This morning’s Times has a new YouGov poll of Conservative party members, asking mainly about Brexit and the party leadership.

Party members are a generally loyal bunch, so as you’d expect all the main players are seen as doing well, though Michael Fallon and David Davis stand out as having the best job approval. While everyone has very positive ratings overall, there are some contrasts between members who voted remain and leave, most obviously in the case of Boris Johnson. 83% of Tory members who voted Leave think Boris is doing well as Foreign Secretary, only 42% of Tory remainers think he is.

Despite the strongly positive ratings for Davis, there are doubts over the Brexit negotiations. 61% of Tory members think the government are doing well, 33% badly. Asked about what the government’s approach should be, 59% agree with Theresa May’s aim of leaving the single market and customs union and negotiating a new deal, 19% would rather just leave immediately with no deal, 12% would rather Britain did remain a member of the single market and customs union, 9% would rather Britain remain a full EU member.

In terms of the details of Brexit Theresa May appears to have some degree of flexibility with her members so long as Britain makes a clean break. 58% of Tory members would think a transition deal was fine (even if it includes payment and following EU rules), 61% think a one-off payment to settle Britain’s financial liabilities is fine too. Trickier would be any ongoing financial payment in return for market access (70% of Tory members would see this as unacceptable) or Britain remaining in the single market (69% would see it as unacceptable).

Looking to May’s future, there is very little appetite for her immediate removal (only 13% of her party members would like her to go now or in the next year), but equally there is relatively little support for her still being around come the next election (only 29%). Most Tory party members would like her to leave after Brexit (38%) or just before the next election (13%).

Who would be a likely successor is unclear. Boris Johnson leads the field as first choice, but only of 23% of members. Second is Ruth Davidson on 19%, third is Jacob Rees-Mogg, suggesting there are actually real party members who think he’d make a good leader, rather than just journos struggling to fill column inches in silly season. David Davis has now dropped to fourth place on 11%, Amber Rudd is on just 6%.

Asked what is most important to them in a leader the vast majority of party members say ability to win an election or competence as Prime Minister, rather than whether they agree with them politically. Their actual preferences paint a different picture though, with consistent differences between Remain and Leave Tories. Tory members who voted Leave say their first choices are Johnson (29%), Rees-Mogg (23%), Davidson (14%), Davis (13%). Tory members who voted Remain say their first choices are Davidson (29%), Rudd (14%), Hammond (11%), Johnson (10%).

YouGov also asked about various potential candidates individually. 58% think Davidson would make a good leader, 56% Johnson, 55% Davis, 42% Rudd, 32% Hammond, 31% Fox, Javid 29%. While the poll included some less high profile figures who have been talked of as potential leaders of the future, most party members didn’t really have an impression of them – 49% said they didn’t know enough about Dominic Raab to have an opinion, 65% said the same about Tom Tugendhat. Notably, of all those asked about Ruth Davidson was the only candidate that both Remain voting Tories and Leave voting Tories thought would make a good leader. It would be an extremely positive sign for a Davidson leadership campaign… if, of course, she had any interest in moving down to Westminster or seeking the job.

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549 Responses to “YouGov poll of Tory party members”

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    I read today that “private” indications had been given that Phase2 discussion would start by Christmas-but one reads so much guff that its hard to know what is informed.

  2. I see than now Colin a time limited period yet to be agreed of about 2 years.

    It is the limited and about I thought contradictory but your explanation covers it nicely thanks.

    DP just wanted to see how many NOW and FOR EVER Tory delegates there were I reckon but agree rubbish stuff for a supposedly serious programme. Jo Coburn not very good either I think, the other woman who has done some programmes is OK, can’t recall her name now.

  3. @Colin

    As I have repeatedly said, the Industrial Strategy, which Timothy was instrumental in, was one of the best Green Papers I have seen for many years. It was only a start though. Timothy appeared to have a grasp of some of the crucial economic issues. However, as so often happens, he mistook having some good ideas on things he understood as being a general all-round genius.

    he is not as colossally toxic and awful as Dominic Cummings, but Cummings was/is really rather good at tactics.

