Already flagged well in advance to the press, so we all knew what he was gonna say anyway, Cameron made a few vague commitments to some crappy proposals from Heseltine’s ‘Cities Taskforce’ – a Tory talking shop charged with coming up with some touchy-feely, hoody-huggy social policy mood music for electoral effect.
In common with every leader of the opposition in living memory, one of Ordinary Dave’s policy-style, policy-substitute possibilities is: “to push power downwards and outwards – away from central government and towards neighbourhoods themselves.”
Yeah, yeah, yeah. That’ll last until the day Dave’s handed the keys to Downing Street when he’ll suddenly decide instead to keep all the power for himself like they always do.
Dave’s also keen on elected mayors at the moment. Just like Blair! And just like Blair, no doubt we’ll get loads of talk about elected mayors but never actually see sight of one.
But the the policy-style policy-substitute that really caught The Bloggers attention was Dave’s promise to “slash unaccountable regional bureaucracies.”
Really? Ordinary Dave’s Conservative Party are going to slash unaccountable bureaucracies are they? Surely this isn’t the same Conservative Party that brought unaccountable bureaucracies to Bristol in the first place is it? Anyone remember the Bristol Development Corporation (BDC)? The unaccountable bureaucracy established by the Conservative government in 1989?
Having dismally failed to make any electoral impact in the city, The Tories decided instead to set up an unelected committee of Thatcherites to impose their will on the city and do some favours for their business friends regardless.
It was the BDC that built the spine road. A major road to nowhere carving up East Bristol and setting back the regeneration of areas like Easton, Barton Hill and St Phillips by about 25 years minimum.
It was the BDC that forced through the building of the Lloyds TSB HQ on the docks that kick-started the low-quality, high density, big profit corporate redevelopment of the area we have today.
It was the BDC that created the soulless Temple Quay development on behalf of more of their corporate friends.
And now that the damage is well and truly done Dave’s gonna sweep these quangos away for us. How generous of him. It’s like the Grand Old Toff of Notting Hill himself. He’s marched his quangos to the top of the hill and now he’s marching them down again…
Hurrah for Ordinary Dave with his ordinary ideas for ordinary people.