Monday, October 05, 2015

George Osborne first and 10 (whatever that means)

Last week the Guardian told us:
George Osborne wants to have an NFL franchise based permanently in London within the next five years to confirm the city’s status as the “sporting capital of the world”. 
The chancellor met with NFL executives, team owners and former players at Downing Street as the Miami Dolphins prepared to face the New York Jets at Wembley stadium on Sunday. 
Osborne said he would “love to have a team here based in the UK playing in the NFL” and he believed Britain was making steps towards that goal. “The real prize, the real touchdown for London, would be to get a team based here,” he said.
My first reaction is that Osborne should have more important things to do with his time. Bringing an NFL franchise to London is the sort of task that should consume a wacky backbencher, not the chancellor.

But this enthusiasm of his does confirm that he is not a traditional Conservative. If he were, he would be worrying about how to persuade more children to take up rugby or cricket,

To someone of Osborne's cast of mind, America is the future. His enthusiasm for elected mayors, a role unknown in British local government until recently, confirms this.

As I argued in a recent post on a cricket club in David Cameron's constituency, this sets Osborne apart from his prime minister.

But already this enthusiasm for all things American looks dated.

For the group of Tories who produced Britannia Unchained - Kwasi Kwarteng, Priti Patel, Dominic Raab, Chris Skidmore, Liz Truss - the future is Singapore.

And for the former Liberal Democrat MP Jeremy Browne in his Race Plan, the future is China. That dictatorship makes an odd beacon for 'authentic liberalism'.

Still, Jeremy is not alone. Today Jeremy Hunt expressed the hope that, thanks to cuts in welfare, we would all have to work as hard as the Chinese.

Who knows where the future will pop up next?

1 comment:

Richard Gadsden said...

Oh, Japan, you were the future once.