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Appeal for national unity

Nick Robinson | 18:29 UK time, Wednesday, 6 October 2010

Meet Britain's new wartime leader.

That - at least - is how David Cameron chose to present himself today.

David Cameron

 

He is the first Conservative leader to address his conference as the head of a coalition since Winston Churchill.

Some here believe they're only sharing power because they failed to win the election... BUT the prime minister insisted that he and Nick Clegg had come together in the national interest in a spirit of respect, give and take and trust.

His party loved his passionate attacks on Labour for the state they'd left the country in, they warmly applauded his list of what the government had already achieved but they were almost entirely unmoved when again and again David Cameron tried to evoke the spirit of The Big Society - the big idea which many hoped their leader would quietly drop.

This was not one of those leaders' speeches littered with new pledges and fresh policies.

It was quite simply an appeal for national unity from a prime minister appealing to his country to stand with him as he, they, we face a massive challenge.

PS. In case you think there were no party conferences during the war I am reliably informed that the Tories did have a conference on 14-15 March 1945 which Churchill addressed.

Comments

Page 1 of 4

  • Comment number 1.

    His party did enjoy his attack on Labour and he dose want the country to work with him and the Goverment to sort out this mess . Although most right minded people in the country want the coalition to sort out the mess,Being human they also want it to be painless. However come the 20th the pain will start to hit us all . then we will see who is right the cut now or the cut later gang .

  • Comment number 2.

    Nick

    When will you stop giving Cameron an easy ride ?

  • Comment number 3.

    National unity? National interest? National unity?

    Tell it to the banks and the City of London.

  • Comment number 4.

    "This was not one of those leaders speeches littered with new pledges and fresh policies.

    It was quite simply an appeal for national unity from a prime minister appealing to his country to stand with him as he, they, we face a massive challenge."

    Really ? Well if the BBC political editor says so,must be true...

  • Comment number 5.

    Five months in and we already have "the last refuge of the scoundrel" speech...

  • Comment number 6.

    How many millions of us should lay down our lives for this Glorious Big Society?

    I think we all know the horror coming our way soon. I wish I was earning £44,000 a year, I would be more than happy to give up £20 a week. But it is more than obvious this little cut was just a ploy to soften the blow, before the true enormous cuts come crashing down on the already severely poor.

  • Comment number 7.

    I think that's a rather narrow view Nick. The PM reminded us what the coalition government has already achieved, and what Labour got wrong.

    I thought that it was a well crafted speech and it will be interesting to see how Red Ed and his team respond.

  • Comment number 8.

    I am struggling with a phrase that is pushing up from the back of my mind - calls for national unity is the last refuge of the.....?

  • Comment number 9.

    Nick:- "passionate attacks on Labour for the state they'd left the country in" Come off the fence Nick!

    New Labour were incompetent in many ways but as I recall, the Tories supported the relaxation on banking regulations as well as the illegal invasion of Iraq - probably the two greatest disasters.

  • Comment number 10.

    Cameron said in his speech 'we trust the people'.

    But the question is why should the people trust them - that is the political cohort, both Labour and the previous Tory administration that has saddled us with some £700 billion of debt.

    I suppose we have no choice, we are stuck with them and at least Labour, Tory and Lib-Dem politicians are working together in the coalition to attempt to recover our situation.

    In around 14 days or so, this is probably going to seem like a storm-in-a-teacup and the general public may finally understand just what the bill for political incompetence and financial incontinence is.

    It won't feel like anybody 'saved the world', ala the unlamented Brown and the banks.

  • Comment number 11.

    My first view after seeing the news is - in invoking the First World War slogans - he should remember that other more accurate one ' Lions led by donkeys' . Regardless of how it started in the Balkans for us it was a commercial war to deny Germany a chance to expand.
    And so it has proven itself once again - a commercial war , perhaps 'Call Me Dave ' should re brand himself ' Call Me Donkey '.

  • Comment number 12.

    8 Watriler
    the quote is ' Patriotism is the last refuge of the scoundrel'

  • Comment number 13.

    Big society? Has he got anyone at all with him on that?

    His own party looked more like they were still with 'there is no society' rather than 'big society'

    My view is that whilst the tories are in control people need to be realistic. It is every man for himself. If you can make money, then do so and keep it. No charity given nor expected.

    Does cameron really think he can make us all redundant, have us live in poverty and then we are all stupid enough to work for nothing?

    It's a great day to laugh at the tories.

  • Comment number 14.

    Governments are not truly accountable are they?
    Labour contributed to current mess, but they will not be held accountable by any means (losing power is hardly enough punishment).
    Current one, if it ever becomes obvious that their measures failed they will probably already not be in power and they will not be held accountable either for putting us through hell for no 'reward' in the end. So, if they fail, could we suit them? When?

