Monday, 25 October 2010

Put your case, don't spin it.

At the moment I’m struggling to find anything new in Cameron’s announcement of a National Infrastructure Plan.

Everything in the plan seems to have been announced already. I found one policy in there that was announced as far back as July – essentially the whole thing seems to be a re-branding exercise.

It’s an old trick that goes like this – take a whole bunch of previously announced policies from different departments and re-package them in a document targeted at a particular audience, so that you can tell that audience that you’ve come up with policies especially for them.

The audience was the CBI conference this morning, which was told by Cameron: “I can announce today the UK’s first ever National Infrastructure Plan.”

It includes Crossrail, High Speed Rail, Green Investment Bank, grants for electric vehicles etc etc.

I’m not saying these things won’t benefit business or suggesting that Cameron shouldn’t get up and tell the CBI which of his polices will help them – merely having a gripe at the attempt to win news headlines by re-announcing old stuff in a new way.

I got sick of that kind of spinning under Labour and hoped the Tories wouldn’t do it – but the signs even when they were in opposition were that they would.

I suppose it would be politically naive to think it avoidable.

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