Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Buying votes, hypocrisy, the Labour way

There's a headline in the soon to be gone Independent about the Tories buying votes, it's a soundbite by Jack (I hate the English) Straw.
Tories trying to buy power, says Straw

David Cameron is today accused by a senior Cabinet minister of attempting to "buy" victory at the general election with a US-style campaign dominated by advertising.

Writing in The Independent, Jack Straw, the Justice Secretary, predicts the Tory campaign will be the most lavish in political history and denounces Mr Cameron for relying heavily on cash supplied by the party's deputy chairman, Lord Ashcroft, who has extensive business interests in Belize.
First off, this is the Tory party using donations to themselves from Lord Ashcroft legally gained and following all the rules, it does not matter if Ashcroft has extensive business interests on the moon, so long as he follows the rules, basically this is just spin from the Independent to try and paint the Tories as dependent on foreign cash (as opposed to Labour who are dependent on Union cash)

His provocative attack comes as the Conservatives prepare to launch a pre-election mini-manifesto next week backed by a flurry of advertising. Party chiefs are planning to unveil a succession of new policies in an attempt to persuade wavering voters they can offer a weighty programme for government.
Provocative? No desperate is closer to the mark, Labour are all but bankrupt and are seen as "losers" hence no-one in their right mind will fully support them and so they are having a bleat to a friendly paper to try and raise the issue.
With no limit on spending until an election is called, Mr Straw's comments also reflect Labour fears that the party is already being heavily outspent in the battle for crucial marginal constituencies. Lord Ashcroft is charge of the drive to capture those seats for the Tories.
Although Labour received donations totalling £2.25m before Christmas from three wealthy supporters, Labour's financial woes also mean it could struggle to match the Conservatives during the campaign.
Help, help the opposition can outspend us?
The Justice Secretary writes: "At the same time that Mr Cameron tells the British people we face 'austerity', he has ordered his party to fight the most expensive election campaign in British political history.
See above.

What people do with their money (including political parties) is up to them, if Labour had popular policies and fiscal credibility, they wouldn't be so worried, as it is the public know the mess we're in, who caused it and no amount of money or publicity for Labour will change that.

However it's the sheer breathtaking hypocrisy of Jack Straw complaining about buying power that's got me annoyed.

Telegraph.

Poor families will also receive 12 months’ free internet use under the terms of the Home Access scheme, launched next year, which will allow parents to spend up to £500 on a computer from an approved list.
The move is part of a bid by ministers to drive up standards in deprived areas, with the white working classes thought to be at particular risk of being left behind.
This is Labour buying votes with my/our money not theirs.

Telegraph.

John Denham, the Communities Secretary, admitted fast social change, including large flows of immigration, has led to resentment in some neighbourhoods that have also been hit hard by the recession.
It comes a day after academics warned the "traditional" white working class have been left behind and isolated in a changing Britain.
Mr Denham announced a £12 million programme to target such communities and make them feel more connected. 
Ditto.

Guardian.
A fierce debate within the government on how to tackle entrenched wealth inequality – possibly through a high pay commission or a tax on assets – is to be ignited by a report ordered by Harriet Harman, the Labour
The report is due to be published in January. Early drafts seen by ministers say wealth inequality has deepened, with the rungs on the ladder having grown further apart, reducing social mobility. It is also expected to underline the degree to which access to pensions and housing play a crucial role in entrenching inequalities in wealth and income.
Harman sees the report, which has been commissioned from a team of academics chaired by Professor John Hills, as a political opportunity for Labour to frame a progressive debate on inequality before the election.
Downing Street and the Treasury would be opposed to a new wealth tax, but there may be pressure for a tougher capital gains tax on main homes, or widening council tax bands. It is also likely to lead to calls for wider employee share ownership and home ownership.
Again this is Labour looking to bribe who they see are their core support.

So Jack Straw is complaining that the Tories are going to use their own money to outspend Labour in a political election campaign, yet Labour are prepared to use millions of taxpayers money funnelling it into areas of their core support via fake charities, free computers, equality taxation etc.

The man's a prize hypocrite!

3 annotations:

wynfrith said...

Why would anyone need to buy power when Mr Brown is so very good at giving it away? ;-)

James Higham said...

They're all hypocrites, that lot.

JuliaM said...

I'm not sure he's due a prize, though.. ;)