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In saying TB achieved nothing compared with coalition, at least Gideon shows sense of humour if zero strategy for growth

Posted on 8 October 2012 | 2:10pm

I missed Little Lord Fauntleroy’s address to the faithful, but it appears I did not miss a new strategy for growth. So that’s two years in a row on that front, Gideon.

It is heartening, however, to hear that despite being the most unpopular Chancellor since Norman Lamont, and the most incompetent Chancellor since, er, sorry Norman … Ozzie has not lost his sense of humour.

Did you hear the one about how he justified his and the government’s growing unpopularity when he spoke to the Tory conference this morning? …

‘I’d rather have these difficulties because we’re tackling these big challenges, than wake up like Tony Blair did, after a decade in power and discover he didn’t achieve anything.’

Er … now, where do we start with that one Georgie Boy?

Bank of England independence, anyone?

Minimum wage?

Sure Start?

Scottish Parliament (after a hundred years of trying by others), Welsh Assembly?

Civil partnerships?

End of Milosevic, and of Saddam?

Peace in Northern Ireland?

Biggest hospital and school building programme since the foundation of the welfare state?

Securing the Olympics for London?

Smoking ban?

Huge boost in aid for Africa, writing off 100 per cent debt of poorest countries?

Record levels of literacy and numeracy in schools?

Paternity leave?

Child benefit increases?

Winter fuel payment and free TV licences for pensioners?

Cleanest rivers, beaches, drinking water and air since before the industrial revolution?

Free breast cancer screening for all women aged between 50-70?

The New Deal which helped over 1.8 million people into work?

Free entry to national museums and galleries?

Heart disease deaths down by 150,000 and cancer deaths down by 50,000?

Cutting long-term youth unemployment by 75 per cent?

Free nursery places for every three and four-year-old?

I could go on and on and on, but will leave it there for now.

Over to Gideon and his pals to tell me what similar achievements they have so far to their name.

A few starters ..

Election wins … zero.

Economic targets met … zero.

Likelihood of meeting strategic goal of deficit being reduced in single Parliament … zero.

Reputation for competence … oh, I’d better stop now, you get the point. Over to you.


  • http://www.patrickjames.co.uk/ Patrick James

    Although I like to comment here in the AC blog I was never a huge fan of Tony Blair. However he was a giant compared with the current figures in power.

    One of the things I really did and do like about Tony Blair is that he did have a great deal of humility. This is not an aspect which is included in the image of him in the press, but I do know it to be true. I grew up in Northern Ireland and I take a great deal of interest in Northern Ireland affair. One of the greatest problems the UK government has had in dealing with Northern Ireland is that the politicians don’t generally take the time to sit down and really work out what is going on in the Northern Irish situation. Uniquely Tony Blair did do this. That is how he achieved the peace in Northern Ireland. He sat down and carefully read about the situation and then thought through all his possible actions. Other UK politicians always “come at” Northern Ireland with pre-conceived ideas, often not very informed. The problems did not fit with their pre-conceived ideas and so they failed to make progress.

    Before David Cameron became PM he made some arrangements in Northern Ireland with the Unionist Party. I watched all of his dealings at that time and it was the biggest muck up I’ve ever seen. He ended up completely alienating the conservative party support he had in the province, and hugely annoying the (currently) biggest unionist party (DUP). It was deeply stupid and entirely due to the fact that he did not have the simple humility to sit down and read about the situation.

  • Olli Issakainen

    Britain can Deliver – Osborne cannot!
    In 1997 UK debt was £347.8bn or 40.1% of GDP. 2007-08 it was 36.5% under the New Labour.
    Figures for cyclically-adjusted current budget deficit were 2.2% under Major and 0.6% under Labour.
    Between 1997 and 2007-08 structural deficit averaged zero. 2007 New Labour borrowed only £35bn.
    Financial crisis in Britain was caused by RBS (bad acquisition = ABN Amro) and Lloyds (risk management failure) – not by Downing Street.
    George Osborne supported Labour´s spending plans near the end of 2008. He wanted even less regulation over banks!
    According to IMF paper 1% of GDP fiscal consolidation REDUCES real private consumption over the next two years by 0.75%, while real GDP declines by 0.62%.
    According to Nobel-winning Neo-Keynesian economist Paul Krugman this proves BEYOND DOUBT that plan A cannot work.
    Britain is in double-dip recession. IMF says the UK economy will shrink 0.1% this year.
    Deficit has WIDENED 22% 2012.
    Borrowing will go up £600bn in just five years of the coalition – £150bn more than the forecast.
    Yes, in 1972 Heath changed course. But so did Mrs T later despite saying that lady´s not for turning.
    As for 1981, this budget destroyed much of British manufacturing forever.
    Part-time chancellor has only created part-time jobs. Unemployment is high.
    Inflation above the target of 2%.
    We are not all in this together. The chancellor cut the top rate tax to 45%.
    Debt is not coming down as percentage of GDP.
    Deficit will not be eliminated by 2015.
    Both TOP TARGETS will be missed!
    Interest rates are low thanks to the bond buying by the BoE – not to Osborne.
    Economy was not worse than expected in 2010. It was growing at the annual rate of 4%.
    Debt was £20bn below the forecast, deficit £10bn below.
    Borrowing short-term means lower borrowing long-term.
    Cutting capital spending in recession is wrong.
    Still NO VISION FOR GROWTH from Osborne.
    Osborne promised to finish the job he started. Scary!
    Workers of the world unite – against Osborne!