    I remember back in the day the ferocious attacks on Labour SPADS who, compared to Cummings and Timothy, were kindly political titans. The Tories need to ask themselves how on earth they have come to attract people like these two and how on earth, once they’ve got them, they give them so much power and so little accountability in what is supposed to be a democracy.

    Because in a couple of years, it’s going to be Seamus Milne calling the shots and it might be nice if the Right had a shred of moral authority to call that out. As it is, it’ll be their fault if/when he runs riot.


    @”Over the Summer LAB dropped a lot of lose promises on cancelling current student debt, welfare, etc but no one was listening.”

    I think this is very important. The Multitude simply don’t want to know anything bad about JC. For the hard core Believer we know that Tories are Evil & nothing Hammond does will be enough.

    And I have a feeling based on my own grandchildren that “Tory unfairness” is a huge perception. So it isn’t Big Policy so much as the drip drip of instances of disabled people, UC recipients etc etc who have been treated like shi* by The System . Cons just have to stop these things happening.

    I’m not saying that Housing & Rents etc aren’t important-they most certainly are. But there is a huge image problem too which I kind of think can be mitigated by just getting the System to work FOR people instead of for the bureaucrats.

    Sorry-thats a bit rambling :-)

  5. @Sea Change

    “During those boom years of the 2nd and 3rd Blair government’s Brown should not have been increasing the public debt in the way that he did that made the Bust all the worse.”


    Lol, this liberal meme keeps getting trotted out but as many have pointed out, our debt was low by historic standards. And you tend to need some borrowing to secure growth. You will find it is rare that governments of whatever stripe don’t run a deficit. If instead you run a surplus the money has to come from somewhere and it comes at the expense of the private sector, hampering growth.

    Not that Brown didn’t make errors, and it’s interesting to consider them given the difficulty of the situation. It was an error not to see there was a reason banks had been more tightly regulated following the Great Depression, and that as we had deregulated we were vulnerable to another crash. And also one could make a case that the QE shouldn’t have all gone to the banks. And he might have used Northern Rock to provide business loans and overdraft facilities to those businesses suddenly denied them when the banks seized up etc.

    Beyond that’s there’s the issue some would raise that we should have had a sovereign wealth fund as a buffer in case if crisis, like Norway secured with their oil proceeds. Additionally, there were signs of banking being at threat of a liquidity crisis a year before the Crunch. The Two Johns satirised it a year before in fact.

  6. JIM JAM

    @” Jo Coburn not very good ”




    Yes !

  7. Transition.

    – the most important issue is knowing the final outcome and not paying the full divorce bill before we start transition to avoid being lost in transition

    – transition is better described as a phased implementation period which should be a roadmap with milestones ensuring we leave at the pace that is appropriate on each major issue (e.g. NI might stay in special status longer, tariffs on some goods might come in quicker than others, some shadowing or voluntary acceptance of ECJ rulings might be more formal early on, etc)

    – Starmer is guessing 4yrs, May has said 2yrish. I expect most of the phased implementation could be done fairly quickly but some might stay much longer (e.g. NI again)

    – payments during transition, even if they are the full 10bn are annoying but 10bn = 0.5% of GDP and it could just get chucked on the existing debt mountain (although Hammond will budget for the payments and hence that is 0.5% less spending potential in the short-term)

    – the period of transition depends on the final deal. If we end up with something very close to SM then the amount of work required to move from A to B is minimal and transition could be limited to very small matters such as sorting out TRQs ,etc. If the final deal is WTO then we might want to set a 2y fixed period to implement the capacity issues at ports, etc. 2y probably won’t be enough but 2y is a lot of time for suppliers to sort out supply chains which given our huge trade deficit in goods with EU should help domestic businesses and encourage reshoring. during the 2y EU-UK might sort out a trade deal making the cliff-edge little more than a bump anyway

    – the domestic aspects of transition need to be sped up. Repeal bill is critical but we also need new agriculture policy, immigration bill, discussion and plan for all other areas where EU intervene.

    – devolved powers will depend a little on the final deal but again no reason these can’t be tackled in parallel to the EU talks.

