David Cameron: UK will get up to strength in 2012


David Cameron: UK must 'go for it' in 2012

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David Cameron has promised to use the "global drama" of the Olympics and "glory" of the Queen's Diamond Jubilee to help get Britain "up to strength".

"This will be the year Britain sees the world and the world sees Britain," the PM said in his new year message.

However, he admitted 2012 would be difficult as the economy struggled.

In his new year message, Labour leader Ed Miliband said his party must convince people in 2012 that "optimism can defeat despair".

The message, issued before the new year, said the UK needed "profound change" to avoid a future of struggling to compete in the world and called on politicians to show they could make a difference.

And in a message issued to Lib Dems last week, Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg said the new year posed "many great challenges for everyone", adding that his party had ensured the coalition government was helping people.

'Extraordinary incentive'

Mr Cameron said 2012 "must be the year we go for it" - the year the coalition government "does everything it takes to get our country up to strength".


The prime minister's new political prophecy reads like a pep talk from the country's coach at a particularly gloomy time. He's at pains to say that he understands people's fears, their worries about jobs, high prices, City excess and the economy.

It's an attempt to enthuse a pessimistic people that better times lie ahead. Number 10 knows it must offer the hope of something sunnier beyond austerity and cuts.

Even prime ministers can't predict the future but two events that will happen this year are the Diamond Jubilee and the Olympics. He wants these to be a "mirror" on the nation, moments to enthuse and inspire. They might, but it's the course of the economy that is the urgent concern of many people and David Cameron's message concedes that its future is almost impossible to predict.

The eurozone crisis still casts an ominous shadow over the economy. "We have gained security", the prime minister says, "for now" - an important qualification.

But he insisted the coalition understood the problems and would "do more" to help people through them.

The prime minister looked ahead to the "global drama of the Olympics", which will be held in London from 27 July to 12 August, and the "glory of the Diamond Jubilee", which will mostly be commemorated for three days from 2 June.

"Cameras and TV channels around the planet will be recording these magnificent events. It gives us an extraordinary incentive to look outward, look onwards and to look our best: to feel pride in who we are and what - even in these trying times - we can achieve," said Mr Cameron.

He continued: "Of course, I know that there will be many people watching this who are worried about what else the year might bring.

"There are fears about jobs and paying the bills. The search for work has become difficult, particularly for young people. And rising prices have hit household budgets.

"I get that. We are taking action on both fronts. I know how difficult it will be to get through this. But I also know that we will."

Mr Cameron said the government had "clear and strong plans" to bring down the deficit, which were giving "some protection from the worst of the debt storms now battering the euro zone".

"We have gained security for now - and because of that, we must be bold, confident and decisive about building the future," he added.

In his new year message, Labour leader Ed Miliband said "optimism can defeat despair" in 2012

"I know much needs to change. We've got to do more too to bring our economy back to health. So we've set out big plans for the transformation of our infrastructure, starting now - with better roads and railways, superfast broadband and new homes."

He said although much of Europe was struggling there were huge opportunities for UK businesses in other parts of the world.

And he promised to be bold in sorting out public services and social issues - complaining that "too often our schools aren't up to scratch, our hospitals aren't always clean enough and our police don't catch criminals".

'Tackling excess'

"While a few at the top get rewards that seem to have nothing to do with the risks they take or the effort they put in, many others are stuck on benefits, without hope or responsibility," he said.

"So we will tackle excess in the City just as we're reforming welfare to make work pay and support families.

In his new year message to Lib Dems, issued last week, the deputy PM Nick Clegg said next year posed "many great challenges for everyone".

He said the UK had been "pulled back from the brink" by a government which remained focused on its "economic rescue mission".


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  • rate this

    Comment number 696.

    Cameron has done well so far in repairing a "Broken Britain", and encouraging us to take hold of our own destiny. Miliband is telling us the way forward`is to wear "rose tinted spectacles "and think lucky. Sorry, Ed, Labour got us to do that before and look what happened. It's time to get off our backsides and work harder than we've ever done before, and to show what Brits are really capable of.

  • rate this

    Comment number 566.

    "Cameron must push a stake into the heart of the NHS" -- What alternative are you suggesting to the NHS? We currently seem to be on the road to a US-style private insurance system, under which the main beneficiaries are the insurance companies, not the patients. The NHS is an example of the sense of fairness and equal opportunity that makes Britain great. Support it, improve it, don't kill it!

  • rate this

    Comment number 563.

    The man who for months talked Britain down to win an election - Broken Britain - now wants us all to forget it because his royal relatives want a few days out!!!

  • rate this

    Comment number 547.

    Olympics and a Jubilee. Its just icing on a hollow cake. I would like to hear what they are going to do about rejuvenating industrial growth in this country. Too many Governments have sacrificed manufacturing for the benefit of the parisitic city. Other EU countries still have a large industrial base but all we have is a financial house of cards.

  • rate this

    Comment number 523.

    It's all very clever and insightful to point out all of DC's 'lies, falsities and downright arrogance' but let's be fair to the man.

    He is meant to come out and make a statement, and as PM it is quite natural that at least 40% of bloggers will actively dislike it, so why not just try be a bit less cynical and a bit more proactive in helping fix the UK!


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