Thursday, August 18, 2011

Iain Duncan Smith: "This is our warning... the crisis is coming."

In an interview for The Spectator, one of the Conservative Party’s true Conservatives gives a detailed account of the state we’re in. When the coalition was formed more than a year ago, His Grace said that only three agendas really mattered: addressing the fiscal deficit and national debt; welfare reform to make work pay; and education reform to liberate schools and raise standards. While His Grace would prefer to see John Redwood at the Treasury, it is a source of comfort that both Iain Duncan Smith and Michael Gove are implementing truly Conservative reforms which will endure.

IDS says Britain is ‘in the last-chance saloon’. O, how His Grace loathes that hackneyed phrase of the way-out Wild West. We’ve been in it so many times that the last-chance saloon is at least the last bar 10: it is a tired wolf-crying political cliché designed to induce urgency and invariably linked to raiding our bank accounts. That aside, it is heartening that the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, a military man, approaches his task like a no-nonsense sheriff. It is reported that when he moved into his office he replaced the abstract ‘Cool Britannia’ paintings of his predecessor with scenes of the Duke of Malborough’s victories: ‘When a group of officials came to visit him just after he changed the decor, they told him it felt like the Ministry of Defence. "That’s right," he replied. "I want you to know that from now on, this is the war room."’

He describes the recent riots as gang-driven, but incited by groups like the Socialist Workers Party. Well, if that’s the case, they should be closed down and the ringleaders given four years like the Facebook Two. If only because these gangs ‘will try to do it again’, he prophesies, which is why David Cameron sees August 2011 like George W Bush saw September 11th 2001 – a game-changing, pivotal, crucial turning point. With up to 200 gangs in London, IDS advocates a US approach: ‘to offer gang members education and protection. Those who refuse are told there will be no hiding place.’

His Grace isn’t sure why we need to import and idea from the USA when it’s really common sense to your average Brit: fix the education system – get them young – and you’ve got them for life. The old Jesuit adage predates any Boston initiative. But outside of school is the more intractable problem of family breakdown. This is a difficult one, not least because the state has spent decades undermining the traditional family by downgrading marriage, sidelining fatherhood, subsidising single parenthood, and being ‘liberal’ and ‘tolerant’ of whatever lifestyle happens to take your fancy. And now we read that IDS is ‘looking at a plan to intervene in 120,000 families who cause the greatest problems’. His Grace can hardly wait to hear what this intervention will be, for the state already offers ‘remedial education, work programmes, job interviews (and) drug addiction rehab’. There’s not a lot of point in getting young people off drugs and coaching them in job interviews when 154 per cent of job vacancies are filled by immigrants. The despair simply drives them back to drugs. You have to instil hope that education will lead to training and that training will result in gainful employment.

IDS is a Christian, and his mission is evangelical: he sees things rather as Margaret Thatcher saw them – as a battle between good and evil, and the problem is sin. Of course, he can’t easily say so because all hell would break loose. But he is intent on renewing society, and you do that by renewing the heart of man, and that is easier the earlier you captivate the heart. And he is adamant that ‘It cannot be the government doing this!’:
“The government can check the signals, but most of the intervention is done by the voluntary sector, private organisations, people who have proven programmes that work. You don’t want some official trying to descend from on high and intervene. We’ve been doing that for years, and it’s all gone wrong. I’m talking about intervention, but on a programme based around local communities. Government doesn’t do this. It can pave the way, set up the structures.”
The initiatives are cross-party, and it is a joy to see fellow Christian Frank Field onboard. IDS says: “...we care more about our society than we do for the political party. I don’t care if I’m attacked for it. I want to get Britain right — to me that’s more important than actually having a political spitting match." And therein lies the problem, because David Cameron has to concern himself with political spitting matches as well as hold a coalition together. And the Liberal Democrats are not overly keen on supporting marriage or addressing these pressing social problems with Conservative remedies.