    – getting on with the domestic side will also show the EU we are serious and intend on sticking to a shadow/voluntary policy on EU laws, etc. it should also calm some of the worst fears of the Remain folks.

    sprinkle in a bunch of IMHOs.

  8. JIM JAM

    @”I think, the other woman who has done some programmes is OK, can’t recall her name now.”

    If you mean Sunday POlitics ( which Neil has left)-its Sarah Smith- eldest daughter of the former leader of the Labour Party John Smith.

    Yes she is excellent.

  9. Colin,

    My exchanges with Carfew demonstrate some unease I have with the direction of travel of the LP but the dropping promises thing is way overblown imo.

    The Student Debt thing was done to death a couple of months ago and at worst Labour failed to correct a misunderstanding and mis-reporting of the policy on historical student debt.

    The policy on future loans is unchanged.

    All that has happened on Welfare AFAIK is that the party has said by the time of the next GE things may be different and a new policy will have to reflect the new reality. In particular UC may be in place so many Welfare policies would have that as its’ starting point.

  10. @ WB – thank you for reply on LAB plans and ECJ. Sounds similar to what I’ve heard elsewhere that some but not all of LABs plans could be done under ECJ but tough to tell whether that is a little or a lot until it happens. I suspect Corbyn+McDonnell don’t want to find out the harder way and hence why they are happy for CON to finish of Brexit and hope to come in once its all over. It does feel a lot like Brexit is the new White Wednesday (UK leaving ERM). CON make a bit of a mess of it but then spend years fighting amongst themselves and hand a strong economy freed from European project constraints over to LAB.

  11. @Sea Change

    Bird and Fortune on the subprime crisis. Published on YouTube in Feb 2008 and actually broadcast on the South Bank show some time before that.

    And plenty of early indicators, abridged from the Graun.

    9 August 2007
    BNP Paribas freeze three of their funds, indicating that they have no way of valuing the complex assets inside them known as collateralised debt obligations (CDOs), or packages of sub-prime loans. It is the first major bank to acknowledge the risk of exposure to sub-prime mortgage markets. Adam Applegarth (right), Northern Rock’s chief executive, later says that it was “the day the world changed”

    Larry Elliott, economics editor, said: “As far as the financial markets are concerned, August 9 2007 has all the resonance of August 4 1914. It marks the cut-off point between ‘an Edwardian summer’ of prosperity and tranquillity and the trench warfare of the credit crunch – the failed banks, the petrified markets, the property markets blown to pieces by a shortage of credit”

    14 September 2007
    British bank Northern Rock has borrowed large sums of money to fund mortgages for customers, and needs to pay off its debt by reselling (or “securitising”) those mortgages in the international capital markets. But now that demand for securitised mortgages has fallen, Northern Rock faces a liquidity crisis and it needs a loan from the British government. This sparks fears that the bank will shortly go bankrupt – prompting customers to queue round the block to withdraw their savings. It is the first run on a British bank for 150 years

    A member of the court of the Bank of England, who asked not to be named

    “At about 6.30pm, we were told there would be a meeting of court. Instead of coming to the bank, where we would be photographed coming in the front door, we were all to meet outside the McDonald’s in Liverpool Street where we would be picked up in a people-carrier with darkened windows and driven in through the back of the bank. There were two problems with this. Firstly, Robert Peston had already broken the story about Northern Rock. Secondly, there were two McDonald’s outside Liverpool Street. Half of us were outside one, and the rest of us were outside the other”

    24 January 2008
    Analysts announce the largest single-year drop in US home sales in a quarter of a century

    Sandra Michel, a nurse, nearly lost her home in 2008 – until Boston Community Capital stepped in. “The house cost $312,000 and we borrowed the whole amount. Then in 2008 my husband lost his job. It became hard to keep up with the mortgage payments. We were a couple of payments off. We asked them about modifying the loan, but they didn’t want to work out anything with us”

    17 February 2008
    After the failure of two private takeover bids, Alistair Darling nationalises Northern Rock in what he claims will be a temporary measure. It will be nearly four years before it returns to the private sector

    14 March 2008
    The investment bank Bear Stearns is bought out by JP Morgan. It is the biggest casualty of the crisis so far…

  12. @trevorwarn

    “We will photocopy the trade deals with other nations – then over time go back and renegotiate some (e.g. Canada) to make them better suited to both sides”

    You are very keen on photocopying your way through Brexit. Two points on this latest batch: firstly, the other parties to the EU trade deals will need to agree; secondly, they may consider they can strike a better deal for themselves and will want to renegotiate on their own timescale.

