offer a positive vision has a lot of resonance.

Like Saatchi, I want to know if any of the potential leaders have the "vision thing" (as President Bush Sr would say). Fox does. Davis may (but he hasn't said what it is). Cameron doesn't.

If we don't buy their vision, why would anyone else?


I didn't mean to be hard on Lord Saatchi, James.

I actually think his idea of finding injustices to tackle is a really important one... which is why I asked the question at the end of this post.

In that regard Edward's first posting was more helpful than his tongue-in-cheek second posting!

Simon C

Abroad: The injustice of oppressive regimes which deny their people democracy, freedom of contract and the rule of law (see Condi Rice today).

At home:

The injustice caused by welfare ("badfare") dependency and the liberal approach to social policy which has so undermined individual dignity and sustainable communities.


The injustice of people's lives ruined by crime, with little prospect of the wrong ever being righted... A little injustice (in a very real, direct sense) perpetrated every day.

James Hellyer

"I didn't mean to be hard on Lord Saatchi, James."

Like the Telegraph, you did make him sound like a bit of a nutter! But I'll let you off this time ;=)

However, I think it's clear that Lord Saatchi means for us to more than draw up a shopping list of injustices to fight, in order to provide idealistic street cred. He wants us to have and forward a vision of a better Britain and better world where those improvements are brought about by Conservative principles. The point being that a clear positive vision would give us a good intentions leeway advantage (as well as being right).

A technocratic or managerial agenda will never offer that. It relies on us being seen as the safest pair of hands. Sadly *that* relies on Labour screwing things up in a big way.

It's time we stopped being afraid of Conservatism and argued that it is best for everyone in our society, whether rich or poor, and that spreading the opportunity for successful and safe lives is better and kinder than subsidising unhappy and unsafe lives.

EU Serf

The injustice of poor inner city kids having no access to decent education.

Adrian Owens

Re: First post on this thread. This morning's lead story on the Today programme underscores the injustice on the current tax credit system.

Simon C

Wilberforce's two great causes - the abolition of slavery and the restoration of manners - still resonate today.

Slavery both in terms of human trafficking, but also the slavery of drug addiction.

The restoration of manners, in Britain, might take the form of addressing lack of trust, coarsening of public discourse, binge drinking, petty crime and antisocial behaviour, lack of respect, foul language, over-sexualisation and the death of privacy and intimacy, to name but a few.

A common theme to both is the restoration of human dignity.


Wilberforce NEARLY was a great figure in early Conservative party history, the only reason his slavery abolition proposals ever stood a chance were because they were backed by the eloquence of Pitt. Until his conversion, he was a very promising MP.

Alexander Drake

James, I don't think the Conservatives will ever have another chance if they don't think the Party are a safe pair of hands for the economy. Why would a couple buying their first home, in their late twenties, tackling a morgtage and looking at starting a family, touch a party that didn't look as though they were competent managers?

You're right in saying it's not enough in itself, but I think it's a vital part of convincing the electorate in returning a Conservative government.

James Hellyer


my point wasn't that we shouldn't be seen as competent managers (heaven forbid that we should want to look incompetent), but that we have to espouse a clear vision.

Simply saying "we'll run things better" will only work if you are seen as more competent or less incompetent. In other words, that would mean we have to sit and wait for Labour to make so many mistakes that people lose confidence in them. That could take a long time.

Embracing pure managerialism, as David Cameron's recent speech on education appeared to, gives the other side the advantage, because you are promising to work their systems and structures better than they do.

I think it makes more sense to sell our desired ends and convince people that we are competent enough to achieve them.

Yes, we want to look competent, but we cannot afford to offer just more of the same.


The biggest real injustice that is real to an awful lot of the UK population is the class war that dare not speak it's name. Not between the Upper Class, Middle Class and Working Class or between the proletariat and bourgeoisie but the war between the producer class, who create wealth and pay taxes, and the privelaged class who live off those taxes.

The cliche about there being nothing certain in life but death and taxes needs to be challenged. I don't accept that taxes, extracted by threat of force, are necessary in a civilised society. Where is the justice in being forced to contribute to government actions you consider immoral?

Robert McIlveen

A major injustice is the level of tax at the bottom end of the pay scale. Someone who works hard, earning £12-15,000 pays a monstrous amount in tax, once council tax and all the other 'stealth' (or rather 'complicated and inefficient' taxes are added in. If the government want people to work hard to avoid welfare dependency then not penalising people who do soul-destroying jobs to support themselves would be a good first step.

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