And it is difficult to see what may be done about youth unemployment when immigration reduces the prospects of British workers. The latest figures suggest that not only have immigrants taken all the jobs created in Britain since David Cameron became Prime Minister, but they have pushed nearly 100,000 British people out of the workplace and on to benefits. Unemployment among those aged 16-24 has jumped 15,000 to 949,000.

With almost a million unemployed young people - and five of them chasing every vacancy - it is simply not possible to address the deep-seated issues as long as the Government is restricted by the EU and bound by the ECHR. Parliament does not control our national borders, and neither can it legislate for British workers to be given British jobs. Before Jesus preached, he made sure his audience was well fed: it is very difficult to renew hearts on an empty belly.


Blogger Span Ows said...

He's right and your right YG. let's hope he succeeds where many others have failed.

18 August 2011 at 10:26  
Blogger D. Singh said...

Your Grace

These are the penultimate problems:

'With almost a million unemployed young people - and five of them chasing every vacancy - it is simply not possible to address the deep-seated issues as long as the Government is restricted by the EU and bound by the ECHR.'

18 August 2011 at 10:53  
Blogger AnonymousInBelfast said...

As a party leader, I never rated IDS much - or at least, didn't really spend much time listening to him.

Now I wish I had. He won't get everything right, but when you're motivated as he appears to be (and to his credit, Frank Field also), it changes politics and is a reminder that earnest faith still has a place - ha! a place; it has a ruddy great hole to fill - at the heart of politics.

18 August 2011 at 10:58  
Blogger Man with No Name said...

Sounds like a Conservative who accepts a more radical, hands on approach is needed to address the evils of capitalism, secularism and welfarism. Lets wish him and Frank Fields well.

18 August 2011 at 11:31  
Blogger Al Shaw said...

In a globalised age, why is the assumption that immigration must be reduced? Why is the assumption not that emmigration could increase?

Why is your posture on immigration essentially defensive? Why do you not advocate encouraging British people to travel and take advantage of the amazing economic opportunities that exist beyond these shores?

18 August 2011 at 11:47  
Blogger someday said...

"IDS says Britain is ‘in the last-chance saloon’."

I'd like to thank IDS for that authentic frontier gibberish:

18 August 2011 at 12:09  
Blogger The Gray Monk said...

Well said, YG. I think IDS is probably the PM we should have, but if he succeeds in bringing a change to at least his current remit he may well move the rest in the right direction as well. He may have a limited choice of expressions at his disposal as the current crop of civil service incompetents are all MBA flourishers who think buzz words are smart.

And I accept full responsibility for introducing a few from my Buzz Word Generator at the height (Should that be low?) of the Blair years.

My favourite, parroted by a Minister from a CS Briefing Note, was "Balanced Policy Contingencies ..."

18 August 2011 at 13:08  
Blogger Maturecheese said...

YG I have said to my wife all along that these riots had a political element to them. The fact that the SWP are allegedly behind some of the rioting comes as no surprise as it will not be unnoticed that violent agitation seem to always take place whenever the Tories are in office. The SWP were probably aided and abetted by their rent a thug sister organisation the UAF. I'm sure that cuts to the Police budget are in the mix somewhere as well. Although I certainly didn't agree with everything she did, we sure need another Margaret Thatcher now to take on these seditious morons.

18 August 2011 at 13:29  
Blogger Rebel Saint said...

I agree with your analysis Cranmer, but find it a bit at odds with you opening statement of priorities: Fiscal deficit, welfare reform, education reform. All these are important but none will make the slightest bit of difference until there is societal reform.

We can be economically sound, with prudent welfare & the best educated children ... but unless the VALUES which under-gird them are in place they will come to nothing.

The riots and social upheaval we see all around us are not due to economic factors or welfare systems or lack of education ... but to do with fatherlessness (is that a word?), rootlessness, nihilism, materialism and hopelessness. Until governments start tackling social policy - with marriage & the family at the heart of it - then everything else will simply come to nothing.