  13. JIM JAM


    Best not debate that here !

    At least they won’t stop Hammond asking some questions next time :-)

    And I think there is a lot of water to go under the bridge before the next GE. Plenty of time for “events” .

  14. Reading up on Wales Uni fee system at the moment and it appears they have scrapped universality and going for means testing:

    “The new maintenance grants will only be paid to families whose household income is below £59,200.”

    Students can get anything from 1k to 11k maintenance grants depending on family income, whether or not they have been in care and where they are studying (top 11k is for London unis)

    I haven’t found budget costing aspect yet, does anyone know how much the previous system cost versus the new one – it could be that there is no change and it has just prioritised poorer families children and removed the tax break element for richer families who can afford to pay their kids fees in full anyway (if they so choose).

    I’ve posted before that this could be a 2bn cost to England if we introduced a means testing approach of up to 4k/student.

    The Welsh approach sounds excellent IMHO.

  15. TURK

    Far from gloating, the Vagas shootings are headline news here in the UK along with the political developments in Spain and the collapse of Monarch.

    I was just highlighting that in the context of what’s making the headlines, the Tory party conference seems to be taking a bit of a back burner as did the SNP’s manifesto launch last year in light of the London terror attacks. So much so they delayed the launch as a mark of respect.

    Back to the Tory party conference. .Er, anything exciting to report on or are they just playing catch up with ol Corby?

  16. @TW

    “@ CARFREW – whether May has PTSD or suffering from the Peter Principle can be left to the tabloids, either way she does not seem up to the job – something we can agree on.”


    Dunno where I stand on Theresa’s capabilities really. But I don’t tend to be that enamoured of politicians as a whole these days.

    I might not have bothered if it was the tabloids, but was in the Times. Which many don’t get to read because paywall etc. so I try and post useful bits. This promotion of a bit of Murdoch’s empire might in the eyes of some cost me brownie points when it comes to entry into that great storage unit in the sky, but you know, sometimes you have to take one for the team.

    “Yes, if we really do turn our backs on the EU, then we are going to become subservient to the USA”

    I would not wish to frighten the horses, but the future dominance of nations will also result from demographics. One reason for the EU Agenda programme on migration, poorly planned and managed as it is, is the projections on population growth and movement and related economic development. On that basis the UK would overtake Germany as the dominant nation in the EU by 2060, but out of it could be subservient to China, India, Indonesia and Nigeria (whose population will rival that of China by the second half of the century).

  18. I am raising the fact the Osborne and Cameron opposed the rescue of Northern Rock not to re-make some old point about their judgement calls but as a great example of how people generally forget what opposition leaders said and U- turns they made.

    Voters generally, look at the overall feeling they have for political parties and the offer they make at GEs.

    So Brown may have been right and Cameron wrong about Northern Rock but what mattered to voters in 2010 was who they thought was better for the next period of Government.

    Old statements, votes etc may have some influence in assessing a politicians decision making ability and choices but what really matters is the future.

  19. BBC article analysing the election and what Tories think Tories need to do…

    Talks about the membership decline, copying momentum’s methods etc.

  20. @ CARFREW – the full report has been on CON home for a few days, only 20pages so very quick read:

  21. @Jim Jam

    “So Brown may have been right and Cameron wrong about Northern Rock but what mattered to voters in 2010 was who they thought was better for the next period of Government”


    It’s not all about how voters stacked Brown up against Cameron though. Clearly Brown wasn’t held in massive esteem but Tories didn’t poll well considering we’d just had a huge crash. A big part of what did for Brown was Lib Dems seizing a healthy chunk of the Labour vote by seeming to move to the left. The reality of that supposed shift was soon to become apparent however…

  22. Telling the young not to lose sight of what they have is not going to work. They don’t have anything. it is like telling a slave that it is a scary world out there at some point they look and say how could it be any worse that the scary life in here. So I am not sure that Corbyn scary bogeyman works

    it is not that privatisation has been shown to be good. the reality is that in 2015 when Miliband talked about predatory capitalism he was laughed at by both the media and the Tories saying he was Red Ed. The point was he was right and people were scared of saying that free market capitalism has flaws.

