Posts Tagged ‘crisis’

Never let a good crisis go to waste. Labour’s sensible centrist MPs should seize their opportunity

01/03/2016, 05:31:46 PM

by Greig Baker

They say a recession is the best time to set up in business, because if you can make it then, you know you’re onto a good thing. Smart Labour MPs should look at Jeremy Corbyn’s political downturn in the same way. It might not feel like it, but if you are a sensible centrist MP with ambitions for the top job, you now have three things in your favour…

First, you don’t have a choice. If you or someone like you doesn’t come up with a plan to make Labour electable again and soon, you face either being rejected by the voters, deselected by your party, or a decade or more of a backbench job with less power and more acrimony than you’d get as a local Councillor. You can make a successful pitch for what you believe in, or join the political dole queue.

Second, in times of crisis, merit wins through. MPs with verve are ten-a-penny in three figure majority Governments. But, like the successful entrepreneur who beats a bad market, it takes special skill and dedication to create political success out of a downhearted shambles. Even better for you (and as much as it pains me to say this given that I used to work for them), the Conservatives are divided, unloved and performing poorly – so there’s plenty to get your teeth into.

And third, if your bid to bring Labour back into the black is going to succeed, you will need to fashion the party in your image. This means forging alliances with people you like, value, respect and trust, and who will be around for long enough to help you achieve real change – so the prospect of working with a genuinely capable executive team beckons.

From an outsider’s perspective, it looks like Labour’s political contraction is already well underway. However, the right moves by the right people could stop the “recession” becoming a “depression” – in every sense of the word.

Greig Baker is Chief Executive of The GUIDE Consultancy

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Cameron’s holiday from political common sense

08/04/2011, 03:50:36 PM

by Kevin Meagher

So Dave and Sam have bid “Adios!” to miserable old Blighty and jetted off to Granada for a sneaky break to celebrate the missus’s 40th.

In our belt-tightening times, Downing Street spinners are keen to point out the first couple flew by easyjet and that they are staying in a “mid-market” hotel.

Of course, if you’re a couple of minted minor blue-bloods, staying in a three-star family hotel is more “downmarket” than “mid market”. Still, I can’t quite see them draped across a couple of sun loungers like the middle-aged swingers in Benidorm.

Or perhaps that’s precisely how Dave expects to reconnect with beleaguered Brits. Taking a budget holiday that may still be just about affordable to many. Not the swinging bit.

But when he’s finished there’s the return to think about. Will he come back like Jim Callaghan, tanned and refreshed from an economic summit in Guadeloupe in 1978 and utter something to rival: “Crisis, what crisis?”

Of course Sunny Jim never actually used that particular formulation. It was paraphrased tabloid-speak. But it was the symbolism that mattered. As it does now. In a week that saw “Black Wednesday”, when the full putrid blast of the coalition cuts hit the public for the first time, there’s a question mark over Cameron’s political common sense.

What does he think people will make of his little jaunt? “Good on the multimillionaire politician who’s just trebled my kid’s tuition fees. I’m sure all that doctrinaire right-wingery takes it out of you. Put your feet up son”. (more…)

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Economy: Sam Dale says we must stop apologising and start fighting back

14/08/2010, 11:00:51 AM

David Cameron and Nick Clegg have clearly made it their political priority to blame the recession and slow recovery on Labour.

Since the election there have been daily attacks on Labour’s economic record, with the government’s inheritance invariably described as a mess. Dave and Nick accuse Labour of economic incontinence and spending money it didn’t have. There was even the sinister suggestion – which should have caused far more offence than it did – that Labour employed a scorched earth policy before leaving office.

Peter Mandelson is portrayed as a madman throwing money around with no thought for the consequences. Dave and Nick simply can’t believe that Labour wanted to help a Sheffield firm in the recession. In their deficit-obsessed, warped minds, this is a total dereliction of duty. And, of the course, there was the ill-judged joke that Liam Byrne left for his successor, feeding the government narrative.


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