Posts Tagged ‘Dave Howells’

The sacred cow: splice, dice and if that fails blow the s**t out of it

25/02/2011, 02:30:57 PM

by Dave Howells

What Tony Blair did in three words, “Education, education, education”, David Cameron did in three letters: “N.H.S”. That was how he set his stall out at the last election.  If they couldn’t get away with being “the party of the NHS”, try though they might, at least they could be “the party that wouldn’t fuck it up”.

Before 1997, Labour had a similar problem with the economy, so New Labour was born and the party was rebranded as one that was pro-business and “extremely relaxed about people getting filthy rich”.  Labour committed to stick to the Tories’ spending plans during its first two years in office. There. Done. Now the country could exorcise itself from the grip of the Tories without having to worry that a Labour chancellor might give the Treasury PIN number to too many poor people, or that the wheels would come off UK Plc.

In 2010, the Tory problem was being trusted full stop. But they were particularly vulnerable to accusations that they might go selling off “the family silver”, especially our treasured National Health Service. Because, after all, when it comes to flogging off state-owned assets to the private sector at bargain basement prices – be they railways, telephone networks, council houses, or (more recently) forests – the Conservatives have got form. So, in a move straight out of the New Labour playbook, the Tories said they would stick to Labour’s spending plans, funding for the NHS would be maintained at its existing levels (in-line with inflation, no less), and there would be no more costly “top-down reorganisations”.  Oh, and Dave changed their logo to a tree and rode around on a bike a bit. There. Done. (more…)

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Dave Howells’ take on Dave Cameron’s big moment

06/10/2010, 04:03:44 PM

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