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Perhaps Osborne is all tactics no strategy after all? He will have to do better than blame abroad, Kate and Wills

Posted on 26 July 2011 | 8:07am

It will be interesting to see whether George Osborne appears anywhere near a TV camera today. And it will be interesting to see whether he allows himself to be questioned.

With the economy the most important issue on the government’s agenda, and with Osborne being the Chancellor of the Exchequer, you’d have thought he might. But Mr Osborne has developed something of a habit of allowing a high profile to develop in print, where he successfully cultivates a sense of being the power behind the throne, the strategist to tactician Cameron, the brains behind the slick(sic) PR, whilst staying well clear from too many challenging media appearances.

This approach predates the full furore over phonehacking, so his Macavity characteristics cannot be explained fully by questions he is likely to face over Andy Coulson – he it was who persuaded Cameron to hire him – and over a meeting with Rupert Murdoch in the States as the BSkyB decision was pending. But at some stage, surely he recognises this, he will have to face up to questions on both, so he may as well have his answers ready.

The economy is however more pressing, and at the very least he needs to give a cogent explanation of what his Plan A is. I keep reading that there is no Plan B, but so rare have sightings of Osborne become that I have forgotten what a proper explanation of Plan A sounds like.

Most people will not need bad growth figures to know that the economy is not doing terribly well, that prices are rising and unemployment too. The figures will represent an important moment in the debate though and Osborne cannot duck out of it.

The line running yesterday that he is likely to blame international factors is weakened by the fact that their entire anti-Labour, anti-GB campaign was based on the idea that a global crash, in so far as it affected Britain, was all Gordon’s fault. He cannot run the argument that the economy is a UK affair when it suits him – in opposition or when laying the false basis for massive cuts – and a global issue when it doesn’t, ie now.

It is all making me think he is less strategic than his fans in the press have been led to believe, and just as tactical as his boss.

One final point – I keep hearing that the Royal Wedding will cop some of the blame for sluggish growth. But amid the positive mood surrounding the wedding, we kept being told it led to tourists flocking to London and that hotels were jacking up their prices because demand was so high.

So as George looks around for blame targets, he will have to do better than Kate and Wills. That is assuming he deigns to speak to us today.

  • I cannot help seeing a sulky little schoolboy whenever I see him on the front bench in the Commons. As you rightly observe, why does he bother to sit there? His face gives away nothing and he isn’t wishing to speak to the nation. He’d do better to sit in his office and work out some realistic figures – even Plan C if it works.

    Clue to George: drop your daft VAT level in time for a spending boom for Christmas. Even having a cheaper winter coat would do me.

  • Rebecca Hanson

    Alastair, have you read my comments on your DV blogpost?  You really should.  We’re in Dalmally – off to see a hotel where one of our ancestors married a Campbell 150 years ago today later today.

    This government looking for blame targets?  Surely not?  I’ve really enjoyed being labelled as being a ‘self-interested teacher’.  It gives me such confidence in them.

  • Chris lancashire

    For most manufacturing businesses (and probably many others) April was a nightmare combining Easter with the Royal Wedding producing two long weekends in succession and reducing production and sales significantly – I doubt that loss of output was offset by the tourists. Specifically on the Wedding, the public holiday represented 1.6% working time out of the three month period.

    Mind you, you don’t always let an awkward fact get in the way of a good opinion do you?

  • A Walsh

    The other issue is that Osborne and Cameron spent 2 years running down the UK economy in Opposition. No direction, poor standards, no one seems to know what they’re doing. Now, when they’re in government, they can’t just swing around 180 degrees and tell us that WE shouldn’t be talking down the economy. The fact is that confidence isn’t there in the business world. There has been no real fiscal stimulus and the big dent in our finances has all come about because of a lack of taxation income for the government. Going hell for leather to get the economy going should have been the government’s no.1 priority – not picking on social workers and nurses who had nothing to do with the problems in the first place. Cutting back public sector capital projects (such as the schools projects) has harmed the building industry, for example. They haven’t got a clue!