    Maybe the 'Big Society' needs to find new ways of holding governments accountable

  • Comment number 15.

    Hello
    its twenty minutes since a post was passed - perhaps the mods have heard the whistle and gone over the top?.

  • Comment number 16.

    8#

    "I am struggling with a phrase that is pushing up from the back of my mind...."

    Its probably the one thats telling you that it is time to open your bowels.

    You'd be well advised to give a higher priority to the one that tells you to go to the thunderbox first though. I know its difficult, but dont give up eh?

  • Comment number 17.

    2#

    Would you prefer he started with "Hello London, Germany calling, Germany calling!"????

  • Comment number 18.

    Limp affair. Let's have Gordon Brown back.

  • Comment number 19.

    Which war-time spirit was he referring to? I thought the Kitchener reference was, well, so kitchen sink... calling on us to volunteer to be sent over the top by his toff generals....I can just see Osborne & Johnson in the roles played by Fry & Laurie in 'Blackadder Goes Forth'. Well, Dave, have I got news for you...I don't want to be part of your 'poor bloody infantry'...some of us have already done our bit while you were still playing leapfrog with George & Boris on the playing fields of Eaton...don't you realise that it was that Liberal Lloyd George who had to rescue your lot and introduce conscription....this isn't a war, not one that's necessary anyway, and the British public won't be conscripted just because you want to adopt Churchillian poses. After all, even he made four major cock-ups between 1910 & 1940 before his finest hours...Tonypandy, Gallipoli, the Gold Standard and Norway. Or had you and Harry forgotten?

  • Comment number 20.

    The Prime Minister considers that removing child benefit from a family with a total income of £46 000 is "fair" - but a family with a total income of £88 000 may keep their child benefit. Upon this logic - it must therefore be "fair" that the bankers keep thier bonuses whilst the nurses, cleaners and carers have their public sector pensions attacked. It is "fair" that the military fight a campaign in far away countires without proper equipment and yet face cuts at a time when the country is at war. One recalls the Conservative Government of the 1930's and its failure to rearm. This must be the "fairness" that those born to wealth and priviledge are taught at Eton and take with them to Number 10. As it is well known "the Tories look after their own" - so the bankers are being looked after - all ready for the various Directorships that will be available to Cabinet ministers when the Coalition looses the next election.

    In a few days time this Government will launch an attack upon working people and the public sector that not even the Thatcher Governments' would have considered "fair". Until now the Thatcher Governments were the most divisive of the modern political era. Cameron and Clegg will surpass Thatcher as the most "hated" government of recent times. They will unite millions of people through the attacks about to be launched on working people. There will be disquiet and there will be civil strife - maybe worse than the poll-tax. People who are moderate today will become disgusted by the ferocity, arrogance and lack of common humanity which this Government will show. Under the cover of tough economic times - this Government will unleash an agenda to the right of any Thatcher philosophy. All those who voted Liberal Democrat surely did not expect or aspire to this?

    Labour will win the next election with a majority comparable to those achieved in 1945, 1997 and 2002 - but the question is will it be too late for millions of ordinary people who will have seen their future destroyed, their retirements lost and their hopes for their children gone in the double-dip recession that this Government will be responsible for?

  • Comment number 21.

    Big Society? Or Big Con? P. T. Barnum springs to mind methinks.

  • Comment number 22.

    1. At 6:57pm on 06 Oct 2010, jim3227 wrote:
    However come the 20th the pain will start to hit us all . then we will see who is right the cut now or the cut later gang .

    I don't think we shall; we shall only see what happens if you cut the deficit less slowly and even then there are many other factors involved, and we shall not know anything for quite some time, in my opinion. We can never know what would have happened otherwise.

  • Comment number 23.

    18#

    Must.... resist.... obvious.... trap....

  • Comment number 24.

    lets face facts the labour government are gone and david cameron should address issues the countries facing now and possibly without scathing cuts on crucial services.there are big issues to be dealt with if we are to get out of this financial trough and become a nation with some pride in ourselves again. I am not sure we have the right people to make that happen.peace out

  • Comment number 25.

    Great speech - well balanced and delivered.

  • Comment number 26.

    Very disappointing speech today.

    I simply can't understand why Cameron is persuing this 'big society' policy. It's very confusing and such a clunky message.

    Shocking end to a shocking conference.

  • Comment number 27.

