Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Conservatives ARE the Agenda

I had said some time ago that I felt it was complacency on the part of "Team Cameron" that led to the shaky start to the Brown Premiership for the opposition. Whereas the LibDems took the novel approach of saying and doing nothing - which, to be fair, has paid off - the Conservatives got themselves tangled up in all sorts and ended up 10 points behind the polls.

That complacency seems to have been shaken off and nobody can deny that over the last week or so it is Cameron who is once again setting the agenda. Last week's trailed report regarding tax and in particular the hated Inheritance Tax really rung bells with the sort of voters we need to win back. Today's Telegraph lead story about Cameron's pledge to abolish the Human Rights Act is excellent and will no doubt have legs over the next few days at least. Add to that Shadow Schools Minister Michael Gove attacking the dumbing down of GCSEs - on the front page of the Time - and Shadow Home Secretary David Davis laying out a positive approach to immigrtion in the Telegraph, it seems that the Tories are really controlling the agenda and leading the media.

Now I notice that the BBC is also leading on Cameron's plans to cut youth crime, which was also trailed in the press. And whatever you may think of the fallout, the coverage of the NHS Cuts Campaign was very, very good.

Whilst his shadow team focus in on specifics and, in some cases, play to the base, Cameron continues to define the big themes and add flesh to the Tory policy bones.

The Conservatives have come out fighting now and a good job too. They are controlling the agenda and long may this continue. We so desperately need our media management to be better. I hope this starts to reflect in new polls soon.

UPDATE: The LibDem Leader has finally said something - about the floods. A bit late, but never mind.


Anonymous said...

I think Tax plans sounded positive. I back those that increase the point of work and saving and penalise wastefulness and excessive, environmentally damaging and needless consumerism. A tax system that promotes family cohesion and generational saving rather than individual, wastefulness, money and resource burning.

There is a need to make the UK tax system more simple and modern, addressing current issues like pollution, resources and fossil fuel taxes.

I am all for abolition of Inheritence tax (a middle class tax), and Capital Gains Tax (hits enterprise and investment), and with the introduction of HIPS, (which I regard as a good thing), but lets have £500 off stamp duty to compensate.

What is lost via these must be made up by vehicle fuel tax (diesel/petrol, but not bioethanol), airport flight tax and fossil fuel carbon tax, where appropriate, such as power stations that emit to the air rather than invest in clean coal technology or 3-4 stage CHP power units.

Anonymous said...

The problem is that Cameron and team think they are leading on issues where in fact like the government they are reacting after the horse has bolted. Immigation yes, but what about emmigration of talented people to Australia and other countries? Affordable housing, yes but not in conservative areas. Youth crime, hug a hoody. Families, discriminate against hard working singletons or parents who choose against marriage. Renewable energy such as windpower, but nowhere near conservative villages in Suffolk, Cambridgeshire and Norfolk. Waste, Pickles campaigning against Fortnightly collections and maggot paranoia, sabotaging recycling, whilst other conservatives introduced AWC successfully in Norfolk Councils. Education, City Acedemies, but no new grammar schools. The Right and One Nation sides of the party are having a tussle for policy and front bench authority. This is clear to all. Will this be the same in government where green clothes are conveniently discarded or watered down for the bad old Thatcherite and hachet ways?