  • ambrosian

    I’ve just heard on the radio the claim that hot weather in April was one of the reasons for sluggish growth. Previously, the cold weather in February was blamed. So what kind of weather do we need to get growth, for God’s sake?

    No doubt in the autumn we’ll be told that Keats’ “mists and mellow fruitfulness” have wrecked the economic recovery.

  • Olli Issakainen

    Osborne fiddles while Britain burns.
    George Osborne´s expansionary fiscal contraction is not working. It has had the opposite effect intended.
    UK consumers have effectively been thrown into recession as spending and saving has declined. Inflation is at 4.2%, and earnings growth is subdued.
    Real household disposable income (total income of working and unemployed populations after taxes and adjusted for inflation) is falling 1.4% this year after dropping 0.8% in 2010.
    UK growth for Q2 was just 0.2%. 0.8% was needed. Britain now risks its credit rating.
    British economy grew by 1.8% on Q2 and Q3 in 2010. 2011 growth will now be only 1.3%!
    Mr Osborne believes that as state contracts, economy should expand. But consumer confidence is down, and banks are not lending. Businesses are sitting on a cash pile of £72bn+, but are not investing.
    Mr Osborne has crushed the confidence!
    He falsely compared Britain with Greece. He falsely said that Britain was near bankrupt. He falsely spoke of nation´s “credit card”.
    And he falsely stated that Labour caused the “mess” by overspending, and huge cuts were therefore necessary.
    He did this in order to get support for his ideological cuts aiming at smaller state.
    But the financial crisis was caused by the failure of banks to assess their risks. Labour saved Britain from depression with Tories opposing every measure – fiscal stimulus, bank nationalisations and quantitative easing (QE) – which helped in this.
    According to IFS British public finances were in better shape before the crisis than under the Tories. Both the debt and deficit were smaller.
    According to IFS the deficit was caused by bank bailouts and recession, not Labour overspending.
    Recession was caused by global financial crisis which started in the US.
    Mr Osborne must now ease his austerity in effort to support the economy.
    Annual growth of 1.7% was needed for the government to achieve its goal to cut the borrowing to £122bn this year.
    George Osborne is being forced to borrow at least £46bn more than expected.
    Plan B will not be enough now. Using “automatic stabilizers” (like welfare payments) and second round of QE will not do.
    People are not ready to spend.
    And because of QE2 the BoE would have to raise interest rates. For government that is betting everything on monetary rather than fiscal policy, premature interest rate rise would be catastrophic.
    It is of no use to try supply-side measures. As Vince Cable has said, there is a genuine problem with demand.
    After the crash a large increase in saving by household and companies created a deficiency of demand resulting collapse in GDP which was not matched by government spending.
    So the Tory-led government is wrong, and is only making the demand problem worse with cuts.
    Growth can now only come from active government. Britain cannot cut its way out of stagnation.
    OECD says that Britain must do more to stimulate economy.
    Policy U-turn is needed immediately.
    VAT rise to 20% was a mistake at the start of the year.
    George Osborne has put politics before economics. But Mr Osborne must stop playing roulette with taxpayers´ money.
    He is in last chance saloon now.
    David Cameron claimed that without £111bn austerity package Britain would face annual interest payments of £70bn. But after all this unnecessary pain debt interest will reach £67.2bn by 2014/15!
    There is absolutely no purpose in Mr Osborne´s plan A. Because of the austerity average household debt will rise to £77,309 by 2015. Household debt (including mortages and credit card debt) as percentage of household income will rise from 160% in 2010 to 175% in 2015, or to £2,126bn.
    So much for “rebalancing” the British economy!

    Ps. Britain´s total public sector debt is now £944,3bn, 62% of GDP. If financial interventions are included, it is £2,28tn, 149% of GDP. By the next election the Tory-led government is about to overspend by more than £300bn!   

     

    • Dave Simons

      Ollie, I tagged a late reply to your post of 20 July and would appreciate your thoughts. I’m feeling a definite need to withdraw for a long spell from the heat and dust of contemporary politics and have a good rethink about a lot of things!

  • Anonymous

    I entirely agree with AC here.

