Home / Blogs / Summer days, driftin away

Summer days, driftin away

Do you begin to see, then, what kind of world we are creating? It is the exact opposite of the stupid hedonistic Utopias that the old reformers imagined.

It’s all gone a bit odd out there. I’m all for a bit of nice Indian Summer weather at the beginning of September to make us feel as though the long, dark nights of winter are still some way ahead. But 34deg during the second week of September feels faintly ridiculous somehow.

Mind you, lots of things seem a bit topsy turvey at the moment. Surely once upon a time, governments mentioned thigs in their election manifestos that they then went on to do, totally mess up (Green Deal anyone) or renege on (Nick Clegg, I’m looking at you).

Now it seems, you can pick up any old idea that’s been languishing in the back of a drawer for 30 years, dust it off and present it as policy. We need more good schools so that academically-inclined and the less academically inclined can all reach or exceed their potential. We don’t need a throw-back to the ‘fifties nor a system where more and more parents are forced to privately tutor their children in order to try and get them into any of the local options.

Even David Cameron didn’t have the gall to try and bring that one back in. He, having presided over the least green ‘greenest government ever’, totally messed up the referendum issue by even promising it in the first place and then threw his toys out of the pram as PM, leaving May to sort out the mess. Except there doesn’t seem to be a mess yet. Yet. Now, having, presumably, sorted out a few choice directorships, Cameron has thrown the towel in as an MP too, paving the way for a by-election. Nigel Farage has been a bit quiet since June; it would just complete the whole sense of the absurd if h contested it.

Cameron is probably right to go, to be fair. Those of us who are long enough in the tooth will remember the sight of former PM Ted Heath castigating his successor in the Commons on numerous occasions, looking for all the world like a mean-spirited, embittered old man from another era.

Maybe Cameron will do what Clegg has done and write his memoirs and we’ll get a window in on the coalition, and the Tory landslide and the referendum from this point of view. Clegg’s, by the way, make interesting reading, as long as you remember that he probably does have grounds for malice.

I suppose you’ve got the feel a bit sorry for Cameron. The architect of much of his own misfortune in calling for the referendum in the first place, he probably thought that his resignation would get a reasonable slot on the Six O Clock News. Instead he was overshadowed by the fact that a show about cake is changing TV channels.

Still, at least the pot-hole at the end of my road has been fixed. For now.

About Fiona Russell-Horne

Fiona Russell-Horne
Group Managing Editor across the BMJ portfolio.

Check Also

Celebrate good times, Come on

If an earthquake were to engulf England tomorrow, the English would meet and dine, somewhere …