Monday, August 01, 2005

Silly Season Repeats

Returning from a blogless weekend, we were interested to see The Sunday Telegraph silly season report that 'Iain Duncan Smith has threatened to resign from the Conservative Party and sit as an independent MP...if two people he blames particularly for his downfall are allowed to stand as Tories at the next election.'

The two in question are of course Mark MacGregor and Vanessa Gearson who "betrayed Iain's trust and behaved disgracefully." They were widely credited with the Betsygate affair.

Now as we recall it, MacGregor was the Party Chief Executive strongly associated with the first Portillista/"moderniser" attempts to snatch power from party members and centralise it into the hands, the Chief Executive and his cronies.

But at the time of IDS' leadership, they hit a stumbling block in the form of the then Party Chairman, who quite rightly refused to play ball. As one frontbench Portillista noted at the time: "The trouble is that the only way we can do this is if the Chairman personally gets involved and puts on pressure and makes plain that it has absolutely got to happen. And there is no sign that he is prepared to do that."

And as we know, the Chairman was none other than David Davis. And the modernisers wasted no time in putting it about that his unwillingness to 'personally get involved and put on the pressure' was simply because he was lazy, and a hopeless Chairman. So poor old isolated IDS sacked him, only finding out later he'd been stitched up by the modernisers, and was himself next for the scaffold.

A silly season repeat maybe, but some things bear repeating just in case we forget how bad they were.


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