People marvelled at the dignified & orderly way Japan coped with the effects of the Tsunami. Their family life is at the heart of that. You won't see riots in Tokyo no matter how bad their economy, how dysfunctional their welfare system or how bad their education gets.

18 August 2011 at 14:10  
Blogger Shacklefree said...

Your Grace said “IDS is a Christian, and … he sees things … as a battle between good and evil, and the problem is sin. Of course, he can’t easily say so because all hell would break loose.” That’s a big problem in our society and one that Christian politicians have been too squeamish to oppose. IDS is also right that intervention from on high has not succeeded and that private sector initiatives in the past have got a proven track record. By comparison, government intervention has generated the dependant society – we have listened to their lies about the jobs, health and wealth they are going to create for us all (using our taxes of course) and in the process they have forced us to close down adoption agencies, promoted sexual promiscuity in schools, destroyed the proper recognition of authority within families, schools and society and gambled our nation’s wealth on the stock market lottery. When are we going to realise that parents have a right to determine what is taught to their children in schools? Once we realise that and start taking action, we may begin the process of reform. Normal people have got to start demanding not through requests to MPs which will be ignored but by action that insists. We could learn a thing or two from the Muslims who got Ray Honeyford sacked or from the Indian hunger striker.

18 August 2011 at 14:13  
Blogger I am Stan said...

Your Grace,

I`m getting fed up with heads of Guvmint talking down our great country and its people, cast iron did and does it now the quite man is at it, things would improve if they kept their interference to the absolute minimum and let folk who know where their arse is in relation to their elbow get on with things.

18 August 2011 at 14:59  
Blogger john in cheshire said...

If IDS could assist in our withdrawal from the EU, repeal of the Human Rights Act, removal of all third world immigrants, the crushing of socialism in all its manifestations, outlawing of islam, the promotion of white, Christian civilisation, then perhaps I might just sleep more easily at night. But he's a politician and they don't have a good track record on being normal.

18 August 2011 at 16:36  
Blogger IdiotZoo said...

The problem is... it's all very well saying problems like the 'downgrading' of marriage is something we can blame on the state, but is it? Really? Does the state dictate the morality of the nation? I don't think that's the case. If anything, it's the other way round. However it's probably true that politicians have compromised themselves over the years in chasing votes. Which is a shame.

The transformation of society that so many of us would like to see probably isn't going to be imposed from the top. I doubt it's going to come from Gove's plans to reform our schools (look, I didn't insult the man, didn't I do well).

I'd like to see if come from the Church; at least a challenge to the secular indoctrination that's rife in British society.

I'm sure it's no coincidence that church schools tend to do the best for children, even in the most difficult of areas.

18 August 2011 at 16:40  
Blogger Dreadnaught said...

If the Conservatives have the slightest idea of how to reform Britain they should say so now and call a snap election while the public anger is up and focused.

There are enough disillusioned and jaded voters hungry for drastic reform, for Dave to at least consider this option as - lets face it - how worse does it have to get?

It is time for the silent majority to reclaim their Country. Suspend all but skilled immigration. Untangle the corrosive benefit system that underpins the 'something for nothing culture' - the root cause of the recent unpleasantness; ditch HRA and tell the EU to back off.

Revolution succeeds during a periods of uncertainty and unrest - we have the ingredients - but has Dave got the bottle? - I doubt it very much.

18 August 2011 at 16:49  
Blogger Man with No Name said...

john in cheshire

Just what is "white, Christian civilisation?"

18 August 2011 at 17:01  
Blogger Oswin said...

Somewhat off-topic here, but as regards jobs: my daughter, during her summer-break fron Uni' has had three jobs, each better, in one way or another, than the preceeding 'other' etc. She could have had many more, having been offered eight of the nine she applied for.

Her two flat-mates had similar offers too.

These jobs were not restricted to students alone, as many who were accepted had no previous experience, or any advanced qualifications.