    I would like to know why the 40% tax rate starts at just £37,401 and does not increase to 50% until £150,000? That’s an £112,600 gap! In the UK we have only 4 tax brackets where as in the USA they have 6. Even then you only pay 35% tax when you get to $373,000. Its seems to me that the amount of income tax we pay in the UK is way out line. I think we should add a new lower tax threshold of 30% at £37,000, the 40% income tax threshold should start at £60,000 and then become 50% at £100,000. We are all completely ripped off in this country. If we could tax fresh air we would. I have 3 children and I am sorry to say that I am struggling to justify living in the UK any longer. My wife and I will more than likely return to the USA to live within the next year where we can enjoy a much higher standard of living in a country that does not want to strangle its people into a miserable over taxed existence. By the way Mr Cameron, fair taxation is not a benefit, it’s a right that you should ensure the citizens of the UK get.

  • Comment number 28.

    Patriotism? The last refuge of the scoundrel?

  • Comment number 29.

    19#

    We'll take that as a "No, I'd rather whinge about it on the internet using boring stereotypes" then??

  • Comment number 30.

    What?? 8.55pm and fubar is still posting - he must be on overtime, these private sector types don't usually post unless they are on firm's time.

  • Comment number 31.

    As a Brummie I know that the Conference Hall is but a few moments walk from the Birmingham Hall Of Memory . In this place is written the names of all those Birmingham people who died in the wars since 1914 , the pages turned once each day . That he should use the phrase ' Your Country Needs You ' is questionable in these circumstances . The embargo on 'Champers' only serves to remind that whilst the 'Lions led by donkeys' were dying in France the donkeys were making sure that they were al-right . So history repeats itself .

  • Comment number 32.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 33.

    i wonder how many times this year will the Tory led coalition blame labour for the mess whilst dishing out so much change and pain,lets consider a few truths labour led us into an illegal war backed by the Tories.a war which has moved to another country and continued almost twice as long as the second world .they rebuilt the nhs something every ordinary person wanted after the running down under thatcher and her puppets.they bailed out the banks with money to stop them collapsing.they
    bailed out the car industry in this country whilst losing the taxes gained from car sales industry wages and the cost of scrappage incentive.
    they paid people living in private accommodation any amount to cover the cost whilst on benefit.yes private landlords because previous govts had stopped building council houses .they committed to supporting the Olympic bid and cost of helping to build the village.you don't want a debacle like India have had of late.yes we cant go spending £4 for every £3 we get .but how about spending £3 for £4 its just an idea .don't frighten us with interest payment figures.i have mortgage for 25 yrs and when those years are up i will clear my debt.its manageable debt.
    if everyone and everything in the country needs to be trimmed should we cut back on mps and euro mps for a period just until we pay the money back.

  • Comment number 34.

    ok

  • Comment number 35.

    30#

    Posting from Lithuania jon. Admiring the handiwork of you and your "Revolutionary Slogans For Dummies" crowd on here. They really shouldnt let these people procreate, they are a danger to themselves, they really are.

  • Comment number 36.

    "So history repeats itself."

    How? How is this anything like 1914? Got, theres enough verbal slurry on this board to fertilize the Sahara.

  • Comment number 37.

    I don't think Cameron, the old Etonian, married to a millionaire, and Osbourne whose mouth can't help but curl up, heir to the Osbourne Wall paper company, millionaire will miss their child benefit. I don't think Nick Robinson will miss his either... although the cash from the grateful Tory back handers will no doubt keep Robinson warm in his retirement.

  • Comment number 38.

    JohnConstable (Comment 10) was right. Successive governments of all colours have racked up the national debt to around £700bn so far. What most people don't seem to realize is that when the current govt speaks of 'reducing the deficit', what they mean is reducing the rate of increase! No-one is even thinking about reducing the accumulated debt. I would hope for straighter talking from the commentators on this, even if we can't expect it from the politicians.
    And Dave (No. 20) is right that the proposed change to child benefit is not fair, not only because of the anomaly he cites, but also because the family on £46k loses child benefit, while the family on £500k or more ... loses child benefit! It's not proportional. Far simpler, less anomalous and fairer would be simply to increase income tax to raise the £1bn drop in the ocean the child benefit change is said to yield.

  • Comment number 39.

    Fubar's up past his bedtime !

    What were you saying about whinging on the internet using boring stereotypes...?

  • Comment number 40.

    National unity! Don't make me laugh. From a coalition cobbled together because the Tories couldn't get more than 30 odd per cent of the vote at a time when everything was going for them.
    National unity! At a time when many of us with children face a huge hike in tuition fees, no child benefit, higher taxes, lower pensions and who knows what still to come.
    National unity! At a time when the bankers continue to get the same bonuses as in previous years.
    National unity! At a time when the Tories seem hell bent on destroying families by cutting benefits for families who stay together.
    And Rockborin says this is the politics of envy, no it's the politics of injustice - one thing the British people will not tolerate for long.