    Now everyone is happy to name predatory capitalist, hell people talk about be price gouged all the time, They bitch about lots of things which are essentially driven by the market.

    The Tories are playing catch up and are making a real pig ear of it. The point is that many of the issues have been well known and easy to solve but it would take a change of direction and philosophy for the Tories and at the moment. They are stuck with brexit.

    Without brexit I do not see the Tories getting 42.4% of the vote, if there is a bad brexit they don’t get 43.4% of the vote, if brexit causes job loses they don’t get 42.4% of the vote and so they have to give something up to get a good enough brexit.

    The reality is that after nearly 8 years of Tory led government people are saying I have had enough oh and can I have brexit there is the problem.

    It is why you get TREVOR and COLIN wanting to sack everyone, whom says it is difficult and they are not wanting realism they are after optimism, yet complain that Labour is offering a banquet that cannot be delivered. Essentially say life is going to be tough for a while longer folks

    Thi was the problem before everyone took the pain because there was not alternative until people stop and thought: I Need an alternative even if it is not real because this pain feel like it not going to get better forever

    My concern has alway been that we are get growth, without gains for everybody, we are getting pay rises that don’t beat inflation, we are getting homes that we can’t afford.

    When independent pay reviews are only allowed to give 1% pay rises then guess what they are only allowed to give 1% pay rises and they are not even seen as independent because they are not.

    We have gone so far down the rabbit hole…………..

    And we voted for it

  23. @ PTRP – without Brexit will LAB get the Remain vote (43% of Hard Core Remain are in LAB VI if I remember correctly)?
    I don’t want to sack everyone and I’m not in the position to do so anyway but for sure if someone isn’t up to the job they should be moved to a job that they can do.

    Here’s some data on EU youth unemployment rates:

    or if you want a UK historical context then:

  24. Nice to agree with Carfew.

  25. Trevor Warne

    I come from the kind of family that would probably benifit most from the means tested maintenance grants. I absolutely loath and detest the notion, it revolts my soul. I know the logic to my intense emotion, the policy promotes division, it’s paternalistic and inefficient.

  26. @alec

    “In all practical terms, iScotland would have remained entirely almost dependent on what happened in rUK, but with no effective influence.”

    You mean like the influence Scotland had on the decision to leave the EU and is having on the form Brexit takes?

  27. Re labour pushing for an immediate triggering of A50

    The referendum had divided the Tories much more than the Tories. The split in the Tory party was wide open and fairly even in MP numbers. Pushing immediately on A50 before the Tories had regrouped could have opened internecine political warfare, as when faced with the immediate implementation the Tory Remainers would have balked, they needed time to come to terms with it. But the Brexiteers would have been in a bind. Argue against immediate implementation, but why if Brexit is so good and easy or Argue for implementation and face the wrath of the Remainers who were terrified of Brexit.

    With all the issues with the practicalities of Brexit coming out in a short time in an atmosphere of panic many of the reluctant brexiters would have had a change of heart and reluctant Remainers would have been less reluctant, the polls might have moved very quickly. The chaos in the Tory party could well have led to a collapse of govt or even a breakaway Tory splinter party. Which in a FPTP system has to be a major objective of the opposing party. The following election could well have been fought as second referendum with a strong chance of a remain majority.

    I’m not saying this is how it would have played out but it’s certainly possible. It’s certainly the kind of thing I was expecting when Corbyn called for immediate A50 and I reached for my popcorn


    I am not sure what telling me about youth unemployment that is mainly in france and the southern states has to do with the UK problems.

    Your answer is the slaver master telling the slave but it worse out there better the pain here than there.