Seemingly, the basic requirements being: literate, numerate and of a clean and tidy appearance.

Neither were the salaries based on the bottom-line minimum wage.

I doubt that Newcastle Upon Tyne fares any better than elsewhere; indeed, it probably ranks lower than most other cities (?) but clearly jobs DO exist!

Thus, is it then the case that many school-leavers are illiterate, innumerate and plain old fashioned 'scruffy' with poor social skills?

Or is it that too many are too damned choosy, or simply cannot be arsed to make the effort???

Surely ANY job is better than none; as any job demonstrates to a potential employer, a willingness to work?

18 August 2011 at 17:20  
Blogger Oswin said...

Man with No Name @ 17:01 :

An easy question to answer: it is the society of my childhood, during the 1950's; it had its problems, but on the whole it was not a bad place at all.

I suspect that older generations thought much the same too, nothwithstanding two World Wars ... at least Britain was recognisable as Britain!

18 August 2011 at 17:36  
Blogger Old Blue Eyes said...

I am more than ever convinced that a lot of our problems would help to be solved if we were to leave the EU.(and no, I am not a member of UKIP) We could control our borders, cut the red tape that stifles our businesses, regain our courts and greatly improve our economy by the savings of our heavy subsidy to that foul federation.

18 August 2011 at 18:21  
Blogger carl jacobs said...

It's not enough to create jobs. You have to provide a work force with both the skill and character to fill those jobs. That means the applicant must be capable of producing more wealth than he costs. He must be willing to show for work on time, and not mouth off to management, and not get drunk on Sunday night so he is ready Monday morning. He has to be capable and reliable and presentable.

Immigrants aren't pushing locals out of jobs. Immigrants are successfully competing for those jobs. Instead of blaming immigration, you should examine why immigrants are more successful. People are not entitled to work simply because they are breathing. They have to earn their income. Ignorance and poor character are no excuse.


18 August 2011 at 18:24  
Blogger Office of Inspector General said...

Your Grace

IDS is just the calibre of politician this government needs, but how big is the scope he can work in. In fact, this goes for any minister of the crown. Being inside the EU must be like working with a hand tied behind your back - IDS knows this but I'm sure will remain the quiet man on the issue.

The Inspector was giving a few thoughts to the family of Leroy James. This young lad apparently being the latest victim of gang culture in London. The propensity for extreme violence from young black youth being all to visible from them breaking into shops - a frenzied collective madness !!

IG recalls the policy of 5 years for anyone caught with a knife / gun. Did it fall into disuse or is there anyone serving 5 years now for that crime. Was there even one conviction ?

18 August 2011 at 18:56  
Blogger Graham Davis said...

I may not agree with Frank Field’s Christian motivation but I have a huge respect for him as a person and his unyielding commitment to telling it like it is. He anticipated the Pensions crisis and was rebuked for not towing the party line and I like people like that.

Whilst I would like to see a curb on immigration that is not the reason why so many vacancies have been taken by immigrants. The simple truth is that the current benefits system enables some people to opt for inactivity rather than work. Until this is changed the problem will continue and this is the opinion of someone whose sentiments are liberal!

18 August 2011 at 20:33  
Blogger Man With A Pen said...

He describes the recent riots as gang-driven, but incited by groups like the Socialist Workers Party. Well, if that’s the case, they should be closed down and the ringleaders given four years like the Facebook Two.


18 August 2011 at 20:56  
Blogger Office of Inspector General said...

The Inspector General advises against proscribing political parties. if you have an enemy, let him be seen. If the party has broken the law, let them account for themselves in court...

18 August 2011 at 21:07  
Blogger Berserker said...

I was recently in London and stayed a few nights at a top Chelsea hotel. The staff were all foreigners. They all spoke excellent English. They were all pleasant and efficient without being sycophantic.

If the less than great British worker had been doing their jobs...

