Saying sorry – the new PR arms race

A brief fly-past, citizens, to bring you the news that David Cameron is sorry that his party has been totally unable to detect the oncoming debt crisis and resulting recession over the last decade (despite the frequent Proverbs of St Vince in and out of the House).


The idea being, of course, that now Gordon will have to say sorry as well, and thence be forced to call a general election, or else refuse to say sorry, and thence be forced to call a general election. Myself, I think they under-estimate his staying power.

God, this is depressing, isn’t it? The two major parties of this once great nation, etc, locked in an unwinnable game of nerny-nerny-ner-ner whose premise is the fact that BOTH of them have spent the last twelve years being crashingly inept.

Mind you, it could be worse. Supposing Labour respond with a statement to the effect that they are even sorrier than the Conservatives? Then the Conservatives will have to hold a press conference to say that they are very very very very VERY sorry and they’ll never do it again, cross their hearts and hope to be smacked until their botties go purple, and then Labour will brief a tame journalist to the effect that yeah, but they are sorry times infinity squared plus one, so ner, then the Conservatives will say that Labour’s sorry isn’t a real sorry but one of those frightful EU sorries shipped in to make apologies when there are perfectly well-qualified British sorries standing idle. I look to next week’s PMQs with a heavy heart.

Image courtesy of ToryBear, who really doesn’t find it remotely funny. I don’t blame him. Nor do I.



  1. Arf, we can’t repost material already posted somewhere else (unless we’re Mark).

    Hang on, maybe I have another of these about my person…

  2. It is good that Cameron at least claims to be grasping towards sanity. But I don’t believe he realises or accepts that the pre-2008 world has died. When is he going to admit that his flagship IHT pledge was a mistake & back away from it with dignity? Where are the real signs that everything they did before the recession will have to be looked at?

    Even the Labour cunts have done it to an extent, & are altering their welfare policies in this light. Regardless, I would still prefer the Tories to them as they have some vague appreciation of freedom. But I will never have any impact at the ballot box as I live in one of the safest Labour seats going. I will probably put my X next to you. Yes, Huhne’s supine response to Geert Wilders & the faith schools debacle is upsetting. But I will just be another elector in Stoke-on-Trent North who gets a good kicking from Joan Walley & her tens of thousands of supporters (she actually isn’t too bad as a constituency MP & often accords with my views, or at least claims to in all the correspondence she has sent me).

    But if this man is going to be Prime Minister, I expect to be critical of him, but I at least vaguely hope to agree with some of his values & policies. Yet I do not see any appreciable change of the kind I can truly respect.

    Tory opinion is divided. A lot of them agree with my views, & think the IHT shite should at least be put on hold. But I think the majority won’t budge no matter what. I was in an argument with Newmania (who is an all right sort of bloke, as much as you probably don’t think so) & he clung to the standard Thatcherite line.

    Action, not words.

    There is also some good shite on page 18 of the Grauniad which I might blog about a bit later about a further outbreak of sense coming from the USA.

  3. You can read what Tories think from the linked-to thread on ConHome.

    That thread is peerless as a way of showing outsiders what Tories think. Though I suspect that the authoritarians are underrepresented as they are more likely to be old-timers who are not online.

  4. Interesting that you should make the observation that it is only worth talking about “the two major parties”, seeing as a Lib Dem apology for failing to spot the problems with the economy would get about as much press coverage as, say, the recent Lib Dem conference in Harrogate.

  5. Um, LFaT, mate, I don’t need to talk about a Lib Dem apology because we *didn’t* fail to spot the problems with the economy.

    I’m sure you say this sort of thing on purpose to give me easy shots πŸ˜‰

  6. I therefore look forward to the presentation of full references of speeches and publications from Lib Dem MPs who identified the impending problems with credit flow, unsustainable debt and dodgy banking practices from pre-2008.

  7. “I have to go and Have A Life now”

    Code for ‘I haven’t got anything better than Vince Cable asking some PMQs’.

    If you re-read my comment, you will notice that I asked for speeches and publications. Where are the Lib Dem manifesto commitments to tackling the debt crisis before 2008? Where are the Lib Dem policies for cracking down on reckless lending? Where are the Lib Dem leadership contests revolving around consumer debt and corrupt bankers?

    Every party has been asking PMQs and trying to get straight answers out of Gordon for months, if not years, but no party has actually done anything more than that – hence why taking shots at the Conservatives on this matter only turns the spotlight onto the lightweight Lib Dems as well.

