Anorak News | For Whom The Decibels Toll

For Whom The Decibels Toll

by | 4th, October 2005

‘THE Telegraph says that after his speech to conference, Tory leadership contender Malcolm Rifkind was given a 60-second standing ovation which reached 93.5 decibels (a level somewhere between the noise made by a food blender and a rubbish truck).

A decibel level between a quiet man and a cough

Well done to him on successfully delivering his message of one nation Conservatism. Getting the ageing Tory faithful to their feet is no small thing. Keeping them there unaided is an achievement an evangelical preacher would be proud to have performed.

Cynics will doubtless point out that Iain Duncan Smith, in his speech to conference the last time the Tories arrived in Blackpool, took 17 standing ovations, even if his own decibel level was around the 6.1 mark.

Today we can expect more banging of walking sticks and rattling of jewellery as the other leadership hopefuls deliver their visions of the future.

The Times’s front page says David Cameron, 38, will promise to bring back young voters to the Tory party.

Stopping just short of body popping onto the Blackpool stage in a hoodie, Cameron will assure the masses that the Tory party is the “natural home of young people who want to change the world”.

He wants the Tories to be “comfortable with modern Britain”. Cameron will deliver a happy slap to the face of British politics.

The elderly delegates in the conference hall will applaud as wildly as their doctors’ advice allows. And then Kenneth Clarke will use his 20-miunute slot to convince the assembled masses that he is the man the Labour Party most fears.

That other agonist, David Davis, the current Shadow Home Secretary, will not offer up his view of a rosy fingered dawn until tomorrow, a schedule that givies him the chance to appear before a warmed-up crowd.

And lastly to appear will be the rather oily Liam Fox, the Shadow Foreign Secretary.

After which point the five white males competing for the top Tory job will have talked about how the party needs to get back in tune with the British people, be more inclusive, more modern, more popular.

And it’s not a moment too soon for the Tories to take a new direction.

As the Telegraph hears party chairman Francis Maude say – the man who in 2001 ran Michael Portillo’s failed Tory leadership election campaign with its modernisation mantra – the party has to “change or die”.

The Tories do not have a “God-given right to survive”, said Maude in yesterday’s address to conference. He then identified a single mother living in Crawley, West Sussex, as the target voter the Conservatives must win if they are ever to regain power.

Maude recalled how he met this unnamed woman back in last May’s general election. Once a Tory voter, she was no longer prepared to support a party that, in her view, demonised single mothers and helped only the better off.

That the Tories failed to win Crawley by just 37 votes has not escaped Maud’s keen eye.

So if Crawley Women is so vital to the Conservative’s chances of success, the key question boils down to this: which of the leadership hopefuls would she vote for?

And when answering please bear in mind that Tony Blair is no longer an option…’

Posted: 4th, October 2005 | In: Uncategorized Comment | TrackBack | Permalink