Posted by: John | September 27, 2007

It’s the narrative, stupid!

After reading Johnathan Wallace’s blog regarding `sleepwalking into a one party state`

I sometimes feel that we miss out on the main narrative. The Tories are back to where we once were – without a proper narrative and simply being told `you don’t know what you stand for`. My mum, for instance, thinks that `they are going to charge me to park at Somerfields.`

The mood has shifted in British politics – people are yearning for parties that tick three main boxes:

1. Competence in Government (they are wanting strategists that are flexible to deal with events)

2. A vision with workable policies to match that at least get you to a part of that journey (they want people to know where they’re going in progressive politics)

3. All this wrapped up in a coherent narrative that they can latch on to (what’s the story, take me by the hand)

Glad to say we can demonstrate the 1st at local government level, the second too from our policies. It’s the third area in which we are lacking. It’s time now for us to meet the challenge about how we’re going to both develop our policies and sell them (what kind of Britain are we for and how can we get there).

I feel that our narrative is like a half born chick – its head is out but it wants to break free of the egg. It’s one that’s struggling to get out. However, friends, it is there – we’ve just got to help it on its way.


No narrative except AGAINST things – David Cameleon doesn’t even seem to know what day it is let alone where he’s leading his party


A real threat to our party’s development – the problem is Brown/Blair statism sounds great in speeches but as Mandelson said it’s the HOW that’s missing. They have a firm grasp of their narrative – basically stay with us for the next ten years and we’ll make the changes incrementally into a one-party state where politics doesn’t matter unless it’s to do with the Labour government or quangos.


Britain seems to have reached a consensus regarding the politics it wants but not the type of society it wants to be – the majority are happy with the extra spending on NHS, Education; the changes in society regarding civil partnerships, the minimum wage etc. What we need to show now is how we would ADD to that with what was said at the conference and how BIG CENTRAL GOVERNMENT CAN’T DO IT ALONE.

I’m sure the next big idea in British Politics is the one that says 75% of the money should be raised locally with local authorities accountable. Indeed, we must argue that none of the things Brown wants can be delivered WITHOUT A COMPLETE REFORM OF OUR DEMOCRACY. We must argue that we want beefed up local and regional government to TELL GOVERNMENT WHAT TO DO with the Government being there on national security, diplomatic service etc

In short what i’m asking for is for this party to develop the Better Governance policy in line with the 75/25 aim as above to set councils free – in short nothing less than the `landerisation` of Britain. Delete and put in another name as you will!


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