David eller David eller … II

Appropos Stanislaws post forleden om “the two Davids”, så havde Michael Gonzalez fra Wall Street Journal dette at sige idag i OpinionJournal.com om de britiske Torys idag, foranlediget af at Sir Edward Heath i en alder af 89 omsider oplevede Keynes’ “long run”:

“Like James Callaghan, a Labour PM who also died recently, Ted Heath had the misfortune to lead Britain during one of his country’s worst and most vexing periods. In the 1970s, taxes were stratospherically high, unions ran riot, economic growth was nil — conditions that finally led to his overthrow as Tory leader by Margaret Thatcher.

What gives Mr. Heath’s death on Sunday at 89 resonance today is that it coincides with an intensifying debate among his fellow Tories about the future of the oldest political party in Christendom.
David Davis is the Thatcherite option, running as a leader who would rescue a party that he believes has lost sight of its core principles. He grew up in a council estate — public housing — and is keen to shrink the state, cut taxes and hold Brussels at a distance.
The “Heathian” option is David Cameron, one of whose key backers recently made news by warning that pushing tax cuts would simply cause voters to “take fright.” Mr. Cameron himself added: “Government must never simply withdraw from social challenges under the banner of a smaller state.” Meanwhile, two major Tory papers, the Telegraph and the Mail, have trumpeted on their front pages a think tank’s charge that Tony Blair’s support for George Bush led directly to last week’s London bombing.

Mr. Heath’s fate has been to be remembered as Ms. Thatcher’s doormat. It’s forgotten that Mr. Heath first had to defeat the anti-immigrant rabble-rouser Enoch Powell before Mrs. Thatcher could defeat him. Those two battles were crucial to turning the Tories into the winning machine that changed Britain. In similar fashion,
Conservatives today are again trying to locate their collective soul as the party of free trade, enterprise and individualism amidst the pull of xenophobes, appeasers and statists.”

“Hear, hear!” Som de ville råbe i House of Commons.

2 Kommentarer

  1. Orde Wingate

    19. juli 2005 at 12:55

    En ting man skylder at have in mente, før end man foretager en general dom over Enoch Powell er, at han i 1965 stillede op til posten som partileder mod nyligt afdøde Edward Heath. som repræsentant for de få konservative parlamentsmedlemmer der på det tidspunkt var tilhænger af ?free-market economics?. Han fik 15 stemmer. Små 10 år senere sejrer Margeret Thatcher, som denne fløjs kandidat. Powell var både før og efter sin berømte tale i 1968 en meget populær konservativ. Og desværre må man vist sige, at talens tema har nogen aktualitet i dagens Storbritannien. (For et nuanceret syn på Powell, for dem der ikke blot vil nøjes med The Guardians og The Independents syn, se Simon Heffer?s biografi ?Like the Roman?.)At Edward Heaths behandling af Enoch Powell skulle have været en fordel for de konservative, er en tvivlsom påstand. Powell genopstillede ikke ved valget i februar 1974 og opfordrede sine tilhængere, og alle andre i øvrigt, til at stemme Labour, for at komme af med Heath. Det kostede med stor sandsynlighed Heath, de få stemmer der havde været nødvendige, for at have vundet de ekstra mandater, han manglende for at beholde regeringsmagten. Powell var med andre ord med til at bane vejen for Thatcher. Og den næste Thatcher er, hvad de konservative nu leder efter. David Davis kan godt beskrives som ?Thatcherite?, ikke at han er i nærheden af Jernladyens appeal. Men alternativerne taget i betragtning; David Cameron (knap nok tør bag ørene), George Osborne (skiftede navn til George fra Gideon for ikke at lyde for ?posh?), Malcom Rifkind (skotte, og var ude af politik fra 1997-2005, kalder stadig Euroen for ECUen), Ken Clarke (Den mest Heath-agtige) af alle. Alle er med til at få Davis til at ligne en mandlig ? ikke nødvendigvis mere mandig ? version af ?Vor Mor?.En kuriositet er, at David Davis er uddannet SAS-soldat (Special Air Service), ligesom den tidligere leder af de Liberale Demokrater, Paddy Ashdown. Ashdown genrejste (desværre) de Liberale Demokrater, så SAS har ikke de værste erfaringer med deres tidligere ?medarbejdere?.Men lad os nu se, om de britiske konservative denne gang vælger en partileder, som sætter standarden for resten af Europa, med en liberal, frihedsorienteret politik. Forhåbentlig kan det give inspiration til at komme af med vore hjemlige socialdemokrater; Fogh og Bendtsen

  2. Orde Wingate – tak for et godt og informativt skriv! Men er der nogen der ved hvem der så vinder?

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