    Sightings of Boy George have reduced to the stage where the Loch Ness Monster is more visible. He is especially absent when the news is not all that he would wish. If he has any shame, he won’t have recovered yet from his last Budget statement when he last invoked the “all in this together” phrase which guarenteed that much hilarity ensued.

    Now that tap-dancing ego-maniac Vince Cable is back on the up, it will be interesting to see if one can rub the other up the wrong way and provoke a response. If it wasn’t us suffering the consequences of their mismanagement, it would be quite entertaining…

  • MicheleB

    I’m afraid I remember ’79 onwards all too well and think the present would be just unbearable if the bank rate was not as low as it is (with very limited commiserations to those that live on savings interest and hopes that they also have a stash of gold to flog).

    I’d just finally taken on my present place (after being gazumped a couple of times in an un-regulated market) and remember mortgage interest rising to 18% in the early 90s and think I’m right that for a time there were being around 90k repossessions per month.

    I don’t remember Osbo anticipating/hinting at any of what’s happening now and so am doubting that his inbuilt ‘flexibility’ (otherwise known as his Plan B) is enough, especially with Parliament in recess.

    However, as I also can’t understand how Cable supported this, yet is now going on about ‘nutters’ suggesting what seems similar across the pond, I’ll confess I’m at sea.

  • Robert

    hang about. the wedding was part of the strategy to keep power. keep minds off the elections and referendum.

    it worked brilliantly as a hundred more labour votes would have seen birmingham go labour.

    in tory britain the economy comes second.

    sorry about no capitals. for some reason the text box on my android phone works wonky here at the mo.

  • Trevor Smith

    Bank of England base rate has been at 0.5% for over two years The £1 has declined by about 20% against the US$ and the euro.
    Incomes of the middle class have not increased since 2003 so wage increases are not a factor for the manufacturing sector 
    What a weak performanace by Osborne blaming the Royal Wedding public holiday (not withstanding the boost to tourist income that caused!) and the hot weather (people going out and spending!) for the poor economic performance during the last quarter.
    Not so long ago he blamed the snow (does Sweden shut down during the winter?)
    The only thing he doesn’t mention is the lack of demand in the economy caused by his own policies

  • MicheleB

    Oh wow, just heard Osbo’s summation of today’s info; no growth is ‘stability’ and yes AC, he did blame the extra bank holiday.

  • Primrose Hillbilly

    Well, Al, it looks like Osbourne has fronted up and faced the media, but to quote you – 

    “Mr Osborne has developed something of a habit of allowing a high profile to develop in print, where he successfully cultivates a sense of being the power behind the throne, the strategist to tactician Cameron, the brains behind the slick(sic) PR, whilst staying well clear from too many challenging media appearances.”

    Wouldn’t that have been identical to what the Gold Flogger used to do and how he used to portray himself ?

  • Moral Compass McManse

    “He cannot run the argument that the economy is a UK affair when it suits him – in opposition or when laying the false basis for massive cuts – and a global issue when it doesn’t, ie now.”

    But if he did he’d only be following in GB’s footsteps – I ended boom and bust; oh hang on, its all gone wrong, it was my mate at RBS’s fault and all those US sub-prime mortgages………

    Just goes to show, there is little to split NuLab and the Tories when it comes to spin……form over substance – the sort of thing you built a career on…..

  • Janete

    If this is true, which I very much doubt, why did the chancellor not anticipate the problem? I think we would have understood if the government had said they would love to give us a bank holiday but as it would cost -0.5% on the growth figures it would be unwise.

    So is this just a load of old tosh or is it true, in which case this chancellor does not understand which factors increase or decrease GDP. God help us all!

    • Chris lancashire

      ambrosian – quite agree with you – totally unnecessary Bank Holiday in an attempt to curry public favour. Fairly clear now that Osborne will miss the 1.7% annual GDP growth that was planned. Mind you, good thing he didn’t use the 3.25% that his predecessor was planning on.

  • Janete
    • Gillian C.

      Thanks for that link Janete.  Well worth a read and funny too!  or sad, depending on which way one looks at it.

