Monday, 25 February 2008

Cameron to Reverse on Green Tax

David Cameron will retreat on his proposals for green taxes, according to a report in today's Times.

Cameron's taxes on flights were widely criticised at the time, for being both too tough and for not being tough enough. However, along with his miniature wind-turbine, and huskie-driving photo shoots, this policy helped establish Cameron as a new kind of Conservative. 

But now in the face of the resurgent, right-wing of the party, this landmark policy looks set to be buried. The document acknowledges that the public had perceived it:

"to involve higher costs, more tax or some form of consumer sacrifice."

When Cameron initially proposed this tax he followed it with the caveat that any flight taxes would be offset by tax cuts elsewhere. It seemed to me at the time that no shift in consumer behavior could actually occur if the overall level of taxation remained the same. The proposals appeared to be a gesture and a modest one at that. So it is a sign of the real shift in Tory priorities, that even proposals as weak as these are now seen as unpalatable.

So as each week now goes by we see a gradual but very real re-branding of brand Cameron. On the way out is the Blair-lite ready to take on his party over unpopular policies, and on its way in is the all improved Nu-Major, back to basics but with a PR sheen.

From tax-breaks for married couples, to reductions in the age for abortions, we see the new Cameron brand alive and well. Not frightened to give in over Conway, not fearful to give in over Grammar schools, not terrified to give in over our environment. This is the new Conservatives. At their best when they're boldest. At their best when they're Tories.


Browns Nappy said...

If Cameron is so anti-green, how comes the Observer voted him as one of their top green idols? Hardly a right-wing rag. Lefties that knock him for it are just annoyed that he has stolen their cause. The fact is, only someone like Cameron could ACTUALLY make the
improvements that are needed to the environment..

Anonymous said...

"How comes the Observer voted him as one of their green idols?"
Because they and the rest of the media elite are totally up call-me-Dave's arse.