This morning's weather is such that there's no great incentive to leave the house, other than to walk a reluctant dog and this gives me a good reason to finish reading and marking-up Cabinet papers for next week and finish a two thousand word feature on last Sunday's flight to Milan and the Gulfstream G200 for 'P1' magazine; a bit like 'Top Gear' and I'm no Jeremy Clarkson although I've attached a quick clip of the landing for anyone who might be interestedin such things!
Having flicked through the Sunday papers, I've decided not to pull-out any stories that caught my attention other than remarking that it's TUC Conference time again and Trades Union leaders were reportedly treated to beer and curry with the Prime Minister this weekend in a last ditch effort to gain their support and their funding as a defunct Labour party totters towards a General Election facing the threat of political annihilation at the polls. Listening to Union leaders on Sky this morning, several of whom I know because of the aerial banner work I do, I'm struck by the continued reluctance to grasp the real implications of the £175 billion deficit that Sky's Adam Bolton referred to this morning. There's not a person reading this who doesn't want better schools and hospitals and a decent pension for the elderly but the simple £175 billion question is: "Who pays?"
Elsewhere, Labour continues to try and put the "Class War" card into play, conveniently forgetting the immortal words of Tony Blair, " Were' all middle-class now." While Labour councillors castigate "Tory Toffs" who went to private and public schools, perhaps we could have a list of Labour Ministers or even MPs who haven't used every trick in the book to achieve the very best education available for their own children? Isn't it human nature to try and get the best for one's children, it's certainly a middle-class ethos to aspire or is this now politically incorrect with most of the other values that my generation was raised with; decency, personal responsibility, the work ethic, opening doors for ladies and more! Why I wonder should someone be blamed for being a product of the best education that money can buy; only in Britain does it appear to be a problem. In the United States it's celebrated!
Congratulations to King Ethelbert's School, here in Westgate, for achieving such a marked improvement in their GCSE results. I also went to school here in Thanet and by coincidence, Margate blogger, Tony Flaig was my classmate. I can't recall any of us boys at the time agonizing over our misfortune at not being sent to Eton or indeed, being bright enough to get into Chatham House and yet those were the seventies, when 'Soviet Weekly' was delivered in bundles to the classroom of every school and Margate was twinned with the socialist paradise of Yalta. Class war is a device that Labour uses every time it faces defeat; it's their worn-out excuse for not delivering on the promise to end child poverty, streamline the NHS or deliver a truly world-class education system. In reality the dismal record of this Government can be found in the pages of George Orwell's novel, 'Animal Farm', "All animals are equal but some animals are more equal than others."
There's another quote from the same story which also rings true in the last days of Gordon Brown's premiership. One could imagine it coming from Ed Balls or Harriet Harman:
"No one believes more firmly than Comrade Napoleon that all animals are equal. He would be only too happy to let you make your decisions for yourselves. But sometimes you might make the wrong decisions, comrades, and then where should we be?"