  • MicheleB

    Ooops, Not Quite Methuselah here…….. to clarify!

    My “I’d just finally taken on”
    relates to the stratospheric interest rate in ’90
    (after 11yrs of similar mis-management)
    and not to my “79 onwards” as it could read.

    Signed off
    Not Quite Junior Either 🙂

  • Dougal

    Have you got your excuse for the next quarter lined up already or will you wait for the terrible news before you come up with something?

  • ronnie

    From Big Society to Big Anxiety.

  • ambrosian

    Here’s another “awkward fact”: it was the Government that decided the Royal Wedding should be a Bank Holiday. Quite unnecessarily, since thay could have married on one of the pre-existing Bank Holidays or on a Saturday, the day that most people choose for their weddings.
    And at the time the Government dismissed criticism by talking up the earnings from tourism. But they may have privately been aware that the wedding would be a convenient future excuse for poor growth figures.

  • ronnie

    This is just woolly thinking.
    Surely it’s pretty clear that when GB said ‘an end to boom and bust’ he was referring to domestic policies.
    For your parallel to work his claim would also have had to have been referring to international affairs.As it is there’s no contradiction – his plans (and everyone else’s) were blown out of the water by an unprecedented and unforeseeable international catastrophe.

  • ambrosian

    Glad you agree. Another fact is that when his predecessor left office the economy was growing at more than 2%. Maybe weather conditions were more favourable back then.

    PS: I don’t normally answer to the name ‘Janete’ but I’m sure you didn’t do it on purpose.

  • Moral Compass McManse

    Nearly there Ronnie, but not quite – was it “pretty clear”? If you are honest with yourself, you’d admit GB liked to claim credit for all sorts of things which weren’t necessarily anything to do with him – if he could have claimed credit for the global economy during the boom times and got away with it I am sure he would have. After all (much to the astonishment of the Governor of the Bank of England, the IMF, our friends in the states and Parliament to name but a few) he did claim credit for saving the ‘world’ during the recent banking crisis.

    Back to my original point: politicians are quick to claim credit when things are going well and quick to lay the blame at other people’s feet when things go wrong – GB is as guilty of this as Osborne.

    In making the post above, you’re simply repeating the party line – which suggests either you are guilty of ‘wooly thinking’ or are happy to put your intellect and critical faculties to one side and repeat the party mantra – none of it was our fault, which is a pretty poor attitude to be frank.

    McManse, former Nulab voter

    • MicheleB

      He did save the world(‘s banks) as we all know.

  • ambrosian

    Thanks for the link. It’s actually quite difficult to satirise the almost surreal nonsense being spouted by this Government. For example, a DWP spokesperson said this week that the fact that 40% of refusals of sickness benefits are overturned on appeal does not mean that the original decision was wrong!

    • Janete

      Apart from the immorality of denying genuinely sick people the benefits they need, we are apparently, paying approx. £30 million per year to process appeals following these flawed assessments.

      Incidentally no mention of any of this on today’s BBC coverage of the story, merely reference to only 7% of benefit claimants being unfit to work.

  • MicheleB

    Have you forgotten that his predecessor was not lining us up for the drastic swingeing behaviour that the wannabe-revolutionary knowitall has thrown the country in to?

    The fact that change is better when it evolves rather than when the whole tableful of cards is just tipped upside down is someting GB and his economic team understood perfectly well (not to mention they and their own driver TB understood how to take people with them, having brought about incredible changes ’97 onwards – getting people to work to and understand the pros as well as cons that come with targets).

  • MicheleB

    Does Osbo have a reputation for an immense capability with detail silly billy?

    His manner in HoC, slouching and looking vacant (not to mention his degree class) suggests not. 

  • MicheleB

    Fabulous OP there Janete 😀

  • Janete

    So the facts are:

    – only 0.2% growth in previous 9 months compared with
    – increase of 2.1% in previous 9 months

    – OBR prediction in June 2010 was growth of 2.6% for 2011
    – this figure revised down several times to 1.7%
    – chancellor will now miss this target
    – will have to borrow at least 46bn more than predicted (see Ollie’s 
      post above)

    Does anyone think he knows what he’s doing?