    The EU is still 28 separate countries: you could compare Germany with Spain or Sweden with Italy or Slovenia with Greece and you would get big difference in the way the economies work and the problems they have.

    I have mention these issues before:
    Currently we have the lowest literacy skill in the EU for 18-24 year olds, near the lowest numeracy for the same age group and similar for computer skills

    We have the second highest in number of jobs that can be performed by someone with an educational attainment of a 10 year old at 20% only beaten by spain at 22%
    Of the Northern EU countries we have 9 of the 10 most deprived regions.

    As of 2015 only the London, the South East had got over 2007 levels of Regional GDP per head.

    Our problems are real. For the Tories they need to come up with answers. I do not see a strategy all I see is piecemeal attempt at shoring up the system. we are just doing managed decline and nothing more

    Incidentally I believe that the problems and solutions for each EU country is actually different.

    Greece basically need a debt reset but they need more reforms and a method of making their chief economic driver work better.

    Continued to avoid the auto moderator

  29. Portugal have gone all anti austerity and are now reaping growth

    After doing austerity for a time that was in my mind stupid.
    I am not saying Corbyn has all the answers far from it I don’t think a general nationalisation strategy is necessary, I would go for much tighter regulation and indeed price controls for the poorest (meter users for example)

    In truth there needs to be a discussion as to what sort of society we want and how much we are prepared to pay for it in taxation and how much more efficient it is to do some thing privately and other using the public option because I fear we are often missing the point with respect to a way forward.

    it is clear that some things can be privatised. Some thing have to be basically in public ownership both sets need to be better managed.

    We need to get away from the obsession of private good and public bad. For example the NHS hiving of services that can be privatised means that you cannot amortise costs. We need to accept that some thing are going to cost more and we are going to have to relearn that paying tax is not a bad thing.

  30. @ PTRP – you’re entitled to see it how you see it, the same for any voter.

    @ RACHEL – why is means testing any different to a progressive taxation policy. The idea is to help those that need help, make the rich pay more.

    why is means testing any different to a progressive taxation policy. The idea is to help those that need help, make the rich pay more.

    Don’t disagree with you, but you could apply the same logic to the state pension

  32. @Trevor

    You’ve already been given a summary of these reasons means testing etc. is problematic compared to taxation. Not that you properly engaged with those Stirling efforts. But there’s no law against ostrichism!!

  33. “The referendum had divided the Tories much more than the Tories.”


    Well clearly, if they are divided, one would expect more than one lot of Tories.

  34. @JimJam

    “Nice to agree with Carfrew.”


    Can’t agree with that. Agreement is overrated…

  35. Princess Rachel: Re labour pushing for an immediate triggering of A50

    It was specifically Corbyn and I don’t think you can attribute it to Labour.

    Your scenario is interesting, but in the event the surefire tactic of calling for immediate triggering backfired spectacularly. The division you attribute to the Tories was actually in place in Labour and Corbyn was quite crass to make the call without having swung the PLP behind the tactic. I just don’t buy your scenario.

    At the time, Corbyn was not trusted on Europe by the PLP, understandably so, given subsequent performance. Yes, he is good on everything else [except Scotland]. But his performance on the Article 50 bill was suspect – my perceptions are coloured by his immediate call to trigger it – and I left the party because, with a German wife, there is no party in England which I consider both able and willing to protect our position here.

    In the event, we are moving to Scotland, because there is a party there with a clear cut position on Brexit, which is able to provide solid opposition.

  36. Interesting report from ” top law firm Baker McKenzie, which examines the implications of Britain defaulting to World Trade Organisation rules.”

    (See 8.07 entry on

    Basically, it says the impact on UK manufactured exports to EU sales will be far worse than on EU27 exports to the UK, leaving a £17bn a year deterioration.

    The impact on several keys sectors (% decline, UK to EU first, EU to UK 2nd) are:

    Automotive -22.1; -0.8
    Consumer -24.2; -2.5
    Healthcare -9.7; -0.1
    Technology -14.4; -0.6

    The EU figures are adjusted for increased intra-EU27 trade post-Brexit.

