Friday, June 06, 2008

Vote Cameron, get Bush

Happy days. Via Sadie, a copy of a Tory strategy document has leaked, explaining what their 'serious plan' is for government, and what their priorities will be.

And it turns out that their big idea is that Thatcher-style social reform is needed, to get rid of state interference in society, just as Thatcher got rid of state interference in business.

You may think that this sounds familiar. As, indeed, it is. It turns out that the inspiration for the Conservatives' social policies, the ones that they are going to bring in if elected, is George W. Bush's 'compassionate Conservatism'. If you've not come across these before, Bill Clinton aptly summarised them as "I want to help you. I really do. But you know, I just can't".

So just at the moment when everyone in America, whether Democrat or Republican, is competing to explain how different they are from George Bush, the Tories over here are planning about how to introduce his failed ideas to the UK.

Cameron's idea that the way to make things better in Britain is for the government to get out of the way, stop helping people and leave it to charities is going to be a tough sell anyway because most people intuitively want the government to do more to sort problems out and to provide better services, not to do less and stop doing things.

They are riding high in the polls, but the Tories still have the problem that the ideas that their activists believe in actually don't work, and have been proven not to work in the USA. That their intellectual inspiration for how they would govern appears to be George W. Bush is something which I hope as many people as possible find out about.


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