Saturday, January 30, 2016

Reality check

I didn't post today's "quote of the day" because I necessarily entirely agree with it or am 100% comfortable with the words Sir Michael Caine used even where I do agree with hum.

I posted that quote as a reminder to myself and any other politically interested person reading this with an open mind that voters with views not a million miles away from Caine's are the people you need to appeal to if you want to win elections.

David Cameron is Prime Minister because he understands that. Ed Miliband isn't Prime Minister because he was the first Labour party leader for three decades who didn't.

Britain has only had one Prime Minister since World War II who was not always careful to appeal to the centre - and even Margaret Thatcher was far more pragmatic and centrist in government than she has been presented as being after leaving office, both by New Labour propagandists keen to blame her for everything and by her own acolytes keen to present her as keeper of the true blue faith.

Maggie was also perceived as closer to the centre in all three of the elections she won than her opposition at the time. James Callaghan, though a moderate man himself, had just presided over a disastrous "winter of discontent" and the Labour left was seen as pervading his government, Michael Foot fought the 1983 "missile election" on an unashamedly left-wing and unilateralist programme, and Neil Kinnock in 1987 had barely begun the long march to the centre which was eventually to produce New Labour.

Elections in Britain are won from the centre. Both those on the right of the Conservative party who think David Cameron is a soggy leftie, and those in the Corbyn wing of the Labour party who want everyone from Hilary Benn rightwards to JOIN THE TORIES, would do well to take a reality check.

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