It’s nearly safe to come out…

Thankfully the subject of the Conservative leadership is rapidly becoming moot. My concern is the same as over questions of deception over Iraq; that people will be taken in with a re-arranging of the furniture.

All the Conservative MPs appear to have fallen into line, each potential contender agreeing in turn to back one candidate. I’m unsure as to what this to achieve, all this talk of how the newly crowned King Michael of Conservative Party is so wonderful strong and moderate, and will lead them to new heights. Perhaps I’m not exactly the sort of person that will be turned on by Michael Howard, but I don’t see how he’ll make them any more attractive to the general public than IDS. Perhaps it’s the old media paradigm of saying something often enough until it becomes true.

There is the question of democracy here. I’ve been in Scouting for many years, and served on several committees, so know how difficult it is to get people to stand for some positions of responsibility. Sometimes the only candidate for a post is the one person warped enough to stand, or weak enough not to bear the arm twisting. I’m not so naive as to believe that is the case here. I have seen situations where the only serious candidate has been challenged by a “joke” candidate to force people to make a choice, which is not a situation anyone would want to see in serious politics.

However there could be situations where committees have sought to pre-select their successors by doing deals behind the scene, and this “election” smacks of that. In both SAGGA and mainstream Scouting I am concerned all members should be treated equally without special privilege, so I’m not impressed with the attitudes shown towards the ordinary members of the Conservative party. Just as well I’m not a member.

Michael Howard seems to be distancing himself from some of the more extreme elements of his party claiming to be leading from the centre.* However given IDS’s comments, and comparison to my (formeToryory father-in-laws perspective, the modern Conservative party seems to have an odd idea where the centre of politics lies.

But surely no-one would forget what Michael Howard has stood for?

Who am I kidding? People do have short memories. But luckily a friend of Paul Richards (aka The Thinker) is concerned we might, in all this revisionism, forget who Michael Howard really is and Paul has posted the article to remind us.

* Actually another example of bad media paraphrasing, he was talking about the centre of his party.


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