Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.
What's happening now is almost an exact replay of the end of the Tory years with Major. The Tories also went down in a flurry of carefully timed sleaze, and Major never quite had the charisma that Thatcher did.

By this time Blair had done his deal with the City and with Murdoch, and was already a useful stooge. He was allowed to win and allowed to spend money, providing he didn't do anything out of line - such as trying to increase regulation or raise taxes.

It's just not credible that he would have had no say on financial policy, and that it was left entirely to Gordo, the BoA, the FSA and the rest. And the lasting legacy of the Blair/Broon years is the way they perpetuated and didn't try to limit the freebooting market thuggery which was started with Thatcher's Big Bang.

Gordo's instincts have always been slightly to the left of Blair's, and in spite of more than ten years of indoctrination he's been showing worrying signs of breaking free and allowing some of the old Labour class consciousness to resurface.

It's interesting that the expenses scandal surfaced in time for these elections, but also - coincidentally - almost immediately after the first serious tax increase for the rich for a very long time indeed.

So we have the party imploding because of in-fighting, and the Blairites are presumably hoping they can replace Gordo with one of their own soon.

But this was triggered by some very handily placed and timely external pressures which will guarantee that tax increases and regulation - for the rich - are less likely than they would have been under Gordo's hypothetical second term.

Is this too paranoid? The Barclay Brothers, who own the Torygraph, are known for their Euro-Skeptic UKIP sympathies. But they'll put up with Cameron if they have to, as long as it means a move to the right, and a move away from Europe.

Meanwhile the Faily Wail, which has been banging the expenses drum almost as hard as the Torgraph, is owned by an n-th generation petty lordling who isn't known for his euro-socialist sympathies.

The truth is that if you can run a dirt-dishing media campaign of this sort, you can herd voters around like farm animals.

by ThatBritGuy (thatbritguy (at) googlemail.com) on Fri Jun 5th, 2009 at 04:01:40 PM EST
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