  • Comment number 41.

    Kitchener's Army were 'lions led by Donkeys'....is this a good metaphor for Cameron's 'leadership' of the British people? I think so....

  • Comment number 42.

    "they bailed out the car industry in this country whilst losing the taxes gained from car sales industry wages and the cost of scrappage incentive."

    Did they? So, Honda, BMW, Toyota, Nissan etc are all British, are they?

    Dont you realise that money only found its way to Tokyo and Stuttgart? How the hell could they bale out the British car industry when there isnt one?

    Not since they let Rover, LDV and TVR collapse. Jaguar arent British any more, they're Indian Fords. Aston Martin are owned by Arabs. Rolls and Bentley are owned by Germans...

  • Comment number 43.

    Big society my backside. The tories ended society in the 1980s. That was thatchers one and only truthful statement the whole time she was in office. At least she talks more sense these days.

    Am I so wrong to think part of what makes a society is people doing, or providing things for others, through their taxes, in the knowledge that if any of us ever need it, at any time, it's there?

    I don't think most british people have a problem with paying tax, that's how governments are able to do stuff for you. You want a welfare state because you know at your level of the economy there's a good likelihood you'll need one bit of it or another at some time in your life. Whether we like it or not, we all know taxes are the most equitable way to pay for that. If, of course, you know there's no way you'll ever need a council house (remember when we still had them?), to claim sickness benefit, or to visit a doctor outside of Harley Street it's very hard to convince you to pay for other people to do so. Like irony, and geography, the americans don't seem to understand this.

    Cameron, like the rust-spattered iron lady before him, is out to cut taxes because that way he can end government spending and that way we all become individual consumers for everything, just like america. If we're all consuming en masse individually (whether it be schools, housing, transport or anything else) we (as taxpayers) don't get the economies of scale that comes from having say, the government centrally buying 20,000 walking sticks or 200,000 school books at a time. Instead, each individual GP, school, hospital, whatever buys a much smaller quantity and pays a significantly higher cost. This is paid for by us and everybody (except the poor sick punter) wins.

    If anything at all that people like to buy these days (iphones, LCD TVs, mercedes's's's, clothing, anything) was actually manufactured here it might not be so bad. But they aren't, and it is. What ever we buy will be at the highest possible unit cost and the bulk of the profit will go overseas. Explain how our economy will grow.

    This country is (insert expletive here).

    Still, that's what you get if you vote for a party that doesn't believe in government. Didn't any of you realise that?

  • Comment number 44.

    Interesting that one of the quotes used alongside the original article is a "Labour Lie"

    "Governments all over the world are facing up now to the aftermath to the economic crisis. It didn't begin here Mr Cameron - it began in the USA" - Andy Burnham

    The crisis was caused by a Labour government that sought to spend more than it was raising in taxes, so that when the "**** hit the fan" the cupboard was bare.

    It's also a Labour government that chose a low measure of inflation to keep interest rates low and engineer an bubble in the housing market

  • Comment number 45.

    "It was quite simply an appeal for national unity from a prime minister appealing to his country to stand with him as he, they, we face a massive challenge."

    Nick Robinsons colleague Brian Taylor writes an excellent blog on politics from Scotland and if you care to take a look, then if the comments on Camerons speech on Taylors blog are typical, then appeals for 'national unity' appear to have fallen on deaf Scottish ears.

    Mind you, the unblinkered have known for years that the 'Union' is slowly unravelling, bit-by-bit.

    If only the Scots would hurry up and put the Union out of its misery because we English are too politically apathetic to do it ourselves.

  • Comment number 46.

    how many times has "fair" been mentioned this week ? in life one pays
    dearly for ones mistakes i fear that the many will pay for the mistakes
    of the few. the profits have been privatised the losses socialised the
    house of cards continues........... very "fair" i am sure !!

  • Comment number 47.

    39

    Aimed specifically at people who need to adopt to get their solitary brain cell some company. People who are to politics what the 286 chip is to 3D gaming.

    You've got plenty of good company mate, fear not.

  • Comment number 48.

    "no it's the politics of injustice - one thing the British people will not tolerate for long."

    You gonna organise a street protest as well mate? LOL!

  • Comment number 49.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 50.

    42
    Fu-San

    The fact that car companies are no longer British is because of Free Market Economics - so beloved of the Sainted Margaret , who I believe was not enamoured of the EU , around which you seem to swann daily..

  • Comment number 51.

