Conservative Policy on the Forces?

#1
In the light of the upcoming local elections I thought it may be a good idea to see what the main parties have to say on Defence Ploicy. I sent an emnail to DC via the Conservatives' website & this is what I got back:

Dear Englishspringer,

Many thanks for your email to David Cameron - I am replying on his behalf.

Our success today is not because we've published a blizzard of policies,
it's because we are setting out a deep and serious analysis of what our
country needs, and we are showing that we have the right ideas and the
right values to meet those needs. We are leading political debate in
this country for the first time in many years.

On defence, Liam Fox has promised that a future Conservative Government will spend what is required to guarantee the security of the United Kingdom. There is a constant choice between commitments and resources.

In the current environment, we will either have to increase the
resources reaching the front-line to match our commitments, or reduce
our commitments to match our resources.

David Cameron has also promised to draw up a special manifesto for the
families of Britain's Armed Forces, following the outcry over the poor
standard of accommodation provided on Army bases.

We have set out what we are fighting for today in a statement of our
aims and values, Built to Last, a copy of which is available on our
web-site - www.conservatives.com.

The changes are clear. For example, we will put economic stability and
fiscal responsibility ahead of promises to cut taxes. Protecting the
environment and tackling climate change will be given equal prominence
to public services and the economy. We will improve public services for
all, rather than promote opt outs for a few. The test for all our
policies will be how they help the most disadvantaged in society. We
will take action so that our Party reflects Britain as it is today, not
Britain as it was.

We stand for social responsibility - the idea that government doesn't
have all the answers and that we've got to work together to fight crime,
improve the environment and make life better for families and children.
That's a big difference from Labour's approach and a new direction for
our country.

David Cameron is aware that there has been far too much short term
policy making in recent years. Time and again we have seen policy
initiatives announced to get headlines in the media which then fall
apart, fail to deliver, and end up being abandoned or reversed. He has
set up six policy groups to examine key areas of concern and challenges
we face. These challenges are complex, interconnected and require
serious long-term thinking. We want to make sure we get the solutions to
these challenges right, and that is why our policy review is spread over
eighteen months.

But preparing the ground is just the first stage. Now we must show what
we will build there. That means laying strong foundations and making
clear exactly what we stand for. Not pulling policies out of a hat to
try and show what sort of government we will be. But explaining the
idea that defines the sort of Britain we want to see.

David Cameron pledged to transform the party and the way the public see
us - he's well on his way to doing that. He pledged to make the police
more accountable - and with the police reorganisation shelved we're
winning there. He promised to put the environment at the heart of our
policies, and he has. He promised that we would bring forward proposals
to actively support marriage through the tax and benefits system, and
he's since outlined how we'd do that - reforming the tax credits system
to make it simpler and fairer and getting our policy review to look at
how tax relief on childcare, and transferable tax allowances, might
help.

So there can be no doubt that David Cameron was elected on a broad
programme and that he's delivering across the board.

We cannot afford to slow down at the moment - we are providing
constructive opposition to this government whilst building up our
platform so that we are an attractive and credible alternative. We are
not betraying traditional Conservative values; as David has said before,
our change is not a betrayal, but recognition and a fulfilment. A
recognition that Britain is not the same as it was thirty years ago, so
we need to start understanding what we will inherit, and a fulfilment of
building a better Britain.

Thank you once again for writing.

Yours sincerely,

Alice Sheffield

Office of David Cameron MP
House of Commons
London SW1A 0AA

So, no real Defence Policy for the Conservatives then, just another opportunity for an adviser to issue the latest Tory Party advertisement!
 
#2
On defence, Liam Fox has promised that a future Conservative Government will spend what is required to guarantee the security of the United Kingdom. There is a constant choice between commitments and resources.
In other words, we don't promise to give any more money to the military.

First thing we will do is pull forces out of either 'stan or Iraq. We will then be looking for "efficiencies" too. Resources are tight, don't you know.....

To make up for it, we will look at doing something about housing but we will need to study the problem in detail first.....which may take sometime.....don't hold your breath.... token effort just before next election as a feel good.....


Am I reading it wrong? :roll:
 

Biped

LE
Book Reviewer
#3
That was a very long non-response to a direct question. I'll say it again, DC gives me the squits. I DON'T LIKE HIM AND I DON'T TRUST HIM.
 
#4
For example, we will put economic stability and
fiscal responsibility ahead of promises to cut taxes.
So not really conservatives then anymore.
 
