Archive for April 21st, 2010

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Getting the old cabbage across

There is an old adage in teaching, and I suspect it works in most forms of communication, and it is this… Keep it clear, tell the listener what you are going to say in summary, say it and recap.  The key word, of course, is ‘clear’ and while there are many good ideas in the Conservative manifesto they are buried deep in the detail and do not appear to be getting out to the wider voting public.

The Guardian, no enthusiasts for a Tory government, report..

There’s no such thing as ‘big society’, senior Tories tell Cameron

Leader urged to scrap key policy idea as anxiety grips party.

The message is very definitely centred around Cameron – this was made even more clear when Cameron re-filmed his election broadcast in his back garden to combat the rise of Clegg.   The Tory high command, it is reported, are a bit anxious that the Tory message isn’t getting out – and they are right to be.  The Westminster bubble, the serious pundits know what Cameron means – The Sun does its best to reduce the message to clear principles (and they do a pretty good job – I am an admirer of tabloid journalism – if not always the more surreal content.  Making the complex clear and graphic is a high skill) – but busy people who are not poljunkies don’t always have time to investigate and discern the meaning.  The concept of reducing the size of government is sound – but the detail is not clear and such detail that has caught the public and parodist imagination  – electing police chiefs, for example,  is not that good an idea.

This quote from The Guardian is telling on two fronts: “We have some great policies but we’re not talking about them,” said one Tory. “I had no idea that we have a great idea to give 1 million more people access to an NHS dentist. What a great idea. Why aren’t we shouting about that … it’s is a great policy and nobody knows about it?” The second ‘front’ of course is.. if a Tory enthusiast didn’t know, how could a floating voter possibly know?

The Guardian continues: “A third Tory source was even blunter. “The ‘big society’ is bollocks. It is boiled vegetables that have been cooked for three minutes too long. It tastes of nothing. What is it?”

The old joke about Michael Howard, oft portrayed as Dracula by satirists and The Daily Mirror,  was..“how would you like your stake?”

This time, The Guardian suggests, the question  to the Party if Cameron fails will be… “What would you like to put on a stake?”

The Tories have form on replacing leaders, quickly, efficiently and ruthlessly. Et Tu, William?

And finally…the BBC reports (Actually… I hope they do push this point and VOTE …. but I am getting old and cynical)

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