Saturday, July 28, 2007


The wrong place at the wrong time was the charitable verdict on Conservative Leader David Cameron’s visit to Rwanda as floods swamped his Oxfordshire constituency this week.
Many of his constituents felt a lot less charitable. Some said that he ignored them as he briefly got his feet wet on a stroll down a constituency street prior to his African safari and had simply exploited a photo opportunity to make him appear concerned.
Clobbered into third place in the recent by-elections in Sedgefield and Ealing Southall, his Party trailing nine points behind the Government in the latest Opinion Poll and murmuring about his leadership among his own ranks, Cameron, who likes to be called Dave, must be relieved the ten week long Parliamentary summer recess has arrived and he can head off on holiday to France with his family.
Cameron loyalists try to claim the slump in Poll ratings is simply due to a ‘Brown bounce’ in the wake of Gordon Brown becoming Prime Minister just over four weeks ago.
The truth is a lot worse for both Cameron and the Conservatives.
Elected leader 19 months ago, Cameron was at best a very inferior imitation of Tony Blair – comedians Rory Bremner and Jon Culshaw did Blair so much better.
But Blair’s days of smoke and spin, in which Cameron could just about get by, are over and gone and already seem a long time ago.
Now, as the country heads into harder times and he is up against the deeply serious politician that is Gordon Brown, Cameron not only appears a lightweight PR man but not even a very good PR man.
His Channel 5 interview on Friday, in which he talked about how he faced a crisis in his Christian when his first child was born disabled, smacked of desperation – especially coming from a man who, in defence of his privacy, has repeatedly refused to say whether or not he took drugs as a student.
And while Brown visited the flood-hit zone in Gloucestershire and looked concerned as he asked questions and repeated his thanks to the emergency workers who had saved the Walham power station from breakdown, the best Cameron could manage was a conference link with the affected areas.
Since becoming leader he has not only disowned and alienated the Party’s traditional supporters and shied away from many of the issues which concern them but he has failed to win over ground held by New Labour.
As the recent by-elections clearly showed, when disillusioned and fed up with New Labour, voters turn to the Liberal Democrats and not ‘David Cameron’s Conservatives’ as the Party was styled in Ealing Southall.
Perhaps the saddest thing for Cameron and the Conservatives is that he looks and acts like a relic from the Blair era – a yesterday’s man who has no place or relevance today.
An air of being superior in every way to the rest of human race has surrounded the world of astronauts.
But first one drove hundreds of miles in an attempt to kidnap a love rival and now it’s emerged some astronauts have been sozzled as they soared into space.
Perhaps the pressure under which they work makes them even more fragile and prone to hit the bottle and have emotional problems than the rest of us.
Copyright © Rebecca Hamilton 2007. All Rights Reserved

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