18 March 2010

The Tory message has been “over-intellectualised”

Life is becoming very confusing for Tory MPs in their attempt to sell the Tory message or “policy pyramid”

MPs and candidates were left baffled after being told at a private meeting to campaign on a combination of one slogan, three promises and six pledges.

Oliver Letwin, the party’s policy chief, told MPs at the gathering on Tuesday night to think of a policy pyramid when talking to voters. The top of the pyramid has the slogan: “We can’t go on like this. Vote for change.”

Senior Tory MPs, including frontbenchers, said that Mr Letwin had “over-intellectualised” the main message, which should have been simpler. Two said that they would “make it up on the doorstep”, while several felt the lack of a specific reduction target for immigration was damaging.


Shadow ministers have admitted that if there was a Tory victory it would not come with the same enthusiasm that Tony Blair enjoyed.

They have got that right.

Having been “over-intellectualised”, we will all wake up on 7 May with a headache.

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  1. wonderfulforhisageMarch 18, 2010 at 8:51 AM

    Seems pretty understandable to me. If it's over intellectualised (interesting word) as an election yard stick then it doesn't say much for the intellect of the avereage Tory candidate.

    Having read the Times article (linked to in your post) I'd say the problem is that the ideas in the pyramid are at best just fine words, and at worst vacuous twaddle.

    For example the article claims that one of the promises is “Make Britain the most family-friendly nation in Europe”. Vacuous twaddle say I. Another promise is "Act now on debt". 'How specifically act?' I ask. Put up taxes? and if so which taxes specifically? Cut the public sector? If so which parts specifically?

    Fine (and not such fine) words butter no parsnips. But then again, we mustn't frighten the horses.

    Mixed metaphors rule. OK!

  2. That's the point. The message is nonsense.