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22 August 2007


Brian Barder

I entirely agree. This is incredibly shoddy stuff from Cameron. Not only has he revealed his ignorance of DTOs, something that he really ought to have mugged up before pontificating on the subject of young offenders: he has also gone completely off the rails on the corny old subject of prison. To be demanding more and longer prison sentences, when the prisons are already full beyond bursting point and when everyone who knows anything about the subject agrees that a huge proportion of people in prison ought never to have been sent there at all, is the worst kind of populist and unprincipled pandering to the worst of the tabloids. And he seems to think that the court decision on not deporting the murderer of Philip Lawrence is something to do with the Human Rights Act (which in fact was only marginally relevant to the decision). Moreover, as you (Tony) have pointed out elsewhere, it's unbelievable that the leader of a major party should denounce the Human Rights Act and promise (or threaten) to repeal it, without so much as mentioning the existence of the European Human Rights Convention whose provisions are reproduced in the HRA and which will remain binding on Britain whether Cameron repeals the HRA or not.

And now Cameron and his Tory sidekicks seem to have blundered over which hospitals face cuts, with hospitals protesting at being named as being at risk when they are not, and the Tories first issuing apologies and then retracting (some of) them.

Can't they do their homework? We expect them to be reactionary and unprincipled, but to be incompetent as well....



I'm with both of you on this. The Tories just aren't serious, preferring dinner party opinions to research. Cf Boris. I am old enough to remember R A Butler and his team. It could be worse. They could be the Government. Is it a sign of the decline of politics that better people do not join the Conservatives? Perhaps power now is too circumscribed to be as much of an aphrodisiac as money.

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