Devious Dave

The results of the Scottish Referendum means Scotland remains, for the time being at least, part of the Union, but hardly was the last vote counted before David Cameron, by all accounts a very academically able man, showed his lack of understanding of how the actions of his government and preceding ones have fuelled the cynicism of the electorate.

Suddenly we learned that there were conditions to the promises made to the Scots; conditions that would appeal to his own backbenchers and cause problems for the opposition; conditions Cameron had kept secret from the others in the Better Together campaign group. I expect he thought it was a cunning plan where he would win all round. It is a cunning plan, but hardly the behaviour of an honourable man, let alone one who cares about having a politically engaged electorate. It underlines how devious he is, his contempt for voters north and south of the border, a willingness to play power politics when he ought to be being magnaminous, and plays into the hands of the disappointed Yes voters, who can now say, you see, those promises were worthless.

It leaves those such as Gordon Brown, who made those promises beside him in good faith, looking foolish and conned, or worse, complicit and dishonest.

I think there is a debate to be had, in fact lots of debates to be had, about the way the different countries of the UK are going to function together and separately, but they are distinct from, and independent of, the promises made to Scotland.

Cameron is said to be a religous man. I hope when he attends church tomorrow and prays to his god, that his god answers and advises him to apologise, show humility, and to thank his lucky stars that the vote gave a no result. I hope his god reminds him that power comes with responsibility, and leadership means more than winning and getting his own way.

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11 thoughts on “Devious Dave

    • Not sure about being disappointed. I didn’t like him in the first place. At the time of the general election I thoroughly enjoyed Armando Iannucci’s columns about him. I blogged and enclosed links, so you could find them if I don’t first.
      I once had to shake. Cameron’s hand. He wasn’t PM then, and I was introduced to him. I could hardly put my hands behind my back. He didn’t have a firm handshake.

  1. I think we need an English parliament, based in Birmingham, with the UK parliament remaining at Westminster, with fewer MPs and still with the House of Lords, presiding over only those things that pertain to the whole Union. I can see the argument that England is too big for this – that we should have local government for cities and regions, but it doesn’t feel integrated enough for me. Fine that cities have local government and that regions have much more say in their own destiny, but I still think we need an English parliament – and let’s have it somewhere other than London.

    • Nice idea about Birmingham. Then perhaps people will stop seeing Westminster as synonymous with London. I feel we need serious, non party political debate about where we go next, which is why Cameron’s behaviour has outraged me.

    • I didn’t mean to write any of this when I opened the computer, but all day I had been feeling more and more cross about the way Cameron has behaved.
      I am sure he thinks it’s a great way to slow down delivery to the Scots and shaft Labour so that the Tories will have overall control for ever. But I think it spells lots of trouble, lots of anger, disillusion and mistrust. Governments of whatever hue need effective opposition; it is a crucial part of democracy.
      Cameron’s actions are opportunistic and not those of a man you can trust, not the actions of a statesman, not the actions of a gentleman. That sounds old-fashioned, but courtesy and respect are important whatever profession you follow.
      I hope the inevitable outcry focuses on his shortcomings in these respects, and not on how others are going to be left trying to square the circle. If there is something we can send him that tells him this, like white feathers handed out to men who didn’t enlist in the 14-18 war, I think we should send them.

  2. I am lazy and unfortunately American in my instinctive Cameron hating. Unfortunately meaning I don’t pay as much attention as I should to the details. I know Promises Were Made. Can you link me up to the Conditions?

  3. This has been interesting to follow from abroad, and it’s too bad that leadership in so many countries seems to devolve to the most base and grotesque politics (these people, at least in relative democracies, are supposed to be public servants). We are currently in full-blown campaign season here, and the hot air is overwhelming; the mute button is getting quite a workout.

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