Monday, March 29, 2010

My 3 little words on the Chancellors

I am confined to the Blackberry so won't be writing any long analysis of the Chancellors' debate on Channel 4 right now. I admit to real nerves before it started. The Almighty Vince, as the only contender with any sort of positive reputation to speak of, had most to lose. I needn't have worried. He was awesome! Don't take my word for it. He got by far the warmest and most sustained applause from the audience.

My ever so quick summary gives just 3 words to describe each contender in ascending order of their place in the food chain of chancellorship..

George Osborne: shallow, sleekit, inexperienced

Alistair Darling: battle-weary, defensive, weak

Vince Cable: honest, credible, consistent

My favourite moment in whole debate was on a question about a potential brain drain. Vince talked about how pin striped Arthur Scargills shouldn't hold the country to ransom, deftly reminding us of how the old parties have always allowed their interest groups to lead them.

George Osborne's sneakiness in saying nothing for months on tax other than espousing cuts in Inheritance Tax for the loaded and then, the day of the debate banging on about reversing NI increase so he could pretend he cared about the poor did him no favours.

I had to stifle a snort of laughter when Osborne went on about how we should be making things. Dear voters, please don't forget how the Tories screwed manufacturing in office.

And there was Alistair Darling, the one with all the power but lacking the backbone to use it. His failure to curb the banks is his legacy. He was shown up by Vince for that. Then he showed he really didn't get the idea of breaking up the banks. It's not about size, Darling! It's all about function, the separation of the "casino banks" protecting the small business lending and household banking.

There were comparatively few fireworks. There were times I'd have liked Vince to take Osborne by the scruff of the neck but sometimes less is more!

No wonder nearly a third of people want Vince as Chancellor. I expect that'll go up after tonight. If you're one of them, you need to vote Lib Dem to make it happen.

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