Bright ideas under wraps

Greetings from the Labour Party in Brighton.

At Labour conferences, there are those who want to win elections and those who love opposition and do their best to embarrass the leadership, a bit like having a few hundred grumpy aunts and uncles, sitting in the corner, upsetting your family and friends.

The Tories often stage manage their events much better although who can forget the year the letters fell from Theresa May’s backdrop, a portent of disasters to follow if ever I saw one.

Shadow Chancellor, Rachel Reeves, has set the tone for Labour with ambitious but affordable plans to help business recover and create jobs in a new green economy.

We have to be careful about revealing too many good ideas, too soon.

Remember when we announced plans for an energy cap. It was immediately denounced by the Tories and then quietly adopted and is now the cornerstone of this government’s efforts to control energy price rises.

Right now, our country is struggling to overcome the ravages of the pandemic and a spate of petrol, gas and food shortages. The government insists it’s not their fault, but what’s the point of government if it can’t sort these things?

It’s good that they’ve borrowed Labour’s suggestions for temporary visas to address shortages of HGV drivers but a pity they didn’t do it a year ago when we first suggested it. That might have spared us some of the current misery.

Keir Starmer has shown this week that he’s in charge of Labour and has a team with the ideas and energy ready to take over if the Conservatives continue to mess up.

Shortly the stage will move to their conference in Manchester.

Let’s hope there’s enough petrol to get them there and that the restaurants and bars don’t run out of chicken or red wine.

After almost 12 years in power, they’re finding it harder to blame others for the country’s problems. No doubt we’ll hear a lot of rubbishing of Labour ideas but watch how quickly some of them will magically be rebranded as Conservative ideas.

Wish you were here!

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