An Unnecessary Role

embracing false choices

“We have to bear in mind that people just don’t give a toss”

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A paragraph (or two) I wish I’d written:

Ed Miliband has recently tried to start “a national conversation”. As part of this the general public have been invited to a day of Party Conference. Definitely not because they want to bulk up numbers at a conference no one wants to go to, but because huge conference halls are ideal locations for conversations on a grand scale.

To make this work, we all need to remember that people don’t care. We have to bear in mind that people just don’t give a toss; it’s the key to success.

Conor’s a funny man, but not even he could have invented the sheer absurdity of the latest Shapps ‘policy’ ‘proposal’, nicely explained by the clever-clogs at Red Brick:

There has been a ground breaking housing policy development that Red Brick readers may just have missed. It’s the government’s Houseboat Strategy.

In genuinely out of the box, beyond the blue-sky thinking, the government plans to help more people live on boats.

In a new bout of press release-based policy making Grant Shapps has said that:

“new moorings could be eligible for the New Homes Bonus, which sees the government match council tax from new-build homes.”

The politician responsible for the nation’s strategic housing needs has just announced that he thinks narrowboats are “basically a pretty good idea” (NB: may not be an actual quote) and what is the Labour Party doing? We’re having a national conversation about nexi of power and flirting with the idea of attacking David Cameron for being simply beastly.

Which I think is what Conor is getting at. Labour (or certainly many of those currently wielding influence in the party) is extremely comfortable with ‘politics’, the business of process, inquiries and strategy, but far less comfortable with the stuff of people’s every day experience. When the Tories are drawing upon Rosie and Jim as housing policy inspiration, that’s something of a missed opportunity.

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Written by samelliot

August 29, 2011 at 5:58 pm

Posted in Cynicism, Housing, Labour

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