Tuesday, 12 October 2010

IDS - Intelligent, Dreary Saviour???

I can't deny it.

I have no faith whatsoever that there are Tories out there who care about the poor, the sick and the vulnerable. Before you tut or sigh, remember history doesn't give us very many (any?) precedents. Though I rack my brains, I can't come up with a single Conservative innovation that has looked to the poor over the heads of the rich and the privileged.

Still, I am, if nothing else, a fair minded, indeed open minded tribalist and have more than a sneaking respect for Mr Duncan Smith.

After his humiliating stint as leader of the Conservative party he could have retired to the shires, licked his wounds and shut the doors to his ivory tower. That he didn't, says a lot about the man. That he then spent the years that followed trailing around council estates, talking to residents and truly trying to work a way through the fog of our welfare system is admirable.

Even the most tribalist of tribal people know that our welfare system doesn't work. It DOES trap people in the system, it IS too complicated.

If Mr Duncan Smith was given free reign to implement his plans in the way he wants I think we could be looking at the politician of a generation. If Gideon drapes the proposals in too much of his cloak, it will simply be another stick to hit the poor with. And that would be a shame, because today, we need Tories like IDS more than we ever have before.


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