Wednesday, 5 May 2010
The Tories don't have policies, they have excuses...
The Tories main excuse is the excuse to reduce public spending. The economic problems caused by their friends the bankers have given them the perfect excuse to slash and burn the public sector. An excuse to reduce spending on the NHS and increase waiting times once more, an excuse to cut the pay of hospital staff, an excuse to put up prescription charges.
Their excuse to give more money to rich middle-class parents is that they want those parents to set up their own "free schools". This is an excuse the Tories have taken from Sweden, where they introduced free schools. This was so successful that they are now closing them all down because of the damage they do, taking resources away from everyone else and increasing inequality in education.
The excuse they will use to cut money to the poorest people is that they need "incentives to work". I always thought the best way to motivate someone to do a job was to pay them a living wage. At the same time the excuse that they will use to justify tax cuts for the richest 3000 people is that they need incentives to work...
But their biggest excuse is the reform of the voting system, and by this I do not mean proportional representation, I mean their new "super-first-past-the-post" system. Reducing the number of MPs to 500 constituencies will get bigger and parliament will become even more unrepresentative. The new system will make it much more difficult not to elect a Tory government, a system in which probably 250 of these constituencies are Tory safe seats with half a dozen LibDems and the rest split between Labour and the minor parties. An inbuilt Tory majority for ever. The excuse will be to reform parliament, an excuse he will use to make it almost impossible to elect anyone else. Proportional non-representation.
Whatever happens this excuse for a party should not be put in the position where it can use these excuses to pander to its own dysfunctional prejudices. We need a government which acts based on what is best for the country, not one which is there simply as an excuse to make the rich and powerful richer and more powerful based on excuses rather than coherent policies.