Friday 14 December 2012

Cameron. Does he like being on the wrong side of the argument?

Why doesn't Cameron seem to understand where the argument's line is and which side to stand on?

He seems determined to pick fights on issues that he then fails to satisfactorily resolve. 
EU referendum. He won't have the In/Out that the party wants, because he is not sure he would win it. So he whips up a storm over not going to give any more powers to Europe and jolly well taking one or two back if they don't decide to let us have a bit more say in our own affairs. 

The party is annoyed by this lack of commitment to a central issue. The EU is annoyed by his foot dragging when they know full well UK won't leave the EU. Supporters are annoyed. Opposition are overjoyed. UKIP are ecstatic! There is no easy answer to our EU membership. Not addressing it doesn't help. Faking a referendum pledge won't help either.

But at least an EU referendum is a serious issue that he must dodge. 
Cameron is happy to pick fights he doesn't need to, on issues few are concerned with,  on subjects he can't satisfactorily resolve anyway. High Speed rail. Heathrow. Wind Farm subsidy.  Leveson's Press regulation. Votes for prisoners. ECHR. Gay marriage. Student immigration, Alcohol pricing. ..Drugs legalisation..

Take the 50p tax rate. The Brown government had set the trap, raising the rate from 40 to 50%, daring Cameron to reduce the tax rate back on entering office. Dave wisely decided to avoid stepping onto the rather obvious, land mine shaped mound, and opted to keep the tax high. This angered some in the party, who wanted an end to Brownite mentalness.. But others saw the political necessity of having a high tax rate if you are going to use 'all in it together' as the slogan foundation stone of your tenure.
Come  the budget the rate is cut to 45p. All the hard work in portraying millionaires as paying their fair share is lost. And the rate not returning to 40%, undermines the Tories own argument for lower taxation=growth. No one is pleased. 

This sort of wrong footed decision happens too often, on too many issues, many of which have little importance. 

Gay marriage is the obvious one. Its earth shatteringly, fundamentally important to about 2% of the country. Total number of civil partnerships formed in the UK since the Civil Partnership Act 2004 came into force is 53,417.  Not even 0.001% of couples in the country. The rest of us shrug with indifference.. Why even visit the issue? Polling must have told him he would lose more votes than he could gain, or at the very best the extra votes from homosexuals would slightly outweigh the blue rinse losses. A handful of votes. It angers the Tory party and conservative values and makes them look as out of touch as Bishops.

This particular bill enables and outlaws gay marriage at the same time. Its hopeless to everyone.

Cameron knows that he must attract a wider base or the Tories will never hold power in their own right again. He doesn't believe that a lurch right will do any good. He has some justification. Romney showed the folly of that approach.

But making useless, wrong sided compromise decisions,  isn't going to achieve anything except drift from both wings of the party.


gsd said...

All you say is true, and while Dave is the main culprit, he's not alone - Clegg's been doing the same thing. Changing FPtP Voting to something no-one wanted & House of Lords "reform" spring to mind.

What really annoys me as a voter is the sheer waste of time, money & effort all this is when we should be looking for solutions to more relevant problems.

[I think I may be turning in a Victor Meldrew type character, as I quite often read the headlines and think "Why? Why would you go there? Just leave it alone & do something, anything useful for once!"]

Sebastian Weetabix said...

He's just a typical cretin with that dreadful bluffers degree, that upper class equivalent of media studies, PPE. All he's ever done in terms of a 'proper' job is PR... and he isn't even any good at that. In his determination to upset no-one he upsets everyone.

We are governed by credulous teenagers who seem to have no powers of critical thinking whatsoever.

Anonymous said...

Bill, I think you have hit the button there, Cameron has obtained the reputation as the Turnabout Kid, when a number of politicos say this or that he has a habit of suddenly doing an about turn. Cameron has got to be his own man, Maggie (like her or loath her) did that and she was respected for it by supporters and detractors. The tories have tried to go back to 1979 and doing things they did then, after 33years the world has moved on. Come on Dave your troops are lined up try to get them moving in one direction and in step.