    48
    No fubes times have moved on. i intend to harness the power of the media by tricking Cameron into expelling the winner of the X Factor. Thus guaranteeing his downfall.

  • Comment number 52.

    re #5
    repeated from and earlier NR Blog:

    Dr Johnson: "Patriotism is the last refuge of a scoundrel"

    Snuffy: "You should only resort to a call to patriotism when you are leading your country into a just, defensive war."

  • Comment number 53.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 54.

    Just listening to the radio, loads of people ringing in saying what a great speech, so well delivered, with conviction and passion. Knocks spots of Gordon Brown.

    Thank God we're on the right road at last. :)

  • Comment number 55.

    43. At 9:39pm on 06 Oct 2010, unclegiblets wrote:

    Cameron, like the rust-spattered iron lady before him, is out to cut taxes because that way he can end government spending and that way we all become individual consumers for everything, just like america. If we're all consuming en masse individually (whether it be schools, housing, transport or anything else) we (as taxpayers) don't get the economies of scale that comes from having say, the government centrally buying 20,000 walking sticks or 200,000 school books at a time. Instead, each individual GP, school, hospital, whatever buys a much smaller quantity and pays a significantly higher cost. This is paid for by us and everybody (except the poor sick punter) wins.

    If anything at all that people like to buy these days (iphones, LCD TVs, mercedes's's's, clothing, anything) was actually manufactured here it might not be so bad. But they aren't, and it is. What ever we buy will be at the highest possible unit cost and the bulk of the profit will go overseas. Explain how our economy will grow.

    This country is (insert expletive here).

    Still, that's what you get if you vote for a party that doesn't believe in government. Didn't any of you realise that?
    -----------------------------------------------------------------------
    Snuffy's two brain cells are not dust covered enough to forget that Labour were on exactly the same track - worse, in fact. Congestion charging? Phone levy? Environmental levies. Uni tuition fees? ID Cards? Road pricing? Paying for Secondary Education some way down the track had they held power long enough?

  • Comment number 56.

    But surely you all want to go down to be trained in first aid and how to deal with chavs in that empty shop in on the High Street next to the empty shop which is now a jedi academy free school. And chat with with you neighbourhood community adviser (one of only 5000) about your turn of the roster to mow the grass in the park. I sure she will mention you must get your form in for your wild teenager to go to the new camps. You will quickly bid her good bye because across the street you see you local property developer who wants to reward you for voting for his development in the recent referendum

    Surely you will want to support Mr Cameron's call for National Unity as you build the Big Society. Why that's his smiling face beaming down on us all that big blue poster.... "Let us hang together or we are all doomed" it says.

  • Comment number 57.

    32# "You really ARE very old then, arent you??"

    To quote Richard Pryor: You shouldn't write off all old people as being fools, you don't get to be old being no fool.

    In any case, the Beatles had stopped writing songs when I grew up. Doesn't mean I have never heard of them, and just because I know the words to a few of their songs doesn't mean I was there at the time. If you're going to be sarcastic about people's comments, at least use a bit of common sense. I can recall when WWII started and ended, doesn't mean I was there for it.

    Also 32# "Really? What logic would that be then? Or did you just make it up?"

    Ever heard of mathematics? Deductive reasoning? Subtraction? Division, even? I'll make it as simple as poss for you since you said your community care is letting you down:

    1 wage earner, two kids, £45,000p.a. All the childcare costs divided by one, no ChB any more, net income probably in the region of £23k = significantly less than the 45 we started at.

    -Or-

    2 wage earners @ 42,000 each, already childcare costs halved (because there are two of them) and they get to keep full ChB. Do you see how it works now, fubar? The 84 grand household keeps ChB, but the 45 grand one loses it. Yeah that's fair. Taking from the less well-off (not even just the poor any more) to give to the rich. Or transferring the non-working parent in a couple's tax allowance to the working one - yes, that'll amount to the same as two kids' worth of Child benefit and no mistake. If you don't understand this, you must be exactly the sort of putz sCameron's hoping to sell this crock to, either that or in Osborne's treasury team.

    As for the bankers, well either it's a bonus and since performance was quite decidedly pants they're not due it, or it's contractually obliged (as we're led to believe, hence they must continue to be paid) and surely therefore it's taxable? If it's specified in a contract it isn't discretionary, is it? You can't eat your cake and still have it. It would certainly be taxable if you were working the tills at Sainsbury's (and your whole store's bonuses wouldn't run to hundreds of thousands, let alone millions).

