Wednesday, 5 October 2011

The Voices of the Frustrated...

It's been fascinating to hear some Conservatives talking this week. Some of them, you would think, believe they are really still in Opposition. These are the anti-Coalition Conservatives, those who blame David Cameron not only for failing to win a majority at last year'e election but also for the unpardonable sin of going into Government with the Liberal Democrats.

Since May 2010, the anti-Coalition Tories have existed in a frustrated limbo - there are Conservatives in Government but it's not a Conservative Government. Their mouthpiece, the Daily Mail, and its witless non-entity columnists like Amanda Platell, Iain Martin and Dominic Sanbrook, whose weekly pleadings for a "Conservative" Government are becoming increasingly desperate and pathetic, writhes and wriggles in its frustration.

Nick Clegg is singled out for vitriolic abuse, the Liberal Democrats are mocked and derided weekly yet in the same breath they are accused of being the real masters and that somehow "conservatives" aren't being heard. On a range of issues, such as abortion and the 50p tax rate, the anti-Coalition Tories line up against the Coalition and hope that someone will listen to their pleadings but no one does.

Then, the anti-Coalition Tories idolise those Conservatives who appear to espouse proper Conservative values so Boris Johnson and Pritti Patel, neither of whom, let's face it, have much prospect of Cabinet office and neither of whom have much in the way of talent, are lauded while Ken Clarke is the subject of muted scorn.

The anti-Coalition Tories don't know how to respond to Cameron of course. Privately, I suspect, they regard himself as a closet Lib Dem or even a Heathite but they can't say that publically so apart from the constant exhortations to sound more like a conservative, or should that be Mrs Thatcher, the anti-Coalition Tories keep their counsel.

Come 2015 and short of a Conservative majority, they would actually prefer a Labour Majority Government to another Coalition - that's the depth of their frustration and the height of their lunacy.

They have a disproportionately loud voice but no one needs to listen to them - the liberal conservatives are doing very well, thank you. The Thatcherites have had their day.

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