  • Anonymous

    OH, this works – glad to see it Alastair. Did you give a earache to your blog setterup sub-contractor, with words like “feck, what is going on”, and, paranoidically, “funny this should happen at the start of the Tory conference”…. : )))

    And “Lord Fonteray”(sp) is not Lord Snooty, is he? He was quite socially aware, Lord Snooty in Beano, wasn’t he? Or was I being fooled when young? Think not, since it was published in Dundee after all, in Scotland, with their cake.
    http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/61tDo70GPSL._SL500_AA300_.jpg

  • Anonymous

    By the way Alastair, listen to this lad who plays for us, and how he side-steps tax advice, when asked, him being a chartered accountant. Great fella, bumped into him a couple of times in Llanelli Tescos, amoungst others that play there, buying their turnips and bananas, in the fruit and veg aisles,
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/0/rugby-union/19863053

  • Anonymous

    Ach, bugger it, might as well post some Gilbert & George, for the Carlton Club, I can’t help myself….
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8CFcp2wzmEY

    Tate modern, cassette tape from G & G, well remembered.

    Any chance, Gordon’s Gin, for an advertisment cut? speak to my blood sucking agent if so… : )

  • Anonymous

    there is funny games going om here

  • Anonymous

    oh gawd, listen to him. Looking at parts two and three would have been to delaterious to my NHS care,
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-Z3RHNZaurI

  • francesco

    Amazing extraordinary post. Wish we could write the sa me for an Italian PM.

  • Anonymous

    How much longer is this country going to put up with their appalling nihilism? Glad I don’t watch TV.

  • Anonymous

    More problems with disqus, due to too many tory party over-bothering here, no doubt, try again…

    As I tried to say earlier Alastair, before the tories which are now in cocktail drinkkies as we speak, Gilbert & George from Tate Modern, well remembered there, with their cassette tape of themselves, when I visited, on the odd occasion,
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8CFcp2wzmEY

    Quite Carlton Club, ey Alastair? They are really stuck in the past, aren’t they? Quite warped in the modern World we presently live in. Barking mad, acshually.

    Cheque in the post Gordon’s? free advert? send it to my agent…

  • Anonymous

    What I tried to post earlier, when disqus was clogged up and too busy, well, I hope it was…., was this, Georgie Porgy spouting today,
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-Z3RHNZaurI

    Quite billious makes one feel, ey? See parts two and three there, if you have a strong stomach!

    That is why disqus has been very busy today, no doubt, and for good reason, and they were well in the negative. This poor boy needs to put on long trousers and finally grow up in the World. He is like a Gerry Anderson Supermarionation episode from the 1960′s, a south-eastern England joke,
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2d9QZFdW8uQ

  • Abdullah

    The Human Rights Act and FOI Act. And Sierra Leone.

  • Anonymous

    Newsnight at the moment – Boris!?! The golden calf of torys Moses of past when on top of Mount Sinai. Torys, he/she is not coming back, since a modern social earthquake is going on. And they know it, really, ey?

  • Anonymous

    Fair point from Alastair. I do not agree that all the things on Alastairs list actually happened, nor that it is positive that some of them did – nonetheless to accuse Blair of achieving nothing is ridiculous. If we had a military coup tomorrow or in 2015, the record will state that Blair was a far better prime minister than Cameron.
    It will also state that Osborne was a useless chancellor, but less useless than Gordon Brown.
    Osborne’s speech was excellent. In a world of spin and swagger, it is refreshing to see a man whose advisers have clearly told him that he shouldn’t even attempt to smile or show any charisma, he just isn’t Cameron, Romney, Obama, Blair and never will be.
    His points about helping workers not those on benefits, in terms of housing, in terms of child benefits, will be hugely popular amont the majority of voters apart from those on welfare (still a minority), their families (and still) and the metropolitan middle class who stand for them (only found in London.) In a majority rule system, Osborne took giant strides with the majority today. The majority do not agree with cutting tax for the rich, that much is true. But the majority do not agree with hug a hoodie, prizes for all, the EU, immigration…and the polls show they do not agree with our current approach on welfare. If only Cam could strap on a pair and put in place hardline reforms on crime, they would romp home with the majority.
    I still don’t agree with workfare – but it will win the election.

  • Anonymous

    Sorry to bother you again Alastair, but with this, I have bit my tongue so far,
    http://www.guardian.co.uk/uk/2012/oct/08/april-jones-mark-bridger-court

    Happened in the old capital city of this land. I am keeping an open mind on it, after the way the constabulary have carried on in such cases in recent times. That farming murder especially, about twenty years ago. Hysteria will not rule my mind until I have heard solid evidence. He sounds like a vulnerable single man, which always makes me think he might be an easy target for the establishment state, to show that they are doing something. No heard evidence yet about any sort of guilt. Not that I am saying he didn’t do it, but what if he didn’t? Could there be something darker going on in this? The state protecting someone?

