Sunday, November 28, 2004

This would be very funny...

... if it wasn't so accurate. This is one of the reasons I am finding it very difficult to support the Tories at the moment. They are offering absolutely no opposition to the Government's crude attacks on civil liberties - ostensibly in the name of protecting terrorism, but in reality doing absolutely nothing to stop any attacks, and only serving to give the police sweeping powers that I would not trust them with in any way, shape or form. I will post on ID cards later, because I think that they are a terrible piece of legislation that will have implications far beyond their intended use. (Note, however, that Blunkett claims to be worried about the amount of information supermarkets store on their loyalty cards!)

What I will concentrate on in this post is the problems the Tories have. It is almost impossible to out-right Blunkett on law and order, and retain a grip on sanity. Tory Party policy, however, is to attempt this. A combination of Howard and Davis as PM and Home Secretary sends shivers down my spine - I cannot think of many things that could be more terrible for civil liberties. Of course there is no Tory opposition to ID cards - they were a hobby horse of Mr Howard's when he was Home Secretary in the 1990s! To think that, for all IDS's faults, he at least had the sense to put Oliver Letwin as shadow Home Secretary. For principled opposition on a liberal basis, Letwin was absolutely perfect and regularly destroyed Blunkett in the House. However, he was evidently too liberal and performed too well for Michael Howard's taste, so instead we get David "pro-death penalty" Davis instituted. He may be uncompromising, but he is also unconvincing in terms of how a vision for the country holds together. And I gather he is unappealing to much of the electorate as well. This worries me greatly. Howard took the star performer of an admittedly poor Shadow Cabinet and shoved him in a role where his freedom of manoeuvre is greatly restricted. Unless the Tories get their best people in the jobs best suited to them, their chances of future success will be greatly limited.