I didn't like the look of this government in opposition, but I'm starting to warm to it. I'd generally assumed Cameron to be a bit of a wet lettuce, but I had in the back of my mind that possibly he was just playing a smart, tactical game. I now believe that this is what is happening.
Firstly, Cam/Osborne had to get elected. BBC and Labour propaganda has been for years that the Conservatives would cut and there would be disastrous consequences. A lot of the public actually fell for this. So, the Cameron strategy was to basically say "we don't want to cut anything". Then, you get into power, dig through the accounts, find things are pretty awful, and what you start doing is cutting the really, really useless parts of government.
Now, Labour's part comes into play - they start protesting about how disastrous all these cuts are. Of course, cutting the arts is not disastrous in the least. Other than a few Guardian readers and the people involved in producting kabuki theatre, or plays about paraplegic lesbians in Iran, no-one else is affected. Certainly not the people who spend their money going to see Toy Story 3.
The effect of this is that people start to see that actually, cutting parts of government aren't too scary.
At the same time, the Conservatives have cleverly left the NHS alone. The NHS is totemic for Labour, the NHS is also something that a lot of people don't use that much (unless they're old). But a lot of people know about good and bad schools, and how terrible many of them are, and many parents in good schools would opt for private schools, if they could afford it. Parent-run schools are going to take off like a rocket. People are going to meet people whose kids are at parent-run schools who will have great stories about how much better their schools are than under the old LEA. This then sets up the government to go after health afterwards.
Tiresomely predictable tastes
8 hours ago