  • Peter C

     Olli, I admire your persistence. Its great that there is someone like you who is prepared to keep up the rhetoric deploring the mess that this unscrupulous, deceitful  and clueless government is making of our economy. Explode the myths, hit them with thye facts. Good on ya.

  • Dave Simons

    Didn’t Boy George once have a hit with:

    ‘Camer-Camer-Camer-Camer-Camer-Camer-CAM-ER-ON!
    He comes and goes – he comes and go-o-o-oes!’

  • Dave Simons

    If I may quote the Westminster blog:’The
    weather was slightly too cold at the start of the year and a bit too
    warm later on; and quite windy as well. The tragic events in Japan have
    undermined our crucial supply chains. And the Royal Family have only
    themselves to blame by organising a wedding – instigating an economically disruptive Bank Holiday – at such a sensitive time.

    I could point the finger elsewhere. Lady Gaga went on tour during the
    spring, which kept a significant number of productive units away from
    their desks. Nick Clegg indulged in a five-day visit to Brazil, when he
    could have been marshalling the forces of economic activity back home.
    It has reached my attention that the plots in Coronation Street have
    been sub-standard of late.

    There were the wrong types of leaves on the line. And the dog ate my homework.’

    With that last sentence in mind I’ll just add that:

    On this blog
    we don’t do dog.

  • ronnie

    Woollier and woollier.
    Surely you’re not saying that Gordon Brown, during a speech about Labour’s handling of the UK economy, really meant that the British Labour Party was in fact responsible for the entire economic policy of the whole world?
    But if you’re not, I’m afraid your reply makes no sense.
    On the other hand, it’s undoubtedly true that Brown’s and Darling’s response to the crisis led the way in world economics and saved the situation from being a whole lot worse than it might otherwise have been. That’s a matter of historical fact and it’s not too far a stretch to call it ‘saving the world’.
    My intellect and critical faculties are fully engaged, thank you, and I’m not repeating any party line – I’m not a member of any party. I’m happy to criticise when criticism is merited.
    But mainly, I’m interested in facts and clear thinking.

  • Ehtch

    Yes, more feckless excuses from the pasty faced one. They are getting quite wearing, aren’t they?

    In three months time for Q3 GDP growth figure, they will blame that people have gone on holidays, for pete’s sake, even though more will be having their hols in this country with the way things are, and spending money in this country instead. And oh yes, it has been quite rainy lately too, hasn’t it?.

    These excuses are true signs of desperation from not knowing how to be in control of the economy. It is plain to see.

  • Ehtch

    I certainly don’t think he knows what he is doing. He hasn’t a clue, it is obvious, and these fishing for lame excuses is really pathetic

  • Ehtch

    …. to Big Balls Up.

  • Gilliebc

    Hello Dave,

    I think we all need to re-evaluate at certain points in our lives. i.e. to take stock of what is important and what is not and to separate the wheat from the chaff and so on.

    I’m only guessing now, but I would imagine that the tragic loss of your young niece plus what is happening or has happened to one of your colleague’s may have some bearing on your need for a period of introspection.

    For selfish reasons I am hoping that your time spent thinking doesn’t mean that you won’t be commenting here for a while.  Your comments whether serious or more light-hearted always give me at least food for thought.

    However, if you need time away even from making comments,  I’m sure we would all respect and understand that decision.

  • Primrose Hillbilly

    ..and doesn’t he go on to use the McCavity comparison that was used so frequently about Gordy as well, Mickster?

    Wow, I wonder if, after all those nasty little spats between Gordo and Charlie and our man Al, including the personality defects slur, Big Al is showing his soft cuddly side and trying to re-write a memo from the Ministry of Defence – oooooops, I meant a bit of history, and make the same allegations agaisnt Osbo, as were made against Gordy?

    Isn’t it all a bit like people trying to kiss and make up through the things that they say about each other in the Press? – Except this is Big Al’s very limited circulation epistle to the true supplicants, so not really reaching a very wide audience.

