Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Deja vu

I am suffering from a bout of what we came to call deja vu. So little changes in British politics.

It is apparent that one party calls for reform - and the other calls for reform when it is convenient. It has been said that the only institution, which the Conservative Party truly wishes to conserve is the Conservative Party. There was a time when I felt otherwise and believed that the party had leaders with the interests of the British people at their hearts; but they were few and far between. For it dawned on my consciousness that the only time when that party will gesture an offer of power to the many is when it is necessary to conserve power for the few.

There is now a third party in Britain claiming to pursue the path of reform; yet in truth it only ever sought power for its own class - and when its own class diminished and dispersed, it also became a vehicle for achieving power for an elite of its own creation.

That has been obvious for a while to those who observe these things and is now, it seems, made clear to the British people at large.

It is therefore pleasing to observe that the Liberal Party has always pursued a path of reform, has continued to advocate trust of the people, even when for a period it forfeited that trust itself.

I am therefore neither staggered nor jubilant when I hear the Conservative leader, Mr David Cameron, offering a programme, which he claims, in sonorous tones, will promise reform and "dispersal of power". It is little surprise that the measures he proposes are trivial; as Prime Minister he would wish to continue to appoint a favoured few to the once mighty House of Lords. As Conservative leader, he would perceive 50 per cent of the vote as unachievable and therefore would wish to retain a failed system that would allow him to seize power without the fulsome support of the British people. He talks of "considering" fixing the term of each and every Parliament - but he only gives a promise of consideration.

He should look to Ireland, which seems to have delivered reform and progress for much of the last century. There was a time when his party looked to Ireland briefly - and it was only brief. For when it suited Mr Disraeli, he was in favour of Irish self-government; when it was no longer convenient, he no longer favoured the measure. Such has been the Conservative approach to reform throughout the decades. Somehow I could never persuade our dear Queen of the man's duplicity; I do not know what hold he held on the dear lady.

The British people should be aware that Mr Cameron will deliver a mere half of the few trifles that he has grandly packaged as a promise of "reform".


No comments: