Monday, 10 August 2009

Dave had drink while student - revelation

Apparently shortly before the general election a documentary will be screened about the Bullingdon Club at Oxford. It will show that Dave Cameron and George (Gideon) Osborne were members of this club and that its members had a few too many drinks and caused some mayhem.

This is a revelation on a par with the story that formed the lead item on the local Fox when I was teaching at Washington University. Shock horror, students at frat houses were having parties over the weekend at which kegs of beer were brought in and consumed. It was almost on a par with their story about two escaped Rottweilers on some island which showed two obese cops spraying the bush with bullets.

I think one might go to one of the lowest ranked universities in the country and find students having too many drinks. Indeed, there were occasions when I did when I was a student.

Of course the sub-text here is that this is some kind of elitist conspiracy comparable to the Skull and Crossbones club Dubya was in at Yale. Now that probably was more like an elitist conspiracy whereas the Bullingdon Club is a bunch of amatures by comparison. Admittedly, they probably drunk champagne rather than Stella Artois. Or perhaps both? No doubt the programme will tell us.

I'm not sure that the background of many Labour MPs as professional members of the political class, lawyers or teachers qualifies them any more to be in touch with so-called 'ordinary people' than Dave.

My serious point is that what should be happening is a through scrutiny of Conservative policies. This is important even for committed Conservative supporters. There is a view going around that once the Conservatives are in they will be there for at least ten years and admittedly that is the pattern of recent British governments.

However, if they get it wrong, they could pay a heavy price. And it's actually bad news for all of us.

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