    Do you need to be so sarcastic, fubar? You seem so objectionable I think you're Ken Clarke in disguise. If you're not Ken (or if you're just in denial) you probably also think people are "mad" to protest at the loss of a couple of grand's worth of old age pension, having to retire later and likely to see the govt do far less for you, as the bloater himself said yesterday. What does he think the city boys'd do if they lost millions of their own money (we know what they do about losing billions of ours...)?

  • Comment number 58.

    The other 'Great War' phrase that comes to mind is 'Butchers & Bunglers'; given the scale of the 'cuts' and the degree of 'bungling' over Child benefit this week, this would seem like an apt description of the Tories in the cabinet - isn't it time the Lib Dems walked away from them?

  • Comment number 59.

    1930's mass umemployment - country's armed forces outdated and unprepared for war - working people living in poverty --and a Conservative Government in office

    1980's & 1990's - mass unemployment - countries armed forces at full stretch to re-take sovereign British territory neglected by Government - riots in London at "unfair" taxes on ordinary working people - and a Conservative Government in office

    2010 - mass unemployment coming - armed forces to be cut at a time the country is at war - unfair welfare benefits to be massacred sending families into poverty - Conservative led Government - Cabinet full of millionaires with public school education

    Maybe not Stalingrad - and of course we all know that the Red Flag emerged triumphant from that one don't we Fubar? Tensions in society are being provoked by this Government's attack on working people and famillies - and its contempt for the public sector know no bounds - the British people don't accept injustice, intolerance and injustice and that is why this Government is doomed

  • Comment number 60.

    50#

    I didnt say that they werent. Thanks for the expected knee-jerk Thatch dig though. I really wasnt expecting that..... {rolls eyes....}

    I was picking holes in you saying that the money went to British motor manufacturers. It didnt. It made s*d all difference to the British motor industry, because there isnt one anymore.

    Oh and BTW, was it Free Market Economics that decided that MG Rover would be bought by the Phoenix 4, as against Alchemy Partners was it?

    The name Stephen Byers mean anything to you?

  • Comment number 61.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 62.

    "Deductive reasoning?"

    Deductive reasoning my @ss. Made it up more like.

  • Comment number 63.

    54 Flame
    "Just listening to the radio, loads of people ringing in saying what a great speech, so well delivered, with conviction and passion."

    What's this - Radio ga-ga?

    What does DLT think?

  • Comment number 64.

    Didn't realise we lived in a police state until 10 minutes ago. My previous comment blocked by the moderators because I merely implied the author of this blog may not be providing an entirely impartial view! Wow

  • Comment number 65.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 66.

    A rallying call? A call to arms? What was that speech? If my country needs me, I'm here, ready to help. But how? Short of running out and setting up a company immediately, what am I supposed to do? How do I play my part? Loads of inspiration - no direction - unless we've all just been asked to keep smiling unquestionably, whilst the government(s) belly flop us all into oblivion.

  • Comment number 67.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 68.

    For those of you who insist in mis-quoting Mrs Thatcher:

    MT quoted from an interview for Woman's Own in 1987.

    I think we have gone through a period when too many children and people have been given to understand "I have a problem, it is the Government's job to cope with it!" or "I have a problem, I will go and get a grant to cope with it!" "I am homeless, the Government must house me!" and so they are casting their problems on society and who is society? There is no such thing! There are individual men and women and there are families and no government can do anything except through people and people look to themselves first. It is our duty to look after ourselves and then also to help look after our neighbour ....

  • Comment number 69.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 70.

    So: those banks who got us into this mess (with government help of course) are all set to pay 7 billion pounds worth of bonuses whilst we have to knuckle down and share cutbacks and "pain" in the name of "Fairness." If the banks, so reluctant to lend, but so ready to pay incentives "to ensure they keep their talented executives," - little less than casino gamblers - wish to pay these large sums to their gamblers, Messrs Cameron, Osborne, Clegg, Cable, etc., should let them, but in the interest of "Fairness" impose a tax on them for the equivalent amount. Thus for every pound bonus paid, a pound is paid in additional tax. I think we might then see somewhat more modest incentives paid from what is after all "our money." That would be "Fair".

  • Comment number 71.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 72.

    60

    Dear Foo Bear
    where did you post that one from then?

  • Comment number 73.

    Never been a tory!will never support tories! but seems to be there are million others like me. Seeing is believing- lets see if the coalition can actually get to grips with these cuts! all I want is the ending to be happy with no ifs and buts.may be am living in a fairytale world - enduring hard times ,but waiting for a miraculous happy ending.

  • Comment number 74.

    Does Cameron really think people are taken in by this One Nation rhetoric?
    3 of my friends, who have given their working lives to public service, were given redundancy notices yesterday telling them not to come into work today. ]f they tried to work the statutory notice period, they would lose part of their pension entitlement. Aside from the legality of this, what a callous way to treat people.
    However, they took in good cheer thanks to Dave's call for unity.

