Tory detoxification continues…
I wrote last week about Cameron’s re-de-toxification strategy – that he seems to be working hard to recruit well-off liberals. This weekend, I happened to notice his last three Facebook posts, which I thought underlined the point I was trying to make.
Let’s talk through them.
Most recently, we have his support for Red Nose Day:
Then there’s the recent feminist action Billion Women Rising
This, remember, is the same David Cameron who is pushing through massive cuts to services for women who are victims of domestic violence.
The third post down shows his ‘support’ for dementia sufferers:
(Across the country, dementia sufferers are losing the vital services they need to Cameron’s cuts).
And George Osborne’s been busy too – here’s today’s Observer front page:
The point is that he isn’t banging on about the danger of the size of the deficit, or about how we should all hate immigrants, or the other usual bile you get from Tories. He is Mr Nice Guy. But remember, if you like what Cameron and Osborne are saying above, that’s probably because you are one of the people they are targeting.
As I wrote last week, the strategy of ‘trying to look nice’ is hardly original for any politician. It is certainly Cameron’s oldest trick. But it is important to note that it is – as it was in 2010, but not in 2005 – key to how they plan to win in 2015.
And it’s important for those who are running campaigns over the next couple of years to be aware that this strategy provides both opportunities for easier wins in some (often symbolic) areas. But with those opportunities comes the risk of contributing more than you might realise to the success of Mr Cameron’s political programme. And this may well, in the long run, be damaging to your aims. It is certainly disastrous for the country as a whole.