Monday, September 03, 2012

Baroness Warsi should be shunted out of the Cabinet altogether

There’s much fevered speculation about an imminent Cabinet reshuffle, in which the Prime Minister is expected to replace Sayeeda Warsi and Andrew Feldman as co-Chairmen of the Conservative Party with a single candidate drawn from the House of Commons, if not the party’s Right flank. Such a person, it is posited, would be better able than either Baroness Warsi or Lord Feldman to represent the interests of the party’s grassroots. Several names have been floated, including Housing Minister Grant Shapps, Work Minister Chris Grayling, and Michael Fallon, the current Deputy Chairman.

But Baroness Warsi turned to The Daily Telegraph to plead with the Prime Minister to keep her in situ, principally because, being female, Asian and Muslim, she embodies the change which David Cameron wants to see in the Conservative Party. His Grace won't re-rehearse the praise he has poured out on Sayeeda Warsi in the past (time and time and time and time and again). As he has previously observed, she is brave, articulate and forthright in her beliefs. She glides through the complexities of Pakistani politics, confronts ‘honour’ killings and forced marriage, exposes voter fraud and immerses herself in very relevant and pressing social issues which benefit more than her co-religionists: her eyes are not solely on the glorification of Allah and the wellbeing of the Ummah. But her Telegraph interview is most undignified, and merits a jolly good fisking:

Speaking in Tampa Bay, Florida, where she has been attending the Republican convention...

Where? Why? How precisely is attending the launch of the Republican presidential candidate a function of the Party Chairman? How does it aid growth in membership? How does contribute to policy formulation? How does it further the grassroots listening process which is vital to the representation of mainstream Conservative views at the Cabinet table? Florida in August looks suspiciously like a holiday (who paid for it?), while back home CCHQ have taken their eye well and truly off the forthcoming Corby by-election. The GOP aren’t going to help the Conservatives retain that seat, are they?

...the peer said: “If I genuinely had a choice, I would like to stay doing what I’m doing.”

Well, it’s the Prime Minister’s choice, and being Chairman is simply not the best use of your skills. One needs to be (or, at least, appear to be) pastoral, diplomatic, in-touch, and adept at political campaigning. Consistently, you have come across as rude, aloof, insulting, ignorant and incompetent.

“If you look at the demographics, at where we need to be at the next election, we need more people in the North voting for us, more of what they call here 'blue collar’ workers and I call the white working class.”

It’s good that you’ve noticed that the Conservative Party needs more people in the North voting for it. But what, exactly, have you been doing over the past two-and-a-half years to contribute to this objective? Where is the empirical evidence that whatever you’ve been doing has made the slightest bit of difference? And why do you equate ‘blue collar’ with ‘white working class’? Are there no brown working class? Isn’t that a rather.. err.. racist omission?

Turnout was higher among Asians in the 2010 General Election – 67 per cent of Pakistanis, 70 per cent of Bangladeshis and 67 per cent of Indians came out to vote – compared to just over 60 per cent nationally. The Conservative thing to do would be to stop talking about skin colour and focus on policy – you’ll find that Asians are rather fond of low taxes, good education and efficient healthcare. They want jobs; they want to see strategies to alleviate poverty; and they want to vote for a party that supports a traditional view of the family...

“We need more people from urban areas voting for us, more people who are not white and more women. I play that back and think: 'I’m a woman, I’m not white, I’m from an urban area, I’m from the North, I’m working class – I kind of fit the bill. All the groups that we’re aiming for are groups that I’m familiar with.”

So, reductio ad absurdum, the Conservative Party also needs more gays, lesbians and disabled people voting for it as well, and they’re sizeable demographics. Sadly, by your logic, you can have no appeal to them. Indeed, considering your campaign leaflets in the 2005 General Election, you have manifestly expressed hostility toward ‘gay rights’ and an equal age of consent. Further, being female and Muslim, how many male Muslims does this irk? How many Sikhs and Hindus do you think you might alienate? And what of the affluent, country-dwelling, Northern ‘white upper class’ (if that’s the term you’d use for ‘white collar’)? You see, not everyone in the North is working class from an urban area, and surely the Party needs to regain and retain the affluent rural vote as well as gain votes from the urban ‘working class’?

Incidentally, Norman Tebbit as party chairman managed to do it under Margaret Thatcher, without being a Northern urban woman.

In an unusual intervention, Lady Warsi, the first female Muslim Cabinet minister, said she was angry at being seen as a “tokenistic appointment”. She described how she has “had to fight for everything, every single day”.