DtP said...

I keep on thinking he may be cleverer than he's letting on, that his gay marriage thing and EU farrago is a triangulating method to make the right scream, to make them feel pain. It's either that or he's a fucking moron so, for the benefit of doubt and considering the alternatives are just so depressing, he's a genuis! Hmm...yeah, perhaps I should work on that considering I haven't convinced myself.

Nick Drew said...

is it as simple as the wretched cult of youth ?

we insist on our 'leaders' being 37-and-a-half, so what do we expect ?

the Milipede thing will be just as awful

Electro-Kevin said...

"Cameron knows that he must attract a wider base or the Tories will never hold power in their own right again."

Which, of course, is the whole point of standing for hopeless - but nice - causes.

He has seen the economic and cultural cliff on which we teeter. Perhaps he knows that the situtation is hopeless and that the awful truth cannot be told to the British public - that this economic downturn is permanent.

Instead he plans an honourable exit in 2015 - standing for 'nice' causes and being rejected on those rather than being rejected on the grounds that he was not gifted enough to rescue Britain. In the meantime he must be hoping against hope that it all hangs together until 2015.

Time will show that the Coalition was the worst possible outcome for us. A Labour win at the last GE would have cured many ills through national bankruptcy:

- Welfarism would have become unaffordable and would have forced us to challenge many of the issues facing us - including mass immigration.

- The Tory party would have split and by now serious political representation of the majority would have been forming.

Don't fall into the trap of thinking it was Labour that brought us to this. Soaring crime, mass immigration, pension raiding etc was well under way under the last Tory administration. As a police officer I remember us (dismayed by the levels of illegal immigration) being told to turn a blind eye because officials couldn't cope.

andrew said...

A summary of 556 words :
Cameron seems to have a policy of upsetting disliked minorities, compromises and then ends up pleasing no-one.

Even shorter:
Cameron is a bit useless

In 3 words:
Cameron != Brown|Blair

Moving on:

Milliband != Brown|Blair

SumoKing said...

Yes but our democracy/politics is utter bunk. The majority of the country grow up in a red team supporting family, get the t-shirt buy the scarf or grow up in a blue team supporting family, get the t-shirt, buy the scarf and then basically stick with that.

A handful of voters in a handful of seats, where team allegiance is finely balanced are the ones who decide if this year's blue team manager get's the PM cup or gets the heave ho.

Values have bugger all to do with it other than to the caustic hard core supporters of each team vehemently rant about the other team's supporters "at least we'll get a win for the Euro Cup blah blah fcuking tosh blah" and who live in some sort of alternate reality where this sort of point scoring oppose the red team bollocks matters.

Hence why you have the blue team, that ranted and raved in opposition about personal freedom and nanny state, being slapped down for rehashing the horrifying red team’s utterly mental snooper's charter and imploding because it’s members are of the opinion that it is the sovereign right of the PM Cup winner to regulate who gets to marry whom.

Never mind that this might get them a cup win in 2015 when the 16 voters they need to score 64 goals (or seats) turn out to be massive lesbians.

Electro-Kevin said...

Family alligience to parties seems not to be the case, Sumo - the huge decline in voting ?

Jan said...

It's a distraction technique to keep us all arguing about irrelevancies when the real problem is the economy.

He knows we are in deep doo-doo but is powerless to do anything about it.

Either that or he really is a complete air-head.

DtP said...

Cranmer has a bit of a gripe! Not only is the lad an air-head, he doesn't seem to understand the constitution.....

Obviously politics is a contact sport and I guess once the next election's done he & his chancellor can be speedily executed and thoroughly alienated from ever holding senior rank again in the Conservative & Unionist Party of Great Britain & Northern Ireland but until then I guess everyone's just on modifier alert and for him to fuck about with gay marriage is probably a good thing as he won't be focussing on anything, yer know, important.

