A MAN I MET …
“I met someone who had been on incapacity benefit for a decade. He hadn't been able to work since he was injured doing his job. It was a real injury, and he was obviously a good man who cared for his children. But I was convinced that there were other jobs he could do.
“And that it's just not right for the country to be supporting him not to work, when other families on his street are working all hours just to get by.
“It's not about responsibility to the state, or the government, but responsibility to your neighbours, your friends and many others who you may never meet but who are affected by your actions.”
TO THE RICH …
“To those entrepreneurs and business people who generate wealth, create jobs and deserve their top salaries, I'm not just relaxed about you getting rich, I applaud you.”
TO THE NATION …
“We will be a party that rewards contribution, not worklessness.”
A COMMENT ON A POLITICAL PARTY
“We need to understand why Labour in government talked about fixing it but didn't.”
ANOTHER MAN I MET …
“He remembered most the deep fellowship that helped win the war and build the peace. When I think about my children, I want them to grow up in a Britain like that. I want them to understand what makes this country special.”
ON WHAT HIS PARTY DID WRONG
“The Labour Party - a party founded by hard working people for hard working people - was seen, however unfairly, as the party of those ripping off our society. We were intensely relaxed about what happened at the top of society.”
“So we sent out the wrong message to those at the top of society. And we all know what happened: the banks acting as if there was no tomorrow and causing the worst financial crisis in a century.”
“There is a terrible shortage of social housing in this country.”
“We did too little to ensure responsibility at the bottom.”
A QUOTE FROM A PREVIOUS LEADER HE SEEMS TO ADMIRE
“Tony Blair once said he wanted a country "where your child in distress is my child, your parent ill and in pain is my parent, your friend unemployed or homeless is my friend; your neighbour my neighbour. That is the true patriotism of a nation.’ ”
MY COMMENT TO THE NEW STATESMAN, WHO PUBLISHED THE SPEECH
As an exercise in utter vacuousness, this takes some beating. A succession of glib anecdotes, leading to conclusions that could have come from the mouth of a backwoods shire Tory - a series of motherhood statements that could have been uttered by almost any politician in any country in the last fifty years - a total and utter failure to recognise what really ripped the heart out of the Labour Party and destroyed its core values. And last but not least, a pious quote from an obscenely rich man who led the country into two ruinous and criminal wars on lies to Parliament, and who now has an estimated annual income in excess of £15m - Tony Blair.
If this speech was meant to establish Ed Miliband’s reputation, it has, definitively - as the Leader of a party that is to all intents and purposes dead, morally, ethically and intellectually, and as someone who accurately reflects its hollow heart.
The fact that it can demonstrate electoral support in the polls simply shows the awfulness of the present ConLib coalition, and the fact that the voters of England have few choices.
Thank God the people of Scotland did have a real choice, and made it decisively on May 5th this year.