Friday, December 28, 2007

Conservatives: Bogus and Negative Campaigning 2007

Strangely I tend to agree with Unity that this fixed-term "Campaign" from Iain Dale is opportunistical tosh. In case readers should think I'm obsessed I also agree with Tom Watson that the likes of this tragi-comic accident must be stamped out. And with Will Parbury that if you're an Eton old boy fed up with living at jet speed this bargain may just float your boat. Just needs a lick of paint.


Phil said...

It is tosh. Tories, traditionally as the party of capital have never consistently campaigned for democratic reforms, except to sponsor the odd opportunistic measure when their opponents are in government. Hence this fixed term rubbish, assertion of parliamentary sovereignty over Brussels, and the English parliament rubbish are sticks to beat Labour with. If they find themselves in government again after the next election, this stuff will be dumped quicker than you can say uncle.

tory boys never grow up said...

Of course it is opportunistic tosh coming from the Tories - funny they never said anything when they changed leaders mid-term - anyone remember Macmillan's terminal illness. They just don't understand the basic point that you cannot change the constitution without such changes being voted on in a General Election or referendum - which really nullifies all they say abvout suddenly having discovered democracy.

In fact history shows us that almost every democratic advance has been opposed by the Tories. Perhaps if they want to exercise their newly found spirit of democracy they could do something to condemn the hunters who are in effect sticking their fingers up to the law - despite that law having been included 3 times in the manifesto of the winning party - just imagine if we were to ignore their laws in the same manner.

That said I do actually think that there is a case for fixed term parliaments - providing that they are discussed and voted for at a General Election in advance. It is difficult to see why the incumbents should have a built in advantage re timing and I doubt that most of the rest of the world is wrong. Also worth noting that the only one of the Chartist's original demands not to have been enacted is that for annual parliaments.

Anonymous said...

The re-writing of history is always entertaining. Conservatives have voted for many reforms over the years ... the abolition of slavery, the Corn Laws (although they also had introduced them), the Reform Act 1867 (although Disraeli's intentions are the subject of academic debate) and the Representation of the People Act 1928 was passed by Stanley Baldwin's Government.

So to assert that 'almost every democratic advance has been opposed by the Conservatives' is in my view, simply wrong.

tory boys never grow up said...

Yes Evan - I was overegging the pudding when I said "almost every democratic advance". The exception I was thinking about at the time was the abolition of slavery - but that aside you have come up with a pretty slim list - I really don't think that you can have the repeal of the Corn Laws after 31 years and the subsequent departure of the Peelites from the Conservative Party even if we set aside the matter of riots and overwhelming public pressure. The 1867 Reform Act is a little dodgy as well given the opposition the previous year to the Liberal's bill - and because of the very limited redistribution of seats to working men who were given the vote.

Perhaps it would be better to have said that the initial position of the Tories was to oppose almost every democratic advance - and then only to give way once the pressure for change became overwhelming or it it was considered politically expedient to do so?

I think that a lot of this history still plays a very large part in determining peoples political leanings - as you might guess I can chase my family back to the Chartists