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Arkadian X
Arkadian X
4 months ago

I just hope one of the candidates will have the guts to talk about Covid and what it did to us (and I am not talking about the virus itself).

Andrew Wise
Andrew Wise
4 months ago
Reply to  Arkadian X

What is it you want to hear them say?
I think the reaction to Covid was the single biggest affront to civil liberties imaginable and fiscally we are reaping the rewards now with a trashed economy.
Neither of which are conservative policies as far as I’m concerned.

JJ Barnett
JJ Barnett
4 months ago
Reply to  Andrew Wise

Hearing them acknowledge even half of what you just said would be good.

I would like to hear the leadership candidates acknowledging that much of what we are facing now is a result of decisions, and those decisions were not good ones, and certainly not conservative ones.

Tony Conrad
Tony Conrad
4 months ago
Reply to  JJ Barnett

We have to understand that the deception was almost worldwide and that we were just one of many countries who fell for it mainly through fearmongering. Boris did what he did at the time but we fared a lot better than some of the countries. There is the other side to it that not many understand even now.

Tony Conrad
Tony Conrad
4 months ago
Reply to  Andrew Wise

A lot of us now know the full truth aside from main media. The country was virtually bankrupted because of a kind of flu. Millions of us have had covid now with no great harm. The flu affected the same people that Covid did but at least they had a proper vaccination to deal with it without this mRNA contraption which wasn’t a real vax and which has caused it’s own harm if the truth be known. .

Steve Murray
Steve Murray
4 months ago
Reply to  Andrew Wise

Whilst i agree with your contention about the affront to civil liberties, why use the phrase “a trashed economy”? It’s very, very far from “trashed”. Yes, of course we’re in an inflationary cycle and have a huge burden of debt, but that’s not the economy – which is the ability of a country to produce goods and services which are needed to fund public services and provide sufficient scope for private enterprise. Latest reports indicate that of the G7, the GDP of the UK is outperforming the other member states.
Give it time, and an end to the conflict in Ukraine, or at least a means by which the global economy can come to terms with it should it take some time. In the context of who should be the next PM and what that means for Conservatism, i’d contend that we’re pretty handily placed in comparison with most first world nations. Talking ourselves down with such phrases as “trashed economy” is not the way to go. We need realism of course, and to steer ourselves clear of a Labour+X others coalition. Whatever Conservatives do to prevent that, and provide a vision for future prosperity and secure defences, will be the new Toryism.

Last edited 4 months ago by Steve Murray
Raf Makda
Raf Makda
4 months ago
Reply to  Andrew Wise

Agreed, yet there is little evidence that a day of reckoning is coming anytime soon. Regarding policies, the conservatives implemented all of the covid rules and are solely responsible for the fallout. The fact that other parties may have been even worse is immaterial, as is the excuse that they were somehow pushed along the path by the media and public opinion. Lately, I have noticed some of the keen lockdowners, maskers, compulsory testers and shielders making a very unwelcome reappearance. Looking back on Jeremy Hunts previous pronouncements on how to handle covid makes me shudder at the thought of what may come this Winter. I also recall Sunak being interviewed about furlough, when questioned about possible fraud he replied “nobody would take advantage during a time of national crisis” Javid and Gove were pushing for tighter covid restriction in December 2021, the list goes on.

Mike Michaels
Mike Michaels
4 months ago
Reply to  Raf Makda

If this is really what Sunak said then god help us all if he becomes PM.

Last edited 4 months ago by Mike Michaels
Andrew Fisher
Andrew Fisher
4 months ago
Reply to  Raf Makda

The contrast with other parties’ policies is hardly ‘immaterial’! That is just an assertion. In the real world there can be better or worse policies, and we have often to choose between greater or worse evils. For all the hyperbolic comparisons with China – we were a long way from that – and even many of our European neighbours. We do actually need to give some credit to many in the Tory Party, one of the few parties in the entire western world which at least had an open, albeit often nasty debate, and even Johnson to some extent. It could have been very, very much worse. We were always allowed to go out for exercise for a start. My French friends were forbidden to use parks or markets.
Here is the Chinese approach: you are not be allowed to leave your home for ANY reason, you depend on rations from the state, you may be forced into a covid camp, and and even your children may be taken form you.

