Newsnight will be doing a feature on David Cameron's new Built to Last document tonight. They're also blogging about it HERE. Sadly they haven't seen fit to ask me to grace Ms Wark's sofa, so I shall share my views with you now. I did a piece of Channel 4 News earlier but I forgot to watch it to see which piece they used. Bet it was the bit where I said we should be arguing the case for lower taxes (wash my mouth out!).
The new Built to Last document is a great improvement on the first version. It's still a statement of aims and values but more detailed. Apart from the fact that it only talks about flatter and simpler taxes, conveniently omitting the word 'lower', I think it's excellent. It is something that virtually every Conservative should be able to sign up to. It should also give the lie to those who claim the Conservatives are policy-lite. Of course the Party shouldn't have detailed policies in every single area at this point in the electoral cycle, but this document helps cement the foundations of a proper policy forming process.
I think the key part of the Built to Last document is the phrase the 'Responsibility Revolution'. I can't say it's the snappiest slogan I have ever heard, but it has the virtue of meaning something.
I am clear about the new direction we must set for Britain. To meet the challenges of the twenty-first century, and to satisfy people’s aspirations today, this country needs a responsibility revolution. A revolution in personal responsibility – giving every individual the
skills, the resources, and the confidence to take control of their life. A revolution in professional responsibility – giving all those who work in our public services the freedom to fulfil their vocation. A revolution in civic responsibility – giving our neighbourhoods and communities the power to shape their destinies, fight crime and improve the quality of life. A revolution in corporate responsibility – giving business the encouragement and the incentive to help enhance our environment and improve well-being. That is the mission of the modern Conservative Party: a responsibility revolution to create an opportunity society – a society in which everybody is a somebody, a doer not a done-for.
You can download the full Built to Last document HERE.