#5
So the choice is between the Tories, who might stitch you up or Neu Arbeit who have proven that they'll stitch you up time after time! At least the Tories have acknowledged the need to match commitments to resources - the leaders and purse-string-holders of Neu Arbeit have demonstrated no such grasp of reality. :roll:
 
#6
Ord_Sgt said:
For example, we will put economic stability and
fiscal responsibility ahead of promises to cut taxes.
So not really conservatives then anymore.
What's the use of promising tax cuts when the policy fails to get you elected (Major/Hague/Howard)?
I think the policy now is as good as it can be: tax cuts if it can be afforded ie: so no one can accuse us of running down the NHS etc
 
#7
radioactiveman said:
Ord_Sgt said:
For example, we will put economic stability and
fiscal responsibility ahead of promises to cut taxes.
So not really conservatives then anymore.
What's the use of promising tax cuts when the policy fails to get you elected (Major/Hague/Howard)?
I think the policy now is as good as it can be: tax cuts if it can be afforded ie: so no one can accuse us of running down the NHS etc
So you think you don't pay too much tax then?

Huge amounts of your taxes are squandered by government and I think promising to give some of that back might actually be a good idea. But hey the tories never got elected in the past by promising not to cut taxes did they.
 
#8
Ord_Sgt said:
radioactiveman said:
Ord_Sgt said:
For example, we will put economic stability and
fiscal responsibility ahead of promises to cut taxes.
So not really conservatives then anymore.
What's the use of promising tax cuts when the policy fails to get you elected (Major/Hague/Howard)?
I think the policy now is as good as it can be: tax cuts if it can be afforded ie: so no one can accuse us of running down the NHS etc
So you think you don't pay too much tax then?

Huge amounts of your taxes are squandered by government and I think promising to give some of that back might actually be a good idea. But hey the tories never got elected in the past by promising not to cut taxes did they.
Of course I pay too much tax! But it's not me that the Tory party need to convince is it?
All I would add is that the Tory Party is doing something akin to what liarbour did in 1997 ie: sticking to Tory spending plans for the first 2 years. Once your in government you can set the agenda.
BTW - I am a healthcare worker so I know all about Government waste.
 
#9
Ord_Sgt said:
radioactiveman said:
Ord_Sgt said:
For example, we will put economic stability and
fiscal responsibility ahead of promises to cut taxes.
So not really conservatives then anymore.
What's the use of promising tax cuts when the policy fails to get you elected (Major/Hague/Howard)?
I think the policy now is as good as it can be: tax cuts if it can be afforded ie: so no one can accuse us of running down the NHS etc
So you think you don't pay too much tax then?

Huge amounts of your taxes are squandered by government and I think promising to give some of that back might actually be a good idea. But hey the tories never got elected in the past by promising not to cut taxes did they.
I do, the current government has £500-600 bilion to spend, FFS how can they spend so much on so little, we've been robbed and lied to and seen over £3000billion pissed up the wall by Bliars idiots since 1997. Just think what good could have been done with that much money....
 
#11
radioactiveman said:
Ord_Sgt said:
radioactiveman said:
Ord_Sgt said:
For example, we will put economic stability and
fiscal responsibility ahead of promises to cut taxes.
So not really conservatives then anymore.
What's the use of promising tax cuts when the policy fails to get you elected (Major/Hague/Howard)?
I think the policy now is as good as it can be: tax cuts if it can be afforded ie: so no one can accuse us of running down the NHS etc
So you think you don't pay too much tax then?

Huge amounts of your taxes are squandered by government and I think promising to give some of that back might actually be a good idea. But hey the tories never got elected in the past by promising not to cut taxes did they.
Of course I pay too much tax! But it's not me that the Tory party need to convince is it?
All I would add is that the Tory Party is doing something akin to what liarbour did in 1997 ie: sticking to Tory spending plans for the first 2 years. Once your in government you can set the agenda.
BTW - I am a healthcare worker so I know all about Government waste.
OK you have my sympathy.

It never ceases to amaze me that there is so much money spent in the UK on things like the police and NHS and they are completely shite.

Crime is running out of control and the police may as well simply not be there for their effectiveness. The NHS is a money pit which is pretty much useless, with failure after failure coming to light.

Its not the individuals at the coal face of course but the management at the top and ministers/government. I spent this weekend watching yes minister and yes prime minister, almost every parody of government in that comedy has come true, incredible.

And breath... politicians, I sh1t em...
 
#12
So if ARRSE was put in charge of the Conservative Defence Policy, what would we include (Current Affairs and not NAAFI)

Define our mission - 'Force for Good', interventionalist, Defence Force, part of European defence force
Review of all major procurement with no 'sacred cows'
Do we need 3 services?
Re-establish proper medical care, including psychiatric for life
No university fees following 3 years Crown Service
 
#13
Surely it must rest as well in the hands of health and safety regs and the compensation culture. How much money is wasted on sh1te like this?

I was always amazed why people should get compensated for tripping up in the street, don't these people watch where they are going?

