A blog by Luke Akehurst about politics, elections, and the Labour Party - With subtitles for the Hard of Left. Just for the record: all the views expressed here are entirely personal and do not necessarily represent the positions of any organisations I am a member of.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Purnell's speech

I got an email yesterday from a friend whose politics are broadly Compass-ite saying "Have you read this Luke? Thought you’d like it - it’s a brilliant critique of Cameron – by far the best I've read from a cabinet minister recently"

It linked to this speech by James Purnell last week.

It deserves reading.


Blogger Jack Ray said...

haha, so he's basically accusing Cameron of being Tony Blair circa 1997 :D

3:55 pm, June 25, 2008

Blogger Miller 2.0 said...

I think it's a brilliant analysis.

I also like some of Purnell's welfare reform ideas.

But his broader politics can go to hell.

5:09 pm, June 25, 2008

Anonymous brownite said...

But his broader politics can go to hell.

Real mature attitude there Miller 2.0

Somehow I don't think Mr Purnell gives a damn what you think.

And you say you're a supporter of the Labour party! Sheesh!

When was the last time you said or did anything supportive of the government?

Time you stopped acting like a propagandist for the opposition.

5:13 pm, June 25, 2008

Blogger Merseymike said...

Yes, good speech - I think that the Tories honeymoon should they become the Government would be very short indeed, since they don't really have any solutions.

The problem is, neither do the government. As far as welfare reform is concerned, Frank Field is someone who has a couple of basics absolutely right.

First, that we tax the poor far too heavily and at a far too low entry level

Second, that means testing is a mistake since it has disincentives built into it.

I'm not convinced that Purnell''s ideas deal with either of those issues and they are vital.

6:30 pm, June 25, 2008

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Luke praising a piece that talks about intellectual tradition - wonders will never cease.

Isn't this the sort of thing that appeals to those dreadful Guardian reading types.

10:51 am, June 26, 2008

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Great expectations.

But then I read first ten pars and realised I was into Akehurst value-added which roughly equates to yah-boo lite.

Cameron confused about what he stands for.

Is that so? Well, I never.

The moat lodged into Purnell's brain which just seems to slip his memory is that Cameron is 20 points ahead in the polls.

If I were you I wouldn't be worrying too much about Cameron at this stage.

There's a brooding, socially inadequate, cack-handed clown sitting at the cabinet table with him every week called Brown.

What to do about Brown, or is Banquo, must be the sole topic of conversation among Labour Party members but he never gets a mention on this blog.

Funny that.

4:41 pm, June 26, 2008

Blogger Miller 2.0 said...

"When was the last time you said or did anything supportive of the government?"

Probably on Monday.

I think loyalty to values and loyalty to the electorate are both more important than loyalty to party, at least, as long as you're not a member of the Government.

I definitely don't believe that membership of a political party removes your right to publicly criticise it or argue for it to change.

I think it's time that the top of our party was more loyal to the thousands which make up the bottom of it.

"Somehow I don't think Mr Purnell gives a damn what you think."

That's precisely what's wrong with 'his broader politics'. Loyalty goes both ways.

Anyway... when Purnell makes some public statements in favour of party policy such as rail nationalisation and the 4th option, I'll be in a better mind to be a bit more compliant. ;o)

5:18 pm, June 26, 2008

Blogger Miller 2.0 said...

"Cameron confused about what he stands for.

Is that so? Well, I never."

I think that's unfair.

Purnell seems to get the strategy that Cameron is putting in place; lurching the tory narrative (but I note, not the policy, because there is none) from left to right.

I wish I could have put the same points as succinctly, to be honest.

5:27 pm, June 26, 2008

Blogger Jack Ray said...

so, why do you think it's such brilliant analysis then? I mean he could take any Tory policy document from 1994 onwards, swap the political orientation and it'd read exactly the same. "the opposition is stealing our political ground, they don't stand for anything, just the unprincipled grasp for power". It could just as easily describe the politics of both front benches.

Oh, and surprise, public school education Oxonian doesn't think that Cameron's background is a problem shocker!

5:39 pm, June 26, 2008

Anonymous brownite said...

Environment policy! That's really gonna win us the next election.

How about supporting the government on issues the public are actually in favour of. Like 42 days. Or do you only believe in loyalty to the electorate when it suits you?

It's time to get behind the government and our great leader. He may not be perfect, but he's better than Cameron.

Maybe Miller 2.0 is a closet Tory?

5:46 pm, June 26, 2008

Anonymous Rich said...

LOL, great leader you are having a laugh. The economy is falling around our ears because of Brown and you really think the voters are going to support you.

A recent classic the government recently passed the Decent Homes Act which enforces home standards for local authorities. Yet the same government also sets the rents local authorities can charge for their properties. So big is the gap that most housing associations and local authorities are now running unviable businesses. They can't make money to reinvest in their housing stock because the rents are not even covering the repairs.

This government legislates without even considering the consequences,

7:46 pm, June 26, 2008

Anonymous Anonymous said...


As it stands - only an act from God will surfice to win New Labour the next election. And Gordon Brown is certainly not the almighty.

The British electorate have lost confidence in this current government because of certain policies, in which they seem determined to persue, so where is the harm in openly debating such issues?
A bunker mentality is detremental to this Country at large. Or is it that in your own self righteous opinion, Gordon Brown is more important than that?

The last thing the Labour party need right now, is to go into self imposed meltdown, because of an inabiltiy to listen and debate, whilst emiting a breath taking arrogance in ignoring anybodys opinions other than their own, for no better reason, than self preservation.
That is not democracy.

7:50 pm, June 26, 2008

Anonymous Anonymous said...

And now what do you think of Purenll after his speech to the government about welfare, last year the Tories said benefits should be time limited Purnell said see the Tories hate the disabled, now Purnell says yes benefits must be time limited IB has to go and all benefits must be means tested. good old Purnell a Tory through and through

12:53 pm, July 19, 2008

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