Children should in their last year of school or even before that, be taught how to write a job application letter, how to find out about the Company they are applying to for employment and so on. They should in groups act out job interview situations. Perhaps this is already happening except the results show otherwise. I mean what exactly do teachers, teach?

All political parties echo the same asinine reflection on the work shy. It goes something like this:-- You can't blame them not taking up the offer of work when they would get less than they do on benefit.

Well, in that case perhaps their benefits need reducing!

Benefit is a privilege and even if they are say 20% worse off than on the state handout that doesn't matter. They should be forced to take up the work offer. Don't forget most of these people have never contributed any taxes to help fund the benefit system.

18 August 2011 at 21:50  
Blogger bluedog said...

Al Shaw @ 11.47, yes siree, the British are going to travel. It's called white flight and Britain's leading export will be the high quality people the country needs to retain. Watch too for donut cities as the whites evacuate the inner city areas for safer 'burbs and villages. You don't have to put your life on the line in the cause of multiculti, its easier to get out before the next gangsta riot.

18 August 2011 at 22:04  
Blogger Man with No Name said...

You didn't grow up on my street or go to my school.

"White - Christian - Civilisation?"

Three words with sinister connoctations in this discussion.

Remove non-whites; reinstitutionalise Christianity and remove non-Christians; and contain or remove the uncivilised.

18 August 2011 at 22:22  
Blogger Matthew said...

Where is your evidence IDS that the SWP is behind any of the riots? Ludicrous!

19 August 2011 at 01:46  
Blogger Bred in the bone said...

Labour has affinity with poor foreigners, Tories have affinity with rich foreigners.

Neither has affinity with those who built this Nation.

19 August 2011 at 06:25  
Blogger len said...

I can only assume that unrestricted immigration was a deliberate policy to dilute and eventually destroy our culture which was carried on
by successive Governments.
Or can they really be that stupid and not have realised the consequences of unrestricted immigration policies?.

19 August 2011 at 08:03  
Blogger Gnostic said...

Tell me the old, old story...

We've been here time and time again. I see the lips moving but all I can hear is empty rhetoric that carries a distinct whiff of BS.

19 August 2011 at 08:07  
Blogger G. Tingey said...

So, man with no m=name.
You would have me declared an un-person and removed from my own country would you?
You would behave as the soviet religious leaders did to A. Solzenhytsin, because he refused to toe their religion's line.

You would expel atheists from Britain would you?

Skin-clour is irrelevant.
It's what's INSIDE the head that's important.
It's called "culture" you know?
And the other failure of the past 50 years.

As for "jobs" ... well.
I needed a new job in the late 80's/early 90's.
No-one wanted a Physics graduate.
I took and M.Sc. in Engineering - thus "garuanteeing" a good job (?)
I'm now retired.
How many days, weeks or years did I get to use my M.Sc. in employment?

The CBI, the IoD, and every single politician are LYING when you hear them say:
"We can't get the traine/educated staff".

Now what?

You nasty little thug.

19 August 2011 at 08:44  
Blogger Man with No Name said...

G. Tingey said...
"So, man with no m=name.
You would have me declared an un-person and removed from my own country would you?"

No, I wouldn't but 'john in cheshire' and 'Oswin' probably would. There the ones calling for a "white, Christian and civilised" nation with all that implies.

Do read the thread before posting!

19 August 2011 at 10:16  
Blogger bluedog said...

Mr G. Tingey @ 08.44 says 'Racist'. Possibly, but possibly not. As it happens my current business partner is a Hong-Kong Chinese woman, a psychologist in fact. A delightful and highly intelligent person. Indeed, I once offended the office manager by hiring an Afro-Fijian woman as my personal assistant. It was one of my best decisions because her personality was overwhelming. She was very good at her job too. So I do have form on the racist front, I must confess.

And, 'Skin-clour is irrelevant.
It's what's INSIDE the head that's important.' Agreed, and in that latter regard you seem to be living proof.

