The Futility Monster

He'll pointlessly derive more enjoyment out of your resources than you

Bags, Cats and the NHS

Posted by The Futility Monster on August 14, 2009 @ 08:50

NHSNFSA few weeks ago, I sounded the alarm just a little on the Conservatives new found love, Mr Dan Hannan.

I was suspicious about him being the asset many made him out to be.

And, sure enough, he has opened a tiny window of opportunity to the Labour Party with his rather unfortunate comments on the NHS. They strike me as the words of a man enjoying his new found fame in the US and exploiting it to the full by wading into the hyperbole of the American healthcare debate.

While I wouldn’t say this has been a big mistake, it is clearly a misstep. The worrying thing about this issue is that Hannan made very similar comments four months ago, saying the NHS “makes people iller” and used the usual American accusations of socialism. He clearly has form.

When that happened, the only people who seemed to notice were the Guardian.  It got very little other comment. But it should have been the event that urged Cameron and the party bigwigs that Hannan is a potential loose cannon. In the way that they don’t embrace Douglas Carswell for his fiercely right-wing agenda, they ought to have started the process of distancing from Hannan.

But they didn’t. Which, thankfully, proves that they are human and they are going to make mistakes.

The huge danger for them now is that it allows Labour to begin the process of suggesting that while Cameron may indeed “love the NHS” (paraphrased) – Cameron is not the Tory party. The backbenchers are teeming with unreformed Thatcherites (most elected in 2005); and you just wait till the next election when you’ll witness a wave of the same being newly elected all over the country.

Don’t tell me that that isn’t going to be the true Conservative agenda for the next Parliament and beyond. There are many Conservatives who would dearly love to see the back of the NHS as a matter of principle. While there is no doubt that it does waste a huge amount of money, and there are bureaucratic reforms that can be ennacted, many Conservatives will use such accusations as a weapon to undermine its very purpose.

All of this coming on top of Alan Duncan’s “misspeak” and the reigniting of expenses issues with the failed deselection of Anne Main MP, something I know local Lib Dems will be cock-a-hoop about.

Maybe this is all just silly season nonsense that will blow over very quickly. But if there’s one man around at the moment who is certainly going to try and make hay…

Well, he’s currently sitting in Number 10 while Gordon Brown is away.

Step forward, Lord Mandelson!

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One Response to “Bags, Cats and the NHS”

  1. Henry Quisling said

    “The backbenchers are teeming with unreformed Thatcherites (most elected in 2005); and you just wait till the next election when you’ll witness a wave of the same being newly elected all over the country.”
    Gosh, I hope this is true! Surely not all of the PPCs can be as sopping wet as Chloe Smith or even Dave himself.

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