Europe may be back, but why is it even on the radar? Because there’s a vacuum at the heart of Government, and at the heart of the Conservative Party.
A rebellion is far more likely when there’s nothing for your supporters to rally behind. So it is even more worrying that the leadership of the Conservative party has had no detail, no vision, to offer backbench MPs and party activists on an issue that was always going to come up.
The crisis in the Eurozone has been on the agenda for so long now it is amazing how surprised Downing Street seems to have been taken by the whole thing. I have yet to hear a single clear policy objective from the Government, the main narrative has been about membership of the EU and the danger of withdrawal.
If you offer a vision, a way forward, then you can make the case for rejecting a course of action that would undermine your objective. That is why detail matters on what a Conservative government would do, if the Lib Dems are the issue, or alternatively what the Coalition will do at a treaty change.
Simply, because nobody knows what the Coalition wants to see from Europe - or indeed what a Conservative government would want to do - the only course of action available is what has been put infront of the house today. The underlying reason will not be dealt with by political discipline, and indeed does nothing to address the clear public concern on the issue.
David Cameron should have come to the house today with a clear plan of what he would do in the coming months, and offered leadership.
In arguing against change - rather than in favour of his own vision - he only added fuel to the fire and drove his MPs to rebellion.
If there’s one thing that winds me up, it’s MPs who have a wonderful ability to forget the recent past and absolve themselves of any responsibility.
So when Yvette Cooper turns up blaming ‘cuts’ for the proposed closure to Pontefract Hospital’s A&E Department I was particularly incensed, given I spent months shouting about the issue - it was front page on the election leaflet I delivered to every home across Normanton, Pontefract and Castleford; I raised it at every public meeting I spoke at;and I spoke to the local media about it. It holds a special significance for me, because I was born in Pontefract Hospital.
I warned that the range of facilities at the new Pontefract Hospital meant it was all but inevitable full A&E services would not continue. This was dismissed as ’scaremongering’ by Yvette’s team. For her to now claim to be on the side of those of us who have seen this coming for years is not only disingenuous but downright offensive.
I repeatedly highlighted the warnings passed to me by staff that the new hospital was not going to have a range of facilities essential for running a full A&E. No acute care beds, no emergency ambulance bays, no morgue.I asked whether we had been misled over the new A&E, while Yvette didn’t even think the new hospital worthy of a mention on her election address. (Below)
And heaven forbid we ask who the Junior Health Minister was at the time the new hospital plans were being finalised? Yes, one Yvette Cooper.
Every decision made concerning Pontefract Hospital was taken under a Labour government. From the grossly expensive PFI deal that has seen parikng charges rocket to the lack of ambulance bays and facilities essential to running a full A&E, there is only one thing Yvette should be saying today and that is sorry.
I could hurl abuse, but instead I shall sit, put my iPod on and smile.
Posted: October 6th, 2011
Categories: Ideas for living
Comments: 1 Comment