Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Parliament Should be Recalled

Last night at about 8pm I got a text saying "Jonah's trip to Washington went well then". It was only later that I found out that Congress had rejected the Bush/Paulsen rescue package. For the rest of the evening there was only one topic of conversation at the conference. At the Telegraph Party Janet Daley and I both thanked our lucky stars we weren't economics columnists. We really are entering the unknown. The subject of David Cameron's response was much discussed. I suggested that he should walk out onto the conference platform this morning and say this:

I have just telephoned the Prime Minister and offered my support, and that of our party at this time of economic crisis. I have suggested that Parliament should be recalled.

The only trouble is, what's the betting the Prime Minister wouldn't be able to take the call as the telephone would probably be in pieces having been flung at the wall a few minutes earlier?

More later, including a report from the fringes yesterday.


Old BE said...

Iain, perhaps you haven't noticed that over the years governments have been giving themselves so much executive power that the present one probably doesn't need Parliament to do pretty well what it pleases.

Recalling Parliament would only give the Tories some credit in the rescue - which is why it won't happen.

Anonymous said...

A far more straight forward and banal reason why it wont happen is that parliament is back from next Monday. Given the time it would take to make the arrangements MPs will be back anyway

Events dear boy, events said...

Iain, In theory you are right and I was thinking the same. If Cameron had done this last week after the Labour conference it may have gone down well. To do it now would come across as opportunistic. The Tories have just been lucky over the timing of their conference but in the long run it will not matter. Brown is finished.

Anonymous said...

yes i was thinking the same
why waste our time here in Birmingham
no one is listening anyway and the hotel is rubbish

Anonymous said...

We need more deregulation of the market not less

you cannot run away because the City has a cold

the City and market forces are always right as Boris stated so well

Anonymous said...

Thank God for the Republicans, the US general election and Yom Kippur - the perfect storm to kick socialists in the nuts. If you're over leveraged then you're a gambler who's lost. As my mum would say "tough, get over it".

God bless America.

Anonymous said...

recalling parliament will only play into Brown's hands his standing is already going up in the polls

we will soon be level with Labour

This is because some in the Party starting saying we had already won the next election

like you Iain the last thing we need is a Sheffield moment...unfortunately some of our PPCs are getting carried away

this is a long haul

Old BE said...

Also if Brown did this, the Tories would rightly say that he was trying to overshadow the Tory conference again.

Anonymous said...

which idiot delegete on Radio 4 said of the next election

"Its in the bag"


Chris Paul said...

Enough of the "broken phone" meme Iain. We've moved through the "picks nose" meme, to good old "Jonah", and onwards to "looking amazingly relaxed" (nudge, nudge).

Meanwhile Tory lead has dropped 10% and the blockbuster policies are damp squibs every one. And vague on delivery and funding at that.

As JGC has pointed out a "recall" is quite simply nonsense a couple of days before it is happening anyway. Don't talk, act ...

Cameron of course doing both. Bad talking and bad acting. The media are fed up with the inevitable victory analysis and they also finally see through Dave's new clothes.

Paddy Briggs said...

A year ago Cameron gave a passionate and adroit speech in which he outlined his guiding principles – those which, he said, would underpin Conservative policy and legislation if they come to power. These are some of the statements from that speech:

 “Every generation of Conservatives has to make the argument all over again for free enterprise, for freedom, for responsibility, for limited government.”

 “I don't believe in an ever larger state doing more and more.”

 “…this new world of freedom is having huge effects on business and our economy. Big business can now locate anywhere in the world, small businesses can find customers anywhere in the world and Britain has some great advantages in this globalised world. Not least because of the changes we made 15 or 20 years ago.”

 “And I know that business wants to hear from the Conservative Party how we will reduce regulation and reduce taxation to give them more freedom in this new world… and we heard from Alan Duncan how we will introduce regulatory budgets to cut that regulation...”

 “[We will] get tax and regulation down for the long term good of our economy and that is the modern Conservative change for this new world of freedom.”

These verbatim quotes reveal beyond any reasonable doubt that the Conservative economic ideology of the Thatcher years is alive and well in the modern Conservative Party – indeed Cameron says as much in the third of the quotes I have listed above. A year ago Cameron clearly thought that to restate these principles would secure him electoral advantage – today they look as wrong-headed, shallow, uncaring and irrelevant as it is possible for policy to be.

