23 Nov 2006

Polly Toynbee, Not Churchill

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The Guardian reports that Britain’s clueless Conservative Party is contemplating trying to outflank Labour… to the left!

One of David Cameron’s key policy advisers will urge the party today to abandon its Churchillian and “out of date” ideas about the welfare state, the Guardian has learned. Greg Clark, who is overhauling the party’s approach to poverty at the Tory leader’s request, will urge Conservatives to look to the (leftwing) Guardian commentator Polly Toynbee rather than the wartime leader.

His proposals are likely to infuriate many in the grassroots – and in the Tory press – but they suggest the party is seeking to outflank the government in surprising areas, as they have already done by campaigning as champions of the NHS.

Mr Clark, a shadow minister and confidant of the Tory leader who has been working on the party’s comprehensive policy review, argues that the Tories must attack inequality.

In a paper being published today, he writes: “The traditional Conservative vision of welfare as a safety net encompasses another outdated Tory nostrum – that poverty is absolute, not relative. Churchill’s safety net is at the bottom: holding people at subsistence level, just above the abyss of hunger and homelessness. It is the social commentator Polly Toynbee who supplies imagery that is more appropriate for Conservative social policy in the twenty first century.”

What Britain needs is a return to red-blooded Thatcherism, not a cowardly revival of 19th century Bismarckian-style efforts to compete with leftism in bribery of the canaille.

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Dominique R. Poirier

Hmmm. How bizarre, bizarre, she is this… Polly Toynbee.


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