Sunday, February 28, 2010
Failing Schools – Filthy Hospitals – Fewer Jobs
There was a rumour flying around Westminster at the end of last week that Gordon Brown might go for a snap General Election, tomorrow, Monday, given his sudden increase in popularity in the polls. I'm up at Portcullis House for the AGM of the Conservative Technology Forum, so it will be interesting to see what the result of Labour's weekend in Wales and the Conservative's Spring Forum in Brighton. Will Gordon go to the country or will he wait a little longer?
I'm watching the BBC Politics Show as I type this and it's increasingly evident that whenever the real campaigning starts, the tone is going to be very personal and very nasty indeed; something which I believe will put voters off the political process even further.
I still have a sense that Members of Parliament of all parties still don't fully grasp the damage done to public confidence by the expenses scandal. Presently, I sense that people see themselves caught between 'The Devil and the deep blue sea', worrying over the on-going consequences of the recession on their own lives and jobs and from looking at the polls, increasingly nervous of change, even if the Devil incarnate was running the country. Meanwhile, there is a universal sense that the public are fed-up with government failure, as in my headline, 'Failing schools, filthy hospitals and fewer jobs.' This list is longer than that of course, with an economy in shambles, greater deprivation, broken Britain, a demonstrably failing criminal justice system, a taxation system which is patently unfair and incompetent and everywhere, constant evidence of unaccountable and faceless agencies and quangos that are unfit for purpose or downright inefficient.
The choice facing people in the forthcoming General Election, requires a leap of faith and arguably and act of courage too. Do you vote for change and a new perspective, with its concomitant risk to the public sector and the economy or stay with Gordon and Alasdair and let the likes of Harriet Harman practice unrestricted warfare on the middle classes; apparently now the focus of Trevor Philips efforts at the equalities commission.
My opinion and of course I'm biased, is that a further five years of Labour 'reform' would prove an even greater disaster for our country at one of the weakest moments in its post-war history. The party is increasingly socially divisive and there's a danger of the 'Marxist' element within Gordon Brown's small but happy band of supporters, running amok with another term of office to experiment with.
What worries me most, is the constant denial from within New Labour, that anything may be wrong in our society, in the familiar style of George Orwell's 'Animal Farm.' What I do know is that the political debate has to move away from the primitive 'Class Struggle' ideology which threatens to divide our country even further. Instead government should support the efforts of those hard-working individuals and families who still respect personal standards of behavior, the law and values and social responsibility that our parents would have recognized as being implicit within a modern and civilised society.