It's like the Dunning Kruger effect writ large over the nation. With all Miliband's faults, it will at least be far simpler to understand what crap he's gonna do next. I think i'd weep if I didn't still harbour terminal fury from the Brown years. For economists to speculate about opportunity cost is all well and good but this petulant teenager will perhaps realise in 20 years or so what an absolute copper bottomed prick he's been and cry acidic tears of self hatred. Either that or just fuck off to Martinique on Rothchild's dime. For shame, David, for shame - quite a few culpas required.

SumoKing said...

Electro-Kevin said...
Family alligience to parties seems not to be the case, Sumo - the huge decline in voting ?

I've gone a bit sledgehammer on the point but what I am saying is that our political system is akin to football supporters in a 2 team town. Manchester, Liverpool, Glasgow etc.

The people that still have any interest in the bland non stories of grey morons trotting out the same old shitt are the scarf wearing party faithfull. On both sides this has done them no good.

The countryside isn't benefitting hugely from blinding cheering for some parachuted muppet living part in jersey and part with her mum in london.

The depreived inner city isn't getting any better cheering for a similar parachuted muppet living in a gated knightsbridge villa.

And yet they seem surprised when their team ignores them and courts the supporters of the other team or the poor bluddy sods who are just completely sick of living in a system where you pretend to pick the least retarded of 2 potential kings for the next 5 years and you just end up hoping to fcuk you are working in the industry his mate works in so you'll at least get some cash back from all the shitt you put into the system because you had the fcuking audacity to go to university and haven't got married by 25 and you don't really want to have a bastarding mewling brat ever.

So, that's why Cameron is having the fights/playing the gsmes he is and that's also why it makes no sense to the blinkered party faithful who still think buying a season ticket somehow doesn't mean they are utter mugs.

hovis said...

It's mis-direction while the whole caboodle gently crumbles and makes sure we dint have airtime foir any real alternatives.

Generating lots of heat and little actual light, keeping the population enthralled looking at the shadow puppets while the real changes needed are ignored.

Anonymous said...

On the E.U. thing: Invoking Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty looks to be the only pragmatic way out.

Blue Eyes said...

Great post.

Let's take gay marriage as a good example of this nonsense. The genuinely liberal thing to do would be to allow gay marriage and allow the individual church and minister to decide whether to do the actual marrying. If none want to there's always the register office. Instead what does Cam do? He gets three quarters of the way there and then baulks at allowing diversity within the established church, thus upsetting people on both sides of the argument. Maybe this is why Blair went for Civil Partnerships instead of confronting the ridiculous scenario where a country with 25% of the population self-identifying as Christian has an established church. Perhaps Cameron's vicar is personally against gay people so persuaded him to go for this absurd "quadruple lock" which will definitely be challenged under the ECHR.

By doing the genuinely liberal thing he would have lost votes from the Blue Rinse wing but might have got a bit of credit from the nice vote but by this messy comprise he annoys everyone as you say. Same on Europe. Same on "cuts". Sometimes a messy compromise is the best possibly outcome but Cameron seems to set out to achieve the messiest compromise he can think of.

I think EK is right on the bigger picture. I think if we'd had a Labour government everything would have gone wrong and in 2015 we might be able to elect a more strident leader, able to deal with the fundamentals.

I would like to publicly apologise for voting for Cameron over Davis even when I preferred Davis.

Blue Eyes said...

And doesn't this all look like a sad repeat of the 1970s? How long until we suffer from a "dash for growth"?

Dick the Prick said...

@BE - seriously, nip over Cranmer's gaff - if only it were that simple. It takes effort to fuck up this bad.

Budgie said...

I hate to say I told you so ........ but I did. I wish I had been wrong. It is difficult even for me to comprehend how badly Cameron has failed. Nor can I suppose that UKIP will be able to form the next government, after the dire Rotherham result.

Whirr dooomed!