  • Comment number 75.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 76.

    It's late, it's unsoctiable, but keep moderating - we need you!

  • Comment number 77.

    'Big Society' means nothing to me, but voluntarism and co-operativism are values worth working for, and many of us are already involved in these movements, but from 'the squeezed middle' as Ed Miliband has put it. There is a broad inheritance across the political spectrum from John Wesley, who taught 'earn all you can, save all you can, give all you can'. Are the high earners also saving/ investing, or are they continuing to speculate to gain more without earning it? Are they giving all they can, in money and/or time? Politicians who address these questions are surely those who can claim to be truly working in the national interest.

  • Comment number 78.

    just watching the tory conference -clips on newsnight.on the lighter side- G.osborne has an abnormal head to shoulder proportion

  • Comment number 79.

    Here we go again.Nearly h
    Headless Nick chooses to side with Crusader David and present his case rather than lambast it.
    Tory argument
    "Oh dear we really dont want to do this but the previous Labour lot left us in such a mess we have no choice."
    You have no idea of the swinging cuts yet but we will continue to blame the last lot.The bankers? No it was that dreadful Labour lot that did everything bad"
    ""Come on everyone its like a war and Im Winston
    Pull your weight folks"
    Are we seriously meant to take this nonsense?

  • Comment number 80.

    A business development idea, no chance as i was told today. Jobs, none in my career path. Emigartion to a better country, definatley. Good luck to all who stay

  • Comment number 81.

    1. Of all the cuts that could have been announced this week, why this one?
    2. So Cameron forgot to mention Child Benefit during the election campaign... like Michael Gove forgot to mention the cancellation of Building Schools for the Future... 3. It promises to be a very entertaining autumn!

  • Comment number 82.

    Will you and many of your colleagues try to put together a balanced and construcive appraisal just for a change instead of constantly trying to strain a mixture of selfish headline grabbing synism and muck raking.
    We know that we don't have such a decent politically aware society - not surprising after decades of being stuffed with soaps and strictly's but this is indeed serious and although I don't agree with everything Cameron stands for, he is surely right to hammer home the mess that has been left by the chameleon politics of that disasterous "new Labour" regime.

  • Comment number 83.

    Will the last one on this blog please leave the lights on so Dave can blame the outgoing government .

  • Comment number 84.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 85.

    Sounds to me as if Cameron's days are numbered. Fairness is a slippery slope. It takes us all the way down the slide to equality. Thank goodness.

  • Comment number 86.

    @78 zengirl

    Thanks for that. I've been trying to work out what it was for days!

    Very peculiar.

    Perhaps he was injured in the Wall Game at Eton - poor chap.

  • Comment number 87.

    Let's be clear about one thing, what we all forget is that the mess we are in the UK at the moment is tory phenomenon, one which labour inherited from the conservatives in 1997. It is rather foolish of the tories to be blaming labour for their own problems. Labour achieved more in 13 years in office than this coalition government could in 100 years. The government policies lack substance, focus and direction. Furthermore, it's rather cruel to allocate blame to outgoing government for what was truly a global economic disaster.

  • Comment number 88.

    68

    To paraphrase - look after yourself and devil take the hind most

    I am leaving the lights on!

  • Comment number 89.

    So if we're all in this together then how about outlawing tax avoidance schemes ?
    It would make a nice change to get a fair amount of tax paid on the bankers' 7 billion - personally I doubt we'll see 1 billion of that.

  • Comment number 90.

    85

    Fairness and equality are not the bottom of the slope but the very pinnacle to which we should strive . The mire at the bottom is reserved for those who would wish to wallow in iniquity .

  • Comment number 91.

    To the people who think the Child Benefit cut won't hurt, if you are earning 22000 PY, would a cut of 1144 pounds per year hurt you if you are a 3 child family?? I earn over 44000 PY, and rely on CB as a part of my salary. I pay more tax than you, so why should I recieve less??

  • Comment number 92.

    Since you wrote this piece we now know from the FT that the cuts are undeliverable in the timeframe Cameron promised - it is quite literally impossible to make the changes promised this quickly.

    "Labour politicians would surely accuse the government of backsliding and the political pain of the cuts would be pushed close to the next general election. But ministers are also weighing the dangers of cutting the wrong items if pushed to do so early and the risk that deep deficit reduction in 2011-12 could undermine the fragile recovery."

    (C) FT - [Unsuitable/Broken URL removed by Moderator]

    This means that the Government is guilty of massive incompetence and complacency about what is possible and what is practical - this is incompetence writ large.