  • Robert

    Though I do not do Twitter, I saw your tweet for the BPS paper on Bipolar. It’s proved a cracking read – there’s little or no psychomedicobabblespeak – and it brings in lots of different strands.

    Thank you – I believe it’s still available to sign up to see for free on the BPS website until the end of the first week in August.

    One of the more interesting points is that often Bipolar sufferers come from high achieving families. And that begs the question as to whether having a trace of Bipolar in one’s makeup is part of nature’s way of ensuring societal progress/survival.

  • Primrose Hillbilly

    Oh, and Micky, I wouldn’t confuse an ability to spew out statistics with an immense capability with detail, all that does is say that the one eyed son of the Manse couldn’t see the wood for the trees, which is why we are where we are.

    Being Chancellor is about Macro Management.

    At least Gideon turns up to the House, unlike some MP who’s been a disgraceful representative of his constituents for quite some time now, woudn’t you agree? A bit like………….who was it now…….McCavity?

    Gotta go, I need to save the world……………………………banking system.

  • Moral Compass McManse

    “That’s a matter of historical fact and it’s not too far a stretch to call it ‘saving the world’.” LOL – remarkable revisionism – not much clear thinking going on there I’m afraid. Keep going – you might get there one day.

  • MicheleB

    You’re a sad case mcmm, bit of a wannabe spinner.

    Can I prescribe some truth?
    http://www.amazon.co.uk/Beyond-Crash-Overcoming-Crisis-Globalisation/dp/0857202855

    Question is, can your prejudice cope?

  • MicheleB

    You miss so many hints that point you towards facts silly billy, even after C&Ping.

    There is no ‘u’ in Osbo’s name.

  • MicheleB

    Yep silly billy, being someone that’s not good at detail yourself you imagine that it’s possible to macromanage (one word) without understanding the jobs/skills of those you are supposed to manage.

    Cameron has been shown up for the failing, he thought that pretending to be ‘macromanaging’ was enough and discovered he was wrong. 

    Osbo’s in for the same fate, trashing our infrastructure as if it’s no more than a Bulliboys’ outing. 

    Problem is that poor Osbo only has £3m to make good with, it might have been enough at an Oxford hostelry, it’s not enough for the state.

  • Janete

    ‘the one eyed son of the Manse’

    Doesn’t this comment say everything you need to know about Tory supporters? 

  • Gilliebc

    Ehtch, I don’t disagree with anything you say about Gideon.  But, have you, or anyone else for that matter considered the awful possibility that he knows exactly what he is doing?

  • ronnie

    I bow to your superior intellect

  • Ehtch

    Very good point. Deliberate masochism you could call it. We are all being given a good public school type flogging, or whatever they call it. Politics for The City and not the people?

  • Dave Simons

    Thanks Gillie. I made the point on Ollie’s 20 July post that I thought we were just going round in circles and repeating ourselves – Ollie was suggesting an ethical and state-regulated capitalism, which sounds to me like what Keynes was advocating over sixty years ago and which became orthodoxy (grudgingly accepted by mainstream Tories) from the late 1940s to about 1976. Now the orthodoxy is Neo-Liberalism, (less grudgingly accepted by New Labour) which sounds to me a bit like what Adam Smith was advocating more than two centuries ago – except that Adam Smith was less narrow and one-sided than some of the recent religious devotees of Neo-Liberalism. We’re still stuck with the latter orthodoxy even though Keynes had a revival after 2007/8. Democratic ownership and control of the means of production, distribution and exchange – which I think is what Marx had in mind when he talked about ‘communism’ (as opposed to its diametrical opposite of bureaucratic state control, as practiced in the former Soviet Union, China, Cuba, etc) – has not happened, and I don’t see much evidence to show that what Marx called ‘the proletariat’ wants it. I hoped that 2007/8 would cause much serious debate about the capitalist mode of production, but I haven’t noticed much, especially in that glorified ping-pong match that takes place daily in the House of Commons.

  • Primrose Hillbilly

    Well d’ya know what, Mickster, I just checked out Google, and while the Wikipedia entry showed the one word, the rest of the entries on the first page came up the way I tried it, so whaddya know?

