Tuesday, 12 January 2010

Cameron's 'Better Safe Than Sorry' Politics

Alex Massie at the Speccie has been like a dog, gums red with blood, refusing to let go of the irksome jagged bone that is Conservative party health proposals. And rightly so.

If there's one thing Team Spectator agrees upon it is, I think, that Tory health policy is utterly inadequate and desperately confused. One especially problematic promise, however, is the notion that what we need is a Department of Public Health.

Yep, that term made me shiver, too.

Well, the inspiration would seem to be Mayor Mike Bloomberg in New York City ... So a War on Salt (voluntary at this stage, admittedly) follows the Wars on Smoking and Obesity and further enhances Nurse Bloomberg's reputation as the Big Nanny Who Always Knows Best. Individually, of course, you might not object to any one of these measures; collectively they represent a gross and unnecessary intrusion. Each intervention then becomes the justification for the next one. Sooner or later you've been nudged into a longer, less enjoyable, less free life. Progress?

Of course not, and this is a question which enthusiastic Tories will have to answer if they are to tempt back those intending to vote for minority parties who, as England Expects points out, will likely cost Cameron in the region of 30 seats as things stand.

The optimism I have heard, from Tories natch, about a possible departure from the current dictatorial style of politics ushered in by post-Blair, top down, for-your-own-good mentality, just doesn't appear to be borne out by anything Cameron has come out with so far.

In fact, it's the complete opposite.

If, as Massie concludes, Cameron is attempting to emulate New York's Bloomberg, he is incredibly gullible and, one might suggest, lacking in research expertise.

Bloomberg's crusades are motivated by an ego which demands world headlines. Or, to put it another way, you will hear loads about how Bloomberg is interested in health, but will never read about any improvement in health as a result. That's probably because none of it works. Not surprising seeing as it is based entirely on junk science and ignorant, populist, holier-than-thou bullshit.

His latest attack on salt has been roundly debunked, whilst his other restrictions are as grandiose in their pronouncement as they are spectacularly useless in their efficacy. He is no doubt interested in health, but the results of his hectoring merely introduce irritation and impose upon liberty, without even a whiff of discernible improvements in health statistics (not even fake ones).

If Cameron wishes to reduce himself to a circus entertainer like Bloomberg, then fine, but he can expect no significant majority on the back of it, nor should he look forward to a second term because the resultant health figures will prove the strategy misguided and, consequentially, Cameron to be hopelessly out of touch with human nature.

It's a political leader taking the line that our lives must be constantly interfered with just in case it makes a difference. Better safe than sorry, and damn the consequences to the lives of those who wish to exist differently to the prescribed 'norm'.

It's a policy which is doomed to failure. And while he dithers on offering a real departure from Labour's hideous social bullying, the votes will continue to leak.


Mark Wadsworth said...

"while he dithers on...""??

Only a couple of days ago DING was waffling on about reducing Sure Start bungs for 'the middle classes' (as defined) and targetting them at 'vulnerable children'.

That's not what I call dithering. That's what I call full-steam-ahead plunging us even further into [whatever it is that Nulab are plunging us into].

Witterings From Witney said...

Cameron is no more a Tory than is Gordon Brown. Cameron's 'compassionate Conservatives' (or whatever title they have adopted this week) equals New Labour which equals yet more socialism.
Cameron is a wet, paternalist control freak.

Anonymous said...

Forty five years voting Tory,
not this time. He is controlled
from the same manipulators as
Labour and that other silly party
,whatever they're called.
Even the shadow cabinet looks like
something from a Gilbert and Sullivan show

Anonymous said...

Same here Anon. I've voted Tory all my life, but no more now that they have adopted the NuLab health regime of control and slaughter.

Cameron is no more a Tory than Blair was labour.

Both parties need renaming for what they represent.

I will no longer vote for a name that is now meaningless. Cameron and his inner circle don't appear to have a clue about what being a conservative actually means.


BTS said...

I've been failing to get my mouse to control the television again.

I think these politicians are really rotting my brain..

banned said...

"Public Health" is not about my health or yours, it is about the health of the public at large and will lead to mass compulsory medication to protect "Public Health". Anyone refusing will be branded Typhoid Mary, Gulaged and have their children confiscated even though people with communicable diseases can already be detained under existing legislation.
Power and Control, Dave is no better than Nu-Labour and Liam Donaldson will be able to enjoy his retirement secure in the knowledge that his principles carry on.

Anonymous said...

I recently filled a Tory party questionnaire on the NHS, asking that they get rid of Public Health altogether. Perhaps Dave hasn't read it yet.

I think it all started to go wrong in 1971 when they decided to go with 'prevention is better than cure' as official policy. The NHS was much better when it just focussed on the 'cure' bit.

I, too, am a life-long Tory voter, so I'll be opting for UKIP next time round.

John East said...

All the signs were there with Blair. The slick presentation, the soundbite presentations, and all of the spin, but being naive and trusting most of us fell for the con.

All the signs were there with Obama, with added arrogance, but being naive and trusting, and assuming nothing could be worse than Bush, most Americans fell for the con.

All the signs are there with Cameron. Light weight, all things to all men, at best vague policies not backed by any guiding morality or consistent theme.

Are we going to fall for it yet again.

Yes, of course we will.

BTS said...

Or 'Yes we can!', as some would have it..

w/v: muddul - how appropriate for Call Me Dave..

Anonymous said...

Cameron getting his orders

Just another bunch of puppets

Sick of the voting nonsense