Last edited 4 months ago by Andrew Fisher
Alan Thorpe
Alan Thorpe
4 months ago
Reply to  Arkadian X

That will mean admitting mistakes and taking responsibility for them, which they will never do.

Tony Conrad
Tony Conrad
4 months ago
Reply to  Alan Thorpe

I don’t know. I think some might now be emboldened to speak the truth without Boris there. Obviously those who backed the narrative might want to save face but there are others who have nothing to lose and indeed a lot to gain by speaking the truth.

tom j
tom j
4 months ago
Reply to  Alan Thorpe

To the contrary, the world is well stocked with politicians willing to take responsibility for *someone else’s* mistakes, and a change in leadership opens up this option for all the new candidates for PM.

John Allman
John Allman
4 months ago
Reply to  Arkadian X

Quite so. Getting out of the frying pan was only half the battle. We still have to avoid falling into the fire.
Boris’ finest hour was when he said we (or they?) needed to “recalibrate”. If he’d actually done that as soon as he realised the need for it, perhaps he’d have held on to the Tory leadership.

Saul D
Saul D
4 months ago

It seems to me that both the Conservatives and Labour are struggling to define their purpose and direction.

JJ Barnett
JJ Barnett
4 months ago
Reply to  Saul D

Which is ludicrous, given that in Britain we literally put the clue in the name when it comes to politics.

Every election cycle, when the parties cast around with pointless polling and focus groups to try to come up with policy ideas I get so infuriated. JUST TURN AROUND AND LOOK AT THE SIGN YOU ARE STANDING IN FRONT OF DANG IT!!

It’s not a riddle, wrapped in an enigma. Conservatives — implement classically conservative policy, and conserve the financial and social resources of the nation. Labour — implement policies that benefit the working class… you know, the labour.

Muppets, one and all.

Tony Conrad
Tony Conrad
4 months ago
Reply to  JJ Barnett

The Heritage party sounds good although small and encapsulates all the policies that I think are important.

Tony Conrad
Tony Conrad
4 months ago
Reply to  Saul D

Perhaps many have lost their own direction in life and can hardly lead the country.

David Adams
David Adams
4 months ago

The article lists Burke’s early interests as promoting religious toleration and self-determination, refusing to avow violence against the state, and opposing monopoly power.

It then bizarrely states that “It is hard, then, to find in Burkean principles the origins of conservatism.”

Really? The positions listed above give a decent summary of mainstream conservative thought.

In the modern world, they would be opposed by neo-feudal despots, not conservatives.

Joe G
Joe G
4 months ago
Reply to  David Adams

Yup. And his association with the 18th century Whigs also doesn’t undermine the ideological continuity of his thought with modern conservatism. Also, I’m pretty sure US conservatives are well aware of his sympathy for the American revolution – that’s surely part of the reason why he’s popular among US conservatives.
Richard Bourke provides evidence that undermines his own case. Maybe the reason why Bourke can’t find “conservative principles which have retained their integrity through the ages” is because he chooses not to see them.

Michael Bishop
Michael Bishop
4 months ago
Reply to  Joe G

Bourke’s book on Burke is excellent, but marred by just the problem you mention. It is impossible for a certain sort of academic (well, almost all academics) to credit conservatism with any positive qualities. Thus Burke’s admirable support for the American Revolution, opposition to the EIC’s greed, and concern for the Catholics of Ireland, are evidence that he couldn’t possibly be an inspiration to conservatives. As someone who is conservative and reveres Burke precisely because of his passionate positions on the issues above, I see no such conflict.

Nicky Samengo-Turner
Nicky Samengo-Turner
4 months ago
Reply to  Michael Bishop

Thatcher was essentially hi jacked by the Orange Lodge Unionists in Ulster, and their mutual lower middle class identity, … and lower middle class dislike of Catholics also alive in Britain even then: this skewed her attitude to The Troubles, and was just ammunition to the PIRA.. and its recruitment, to heavy cost to The Army over many years.

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
4 months ago

Not so I’m afraid; By the time (Lady) Thatcher appeared, the war in Ireland had well passed its peak, with 1972 being by far the bloodiest year. By 1979 things had reached “ an acceptable level of violence” and would continue to do so until the end.
Incidentally ‘most’ of the Army rather enjoyed themselves in this novel little war, and it cannot be counted as a “heavy cost” as you would have it.
It also rather neatly solved the problem of what was the Army going to do after the withdrawal from Aden in November 1967.