Oh, come on. You have never won an election in your life; indeed, the Party’s share of the vote has fallen wherever you’ve stood. You are a Cameroon creation, elevated solely because you are female, Muslim and Asian. The ‘greasy pole’ was obligingly degreased especially for you: high-profile roles were created and ladders were made abundant while the snakes of political reality were de-fanged and un-venomed. All because you embody the Cameroon ‘modernisation’ strategy and ‘decontamination’ agenda. You are indeed a symbol – a ‘tokenistic appointment’ – as some of your co-religionists observe.

In a riposte to her critics, she said: “Do you want to try to be an Asian woman and try to do it my way?”

This is just silly: perhaps you might try being a white, middle-aged, heterosexual Christian man, and getting a foot on a rung of the ladder in David Cameron’s Conservative Party.

Of the reshuffle, she indicated that she had considered other roles in the Cabinet, saying: “I’m not exactly cut out to be secretary of state for Defra [the environment department]. “David [Cameron] knows me quite well … he’s known me for a long time now. He knows my strengths and weaknesses and that I’m honest. I believe you’ve got to have the right people in the right job.”

You’re right, you’re not cut out for DEFRA. But neither are you cut out for the DfID or Northern Ireland (for which you’ve reportedly been fishing).But there is something you do rather well, and you really don’t need to be in the Cabinet to do it.

Lady Warsi said: “If you’d gone back a decade when I first got involved in the Conservative Party, then people would have said the party was a challenging environment for someone like me. The culture is beginning to change … now it’s a place where I am entirely comfortable.”

Only 16 per cent of all ethnic minorities voted Conservative in 2010. By 2050 ethnic minorities will make up 20 per cent of the entire population. There’s no quick fix to this electoral challenge. And whatever the slow fix is, it certainly won’t be a top-down approach from a Muslim matriarch at CCHQ: it calls for local engagement and local knowledge. To speak of ‘the North’ is antithetical to the strategy required: campaigning must be carried out by those who know and understand the challenges in every community.

Yet the Party’s foot soldiers are leaving; deserting in droves. Why is this? Could it possibly be because the Conservative Party has ceased to fulfil their needs and aspirations? Has it become tokenistic and ignorant of mainstream Conservative values? Haven’t you been rather complicit in this decline?

Lady Warsi, the daughter of a textile worker who moved to Britain from Pakistan and went on to build a successful business, said she was always aware of the unpleasant suggestions that she was only appointed because of her gender and ethnicity.

Yes, the truth hurts.

She said: “Some people think I’m there as a tokenistic appointment. That’s hard to take for someone like me who grew up in the environment that I grew up in, who has had to fight for everything, every single job.”

We’ve all had to fight, dear: that’s life. But we don’t all end up in the House of Lords for doing it. You’ve had your share troubles and difficulties, no doubt, but you’ve been handed your entire political career on a plate, and, by all accounts, you’ve dined very well on it.

She has been criticised by some MPs who say she does not appear regularly enough on television to back the party. She strongly defends her record as chairman. “I’m out in the country two days a week, doing dinners and door-knocking,” she said.

Sorry, but dining at Tory supper clubs and ‘door-knocking’ aren’t enough: you need to be a consistent media advocate for all that the Conservative Party is doing, and you give the appearance of trying to serve two masters. It is not simply in the increasing disconnect between CCHQ and the Party's local associations that you have failed, but in your determination to spout on about multiculturalism and Islam under a patronising veneer of Christianity. You appear to have little knowledge and even less respect for the Party's history and structure, and are quite ignorant of its philosophy and traditions. If you had dedicated just one tenth of the effort you've devoted to religious affairs to arresting the inexorable decline in the Party’s membership, you might be justified in pleading to retain your position. 

“If you said to us that after two and a half years in government, we would have more councillors than the Labour Party and Liberal Democrats put together - which we do have - I’d have said we were in a good place.”



Blogger William said...


"Well, it’s the Prime Minister’s choice, and being Chairman is simply not the best use of your skills. One needs to be (or, at least, appear to be) pastoral, diplomatic, in-touch, and adept at political campaigning."

But who this man could be I just don't know.

3 September 2012 at 11:00  
Blogger Gareth said...

She probably hasn't met any white working class in the North, if she thinks that she can win their votes. Most of the ones I've ever met are dyed in the wool racists.

3 September 2012 at 11:08  
Blogger IanCad said...

To quote YG:

"You appear to have little knowledge and even less respect for the Party's history and structure, and are quite ignorant of its philosophy and traditions."

