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.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Speech reactions

I thought Gordon's speech was well delivered, with some useful policy meat and a good sound bite about the Tories "making cuts not because they have to but because they want to".

The return to a pre-2007 emphasis on tackling Anti-Social Behaviour was the most important part of the speech and demonstrates a realisation in No10 that crime and ASB remains a top concern for both Middle England swing voters and our core vote on estates.

As a long-term campaigner for electoral reform I was delighted by the commitment to a referendum on changing to a fairer voting system, and as a tactician I was delighted that the crazy idea of holding that referendum on General Election polling day (which would have split Labour during the election campaign and turned the referendum into an extra vote for or against the Government) was dropped.

I was disappointed that compulsory ID cards have been put on the back-burner -I still think we'll need them if we are ever going to really control illegal immigration - you can't tell if people have a right to be in the UK if we don't have to possess biometric proof of identity.

I'm one of the top-rate taxpayers who was benefiting from the to-be-abolished Employer Supported Childcare scheme so personally Gordon's speech just cost me £1,195 per year plus the 1/2% NI increase, but as a socialist I can't complain about a little bit more redistribution towards the families that most need childcare help.

The setting up of the National Care Service is important - varying standards of home care for the elderly council-by-council limit their ability to carry on living at home in a way that is unfair and wasteful.

I detected the hand of some Aussie-politics following No10 SPADs in the summation - it came within an inch of repeating the Paul Keating phrase "a victory for the true believers". Like Keating, after this speech the successor to a 3 election winning Labour leader may just pull off a surprise 4th term.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Gord came, saw and promised a bundle of IOUs on every weepy project that could conceivably get him a vote.

A drug-addled Santa with an extreme bout of diarhoea.

6:05 pm, September 29, 2009

Anonymous Clapton Ali said...

"I detected the hand of some Aussie-politics following No10 SPADs in the summation"

What's a No10 SPAD? And what does that sentence mean please?

6:16 pm, September 29, 2009

Blogger Luke Akehurst said...

A SPecial ADviser to the PM. A couple of the people helping draft the speech are interested enough in Australian politics to have been thinking of Keating's "victory for the true believers" speech when they drafted Gordon's peroration.

8:37 pm, September 29, 2009

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Luke, you a socialist - I don't think so...another delusional area of self-perception there...

10:23 am, September 30, 2009

Blogger Merseymike said...

I'm afraid I wasn't very inspired. The reminder about what has been positive was good, but that doesn't obliterate what I have disagreed with. However, the main problem was lack of any real future vision other than vague generalities.

9:51 pm, September 30, 2009

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ah yes, a "commitment to a referendum on changing to a fairer voting system". Would that be similar to the one made in the 1997 manifesto?

I'll believe it when I see it.

7:45 pm, October 03, 2009


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