Wednesday, October 05, 2005

 

Tories in Blackpool

'The Tories in Blackpool are funny. Can't see vey far- as usual. Go on blundering along, apparently unable to see that they must change if they are going to prosper again. Like putting life into a dead body now.' A recent comment in a media outlet? No. It's from a wonderful book by Simon Garfield based on Mass Observation diaries written by ordinary people during and after the war. The above entry was by Edie Rutherford, a middle-aged housewife, written on 4th October, 1946. Ironic the comment should still be so apposite but of course the party did recover and did prosper to the extent of dominating the rest of the century after Attlee's exhausted government exited the stage in 1951. Will the Tories recover again? It seems much more dificult this time.
In 1946 the party still had leading able politicians to drive the party forward, including the venerable, canonised but still determined Churchill. Now the Tories have no real obvious heavyweights. Interestingly the biggest ovation of the day today was given to a failed leader, William Hague. John Pienaar on the BBC said that had he decided to stand for the leadership he would have been elected there and then by acclaim.
The real contest however, is now between the five candidates- David Davis,(council house, single mother, ex SAS and successful businesman but with tendency to alienate people. Speech today judged 'workmanlike' at best) 'Dave' Cameron(Etonian, 38 yearold, married with disabled child for whose cause he has worked admirably but with no experience and a habit of trying to appear too much like Tony Blair), Kenneth Clarke( 65 yearold veteran of Thatcher and Major Cabinets who is hugely popular but too Eurosceptic for the rank and file- also works for a tobacco company), Liam Fox) youngish former doctor who looks good and appeals to the rightwing traditionalists- did well in his speech today)and Malcolm Rifkind, former cabinet minister who is younger than Clarke but seems older- not regarded as a serious candidate). Who will win?
There is quite a lot of time before the MP's vote takes place to find the two on whom the membership will vote, sometime in December. But, emerging from the conference, David Davis has probably found his bandwagon has slowed down appreciably, Cameron's has advanced after a fine presentation but so too did Clarke's who basically appeals to the same constituency of Tory supporters as the younger man. Rifkind, who was never rated as a realistic player, is also a One Nation Tory is virtually out of the race, despite a spirited address to the conference. My guesss is that it will come down to Davis and Clarke with a possibility that Fox will come through amongst MPs. In such a run-off the rightwinger will win and the party will have wasted another chance to move into the centre ground and really threaten Blair's hegemony there. Seems Edie Robertson's comment is still relevant nearly sixty years on but the body is now even closer to terminal coldness.

Comments:
tWtN67 The best blog you have!
 
NJVIKZ actually, that's brilliant. Thank you. I'm going to pass that on to a couple of people.
 
actually, that's brilliant. Thank you. I'm going to pass that on to a couple of people.
 
Please write anything else!
 
Please write anything else!
 
Magnific!
 
Thanks to author.
 
Good job!
 
Wonderful blog.
 
Hello all!
 
im5FGG write more, thanks.
 
Hello all!
 
Wonderful blog.
 
Magnific!
 
Thanks to author.
 
Wonderful blog.
 
Wonderful blog.
 
Nice Article.
 
Wonderful blog.
 
Please write anything else!
 
Nice Article.
 
actually, that's brilliant. Thank you. I'm going to pass that on to a couple of people.
 
Thanks to author.
 
Energizer Bunny Arrested! Charged with battery.
 
Clap on! , Clap off! clap@#&$NO CARRIER
 
Thanks to author.
 
Magnific!
 
When there's a will, I want to be in it.
 
I'm not a complete idiot, some parts are missing!
 
All generalizations are false, including this one.
 
When there's a will, I want to be in it.
 
Energizer Bunny Arrested! Charged with battery.
 
Post a Comment

Links to this post:

Create a Link



<< Home

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?