Does this not apply to the entire CP leadership?

The name of David Davis came up on this blog last week.

Now, I've not been paying as much attention to UK politics as I should. As far as I can see he seems a man to whom the above quote may not apply.

Any chance of him replacing Dave?

There will not be a CP left if Cameron stays on.

3 September 2012 at 13:03  
Blogger John M Ward said...

As I have this afternoon written on my own 'blog, the lady is too valuable to waste – so I anticipate a third, perhaps brand new, use for her skills and drive to crop up at any time.

Although I share most of His Grace's positive vibes toward the Baroness (as can be seen from sources such as the Question Time live-chats, to which I regularly contribute), and just some of his negative ones, I don't want us to lose her from a high-level active position of some sort – though this could indeed be outside of the Cabinet

3 September 2012 at 13:26  
Blogger bluedog said...

'If you had dedicated just one tenth of the effort you've devoted to religious affairs to arresting the inexorable decline in the Party’s membership, you might be justified in pleading to retain your position.'

Isn't this the rub? After two years in power the Conservative Party should be generating a powerful bandwagon effect as Conservative voters are 'confirmed' into party membership. As we know, under Dave's progressive agenda the reverse is the case.

It has to be said, Warsi is the last person on earth who can win the votes of the White Working Class. As a cocksure representative of alien invaders whose people have driven the WWC from their own homes and jobs she is emblematic of everything the WWC detests about modern Britain. The problem for the Conservative Party is that Dave has such a narrow life experience that he cannot relate to his market, the electorate, because he has no idea what they think. Neither does Warsi.

The 2015 general election could therefore be a very dangerous poker game. The Conservatives have to consider that the Coalition will collapse and that the Lib-Dims will re-align with Labour once the election is called. In which event the Conservatives will have no option but to try and cut a deal with UKIP, who would be wise to refuse. Under the right leadership the Conservatives could win, but not with Cameron and Warsi. Humiliating defeat looms unless the Conservatives re-position their policies and their leadership. Of course, the assumption is that Boris would take the leadership if it were offered.

But Boris is no fool and can do the equation himself. So what if Boris declined to move to Westminister until after May 2015in order to avoid the taint of defeat?

It hardly bears thinking about.

3 September 2012 at 13:37  
Blogger Berserker said...

On the World at One today, I heard Mr David Davis give the view that more tax cuts and deeper spending (whatever that is) would be needed to get us out of recession.

That means less revenue. How can we pay off the deficit with views like that. The truth is that customers the whole world over are spending less and will continue to do so for years to come. No politician will say this. But of course Davy is positioning himself to become the new Dave.

By the way, and typical of the BBC, the interviewer was almost inaudible - down some deep corridor of the Beeb while Mr Davis was loud and clear. Did we get an apology? Did they even know? And another dropped telephone call as well. This is now getting to be the norm.

3 September 2012 at 14:51  
Blogger John Chater said...

You can't blame her for wanting to save her own skin (am I allowed to say that?) The wretched woman, whom I once heard disparagingly referred to as the BNP's most able recruiter north of Watford, probably wakes every morning and gives heartfelt thanks to the Almighty for her otherwise inexplicable good luck.

Is Warsi disliked because she is Asian, a woman or a Muslim? No, it's only those attributes that have so far kept her from earning a living emptying bins. The reason she is disliked is because her only champion is a man with no depth, no real intelligence and no authentic roots in the Party he leads.

The blame for the Warsis of the party can only be laid at the sharkskin clad feet of the PM, whose breathtaking incompetence is hardly going to be papered over by a Cabinet reshuffle (unless of course the idiot replaces himself).

It is Cameron who, with witless enthusiasm for all things equal and diverse, has opened the doors of the Party to a bunch of phony box-tickers who have absolutely nothing of substance to offer. Likewise his capitulation to a tiny minority of homosexuals who for reasons no one really understands are now demanding to be taken up the aisle.

In a few months it is likely that the deplorable Liberal Democrats will require a new leader. Take the hint Dave, dust off your CV and put in for the job, and please, take the rest of your posse with you, baroness included.

3 September 2012 at 15:05  
Blogger A Troubling Art said...

Your Grace,

I don't wish to speak out of turn but the wit and humour, so characteristic of your Grace's posts, seems to be lacking.

I hope you've not been overdoing it again and are now working overtime while trying to manage a caffeine 'come-down'.

A little less venom in the next instalment perhaps?