  8. “Code for β€˜I haven’t got anything better than Vince Cable asking some PMQs’.”

    What a suspicious little man you are! No, I’m afraid I actually do go off and Have A Life from time to time. However, long lunch done, I am of course at your beck and call, LFaT…

    It is transparently clear from what you say about PMQs that you have not read the links I told you to read. I told you to read Jock’s links at 4.49 and 4.55. You appear instead to have read my PMQs links. Try again, reading Jock’s links this time – they deal with various Hansard entries, most Cable, one Campbell, going back to 2003 on the subject of debt and the housing bubble. There, is that a little easier?

    It was also Cable, incidentally, who opened the adjournment debate on the Cruikshank Report back in 2000:

    His concerns re demutualisation of building societies and asset stripping go back to 1997:

    And here he is on both regulation, risk-taking and debt in 2003:

    – and you know what? Just to make it extra, extra easy, I’ll C&P the relevant paragraph of that last one for you:

    “Can the Chancellor confirm that one of the objectives of risk-based regulation under the Basel accord is the prevention of dangerous booms and busts in bank lending? Will he therefore explain why, at a national level, no one is taking responsibility for the often reckless debt promotion by the leading banks and credit card companies? Given yesterday’s conclusions of the Treasury Committee, does that not suggest that the Government and the regulators are either blind or asleep where the banks are concerned? ”

    Re: publications. The Lib Dems don’t publish things as such unless they are a policy paper to be voted on in conference. Do the other two parties do this? As a very exceptional response to the banking crisis, however, the Recovery Plan is linked on the front of the party website.

    By demanding manifesto commitments before 2008 I’m afraid you’re moving the goalposts unacceptably from your original challenge. In order to remind yourself of how bone-headed the other two parties were being at that time, have a look at some of the responses to Cable in the links above and in Jock’s comment.

    Also, please note my comment in the LDV post recording what Evan Davies told George Osborne, which I gather has also escaped you.

  9. How one wishes Cameron would start punching. You know, hammering hard at Gordon and his lot. If ever an opposition was given a heaven-sent series of gorblimey gaffes from a government, it’s this one. There’s too much floating like a butterfly with Cameron, and not enough stinging like a bee. He’d better get tough and beat up on Gordon mercilessly, or the used-to-be labour party will get back again, on the votes of all the benefits claimants.

  10. Naughty Alix! πŸ™‚

    We can always change slogans too suit but you must think like I do that Labour have served their time and the best shot at getting rid is to vote Tory! πŸ™‚

    I think you are savvy enough despite your LD protestations to want that! πŸ˜€

    The Tories show open arms to you! πŸ™‚

  11. Letters,

    I thought the press coverage of Harrogate was quite good actually…there was a reasonable amount on the BBC website though the print media wasnt quite as good from what i saw…

  12. I have a better idea. I think we should simply abolish the word ‘sorry’. Because what does it mean in political discourse now? The rot started with Blair, who made a point of only apologising for things that he not only hadn’t done, but could never have done or had any influence over in the slightest, like the slave trade. Which – under the circumstances – was even more oleaginously repellent than expressing regret; somehow managing to rub it in everyone’s face that a) it happened and b) he disapproved morally and isn’t he good?

    Then Boris was made to apologise for expressing an opinion he was perfectly at liberty to hold about Liverpool, and then – as if to highlight how cocking ludicrous it all was – to apologise to the natives of Papua New Guinea for mentioning that they occasionally used to snack on people.

    Now there’s some smugfuckery on my train line whereby a recorded announcer – yet more faciotteric jeering – personally apologises for the fact that the waterloo train is cancelled again as if to suggest that that they are being held individually responsible in some sort of Soviet show-trial way, and that their immediate liquidation will make me feel any better about being late, not to mention the fact that the one after it will be so packed that it forces one into unplanned sexual intimacy with the next commuter each time it lurches.

    I don’t want their sorrow any more. I want their money.


  13. Sorry Alix!

    I like your blog and comment every now and then but ‘german people’ on newsnight make me relise i am neglecting my muscles! πŸ˜†

    It’s not funny once you build them up you have to excercise them otherwise they go naff! Big muscles are great but they have to be optimised otherwise they become less good! LD’s are interesting but some are more appealing than others! πŸ™‚

    I hope you are on the BBC in 2009 on election night as you were in 2008, when Boris got elected! πŸ™‚ I think you have a good sense of humour! πŸ˜†

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