This is what we might call Miliband’s toadstool strategy – to shelter beneath some umbrageous and poisonous fungus and croak whatever Lefty nonsense comes into his head and that he thinks will be popular. He wants us to focus on the miserable old toadstools and forget about the ambient sunshine.
First, he noticed that people were fuming about their energy bills. So Labour offered to freeze them. We’ll cut your bills! Free money for everyone! said Labour. Really? said everyone, turning to look. You bet, said the voice beneath the toadstool. And for a while, it worked – until people started thinking about it.
They realised it would mean the energy companies wouldn’t be able to invest in the new kit that would allow them to hold down costs in the long run: new nuclear power stations, new substations and distribution networks. They started to wonder whether it made sense to allow politicians to set market prices in this way. Hadn’t the Emperor Diocletian tried that? Didn’t Edward Heath? It looked as though the energy price freeze might end up having the opposite effect – driving the price higher later on.
If David Cameron loses the UK general election in 2015, London Mayor Boris Johnson or Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne would most likely become the next leader of the Conservative Party. Either one would make a good prime minister, in my opinion. However, if the Conservative Party does not win next year, it is unlikely that either could win a general election before May 2020.Back to top