Last edited 4 months ago by stanhopecharles344
Nicky Samengo-Turner
Nicky Samengo-Turner
4 months ago

Then why did secret peace talks have to be held by former Coldstreamer Whitelaw and ex Blue Channon with McG and A? without Thatcher’s knowledge?

Joe G
Joe G
4 months ago
Reply to  Michael Bishop

Yeah, the influence of the left-wing caricature of conservatism, very popular in academia, may explain Bourke’s baffling characterisation of the causes Burke supported as somehow inconsistent with the conservative tradition.
Those causes appear to be based on principles which came to define the actual limited-government conservative tradition, but maybe not the caricature of conservatism popular in academia, and Bourke may be using the caricature as his comparison.

Tony Conrad
Tony Conrad
4 months ago
Reply to  David Adams

One cannot have a static policy based on some idea of conservatism. Life isn’t like that. There are no well worn tracks. Basically honesty and commitment and putting in those who have a good track record and who know the difference between good and evil will surely help us. I don’t know in these days that even a good education will work judging by what they are serving up these days.

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
4 months ago

I wonder how the ‘Red Wall’ views all this sanctimonious nonsense?
Johnson may well have been a feckless buffoon, but at least he had charisma. Do any of the other candidates have even a glimmer of the latter? All Johnson has to do is start acting like a real Conservative, which should not be difficult for such a naked opportunist.
Perhaps he should really call an unprecedented General Election, or are we yet again to repeat the disgrace of the Thatcher- Major putsch? And waste another five to ten years?

Mark Chadwick
Mark Chadwick
4 months ago

One thing that’s perfectly clear is that whoever gets the top job now, regardless of what they say they’ll do if elected, once in office they’ll implement the same Globalist WEF policies, just like Boris Johnson, just like Theresa May and just like David Cameron. The Tories and Labour are both completely and utterly polluted with Globalist dross, and unless the British people wake up and stop voting for them, then we’re finished as a nation and a people.

AC Harper
AC Harper
4 months ago

Heraclitus apparently believed that everything changes. From which you can argue that things eventually change into their opposites.
So Labour appear to be moving away from aligning with the working man and the Conservatives appear to be moving away from aligning with the gentry.
Boris seemed to realise this but he was (now obviously) unable to bring the conservative Conservatives along with him.
At the moment both Labour and the Conservatives appear to be contending for the middle class, with the activists pulling for the extremes. It will be a brave PM that can pull it all together.

David Simpson
David Simpson
4 months ago
Reply to  AC Harper

No, Boris was unable to govern. Had he been he’d still be PM

Victoria Cooper
Victoria Cooper
4 months ago
Reply to  David Simpson

Was Thatcher “able to govern?”..

James 0
James 0
4 months ago

As students of the history of ideas will recognise, the most basic lesson is that we have to do our own thinking for ourselves. While interesting and useful in many ways, the study of figures like Burke, Rousseau, and the American founders just reveals how alien their world was to our own. What, really, can the Tory party gain from orientating its politics to what Burke thought about the East India Company, or the French and American revolutions? It’s as strange as thinking that they should constantly be in thrall to Churchill and asking ‘What would Winston do?’ about things like coronavirus. It’s bizarre.

Tony Conrad
Tony Conrad
4 months ago
Reply to  James 0

That’s what I think as well. These figures may inspire us but we need something within us as well. If we haven’t got that we shall be just copying someone else which isn’t an asset.

Rob Britton
Rob Britton
4 months ago

Dumping Boris Johnson will save Conservatism, not destroy it.

Philip Crowley
Philip Crowley
4 months ago
Reply to  Rob Britton

I agree, Rob. In my humble opinion, Johnson was a clever opportunist, not a conservative.

Ben 0
Ben 0
4 months ago

The nub of the economic debate seems to revolve around requests for higher cap-ex spending for the north versus the clamour for tax cuts elsewhere. .
Surely tax-breaks for all businesses are good, whether in the north or south? And wouldn’t intelligent cap-ex projects in the north further add to its economic output over time?
Can someone please enlighten me please?
The north was the birth place of the industrial revolution, the Manchester School and free trade. Perhaps we need to change the conversation with regard to the north and stop treating it as a state supplicant.
Surely we want all regions of the UK to be as powerful and self-reliant as possible. The north-south divide has been an open wound across the UK for far too long.