It has just got sooo out of hand now, I am sure this is where all the money goes. Paperwork for paperwork, for paperwork, ffs just get the jobs done.
 
#14
I'm not sure how precise Englishspringer's question was, but from about 730 words on a whole gammut of things, all we got was these sentences:

On defence, Liam Fox has promised that a future Conservative Government will spend what is required to guarantee the security of the United Kingdom.
It is fundamentally impossible to "guarantee" security. Not a good start Dave - or pp Dave...

There is a constant choice between commitments and resources.
Very true. But if the question was constructed around the question, 'what is your defence policy?', we're looking for you to tell us just what those committments are going to be.

In the current environment, we will either have to increase the resources reaching the front-line to match our commitments, or reduce our commitments to match our resources.
OK. So you recognise that there is currently a mismatch. But we're after YOUR policy, not your comment on current problems.

David Cameron has also promised to draw up a special manifesto for the families of Britain's Armed Forces, following the outcry over the poor standard of accommodation provided on Army bases.
Thanks Dave. But what's your POLICY on defence???

Are you, like me, still completely in the dark as to what Conservative policy on defence actually is?
 
#15
What possible use could there be in anouncing any firm policy now?
As it seems to me, whenever previously the Tory party has announced a policy commitment the attitude of Liarbour has been to pooh pooh it before nicking any possible good bits from it.
With a new (mis)management team about to come in to Number 10, who will inevitably have a honeymoon period, why stick your neck out. Keep your powder dry and don't shoot 'til you see the whites of their eyes.
 
#16
whitecity said:
Are you, like me, still completely in the dark as to what Conservative policy on defence actually is?
Pretty much agree with this statement. If it's any help, I think the confusion arises from most Conservative statements trying to be all things to all people, on every agenda. To be fair to the Conservative party, they are not alone in this.

As much as (I would guess) most ARRSE'rs would like to see Defence as the defining issue in electioneering, the current "don't go near it, it's a bag of nails" approach by all parties is a bl00dy insult to those serving and those that have done.

It makes me wonder what type of loss / incident the armed forces will have to suffer, in order to force our elected representatives of all parties to put the deployment and use of our armed forces at the very forefont of the UK's political agenda?
 
#17
ABrighter2006 said:
It makes me wonder what type of loss / incident the armed forces will have to suffer, in order to force our elected representatives of all parties to put the deployment and use of our armed forces at the very forefont of the UK's political agenda?
If my memory serves the US Armed Forces only got a serious increase in funding after the failed operation to rescue their hostages in Iran.
 
#18
radioactiveman said:
What possible use could there be in anouncing any firm policy now?
As it seems to me, whenever previously the Tory party has announced a policy commitment the attitude of Liarbour has been to pooh pooh it before nicking any possible good bits from it.
With a new (mis)management team about to come in to Number 10, who will inevitably have a honeymoon period, why stick your neck out. Keep your powder dry and don't shoot 'til you see the whites of their eyes.
I fully accept the points you make after the highlighting. It's a policy that's worked for others in the past.

But, to answer you the question in bold. To get a vote at the upcoming local elections - which was the original point of the letter to Dave. Think of it like this. Potential voter takes the time to write to the parties on the point which most interests him/her. Party reponds by avoiding the question and spouting irrelevant nonsense. Guaranteed not to get the vote!

And they wonder why we've all become so disallutioned with politics!!! :x
 
#19
whitecity said:
Potential voter takes the time to write to the parties on the point which most interests him/her. Party reponds by avoiding the question and spouting irrelevant nonsense. Guaranteed not to get the vote!

And they wonder why we've all become so disallutioned with politics!!! :x
What were the responses from the other parties?
 
#20
whitecity said:
radioactiveman said:
What possible use could there be in anouncing any firm policy now?
As it seems to me, whenever previously the Tory party has announced a policy commitment the attitude of Liarbour has been to pooh pooh it before nicking any possible good bits from it.
With a new (mis)management team about to come in to Number 10, who will inevitably have a honeymoon period, why stick your neck out. Keep your powder dry and don't shoot 'til you see the whites of their eyes.
I fully accept the points you make after the highlighting. It's a policy that's worked for others in the past.

But, to answer you the question in bold. To get a vote at the upcoming local elections - which was the original point of the letter to Dave. Think of it like this. Potential voter takes the time to write to the parties on the point which most interests him/her. Party reponds by avoiding the question and spouting irrelevant nonsense. Guaranteed not to get the vote!

And they wonder why we've all become so disallutioned with politics!!! :x
Local elections are for local issues so unless you live in a garrison town DCs researches wouldn't have seen the connection. I imagine that Conservative Central Office are twiddling their thumbs round about now anyway as the Liarbour party have dug a big enough hole on their own without Tory help.
I still believe that the Tories represent the last, best hope for our forces.
 

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