    Maybe I’m just born lucky

    Are you really sure you mean only £3m?  – You’re absolutely righ. It’s not an awful lot of money at all. £1 Mln extra to any Ministry’s budget is really very small change indeed. It goes in a few days.

     Are you exaggerating the state we’re in, by saying he’s only got £3M to make good with, or would it be that in your eagerness to put me in my place, you lost a bit of the grasp of detail detail yourself?

    Bulliboy – probably not original, but still quite amusing.

    Tee Hee.

    .ttyped the word put the worc

  • Loquitir

    The treasury media and communications strategy is present a lot of background noise around the performance of the economy and the government’s economic policy. I would normally have said strategy but the clearly don’t have one. So, the concentrate on the Tory belief in reducing welfare because there so many people cheating the system, there is work out there that should be an alternative to unemployment or illness; hat the public sector is over paid and unproductive, business needs time and incentives to create jobs, the NHS is a cost to great and only the private sector can save it from itself; education is bettered delivered at a lower unit cost free from state regulation.

    The lunacy of their economic policy gets lost in all their noise about the state being too big and over regulated.

    There is much more regulation in the US at a state level e.g. Labour law, health and safety.

    We are now getting big society soldiers and the army cut.

    We wil shortly get big society teachers, police officers, nurses, doctors and so on.

    None of the tory led poliicy is in the community interest but busi in interests of the conservative party and it’s business interest.

    David Millibamd offered an articulate vision of a labour party anchored in the community interest which we never got to see.

    I am afraid the most worry aspect of the Osborne policy is that Ed Milliband doesn’t have any articulated public campaign against it. The longer he stays the worse it’s going to get because the Tory noise is getting louder and Milliband’s voice is getting quieter.

  • MicheleB

    Am on topic with the title if not with the thread. 

    Am re-listening to Any Qs and am seriously amazed that such dumb people can be selected as Tory candidates….. never mind elected as MPs. 

    The former must be down to their covert ‘A list’ and the latter just shows how some voters misuse their rights, voting against rather than for .

    Quite apart from the Tory woman’s common snide comparison of leftism with Hitler’s ‘socialism’ (that cheap tacky pretence of thinking similar words in different languages mean exactly the same) …. her lack of alertness is a joke, not quite as funny as Nadine Dorries who I think actually had to be shaken awake a couple of weeks ago but ye gods …. these people are paid too well to perform so shoddily.

    It’s PAINful
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b012r9kz/Any_Questions_29_07_2011/

  • MicheleB

    Am on topic with the title if not with the thread. 

    Am re-listening to Any Qs and am seriously amazed that such dumb people can be selected as Tory candidates….. never mind elected as MPs. 

    The former must be down to their covert ‘A list’ and the latter just shows how some voters misuse their rights, voting against rather than for .

    Quite apart from the Tory woman’s common snide comparison of leftism with Hitler’s ‘socialism’ (that cheap tacky pretence of thinking similar words in different languages mean exactly the same) …. her lack of alertness is a joke, not quite as funny as Nadine Dorries who I think actually had to be shaken awake a couple of weeks ago but ye gods …. these people are paid too well to perform so shoddily.

    It’s PAINful
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b012r9kz/Any_Questions_29_07_2011/

  • MicheleB

    £3mn is allegedly his personal fortune silly billy (and therefore the explanation for the rest of my paragraph).

    It seems more than a litte low to me but I suppose it only relates to what’s registered in this country; he does after all enjoy ‘private banking’ which, by its very nature, is usually off-shore.

  • MicheleB

    £3mn is allegedly his personal fortune silly billy (and therefore the explanation for the rest of my paragraph).

    It seems more than a litte low to me but I suppose it only relates to what’s registered in this country; he does after all enjoy ‘private banking’ which, by its very nature, is usually off-shore.

  • MicheleB

    Oooops, bit of an own goal there, being a silly sod reading and listening to radio as well as to music.  Ahem, fortunately Melissa Kite is not an MP, whe was not on the panel as its Tory, George Younger was there.
    She’s ‘just’ a Spectator columnist.  Rest of the post stands.