Tuesday, September 26, 2006

The Next PM of the United Kingdom

I wish our PM said these things a bit more often.

On having faith in people:

'And is not our history the story of yes, progress through the fulfilled talents, even genius, of some but, yes, also of the wasted potential of millions for too many, their talents lost and forever unfulfilled?

That's why I joined the Labour party - out of faith - faith in people, that they should have the opportunity to realise their potential.

And I believed then and I believe now that at all times the Labour party must stand for more than a programme: we must have a soul.'

Note that Kimbo, Senators Ray and Conroy- a soul

On Education:

'Strip away the rhetoric about globalisation and it comes down to one essential truth:

You can buy raw materials from anywhere, You can borrow capital form anywhere, You can engage with technology half way across the world, But you cannot buy from elsewhere what in the global economy you need most; the skills and the creativity of all our people - and that means that in education we must aim to be number one.'

Full employment as a policy goal:

'I want a Britain not just of excellence in education but a Britain of full employment and an end to the dole as we know it.'

On youth:

'So let us in every area of the country champion youth councils and youth budgets, young people deciding for themselves the shape of youth facilities in their communities.

Let us do more to support what gives young people opportunity and idealism: a youth community national service offering thousands of chances to expand horizons.'

On Power:

'I want a radical shift of power from the centre...

It is right that local councils, not Whitehall, should have more power over the things that matter to their community and from economic regeneration to public transport, the empowerment and strengthening of local councils and local communities is what we must now do.

And I will also champion community ownership of local assets and so that people who want change can secure that change community petitions to trigger action. And in that spirit of devolution I want to work with the lottery so that for even the smallest community, local budgets for local community facilities can be voted on by local people.'

Full employment, youth policy, citizens initiated referenda, government with soul, increased education spending- you won't hear John Howard or Kim Beazley speaking out on any of these issues. Well maybe Beazley on education. I guess the criticism of this sort of politics is that it is 'big picture' stuff that doesn't really shift many votes, but I storngly feel that these are the sort of things Labor should be talking about with conviction. They may be ambitious, and the results may not be as great as imagined- but it is a powerful vision and narrative for the future that people can follow and understand. We frequently hear that politics these days is about trust. Not necessarily personal trust as John Howard has shown, but trust in a shared vision for the future. Quite simply, people want to know where a politician stands. I don't think they care If you are centre left or centre right- as long as they can see where everything is headed, that's OK.

I'll leave it with a shocking joke:

'It will not be a surprise to you to learn I'm more interested in the future of the Arctic circle than the future of the Arctic Monkeys.'

His speach writer must be about 25! what a twat


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