3 September 2012 at 16:46  
Blogger Office of Inspector General said...

Good Lord, Archbishop, you’ve given that woman a thorough drubbing, what !

They say behind every successful sub continent man, there is a pushy sub continent woman. It’s in the blood, you know. Of course, every now and then, the woman appears in her own right and comes out pushing into the open. Somewhat unnerving, don’t you think.

One feels it is not the done thing to involve peers in cabinet positions other than those that relate to the Lords. Call it a democratic nicety if you want. So thank you Baroness, your services will shortly no longer be required and you can devote yourself fully to whatever it is pensioned-off failed to get elected political life peers do in the Lords {AHEM}.

We really can’t have ethnic types being treated any more favourably than John Bull. No special considerations - if they want it, then they should do it off their own bat like everybody else. Any pleas for a leg up to fall on deaf ears; that’s the British way.

Tally ho !

3 September 2012 at 18:01  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

If all else fails then there's always some pictures on the Members Only patio with some frocks and expensive shoes to fall back on.

3 September 2012 at 18:09  
Blogger Office of Inspector General said...

So, no Warsi in power, no muslim Conservative vote.

Not quite there, let’s try ‘Same Sex Marriage in place’, no muslim Conservative vote.

Ah that’s much better ! Do you see how easily that runs. Fits rather well, don’t you think, and works on so many levels, as the smart types now say.

I say chaps, come a bit closer. There, that’s it. Well, get this - Not a peep from the socialists about SSM, what ! No prizes for guessing why !

Which brings us neatly to the White Working Class. Shown the door by ‘new’ Labour, as part of it’s disassociation from it’s past, the only party to have actively canvassed for its vote since was the BNP. Surprisingly, apart from flashes in the pan, that has not been at all successful. And yet, it was the WWC complaint that the country was giving over the housing stock where Johnny and Jenny were going to live on leaving their parents that caused Labour to turn it’s back. Had to – the prospect of millions or so guaranteed socialist votes from grateful generations of Asians was just too tempting to ignore. Anyway, the WWC would still vote Labour of course. Everybody knew that.

What particularly hurt the WWC was that the abandoned were the children and grand children of men who fought for this country. The very people who put their lives on the line to PREVENT a mass invasion by an alien people !

The loss of the local housing stock was, for many people, drastic. Effectively putting many miles between them and their parents, the social cohesion of areas started to disintegrate. Mum and Dad were no longer around the corner. Relationships began to suffer and took its toll on marriages at a time when people still married rather than cohabitate. For the children, a visit to Gran and Granddad was now an occasional day out. Of course, middle class types were used to moving away for a career, but the WWC were cruelly forced into it and they did not like it.

Anyway, the WWC vote is there to be had. But it doesn’t come cheap. ALL mass foreign immigration including the ‘arranged marriage to a Pakistani National’ little number to cease. If Pakistanis living in this country want to marry, they might just have to find someone who isn’t a cousin.

Toodle pip !

3 September 2012 at 18:10  
Blogger non mouse said...

Thank you, Your Grace: I see no venom but remedies can also sting; as you say, "the truth hurts."

There are many reasons the well-fed Worsi-persi is disliked in our homeland. Not least is that she (an alien) lords it over us pathetic natives while she parades as "Baroness" --a German title if there ever was one. One thing's for sure: she is not, and never can be, an English Lady. Labels cannot make it so.

Must say I wonder how she went down with which Republicans in Tampa. Are they grovelling around the title? Are they slurping up the diversity? Are the Feminazis all over her? Have the Americans engaged her in a contest in the deadly art of patronising (they're awfully good at that-it's a tradition they practice in high school)?

Or are they ignoring her?

3 September 2012 at 18:30  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Inspector, as all the main parties seem to be in favour of marriage progress, I can't see that Muslims will be voting, if what you say is true, other than for independent candidates. Wouldn't that suit you more, by keeping their voice on the periphery of our legislature?

3 September 2012 at 18:42  
Blogger Office of Inspector General said...

DanJ0, Bradford was a shock to the Labour party. Not so much that they’ll be taking any more inner city seats in the future, but a vigorous Respect campaign, spurred on by said victory, could well split the Labour vote and let someone else in. You can see the predicament then. The homosexual vote will remain at 1.5% of the population. God alone knows where the muslim vote will eventually end up – 20% one has heard...

Do like you spinning your question with the word ‘progress’. Hope springs eternal, what !

