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Wednesday 21 April 2010

So What Is The Message?

One could forgive the electorate for not knowing what Young Dave and his jolly good chaps are trying to tell them: yesterday brought yet another series of posters, the message being that a Cameron Government would be tough on anyone who chose to remain on benefits rather than take a job.

But this isn’t an original idea, and nor does it follow logically from any other recent Tory poster campaign. And thereby hangs the problem: the message keeps changing. First we had Young Dave in honestly-not-airbrushed mode, followed by the apparently less than successful “I’ve never voted Tory before ...” series. Then with the arrival of M&C Saatchi there was a change to attack adverts featuring Pa Broon smiling.

And now we have Cameron apparently endorsing a crackdown on the lazy and unemployed (an easily demonised and therefore soft target). To all these changes of tack can be added the hurriedly changed Party Election Broadcast from earlier this week, the original being pulled and replaced by Young Dave basically pleading with the public to vote Tory, and not, repeat not, for anyone else.

There does not appear to be any underlying strategy to the Tory campaign, something that Big Al has been banging on about regularly. And this is something that the Tory cheerleaders do not, or cannot, address: moreover, there is no thought that what appeals to them might not even register with the average voter.

The latest poster was rapturously received by Tim Montgomerie and all those other clever people at ConservativeHome who talk loudly in restaurants. They could do worse than heed the wise observation of Lyndon Johnson when reflecting on the subject of economics: “Did y’ever think ... that making a speech on ee-conomics is a lot like pissing down your leg? It seems hot to you, but it never does to anyone else”.

The thought of Montgomerie, Isaby and the rest getting sore legs to no purpose is one to savour.

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