Sunday morning, even out in the sticks, means the Andy Marr Show, and today’s edition brought a mixture of the predictable and the routine – and, for those who have been following the UK’s military campaigns, the revelation that the party likely to form the next Government will be cutting back on the armed forces. But you had to be quick to spot it.
First up was a confirmation of my analysis from last week’s prog: on the paper reviewing sofa was none other than Sun columnist Jane Moore, who at least talks with some objectivity and dresses practically, unlike the appalling Amanda Platell of the Daily Mail. Ms Moore is also doing some work in the C4 Dispatches series (she managed a brief plug for tomorrow’s edition), so does not rely completely on the Murdoch shilling.
But for me the most significant appearance was that of the Rt Hon Gideon George Oliver Osborne, heir to the seventeenth Baronet, and likely to become Chancellor of the Exchequer by this time next year. The interview, as with all the others I’ve seen recently, did nothing to amend my view of Osborne, which I considered a while ago, although it did show a suitably shameless attempt to have his cake and eat it.
Osborne, along with Young Dave and the rest of the Shadow Cabinet, have been relentlessly milking the alleged helicopter shortage in Afghanistan, which I considered the other day. Today’s interview brought much of the same, and so thus far was not new news. However, the revelation that the military will have to take their share of cutbacks under a future Tory Government was new – especially the idea that the Afghan mission may be part of those cuts. This chimes with an item by Gaby Hinsliff on the Guardian Politics Blog.
That’s pretty neat, even though it’s political opportunism at its cheapest: play the supposed shortage in military resources for votes, then get into power and slash the military budget.
There’s a principled politician for you.