Thursday, January 15, 2009

Headless Chickens Leave Voters Cold

Ministers are floundering around sending out a staggering array of mixed messages to capture headlines and bewitch voters. But running around like headless chickens leaves voters bothered and bewildered. 

Hardly a day goes by without more spin and confusion. The Orange Party is starting to get a headache. God knows what the public must be thinking. 

A couple of treats over the last few days bring all the spin into sharp focus. 

First up slippery Jack Straw who, having failed to get secret inquests in his anti-terror bill, to rounds of applause from anyone concerned about civil liberties, suddenly pops up with the same cunning plan to allow inquests behind closed doors with the pathetic excuse of “national security”. Everyone knows this is just a way of avoiding coroners' stinging criticism over troop weapons shortages. So why the confusing flannel?

Yesterday's prize went to Mandelson's junior minister, Baroness Vadera with her ludicrous headline grabbing statement that she saw "green shoots of recovery". Hastily retracted, Vadera eats shoots and leaves. It grabbed the headlines but not in the way either she or Mandy intended. 

Today it's the Heathrow runway sham. At a stroke blowing the government's pretence of any green credentials out of the window and forcing backbench Labour MPs, particularly in the marginals, to write their election suicide notes. 

Today also it's Blair-boy Miliband whose suddenly woken up, smelt the coffee and decided the 'war of terror'  wasn't such a good idea after all. Where on earth has he been all these years? Seven years of New Labour foreign policy thrown out of the window. Where was the weasel-worded wonder boy's conscience then?

And if that's not all, the public has to suffer the ridiculous sham of the school league tables, now a totally meaningless yearly farce.

Meanwhile back in Brown's deluded world, he's running around like a headless chicken trying to look busy doing nothing, as the economy crashes around his ears, creating false hopes on the jobs front as every new announcement is swiftly rounded on and exposed as a sham. 

Still to come is Mandy's plan to sell off Royal Mail. He's sticking to his guns but faces a full-scale backbench rebellion, throwing the whole mess into a confusing spotlight. 

So much of the spin has Mandelson's paw prints over them and its starting to get up the nose of backbench MPs. 

Did Brown really know what he was letting himself in for when he allowed Mandelson to flee from the clutches of the EU and run for cover in his government? It seemed like such a good idea at the time and for a while the master of spin did his job, managing to head off any coup against Brown and paint the supreme leader in a good light. 

But, as the Orange Party warned at the time, Mandelson always came with a health warning. Too much spin is bad for the government's health. Tories, LibDems and SNP will be laughing all the way to the ballot box.

UPDATE: Backbench true Labour MP, John McDonnell, has been suspended from the commons for five days. His crime? Running off with the sacred mace and attacking Hoon over the Heathrow runway with the words: "You are a disgrace to democracy." Thank god there are still Labour MPs with the guts to stand up to these morons.

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