    Hope they produce some concrete evidence soon, that will stand up in crown court, or I will carry on, as with others, thinking and judging for myself, rationally. But something does not seem right here. I do not know exactly what, just a feeling I have.

    But Alastair, if he did, or any accomplices, hope he comes clean soon, and tells you know what, everything.

  • http://twitter.com/bjohnsonsmith Bill Johnson-Smith

    Don’t mention the illegal war, :p

  • http://twitter.com/bjohnsonsmith Bill Johnson-Smith

    Or the mountain of debt the country accrued under Blair’s watch.

  • Anonymous

    A huge shame that because of often dishonest statements and a lot of conspiratorial bilge about Iraq and Afghanistan, Labour people, and those on the left more widely, have effectively conspired to do down the achievements of the most electorally successful leader Labour ever had and who – speaking for myself – I would be only too pleased to have back at the head of our party again.

  • Anonymous

    change the record.

    Another fella who has got the Tone mixed up with dubious George from the US!

  • Barkingside 21

    Look here, Campbell. You have to stand up for yourself. Point your finger a bit more and be positive. It wasn’t TB, you have to admit it. You have to take the credit as well as the flack …

  • Anonymous

    …furthermore, why can’t we be like present day Germany, Frankfurt in one part of it, and Berlin in another. And in the old West Germany there was Bonn. And look at Munich?

    Things in this country are too stuffed in London, with their rat-raced commuters crawling in from their home counties. Dysfunctional it is.

    When they have to do this restoration of the Houses of Parliament, why don’t they say “bugger it, let’s move to Birmingham, or Manchester, or even Milton Keynes”. It would be a more efficient government, I think. And they can leave The City with their associated Canarys where it is, to play their fun and games.

    Yes, have a new capital of the UK, where the seat of government is. Sky-blue lateral pull a fish out of the sea thinking, see.

  • Anonymous

    The Labour Party is a democratic socialist party. It believes that by the strength of our common endeavour we achieve more than we achieve alone, so as to create for each of us the means to realise our true potential and for all of us a community in which power, wealth and opportunity are in the hands of the many, not the few, where the rights we enjoy reflect the duties we owe, andwhere we live together, freely, in a spirit of solidarity, tolerance and respect”

    Tony Blair since leaving office has realised his true potentional. He had the Power to implement or steer many of the achievements you cite

    He had the Opportunity and the means to ensure by the strength of his own individual endeavour to achieve more than he acheived as Labour Leader by using his role, position and contacts to reflect his current bank balance.

    He now has Wealth which is in the hands of the few and not the many.

    This is the ultimate New Labour. Third Way acheivement by Tony Blair.
    Power! Wealth! Opportunity!

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  • http://www.facebook.com/mark.p.norris Mark Patrick Norris

    secret wars in mind swim
    Where the Councils pay Housing Benefit, Council Tax to the JOBSEEKER as the jobseeker he/she goes to his or her local Council Office to take a ticket and a safe seat and waits for his or her number to be shown Jobseeker he/she then proceed to the desk to be greeted by a civil servant is it housing benefit and council tax you would like to CLAIM?.. Said the civil servant
    Jobseeker said YES BOTH benefits.
    Civil servant said we’ve had a very easy SOFTWARE upgrade without shouldering the costs. This is when you surge forward and grow. I feel I am surging forward and growing at a pace that I have never experienced before said the civil servant as we can now offer you 4 benefits instead of two.

    Jobseeker said what are these new benefits that you can offer me?Civil servant said pension credits and job seekers allowance of £100 pw in return you work for your well fair road sweep removing chewing gum removing graffiti.Jobseeker said anything else?Civil servant said SHUT DOWN OF DWP shut down of all jobcentres shut down of all providers shut down of all call
    centers SHUT DOWN SHUT DOWN SHUT DOWN.

  • arnoldo87

    You mean the Kosovo invasion?

  • arnoldo87

    The debt was lower in 2007 than 1997

  • arnoldo87

    Fortunately, nobody can change the debt record of the Blair years. Not even envious Tories.

  • Anonymous

    Debt record imported by the US when they can see China overtaking them on the economic World stage. They stamped their feet, and sent western capitalism into a spiral crash, which Brown and Darling managed to make some sort of softish landing, and we are still trying to recover passengers, as in Rep Ireland, Iceland, Greece, Spain, Portugal, etc. etc..

    And notice, even Switzerland has had austerity put on them by their government, but do we hear about that? Nooo! And Iceland is not in the EU by the way, so US bankers might have used them as a conduit to drag down the EU, economically.

    And to think Swiss were like this at the start of the cold war! Look to Russia we need to do, they could be our capitalist strong allies in the future…
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VRqLuUBUIZs

  • Anonymous

    And Kosovo?