David Cameron to focus on 'what really matters'

David Cameron David Cameron will attempt to shrug off recent controversies

The Big Picture.

That's what Tony Blair used to say the media should focus on when asked about all the things that were going wrong for his government.

Expect David Cameron to express the same sentiment - if not to use the same language - at his conference this week.

This afternoon William Hague spoke of the "great test of this generation" in a speech which was much more serious than the one his party's grown used to on the opening day of their conference.

What he meant by those words was the simultaneous challenges of tackling the deficit whilst preparing the country to face the growing competition posed by the world's new fast-growing economies.

The Tories' claim will be that George Osborne's deficit reduction programme, Michael Gove's education reforms and Iain Duncan Smith's re-shaping of the welfare state are doing just that.

When asked about pasty taxes or plebs or rail franchises the prime minister will insist that what really matters is the government's big reforms and not the day-to-day cock-ups.

Nick Robinson Article written by Nick Robinson Nick Robinson Political editor

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  • rate this

    Comment number 359.

    What MATTERS is his rich pals

    The workers can go whistle

    Roll on the Independence vote and a Tory free future

  • rate this

    Comment number 358.

    Just listened to Gideon's speech and my blood is boiling...

    As far as I can see, all he has done is cut taxes for the rich while hammering the poor into oblivion.

    And by looking at their faces, I suspect even the Tories own supporters are starting to feel uncomfortable with this bunch of self serving, silver spooned toffs playing at politics.

    PS - Pay your taxes George.

  • rate this

    Comment number 357.

    Menin 351
    On a roll tonight! Take a pinch of snuff at 323 and your ' just keep it simple, adapt to changing circumstances and be competent.' and things might improve.
    Bit cheeky of George to treat us to a bit of what I'll do as Chancellor AFTER the next election? Whistling in the dark? Or is it what will probably happen anyway no matter who gets elected?
    Having a bit of a 'black dog' day.

  • rate this

    Comment number 356.

    Night night, one and all.

    A better day tomorrow!

  • rate this

    Comment number 355.

    @349 AD
    Agreed but not hard for pols to go out & do micro&sub-micro econo research for themselves. F.Field does it! ConHome guy reported last night that Tory bk-benchers are complaining about not being listened to!

    But it beggars belief when Cable tells RoyMail it's OK to ramp up charges but then another Min starts to talk about another benefit sub for pensioners at Xmas! Joined-up thinking?

  • rate this

    Comment number 354.

    Today was a very bad day for any human being in this country with a moral conscience.
    For today I heard the Upper Class Privileged order my brothers and sisters not to question the tax breaks and the bankers bonuses, but instead focus on our next door neighbours and "Punch Down" the social ladder.
    Today was not just a Tory Conference, today was a Nuremberg Rally.

  • rate this

    Comment number 353.

    345 UU you dig up all the potatoes, I stay at home and get half ? or you help me, you dig up half and only get 10% ? But I supplied the spade ? Fair is complicated. Maintaining both demand & supply fueled is easier. Avoidance exists becuase no one is going to risk capital for a return of 15% after death duties. Much better to have simpler lower tax & no avoidance. Collection would increase.

  • rate this

    Comment number 352.

    If you want to encourage sh/own & employt, better would be to offer Cos ENI tax break for every workr they take on that stays for over 1yr & qual for share bonus after 2yrs.

    Policy like that might have immed effect on jobs

    W/everyone workg past 65 in future, 0%CGT on employee sh sale is way out into future even for those who are just 60 & may be a policy cancelled, anyway, by future Lab Gov

  • rate this

    Comment number 351.

    "Trust me. I really want to be PM. I think I'd be good at it."

    How did we get to this point where we have so little faith in our young leaders, who keep playing the blame game rather than looking for coherent solutions.

    Too clever for their own good at times - just keep it simple, adapt to changing circumstances and be competent.

  • rate this

    Comment number 350.

    If the country is in such a bad state why can't all parties get together for the common good? Instead of blaming each other for mistakes past and present. Personally I think that not only should the top level Bankers give up their bonuses, but I'm sure that MPs could give up most of their expences, which are still way too high. I worked for 42 yrs, forced to "jump through hoops" to get naff all.

  • rate this

    Comment number 349.

    347 Up2it

    They have no idea of the mechanisms at play nor have economists. The way the game works is they think there will be a rebound but there isnt one when the eco structure is crystaline & flawed, there is just destruction. That is why there is no rebound. Pols & econs are too far from the rockface. Plus in normal slump it is local within an economy not across the board so uplift never stops

  • rate this

    Comment number 348.

    Obviously Boris wants DCs job because he has said how much he admires DC. In politicospeak that confirms it, you have to reverse everything said

  • rate this

    Comment number 347.

    How many of those sorts of Cos. start-up in the UK every year? I would have thought Oil & Gas was a pretty niche market. Could be wrong. Let us know.

    GO needs soemthing NOW to get him out of revenue deficit hole & us out of yet another politicians' mess with no ideas! It's like the early 1990s all over again. :-(

  • rate this

    Comment number 346.

    nick have you ever thought about asking George and the rest of your chums if they will pay their fair share of the tax they have avoided by say flipping their tax payer funded homes to avoid capital gains it seem hypocritical to castigate and demonise poor people claiming HB when your chums do it and laugh all the way to the bank in the caymans ofcourse giggle plebs giggle our democracy failing.

  • rate this

    Comment number 345.

    @335 feedbackloop

    It seems obvious, although perhaps a little naive, that the equal distribution of that surplus would be both stable and fair. Rewarding effort, and even some risk, is fine, but that isn't what's happening. For any system of taxation to function as intended it must be enforced. That isn't happening. If we were to start somewhere I'd suggest there. Heck it might even work!

  • rate this

    Comment number 344.

    341 - not true for oil&gas - UK SME's typically start with 2 - 5 employees if successful are 5-10 within 2 yrs. All limited co. Investors are usually private minority stake. VC's come in at medium level 200-250 employees. VC's often take less than 50% ownership but usually above 25%. Tech cos are different as they need more start up capital.

  • rate this

    Comment number 343.

    244. voice-of-rationality

    The UK spends 33% more on welfare and benefits than it raises in income tax.
    What % of welfare is inflated landlord subsidies.

    Build public housing, create jobs, divert money from landlords' pockets to where it's really needed.

    The other, rather quaint thing we could do is collect due taxes and change the laws on avoision - worth a mint that.

  • rate this

    Comment number 342.

    339 agree - sadly pragmatism and common sense is rarely a vote winner.

    323 340 I also agree with US that the key is to work out what to do now -

    not assign blame for the past

    problem is .......

    no no I'll stop there

    I nearly spoiled it..

  • rate this

    Comment number 341.

    Failure of new start-ups used to be 65% within 9 mth of start-up. Think it may be bit better now. By def, s-up SMEs tend to be s/traders & prtnrships, not Ltd Cos. w/share cap. Those that are are usually bought into by Venture & St-up Funds who tend to have signif hold on ownership of business.

    GO was talking rubbish today. He should have known that. His Party should have known that.

  • rate this

    Comment number 340.

    323 Up2
    Amen to that.

    Those seeking to solely blame any one political party run the risk that the many lessons that need to be learned from the last 30-40 years are swept away by partisan nonsense (which I appreciate with my left leanings that I am not immune from myself from time to time).

    How to avoid or at least far better mitigate against 2008 type events should be the focus of all.


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