The cataclysmic global and national financial markets problems of today can be traced back to the implementation of deregulation on both sides of the Atlantic in the Reagan/Thatcher years. In Britain the Thatcher “Big Bang” accelerated the deregulation of markets and the cumulative effect of these and subsequent deregulation has brought us all into Queer Street. And yet David Cameron and his free market Tory allies want more not less deregulation – they want the corporate world which has sailed us into today’s financial black hole to be freer not more controlled! It defies belief.

Winston Churchill once famously said "Democracy is the worst form of government, except for all those other forms that have been tried from time to time." We might paraphrase this saying and say that "Capitalism is the worst economic system; except for all those other forms that have been tried from time to time.” But in doing so we need to acknowledge that unbridled capitalism leads to excess – be it Victorian industrialists employing children, the Rockefellers creating monopolies – or the greedy and irresponsible financial magnates of today driving our monetary institutions onto the rocks in pursuit of their own personal advantage.

The events of the last few months have shown undisputedly that what the corporate world needs is not, as Cameron tried to lead us to believe, less regulation but more. He was mistaken and the evidence of his error is all around us. It will be interesting to see if Cameron has the good grace to admit how wrong he was a year ago when he returns to Conference this week. A bit of humility would be welcome.

Anonymous said...

Save our City bonus

sign the petition

hatfield girl said...

The American people can express their repugnance at giving $700 billion to bankers through their representatives, and refuse.

The people here have had to hand over another £40 billion and rising on the orders of the Brown regime that engineered the economic and financial catastrophe in the UK in the first place.

Northern Rock and Bradford and Bingley should have been left to their fate, not nationalised with our taxes to save Brown's client base. But then, we didn't get to vote on it. We really need to get to vote on the Blair/Brown Labour regime or we'll be watching the impoverishment of millions in the UK for more than this generation.

Anonymous said...

Said well Hatfield Girl - I think Paddy Briggs wants Mystic Meg to run the opposition. Chris Paul - you're lovely, you really are. I bet you remember all your family's birthdays and anniversaries, take flowers to the lady of the house when going for dinner and are really nice to your mum. Good man - deluded, but a stand up guy.

Anonymous said...

Its shocking the way these city types have behaved - as Guido points out

Paul Myners, Chairman of The Guardian, profited massively from B&B fall out and Sir Ronald Cohen, a massive donor to the Labour Party, has set up a new hedge fund to profit from the misery of others.

What is really funny is that the said Guardian Chairman is also Chairman of the Low Pay Unit.

Anonymous said...

"The subject of David Cameron's response was much discussed"

Remind me, who is David Cameron?

Anonymous said...

Paddy Briggs said...

"Cameron...'Not least because of the changes we made 15 or 20 years ago.'”

Exactly. The tories created this mess in the UK. Nulab are guilty of not getting rid of them, but it was the greedy tories who changed the rules to make themselves even richer.

Anonymous said...


Thank you for reiterating a post I made on Monday:

"Jonah crosses the pon[d] said...
I see Labour trolls have been busy here but also on telegraph and other sites. Well, put this in your pipes trolls:

Gordon goes to see Bush and what happens: the bailout deal falls through. Jonah strikes again. I rest my case m'lud.

September 29, 2008 9:46 PM


Anonymous said...

Jonah crosses the pond said...
"I see Labour trolls have been busy here but also on telegraph and other sites".

And they aren't allowed to express their opinion?
Do shut up, it's sounding like panic.
It'll be Zanucon next.

Anonymous said...

Tories. Read paddy briggs and weep.
Cameron's hung by his own petard.

His weasel worded speech is dissected beautifully by MaGuire.

We are in 'events dear boy, events' time, that a couple of weeks ago you all laughed at.

Public opinion is on the move again, and not towards Cameron.

Anonymous said...

Vanitas vanitatum omnia vanitas. Ecclesiastes 1:1 - 11.
My mother suddenly passed away at 11.20 pm yesterday. She has no worries about the credit crunch, her pension or anything now. We're suddenly confronted with the bigger picture.
We're sorting out her move from the hospital, etc. The stress over the credit crunch and the hubris on wall street and in some politicians (GB) are due to lack of awareness of our real purpose in the world.
Concern for one another would lead to a better world.