However it is difficult to keep a straight face having read this soul-baring post on Dave's Part -
LISTENING to a group of young people shouting ‘Labour, Labour, Labour; out, out, out’ while marching past Brighton’s conference centre yesterday took me back to when I was the same sort of age. We had a similar chant, you see. But back in the 1980s, the slogan was aimed at Maggie.
Instantly recognisable was the intensity of the hate on display, which was clearly of the kind that will last a lifetime. My twentysomething animosity to the Conservatives has been enough to secure decades of commitment to the far left, and I don’t doubt that a whole layer of students, young workers and a million or so NEETs in 2009 are in pretty much the same frame of mind about the party of which I am a member.
I’m assuming, if only from what I overhear apolitical workmates in a similar age bracket say, that this mood is generalised and not confined to the radical elements that each successive decade inevitably throws up.
And frankly, New Labour might just as well have striven actively to cultivate the contempt of the young, as evidenced by everything imaginable from tuition fees to the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq and the parliamentary expenses scandal.
Not trying to cause a big sensation. Just talking ‘bout their generation. If I still looked good in tight jeans and didn’t have to comb my hair in unusual directions to hide the bald spots, I’m sure I’d feel the same way too.
Any defence, justification or spurious apologetics for Labour I can offer – from the national minimum wage to my inimitable old git reminiscences of just how nasty Conservative government truly can be - are going to have little impact on people who were schoolkids 12 years ago.
For instance, I remember telling a keen teenage fan of house music how the Conservatives once tried to ban ‘repetitive beats’. He clearly found the idea amusing, but I doubt that the revelation is going to change the way he votes.
In recent posts I have detailed how New Labour has lost the north, and pointed to analysis that suggests it will be wiped out in Wales. For good measure, let me highlight this Evening Standard poll, which indicates that 17 of its 44 seats in London are set to go.
To lose regions such as this – the historic cradles of Labourism – is of course calamitous, but not necessarily irreversible. Lose an entire age group, on the other hand, and you can kiss government goodbye until another one comes of age. See you in a quarter of a century.
All of my politically-aware life I have been bombarded by the whining , self-righteous bleatings of the Ben Elton generation .
While as a teenager I was interested in our prospects in winning the Cold War and defeating the IRA and the Argies , these muppets , more or less openly , supported our country's enemies and covered their embarrassment with highly personalised attacks on our repeatedly elected leader - Margaret Thatcher .
Now perhaps they are ready to shut up .
(Hat Tip to Obo the Clown)