Thursday, 18 February 2010

How do you know when a Tory is lying?

On the 4th December last year I wrote about Margaret Beckett's mistake when talking about the Mansion Tax. She thought that 86 000 was 86. I don't remember an apology but at least she had the decency to look embarrased. This week the Tories are making mistakes (nothing new there then) on their teenage pregnancy figures. Does it really matter if 54% is actually 5.4%? They are only figures to support an argument that the country is going to the dogs under a Labour government.

Incredibly this was actually the explanation that the Tories gave! "A decimal point was left out in a calculation...It makes no difference at all to the conclusions of a wide-ranging report which shows that Labour have consistently let down the poorest in Britain."

I have written blogs about the disservice that this attitude does to politics in general not just to the Tories. There is no apology for the error, no recognition that the figures are improving, and not even any embarrasment. This approach is not good for anyone and is more ammunition for people who simply don't believe what politicians have to say. It is really important to note that this spin comes from the Conservative Party not from an MP, but there may be individuals within the Party who know when they should apologise.

This reminds me of the joke about politicians lying and the answer relates to lips moving. If the Tories did apologise it might do them some good but it would do politics in general a lot of good.

Change the world

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