'The CBI, the IoD, and every single politician are LYING when you hear them say:"We can't get the traine/educated staff".
Does one sense a wounded and excluded individual?

'You nasty little thug' See previous comment.

The reality is that the current riots and looting will create a deep sense of unease amongst middle-class whites who have moved into 'edgy' and multi-cultural parts of the big cities that were once the preserve of the old white working class, before their replacement. What was an exhilarating and exotic experience has suddenly turned very sour and from the point of view of property values, potentially very damaging. A form of reverse gentrification seems likely.

A thoughtful piece by James Meek published in the London Review of Books summarises the situation. Link:

19 August 2011 at 12:39  
Blogger Oswin said...

Man with No Name @ 22:22 :

You are right, we all have differing experiences. In all probability I did not grow up in your street, or attend your old school. I have my own tale and woes.

Whatever my experiences, they were not made worse by living in a culturally 'Christian' country, with few immigrants; where the ''uncivilised'' were a distinct minority and not likely to contaminate the majority.

It was a better world, regardless of its many difficulties, and I make no apologies for thinking so.

Anyhows, let's not begin a 'who lived in a cardboard box' routine.

PS. I seriously doubt that I'd have Greg Tingey exiled from Britain; I have no great objection to 'culturally Chritian' atheists, as long as they are 'civilised'...

19 August 2011 at 16:43  
Blogger Oswin said...

Please forgive the typo's; I've had one of those days ...

19 August 2011 at 16:45  
Blogger IanCad said...

YG, I have not heard IDS speak since he was the Tory leader. For what it's worth, a couple of days ago he was on a BBC 4 program and I thought he came off as a firm, compassionate man who represents all that is best in the current administration.

19 August 2011 at 16:50  
Blogger PayDirt said...

Mr Toad is preparing to take on the stoats/weasels/what have you. But where is Badger and where is Ratty?

19 August 2011 at 16:56  
Blogger Oswin said...

PayDirt: very good! :o)

19 August 2011 at 17:05  
Blogger Man with No Name said...

A cardboard box! You were lucky ...

What if Greg Tingey was black and civilised?

19 August 2011 at 18:56  
Blogger Oswin said...

Man with NO name:

Allowing that he might be, could we rely upon his progeny being civilised too; or would they become 'disaffected black yoof' ?

PS. Very lucky indeed; our cardboard box once held 'Craster Kippers'... as a special treat we were allowed to lick the lid/ ceiling...those were the days!

19 August 2011 at 19:55  
Blogger Office of Inspector General said...

We used to dream of our own cardboard box...

19 August 2011 at 21:52  
Blogger Man with No Name said...

Office of IG
Now, now, Sir. We have already established you shared bunk beds in a room without central but with windows.
(Have you forgiven me for Eve yet?)

Those were the days - roasted rat for Sunday dinner but we were happy with our lot in life.

But we couldn't possibly know how GT's offspring would turn out.

What if our 'white, Christian, civilised' society was despoiled by white yoofs?

19 August 2011 at 23:00  
Blogger Oswin said...

Man with No Name :

''white yoofs'' aren't a protected species; shoot the buggers!

Roasted rat??? We milked our rats for a weak-ly cup of tea! (see what I did there eh?)

20 August 2011 at 02:10  
Blogger G. Tingey said...

So bluedog.

You are suggesting that people who have worked HARD for GODD educational qualifications (Like my M.Sc.) should not be able to find work?
Yes, I am nitter - and with good reason.

I don't like being lied to.
By anyone, politicans or religious leaders.

20 August 2011 at 08:23  
Blogger Man with No Name said...

Good idea - never thought of rat's milk. Too hungry getting the little blighters skinned and on a spit roast.

We made our tea from sawdust and grass.

20 August 2011 at 13:34  
Blogger Oswin said...

Maister used to beat us if we mashed t'grass; us knew our place.

22 August 2011 at 02:55  

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