January 15, 2007

Something about the Boy (King)

Really we have absolutely no idea what David Cameron's policies will be when in power. He has resolutely refused to be pinned down on just about everything. Other than a few moments of insanity there does seem to be a theme of shrinking the State, but nothing solid and certainly no bankable promises. I believe there are, or at least could be, three reasons for the Boy King's current strategy, two obvious and one devious.

1. It keeps the BBC on side. By playing to the biases of the largest media group in the country he can stave off the point at which they start demonising him (and they will, just wait) till his warm and fluffy image is set in the minds of the public.

2. It plays to the centre ground and will help take back those seats that fell to the Lib-Dems in former Tory strongholds. With a first past the post voting system the core vote matters a lot less than the outliers in a few marginal seats. By making the core vote hate him he also creates a break with the past making them more likely to actually look at the things he is proposing as it will seem like they cannot judge him by simply anti-Tory prejudice.

Enough with the obvious, here is the devious.

3. He might be able to goad Gordon Brown into doing something stupid.

Higher taxes are the last thing the economy needs being already groaning under a tax burden that is higher than its competitors, and with a housing market that is ripe for a correction. It would not take much to trigger an economic downturn and whatever happens one is going to come along sooner or later. So maybe Cameron wants to try and goad Brown into making it happen before the next election.

Empathising over the poor and disposed is classically what Labour do, so if he could get the Big Clunking Fist to think, 'So you want to try and be more soft and fluffy than me do you? Well I'll show you who the soft and fluffy one around here is you posh southern bastard!' before going on a classic socialist tax and spending binge. If that happens (and the school lottery idea is evidence that the loony wing of Labour are being given a freer ride) then it might be enough to trigger the correction early. New Labour's one achievement of keeping the economy going will disappear in a cloud of Old Labour high taxation, and Cameron is guaranteed a landslide victory with no reason to actually do anything about any of the pseudo-lefty noises he used to goad Gordon since high tax and spending policies will be associated, correctly, with economic failure.

If point 3 is part of David Cameron's plan, and more importantly if it is working, we will know in a few months time once Gordon Brown's last budget before becoming Prime Minister has been delivered.


Anonymous Anonymous said...


I would dearly love there to be a hint of truth in no.3

I do know a lot of VERY bright people who have been rooting for Cameron since long before he won the leadership and at least one or two of which are certainly smart enough to have gamed this one....


2:15 pm  

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