Coming in on a wing and a prayer. Look. It’s Supercam
written by: admin2
So who is David Cameron? His media blitz (Today programme plus a day with BBC Political Editor Nick Robinson for TV news) threw up some intriguing possibilities.
Three Daves, all closely related, were on parade.
There was Supercam, closely modelled on his unflappable hero Supermac, aka Harold Macmillan, the languid Edwardian who saw his role as PM in the late 50s and early 60s as the orderly management of British decline and liked to spend his afternoons in Downing Street reading novels in the garden.
Then there's air ace Biggles. Listening to laid back Dave casually rolling out the platitudes in the face of a typical John Humphrys grilling on Today, you had to wonder where was the sense of urgency or even danger.
Yes, he had made mistakes, but so long as he kept up his average of good decisions, people would understand. Yes, it had been a difficult couple of months, but the key thing was to focus on the big picture and the Government's economic rescue mission.
Think of "Biggles" Dave coming in on a wing and a prayer. His Spitfire is riddled with Jerry bullets and half the squadron has "bought it" over the Channel.
Dave casually clambers out of the cockpit, adjusts his silk scarf and heads for the officer's mess and a pink gin.
Admirable in its way but you wish he would wake up to the mess he's in. An invasion is just over the horizon and the RAF is reduced to putting interns (and Nick Clegg) in the sky. But Dave doesn't even blink at polls suggesting he's in a tailspin.
Finally, we have new man Dave, circa 1990. He's not lazy. He's at the kitchen table reading his red boxes by 5-45 am. His Downing Street strategy meeting starts at 8.30 am. He's on top of things.
But is he? The PM felt the need to explain that he had to set aside time for "date nights" when he has dinner with Samantha. And every now and then he takes the kids to school.
Gold medals all round then? Or is it? Most of us have had dinner with our wives or dropped the kids off in the morning. But most of us are not PM, especially not PM when the country is in the throes of the worst recession for 100 years.
Most of us, I would suggest, would be happy to see Dave ( and the rest of his Cabinet) spend less time on "date nights" right now and more time getting the country back on track.
Back to SuperMac, immortalised in Vicky's wonderful cartoons. He famously dismissed the resignation of his Chancellor and two other ministers as a "little local difficulty." No doubt Dave is brushing that one up when Boris (now only 2 points ahead of Ken) loses next week and the Tories suffer a town hall wipe out.
The languid pose worked its magic for a few years. But it all ended badly for Supermac. In the summer of 1962, he sacked seven members of his Cabinet in the infamous "night of the long knives" and a little over a year later, after the Profumo affair, he was gone.
July 13 this year is the 50th anniversary of Macmillan's butchery. Let's hope, for his own sake, Dave is not tempted to repeat that atrocity.