Adam Lovejoy writes from Birmingham: I bet Prime Minister David Cameron, who is also the leader of the Tories, is hard at it putting the final touches to the speech that he’ll be reciting to the last remnants of the party faithful at their big annual gathering which opens tomorrow.
Mr Cameron’s task is made all the more difficult because he has a tough act to follow. His main rival, Labour leader Ed Miliband, has supposedly had a great conference of his own this week and allegedly managed to fire up his troops. I say ‘supposedly’ and ‘allegedly’ because that is what British hacks have been reporting, even though the Labour conference was a total disaster and demonstrated with remarkable clarity that the party is not fit to be in politics. In fact, Soviet communists would have been very impressed by Ed’s performance. He managed to skip all the real issues and spoke about his ‘faith’, which was not of the religious kind but faith nevertheless and it was all about leaving the country that he has inherited a better place. This is so communist that if Ed moves anymore to the left, along with the other chancers and opportunists in his Politburo, they will all fall off the perch. But such is the mainstream media in Britain now that it can’t see the forest behind a tree and is mostly dominated by crazed leftie liberals who have no problems calling black white and vice versa if they feel like it.
Anyway, there he is: Mr Cameron and his closest advisers, burning the midnight oil, thinking of what to say to convince the British people that the Tories actually know what they are doing, even though everything actually points to the sad fact that they haven’t got a clue. Not to mention that the Tory front bench is not really Tory, if you take a closer look at them, and have managed to disappoint and even outrage most of the traditional Conservative supporters with their cheap stunts and gimmicks and politically correct causes and slogans. (I bet one pledge – to introduce gay marriage – has alienated about half of the Tory supporters.)
So what will Dave say to try to save his political bacon? Well, he will talk about the success of the Olympics a lot because he is under the impression that the nation is still excited about the government blowing something like 15 billion smackers on the useless Games. Cameron’s advisers actually believe that the ‘Olympic legacy’ that has evaporated as quickly as Dave’s conservatism after he’d entered 10 Downing Street is a vote winner. Just as they seem to be under the impression that Mr Cameron can get away with promising a referendum on Europe after 2015, even though he broke his promise from his previous election manifesto to hold a referendum on the Lisbon Treaty. No one is going to believe him any more on Europe. But he will talk about it anyway.
The sinking economy is not a good subject for the Tory leader to dwell upon, considering that his Chancellor, George Osborne, really blew it with his supposed austerity that turned out to be an even bigger spending spree. But Dave can always claim that the green shoots of recovery are there, quoting the Economist that has spotted some of these shoots somewhere and even devoted a cover story to this elusive subject.
Gay marriage? Yep, Dave’s a sucker for it and will mention it as one of his priorities. He is under the impression that the ‘modern’ Tory party is all for gay marriage. If he continues like that he might soon find out that he will have no more grassroot members left, apart from the front bench, supporting him. Still, he is bound to risk it to get some good headlines.
Syria is bound to be mentioned as well, with Mr Cameron still believing that his tough stance on saving the Syrian people, just as it happened with the Libyan people before that, would give him some political points. Even though it would be difficult to find any people in Britain who are keen to see British troops getting involved in Syria.
Any way you look at it, it’s a tough time for Dave. But he has only himself to blame. You can’t really call yourself an heir to Tony Blair while running the Conservative party. Stepping down would be a more honest approach, but that’s not what Mr Cameron is all about. He’s a fighter and will fight until he’s carried out of Number 10. Just as it happened to his idol Tony.