Saturday, September 25, 2010

And the Winner is?

I must confess I'm delighted for the Labour Party this afternoon with the news, moments ago, that Ed Miliband, the Trades Unions choice, is the new leader of the party.

It may not have been lost on some observers that all the candidates were Oxbridge educated, which speaks volumes about our top universities at a time when these are struggling against government interference in what was once regarded as the finest education system in the world.

Labour then, has retreated, through the choice of its new leader, to a party once again  heavily influenced by the trades unions at a challenging and difficult time in our history. I was struck by Harriet Harman, in her farewell speech, refusing to take one iota of responsibility for the £160 billion mess in which her Government left us and for which, collectively, we are all about to pay.

At this period in time, it's easy to be in opposition, both nationally and locally, because you don't have to take the tough decisions or indeed, even clearly state what measures you might adopt to deal with a chronic financial challenge to generous public services and subsidies that the nation can no longer afford. In a few weeks, the coalition government's detailed measures to reduce the national debt. will be announced for all to see and without a doubt, it's going to hurt and that pain will be felt across all sections of society, equally and unequally, from any government regardless of party.

On a personal note, I have always believed that David Miliband was Labour's best bet for the future, lucid, telegenic and very smart, he would have made Prime Minister's Questions an interesting intellectual contest between two well-matched politicians. Brother Ed, the union man, I'm not so sure about. Smart, without a doubt but equipped to deal with Britain's manifest problems on a very public platform, I'm not so sure.

Red Ed, a good result for the Conservative and Liberal parties without a shadow of a doubt.

Finally, to remind us that the true spirit of international socialism is alive and well in the party, the 'Prince of Darkness', Peter Mandelson is still being paid £8,000-a-month by EU two years after quitting Brussels - The peer, who quit as European trade commissioner in 2008 to return to the Cabinet, has a 'transitional allowance' of £103,465-a-year funded by the taxpayer. Who says you can't take it with you?

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