Tony Conrad
Tony Conrad
4 months ago
Reply to  Ben 0

The south is partly made up of lots of northerners who do well (and even Scots and every other ethnic minority) so a geographical division is not always that helpful.

Allison Barrows
Allison Barrows
4 months ago

Here’s a good gauge for determining today whether a political leader, media organization, university, corporation or other high-impact person/institution has any credibility: does she/he/it take Chinese money? If the answer is yes, and it usually is, then all the Tory vs Labour, Democrat vs Republican, Left vs Right palaver is moot. Is our future going to be a Black Mirror dystopia? Are we going to suffer THE EVENT few will survive? The answer rests with our response to China’s ambitions. All this other BS – the political tribalism, the culture wars, the addiction to tech – are deliberate distractions that weaken the West, which is just how China likes it. Will they prevail? Depends on who’s cashing their checks.

Jonathan Nash
Jonathan Nash
4 months ago

I think the easiest dichotomy to keep hold of as being the origins of the Tory party, is the “Court” and “Country” groupings (it would be anachronistic to call them political parties) of the late seventeeth and early eighteenth centuries: the “Tories” were the country grouping – essentially the landed aristocracy and gentry who did not seek (or at least receive) the patronage from the Court under the control of the Whiggish Robinocracy of Walpole. Thus in origin the Tories saw themselves as standing for the old country against the centralising and legislating government, a theme which has remained fairly consistent as the grouping evolved into a political machine in the nineteenth century, notwithstanding that the Whig monopoly on power was broken by then. Burke’s position as somebody who saw that the Revolutionaries of France would quickly become a terrorising central power is a classic Tory position. Margaret Thatcher, as is often remarked, although she had some Tory traits (an affection or nostalgia for local civic action for example) was in economics a free-market liberal. Its rather difficult to judge how “Tory” the current candidates are because they are all trying to frame themselves by reference to whether they are tax cutters or tax raisers, rather than expressing any wider view of the relationship between government and society. Kemi Badenoch sounds like she is probably a Tory; I think Rishi is a Whig. No idea about the rest.

Lennon Ó Náraigh
Lennon Ó Náraigh
4 months ago

Thatcher was a transformational PM. I will never agree with her or her methods, but she had fresh ideas, and huge energy, which helped her to push through her modernization of the UK economy. In his way, Blair was a similar leader, with great energy end drive. Of course, Blair’s transformational project ended in a pile of sand in Babylon. Thatcher’s ideas and Blair’s ideas were very much of their time – tax-cuts and stamping out trade unions, or public-sector expansion funded by taxes on the City. These are now very dated ideas. The fact that the main contenders for the leadership of the Conservative party are reaching for some of these stale ideas shows just how empty the Conservatives’ intellectual cupboard is. At this rate, they are heading for a long spell in opposition.

Nicky Samengo-Turner
Nicky Samengo-Turner
4 months ago

I cannot but think, and perhaps believe, that a very large number of modern Conservative Party supporters and voters are actually far more ” Fox Whiggish” and ” Old Liberal” as was Churchill at one stage, than ” Tory”? I am, but perhaps the critical issue here is the sequestration of the term Liberal, in and by the ‘ Meeja’ to mean ” Freedom to stop and prevent the expression of all that we do not like”….?

Laurence Target
Laurence Target
4 months ago

Burke broke with Fox; so should the Conservative Party.

Tony Conrad
Tony Conrad
4 months ago

What we have here is a history lesson which doesn’t really affect our present or future. There is nothing magical about Tory. It is more about honesty and lack of deception even the deception picked up by MP’s about woke and so called zero carbon etc. I am greatly surpised that gay marriage came from the Tories. Yes it has changed drastically. We can no longer rely on what we used to concerning the Tories. We can only pray and hope that the country stays on the right road.

Will Will
Will Will
4 months ago

No mention of Peel, or did I miss it

Robin Blick
Robin Blick
4 months ago

Tory Covid conspiracists running riot here.