    The firm’s comment includes: ” you can clearly see that the EU exports a lot more broadly, to a whole host of other markets, and consequently, it is far less dependent on the UK as a market than the UK is on it.”

    I guess Brexiters who claim that “they need us more than we need them, so they’re bound to cave” will just have to reject this report as wrong or biased.


    Good luck with your move. What a shame you have had to move because of this Brexit shambles.

  38. Does any know what the definition of London is in the you gov poll?

  39. Mike Pearce: MONOCHROME Good luck with your move. What a shame you have had to move because of this Brexit shambles.

    Thanks for that, Mike. Now we are underway, we already have the new house, [although the old one remains to be sold]. We are in a lovely place and the silver lining for us is that we would never have thought of moving but for Brexit. Roll on independence.

  40. @ Rachel

    As YouGov’s other geographical divisions are based on the UK’s regions, I guess that London must be, too. So it means the London boroughs.


    Sometimes it is just that I believe you view point appears to be more blinkered. It is why I believe Labour did well. Look at the crossbreaks as to what made people vote Labour and you will find that brexit was way down the list. brexit or no brexit you need to pay rent/mortgage , feed yourself and your kids and have some fun or else you will start to ask what the hell are you doing it for.

    We have too many people whom are just unhappy and we have had 7 years of a government strategy that has not changed that for many.

    Yes there are some interesting thing going on but I see very few of them coming from the Tories which as I have said several times is a surprise to me. Even your example of a solution to student loans using the welsh system is not Tory idea but a Labour one. They are running to stand still at the moment and I fear that all that is hold this together is a fear of losing and brexit.

  42. @monochrome october

    Welcome to Scotland!

  43. @Trevor

    “but lets be grateful that was not a state subsidised business that the taxpayer had to bail out and nationalise into a loss making burden on future taxpayers.”


    Well thats the liberal playbook where they act like it’s inevitably a disaster but quite often it’s the other way around, you keep a strategic asset that you otherwise would have lost. Hence we saved Rolls Royce during the oil crisis, but sacrificed the car industry.. The French bailed out Renault who are now doing very nicely. More recently the Americans saved their car industry.

  44. @JP

    Well sure, the State may seek to assist markets in a hands-off way via investment banks but it’s still state involvement innit.

  45. Peter Cairns,
    “Now they are forced to think about the Unthinkable it turns out they were right that the consequences are Unthinkable so no matter how much they Think it’s still Unthinkable.

    This is like Bilbo in the Dark…”

    All relies upon magic too.

    “I blame May for allowing a SPAD with such poor tactical ability to overide her own judgement”

    I really dont understand why anyone believes professional career politicians have suddenly lost their understanding of political realities. Of course they havnt. Ther was no mistake about the election campaign, it was what was necessary. There are plenty of people posting here who understand the difficulties of Brexit and how it stacks one untenable position opposite another. What do you do when to win is to lose and to lose is to win?

  46. Danny…
    You are talking pish.
    This is not an Ad Hom, merely objective observation.

    “, the State may seek to assist markets in a hands-off way via investment banks but it’s still state involvement innit.’
    Yeah, but it’s like good, hands off state involvement: either strictly done on commercial banking terms, covering costs of the money and a mark-up to make the invesTment institution viable; or it offers value-added, providing linkages with supply and marketing chains,technical support and training, which can be written into the loan agreement. The multilateral development finance institution system (to which DfiD provides about a fifth of all UK aid, bases lending on detailed feasibility studies including social cost benefit analysis and technical asssistance during the loan period, designed as a project with specific purposes and independent M&E. i.e. it doesnot leave the proposition,investment banking is economically viable, to conjecture.

  48. RJW,
    You are talking pish.”

    tosh! You didnt know the government relies upon Bilbo’s magic ring for so many things?

  49. “You will find it is rare that governments of whatever stripe don’t run a deficit.”

    Not just rare but structurally impossible in a net importing nation.

    It’s simply not an issue that should concern anybody in a sovereign nation with a floating rate currency.

    Professor Steve Keen explains how the fallacy of composition arises here:

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