Nope, still can’t muster any love for the Tories

I’ve noticed a trend among some Liberal Democrats lately of assuming that, because the party is in coalition with the Tories, they should say nice things about the Great Blue Evil and even defend Conservative Ministers when the inevitable (and probably not unreasonable) accusations of madness and megalomania are levelled against them. Sorry to opt out of this love-in, but a Tory is a Tory is a Tory.

Let’s not forget the people we’re dealing with here: George Osborne, who simply couldn’t wait to crank VAT up to 20% and start slashing public services; Michael Gove, who has wasted no time in making a complete lash up of the schools rebuilding programme; Iain Duncan Smith, who brought back not-so-fond memories of his Chingford predecessor Norman Tebbit with his reworded ‘on yer bike’ solution to unemployment; Eric Pickles, who plans to fillet local government and bring back a good dose of Christian values to public life (except the one about bare-faced grasping, of course).

And then there’s Cameron himself, the craftiest and most slippery of them all, a man who – as far as I can tell – believes nothing at all and is more than willing to let the idealogues around him get on with their dirty business.

The Tories, lest we forget, are only in this for one thing: looking after the small minority of the population who hold most of the wealth. Much wind has already been expelled about the cost of benefit fraud, for example, but there seems to be little interest in tackling tax evasion which is estimated to cost the Treasury fifteen times more. No, far easier to leave your party donors alone and get your mates in the right-wing press to stick the boot in to the less well-off on your behalf instead. It’s like the eighties all over again – the Tories will never change because they have no concept of what the word means.

Yes, I know there’s a coalition here and that compromise is part and parcel of the deal and yes, I know some people from my party signed up to it. I also accept that the party leadership didn’t have too many options considering the parliamentary arithmetic and the need to prove that a hung parliament needn’t be a recipe for instability.

But I curse, pretty much on a daily basis, that the Tories were the only show in town. And whatever the arrangements, however much the coalition is supposedly a vehicle for worthy Lib Dem policies, I’m never going to be able to muster any love for the Tories.


Click here to vote in the Total Politics Best Blogs Poll 2010

Advertisements

8 comments

  1. Perhaps you should look at what the Coalition is actually doing rather than recycling labour’s lies.
    Do you for example agree with labour that it is better to let generations rot in unemployment blackspots rather than give people help to move to here the jobs are?

    1. No danger of recycling Labour’s lies here – they too would certainly have hiked VAT, in spite of all their crocodile tears since the budget.

      The problem with putting people on their bikes to look for work is that, thanks to the Tory rape of social housing in the eighties, most people are tied to the house they bought while they were being encouraged to become part of the ‘property owning democracy’. A housing market which will inevitably slow further due to Osborne’s Budget is hardly the best starting point for Duncan Smith’s proposed jobs odyssey. Yes, those who live in Council houses (where they still exist) will be easier to move about, but is it fair to expect this of people simply because they don’t own a house?

  2. “But I curse, pretty much on a daily basis, that the Tories were the only show in town. And whatever the arrangements, however much the coalition is supposedly a vehicle for worthy Lib Dem policies, I’m never going to be able to muster any love for the Tories.”

    That’s just sort of sadly tribal and unthinking. To be honest it reminds me of the response pattern of the worst of the Tory dinosaurs who post at Conservative Home, as an example. Maybe you DO have more in common than you might prefer to accept. As Simon said, perhaps commenting upon what is being done and the reasons thereof rather than upon who is doing it might be a useful way forward.

    “And then there’s Cameron himself, the craftiest and most slippery of them all, a man who – as far as I can tell – believes nothing at all and is more than willing to let the ideologues around him get on with their dirty business.”

    You might want to tell the Tory ‘right-wingers’ this. They can’t abide Cameron as they consider him to be far too ‘moderate’. I think I trust their judgment on this, being as how they are the ones who should know if he caters to them or not. You don’t have to ‘love’ the Conservatives, but you really should try to ‘see’ what the Cameron types truly are. As someone once said, ‘you are entitled to your own opinion, but you are not entitled to your own facts.’

  3. I have no love for the Tories, it’s just a business transaction only. But Labour was even more unpalatable after their 13 years of mostly shame!

  4. Sorry to opt out of this love-in, but a Tory is a Tory is a Tory is a Lib Dem who votes to support the government increase in VAT – presumably you are as ashamed of your Lib Dem Cornish MPs as the people who voted for them?

    How does it feel to be a minority in your own party?

    If you don’t agree to the cosying up to the Tories what are you doing to extract your party from its potentially fatal alliance?

  5. I honestly believe this coalition is going to be a disaster for the Liberal Democrats now. Particularly in the North where people voted Lib Dem because of the fact that Labour had not done enough in terms of social equality. The excellent work of councils in Liverpool and Newcastle seemed to point to something more like what people expected of a left leaning party. The Lib Dems association with this Tory administration could lead to them being unelectable for decades. After all Jeremy, what are they actually getting out of it that’s worthwhile? I’ve changed my tune and I know it – Clegg is being used. Mr. Cable, I suspect, is taking some very uncomfortable looks at himself in the mirror.

    1. So good was the work being done by Lib Dems in Liverpool that we lost 9 seats there – and was without the alleged wipe-out caused by the coalition

      Time to look at facts before we start blaming all our ills on the coalition

  6. Hmm. Sorry to present my opinions in such a way as I appeared to be claiming them as facts. My “opinion” of Liverpool and Newcastle was solely based on the “opinion” of knowing a few people who have been voting in those cities. What they told me impressed me. In fact I am one of those poor saps who trusted Clegg and gave him my vote having fallen into despair over Labour’s lack of imaginative social policy.
    However Allan, as you are keen to hear some facts – hear are a few facts which are reasons that myself and a number of other people I know have become very worried about where our vote went.
    Fact 1 – having promised that a key plank of the coalition agreement was a decent level of taxation on Capital Gains – Osborne has been allowed to get away with the barest minimum rate he could. This means that most high earners who would have paid capital gains can afford to pay accountants to get out of paying it.
    Fact 2 – Having promised that he would make banks pay, Clegg has allowed the Tories to cancel out the effect of the bank levy through the cut in corporation tax. In fact, I believe (this is not a fact here, but I suspect it may be true) that Lloyds bank will actually come out better off as a result of the budget (the one where we all have to feel a little pain).
    Fact 3 – Vince Cable’s plan of separating the investment part of banks from the high street branches has now been put in the hands of a commission which includes Martin Taylor, the former Goldman Sachs executive who pioneered the original link between Barclay’s investment and high street arm in 1996. I wonder what the commission will recommend?
    Opinion – The cabinet posts given to the Lib Dems are a grave disappointment. Vince Cable and Danny Alexander will ultimately bow to the Treasury as they have proved in the “facts” presented above. The Scottish Office is toothless in the face of the amount of executive power now residing with the Scottish parliament.
    More Opinion – AV is pathetic. I will vote for it of course because it is a little less pathetic than FPTP but would have delivered a not vastly dissimilar result to the one we just experienced.
    Many facts and a few opinions as to why I believe that Clegg’s face is in danger of becoming the death mask of the Liberal Democrats.
    I haven’t even mentioned education cuts and if you’re telling me that Liverpool Lib Dems are actually crap, the party may as well hand over the northern seats now.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s