Monday, 17 November 2008

Brown doesn't know the meaning of fairness

Millions of ordinary British people who work diligently, pay their taxes if not uncomplainingly then at least honestly, make no demands on the social welfare or the criminal justice system, who are in no need of constant policing, containment or intervention, raise families responsibly, assist in their children's education, recognise responsibility for their own health and who manage to behave in a socially responsible way on a median personal income of £26k a year have every right to expect fair treatment from government.

These people are the ones who fill the Treasury's coffers, who pay the wages of Brown's army of Quangocrats, who fund MPs' bloated and recession-proof pension pots, who pay for Labour's mendacious military adventures, and who pay for all the social welfare agencies and the vast costs of policing and supervising the feckless and corrosive underclass. On any scale of fairness their expectation of a share in measures to counter the recession is a reasonable one.

Does Brown recognise any of this? Of course not. The IMF are pushing for tax cuts in the region of 2% of GDP. The Taxpayers Alliance have recommended immediate measures to cut income tax by 3p, take 2% off VAT and reduce employers' NICs by 2% from the current 12.8%. These measures come to about 2% of GDP. They would without doubt be the fairest and most equitable way of buffering the nation through the worst of the recession. Which is why Brown won't even consider it.

Brown's only concern is to increase hand-outs to his Welfare State clients. He's quite happy to see the prudent, responsible core of this nation not only suffer, but pay for his largesse.

Janet Daley, writing in the Telegraph this morning, recognises this. Millions of ordinary, responsible families across Britain recognise this. Unfortunately, neither Labour nor the Tories recognise this. Cameron and Osborne will stick to their purist position and condemn us to another five years of Labour, and Brown will use the opportunity to ratchet up the micro-management of the intrusive State into all our lives.

The intelligent and well-reasoned anonymous response to this post below is faultless in its logic. However, what if Brown calls an election before the backlash kicks in? The Tories are allowing themselves to be cast as the villains. They will shed votes like water from a weir.

I'm sorry, but getting Labour out of office and keeping them out is the greatest of all priorities. And if this takes Osborne standing on the rooftop in his underpants shouting 'Jam tomorrow!' then it's a price worth paying.


Elby the Beserk said...

Spot on Raedwald.

Any room on your boat? I'm a good cook :-)

Nick Drew said...

I'm torn on this one (election prospects, not the need to eject Labour !). My antennae tell me the decks are being cleared for a snap election. This is probably Mandelson's doing. But it is also fairly argued that Brown has been so badly burned by this once before, he won't even allow it to cross his clunking, inflexible mind.

I don't for a moment underestimate the power of incumbency, the creativity, initiative and malice of Mandelson, nor the black arts of Campbell. My bottom line, however, is an optimistic one, whatever the timing, and it's based on the very fresh memory of Boris vs Ken. In >30 years of telling at the polls I have never seen greater enthusiasm on the part of undemonstrative but determined 'ordinary voters' to heave the rascals out.

I do believe this has taken root, sufficient to work the trick, and that we are looking at a 1945 or a 1979 - whenever it comes.

Anonymous said...

I wrote the post you referred to you and I think you have an extremely valid point. Labour's trick, if it works at all, will only work within a narrow period of time. In six months, I expect Brown's promises will have been exposed as worthless; in a year, they'll definitely have lost their power over the public.

For Brown's plan to work, he must strike quickly - it's not enough to strike while the iron is hot but, as Bismarck said, he must make the iron hot by striking. However, when we look at the psychology of Brown, I think we see someone who always chickens out of any major public decision at the last minute; he starts by procrastinating and by making excuses for that procrastination but, as time advances and events force him to act, he generally pulls out. Procrastination becomes the fullscale abandonment of his stated goals.

We sas this in action last summer but it's pretty much the story of Brown's life. Consider his bid for the Labour leadership after John Smith's death - endless talk about how he's the natural successor followed by basically bottling it. Consider also his relationship with Bliar. Yes, Brown (or, rather, his allies) made endless threats about bringing down Bliar's government and triggering a no-confidence vote and a leadership challenge but, in the end, Brown shat himself; Bliar left when Bliar wanted to leave and Brown had no say in the matter.

Brown is unsuited for electoral politics because he is an enormous coward. He fears the consequences of his own decisions and he fears the judgment of the public. His contempt for the great mass of the British electorate is matched only by his pants-pissing terror of them.

I bet that he will retreat from any election, insofar as he is able. He'll flirt with the idea, table discussions on the topic with allies and generally act like he's on the verge of calling one....but he won't. He'll bottle it. The only exception, the only way that an election gets called, is if the people around him - the Mandelsons and the Campbells - force him to call one. As people who wish to see an end to Brown's reign, that should be our great fear - not Brown himself but his handlers, his controllers, his psychological masters, the men who know how to manipulate and control his third-rate intellect and his first-rate ego.

But, even so, I think the electorate is less stupid than we give them credit for. Perhaps I've caught something from the Obamamamas but we must hope and trust that voters are simply not that stupid. After all, despite Brown's so-called great electoral boost from this crisis, he is still far behind in most polls. Moreover we know that people, in a crisis, will tend to flock to their leaders and offer them support but this is also a reasonably ephemeral phenomenon. Unless Brown calls an election before Christmas, any electoral gain from the crisis will have evaporated; moreover, as the next six to twelve months roll past, I would bet heavily that we won't just see Tory gains in the polls but will actually see Labour fall to a point lower than it was at the start of this crisis.

Anonymous said...