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Friday, 12 December 2008

Has Gordon got the guts to go?

Back on 19th November I posted on signs emerging of a Winter election; I reckoned February as a good prospect. I think the signs are getting even stronger. Jeff Randall in the Telegraph this morning reckons the same thing; he says
Having boasted in the Commons this week, "We not only saved the world..." the Prime Minister's logical next step is to invite the country to demonstrate its gratitude. He needs to look sharp, though, because his miasma of authority is about to be blown away by gales of rising unemployment.
The entire Labour front bench it seems is turning its full attention to the readership of the Mail; first Phil Woolas with a radical shift in immigration policy, then Straw pledging to deport dangerous wogs, now Purnell promising an end to Welfare madness. The only factor lacking is an announcement to end non-contributory public sector final salary pensions.

Gordon needs to be quick, though. The Germans have branded him an economic lunatic, and by early 2009 if the UK gets much worse in comparison with big Europe and the US (as most think it will) his economic credibility will drain away, and Spring will bring out our natural urge for change and renewal, so June is dangerous for him. His mental health is being increasingly seriously questioned and this won't take long to spread to the public perception. As Randall wrote, rising unemployment will skewer him, and once the news bulletins go back to carrying a round up of the day's redundancies, as they did in the past, each day will bleed away 100,000 Labour votes. The polls are now about as favourable as they're going to get. His best chance is January or February on anyone's reckoning.

But will Gordon have the guts to go to the country? Or will he bottle it again?


patently said...

Gordon will only go if his people tell him it is a dead cert, or if he hits May 2010.

So we need to make it look like we all support Labour, right up until the moment when he calls it...

Anonymous said...

Left to his own devices, Broon will bottle it. He'll formulate grand strategies, talk big, order focus groups, pay close attention to the polls, calculate who stands to lose seats.......and then he'll do nothing.

That's if he's left to his own devices. The bigger question is what Broon's cabinet colleagues will do when he chickens out. Mark my words: if Labour calls a general election any time before May 2010, it will not be of Broon's choosing; it will be the result of internal pressure brought to bear by cabinet members and, to a lesser extent, the Parliamentary Labour Party.

The Great Simpleton said...

I'm not convinced as there could be another scenario that plays out.

The Badger keeps telling us that the economy will start to pick in 2009/2010 and if it does they will claim that is is their policies "wot wun it". But could it happen? Possibly. Consider this scenario.

The economy continues to tank and we get a few more quarters of deep recession with negative growth of, say, 1% per quarter. As we get towards the end of 2009 the economy is so down that it just can't collapse any further. This means that on a year on year basis negative growth starts to decay and we may even get positive growth in 4Q09.

Nothing to do with their policies, other than they are making the position worse now, but whenever has that stopped a politician claiming it was their policies all along?

Anonymous said...

I've been saying February for quite a while now.

And it seemed to take quite a while for the MSM to notice, but the signs have been there to see.

crackers said...

Even if economy does show some sign of recovery in Q3/4 2009 NuLab will be evicted. Whilst the electorate is prepared to get behind an incumbent PM during a period of crisis once through the eye of the storm they will extract punishment for the journey they have been put through.

Mandelson will decide the date of the election. He is the PM in all but name. He has a huge investment in NuLab reelection - victory will secure his place in history and erase previous humiliations.

Brown will want to go for Feb because he knows whats coming. Will Mandelson let him?

Anonymous said...

I agree with your Feb estimate.

He will want to do the election before the budget when he would have to face at least some of the abysmal mess he's made.

If he loses he leaves the new government to do the budget and get the blame for the problems that will surely follow.

If he wins - he's got another 4 years to persuade himself that he can do the job.

BTB I had a long talk with my son last night about his future. Best advice I could give was to go to Australia or Canada.

Its a sad thing thing when you have to advise your children to go to the other side of the world to have a chance of a decent life because the country of their birth has been ruined by 2 greedy, egotistical incompetent politicians.

If there is a Hell Blair and Brown should roast for eternity.

TheFatBigot said...

Your aside about Brown's mental state touches a subject many with little interest in politics have mentioned to me.

His appearance is increasingly bedraggled and his face is showing the signs of a man on the edge.

We have all seen highly competent politicians age prematurely under the strains of the job, but his physical change is different. He has developed the outward signs of a man besieged by mental torment - twisted jaw, unable to look anyone in the face, muttering and mumbling, incapable of distinguishing between fact and fiction. Coupled with his naturally violent character the likelihood is that all reason will come second to his paranoid fear of being judged. He will need a lot of persuading to go to the country before he has to.