3 September 2012 at 18:53  
Blogger Office of Inspector General said...

DanJ0, desirable as it seems that muslim influence in British society is at a low at the moment, you have to appreciate the long term plan. Nothing major will happen until they consolidate their position and have their beloved Sharia law recognised in British law in their communities. One is rather hoping that when the request is made, it is denied. Of course, the result is inevitable, but there’s nothing like a bit of stalling in the meantime, if only to test their resolve...

3 September 2012 at 19:15  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Inspector: "Nothing major will happen until they consolidate their position and have their beloved Sharia law recognised in British law in their communities."

Sounds like we need a formally secular State as soon as possible.

3 September 2012 at 20:04  
Blogger Office of Inspector General said...

DanJ0, one thinks you’ll find we already have one...

3 September 2012 at 20:18  
Blogger Office of Inspector General said...

DanJ0, just a thought. When sharia is allowed within districts of our inner cities, gay pride marches will have to avoid them. One can imagine such a procession as an illegal gathering under that law !


3 September 2012 at 20:29  
Blogger DanJ0 said...

Right, I'm afraid that's your quota for this week. I can't have you getting too excited again with all this gay talk.

3 September 2012 at 20:37  
Blogger non mouse said...

Your Grace:

Meanwhile... beyond the distractions of the Punch and Judy Show: What are the euros up to in regard to taking over British banks?

3 September 2012 at 20:49  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Talking about honour killings, in the village of kurukshetra, maya was put to death by dharma.

Nobody asked any questions

3 September 2012 at 22:46  
Blogger Mr Integrity said...

Your Grace,
'more gay conservative voters!' God forbid. Obviously they can vote where they like but to attract them as a group will only contribute to their all ready considerable influence at Westminster.

3 September 2012 at 22:56  
Blogger David B said...

Let us not forget that in the somewhat parlous state the country was in, and the political balance was in, at the time of the last election, there was a lot of pressure for a Lib Lab coalition that would have been, I think, disastrous for the economy of the country.

The statesmanlike conduct of Cameron and Clegg at that time, when Labour had lost the confidence of the country, but could still, perhaps have put a majority coalition together, without the inadequate but better cuts on spending that the coalition has imposed.

But for that statesmanship, knowing that it would be of probable personal and party cost, we might well be another Greece at the moment.

I have been a Lib and then Lib Dem voter for decades now, and I expect the party to suffer losses at the next election because they did the right thing by the country, as did Cameron.

Do not underestimate either of them - at a very difficult time they put the country first, at great political cost.

David B

4 September 2012 at 00:21  
Blogger David B said...

But back at the point, I'm as sympathetic to feminism, and as anti-racist as pretty much anyone who regularly posts here, I think.

But I have no time for Warsi.

David B

4 September 2012 at 00:29  
Blogger Rambling Steve Appleseed said...

The Conservative party needs move (small c) conservatives voting for it. Adopting conservative policies might help.

4 September 2012 at 09:12  
Blogger Rambling Steve Appleseed said...

'more gay conservative voters'

Since homosexuals make up no more than 2% of the population and most I have met are liberal/left in outlook, and since some 12% of voters in a recent survey said they would vote UKIP, perhaps what the new Cabinet really needs are some mathematicians, or at least people who can, like, add up and do sums and stuff.

Assuming that is they have abandoned such things as principle and only wish to be re-elected whatever it takes. It was William Hague during his short ill-starred turn as Tory leader who decided to abandon the core Christian conservative vote in favour of the pink vote. That turned out well, didn't it?

The biggest electoral problem David Cameron's Blue Labour will face in 2015 is the millions of conservative voters who will either stay at home in boredom and disgust or vote UKIP as the party he currently leads is no longer what it says on the label. Its not about presentation or tokenism, its the contents of the tin that matters.

4 September 2012 at 09:21  
Blogger bananabrain said...

"she (an alien) lords it over us pathetic natives while she parades as "Baroness" --a German title if there ever was one. One thing's for sure: she is not, and never can be, an English Lady. Labels cannot make it so."

i don't think much of warsi, but at least she's not a fecking racist like you.


6 September 2012 at 11:44  
Blogger bananabrain said...

i meant "at least *i'm* not a fecking racist like you". i'm not that impressed with warsi's record on anti-white racism either.


6 September 2012 at 11:49  
Blogger Office of Inspector General said...

Calm down Bananabrain, and do make allowances for our Mightymouse...

You’re lucky being a Jew. She really has it in for Roman Catholics, you know...

6 September 2012 at 18:47  

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