    It means that all the ludicrous, irresponsible and wreckless approach to reviewing government spending was fundamentally impossible to deliver before Cameron even started - that ideology was put before the realities of management responsibility - and that from the very top down, The ConDem Coalition was totally unrealistic about what could - or should - be achieved in spending reductions.

    And if spending won't be cut in the planned timeframe, then UK borrowing won't fall and the claim that the UK's credit rating is at risk will be tested - if it does fall, then Cameron has mismanaged expectations - if it doesn't, then he was wrong to say it was essential to implement the cuts that now can't be made.

    That leaves Nick Clegg completely exposed as the patsy in believing the "panic - panic now!" line that Cameron sold him in the negotiations for the coalition.

    If there is no meltdown in our credit rating, it means Alistair Darling's less radical cuts programme was much more realistic - the boring, Mr. Labour white Hair Chancellor got it right.

    Cameron is now in a no-win situation - either his assessment was wrong, or his programme was undeliverable - the markets will decide which fundamental mistake he made - and its got to be one or the other.

    The rhetoric about Labour's failings and his values may go down a storm with the Tory Party - but will the leadership judgement stand the test of time?

    The cuts in Child Benefit revealed a PM who will wobble under pressure - will the collapse in his spending cuts programme make him dissemble into the mass of contradictions that is David Cameron?

  • Comment number 93.

    Well I'm an Eaton Educated Tory millionare, so I say take my childrens child benefit, take my bus pass and my fuel allowance - half my pension if you like, oh and I don't need my free TV license - my country needs me ? I have two sons to throw away too. How else can I help, David ?

  • Comment number 94.

    Chas & Dave - I liked the arrival at the station with the new born baby stunt double, very 'family man' - hopefully there were a couple of nannies handy to take care of the little blighter while you went away to fix the country ?

  • Comment number 95.

    'Big Society' is not understood by voters (it could mean anything) and many feel that the lack of clarity actually cost the Tories the expected election victory the polls had previously indicated.

    Mr Cameron started his conference speech by mocking those who thought the party was a 'dead parrot'. But he doesn't recognise that 'Big Society' is a dead horse - he really should stop trying to flog it.

    Instead of talking of 'Big Society', he would do far better to talk about 'Smaller Government'. This would be much easier to understand.

    Smaller government is one that doesn't try to interfere in every aspect of our lives, doesn't regulate and micromanage all human activity, doesn't tax us to the hilt - believing it can spend our money better than we can ourselves, doesn't drown businesses in red tape, doesn't keep dreaming up new initiatives for schools, doesn't impose absurd 'health and safety' regulations, doesn't allow local councils to spy on citizens (RIPA), doesn't waste taxpayers money on useless IT projects or quangos.

    Instead of the 'Big Society', Mr Cameron should concentrate on the Five Cuts:
    Cutting the deficit, cutting waste, cutting tax, cutting regulations, and most of all, cutting the c***p.

  • Comment number 96.

    Who is this Nick Robinson?

    And why is he writing press releases for the Tories for the BBC?


  • Comment number 97.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 98.

    89. At 00:19am on 07 Oct 2010, arrbee wrote:
    So if we're all in this together then how about outlawing tax avoidance schemes ?
    It would make a nice change to get a fair amount of tax paid on the bankers' 7 billion - personally I doubt we'll see 1 billion of that.

    ========================

    You do realise that we all benefit from Tax avoidance schemes don't you? You avoid tax on your first 5K of wages, you avoid tax on your pension payments, if you have an ISA, you avoid tax on that - you want all that scrapped?

  • Comment number 99.

    We all went out and spent money to some degree? The rest of the world is in the same hole as us? Unless the news reports I see are wrong. We are being constantly told by the coalition it's the last lots fault. What I find strange is the fact that most of the G8 followed the Brown plan to some degree and we where told at the time the plan was to try to re-kick start the economy. Why are they still following it and we are rubbishing it. It was a simple plan based on the Hover plan of the 30's. At the mo the we are more like Frazier from dads army "We are all doomed" there's Dave's War time spirit.

  • Comment number 100.

    Thing is Nick, we are technically at war, so DC is a wartime leader.

    It is the cost of maintaining a presence in Afghanistan, and elsewhere, that is partly to blame dragging the country's finances down.

    Its about time our leaders accpeted that we need to defend our borders, but we should not try to be the worlds Policeman.

    I'd say it is in the "national interest" to get out of Aghanistan PDQ. An immediate withdrawl would be good, if we've now reached the stage where child benefit and pensions have to be cut at home...

 

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