Posts Tagged ‘Tory party’

The Tory party: idealists welcome

21/05/2012, 01:30:53 PM

by Kevin Meagher

For JS Mill, the Tories were famously the stupid party. By the 1980s they were definitely the ideological party. But under David Cameron are they are becoming something else: the home for political idealists?

We casually think of idealism as the preserve of the Left, but the lodestar of this government is to reshape the state in as profound a way as Attlee or Thatcher managed.

From the NHS reforms to free schools. From academies to police commissioners. From the big society to big city mayors. Austerity cuts through to the massive welfare shake-ups; there is an abundance of idealism. Or ‘tip-up-the-apple-cart-ism.’

Much of it is to be regretted of course; a lot of it feels impractical, even reckless, but idealism it most definitely is. As is George Osborne’s “faith based” economic policy. In the face of overwhelming evidence to the contrary, he presses on.

It’s like watching one of those old bits of film of a man flapping giant cardboard wings and jumping off a pier, expecting to fly. The chancellor is the ultimate expression of optimism over reason.


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Three cheers for Nigel Farage!

09/11/2010, 12:00:33 PM

by Kevin Meagher

NIGEL Farage is back. Yes, that suspiciously French-sounding, irrepressibly upbeat Euro-baiter par excellence swept up 60% of the votes to retake the leadership of UKIP last week.

This is of course the same job he casually abandoned just a year ago. For big talents on small stages, there is always the lure of something better. In Farage’s case, defying Parliamentary protocol and standing against Speaker Bercow in the general election. That did not work out, so it’s back to the old day job: jolly Euro-bashing and all round right-wing populism.

To many, leading UKIP is a dubious honour. This is, after all, a party David Cameron once described as “a bunch of … fruitcakes and loonies and closet racists, mostly.” But therein lies the point: Farage’s enemies are on the right. The two men in British politics loath to see Farage return to lead UKIP are David Cameron and Nick Griffin. (more…)

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