Dishy Dave Cameron wandered into town to push his case to be the this season's loser of the Tory party.
This is a great city - Britain's second city, a powerhouse of our economy and a place that's enjoying a fantastic revival. Brindleyplace, the Bullring, The Mailbox - all these great new developments are testament to the renaissance of a world-class city. They're proving the truth of the city orchestra's slogan - "An international reputation, made in Birmingham."
At the risk of stating the bleeding obvious, David, the spirit of which you speak was created by a Labour council. For the past eighteen months, the Tories have been sitting on their overpaid backsides and stifling that revival.
The national revival of the Conservative Party depends on showing how modern Conservative values and principles can help deliver urban revival right across the land, in inner city areas and in suburbs too.Can we see some of that in Birmingham, please? If Cameron's holding the creaky Tory/Lib Dem coalition in this city up to the nation as an example of what the Tories can do, then that's indicative of the problems facing the party in local government - just how desperate can you get?
He's still long on vision and short on policy (which at least puts him one up on Whitless). He is trying to put the memory of the Baroness to rest, though:
there is such a thing as society, it's just not the same thing as the stateand calling on one of the big rallying ideas of the Republicans in the US
...And I'm delighted to see that the city council is working increasingly closely with community and faith groups, exploring ways to help them achieve their potential. That's essential because we haven't even begun to harness the social sector's true potential...- they sought to pass responsibility for some of the social support network onto voluntary and faith groups, relying on local communities to support themselves with reduced government backing.
What with that and the flat tax, I'm looking forward to him taking over - Gordon needs some fresh meat to chew up and spit out.
Roll on 2009 and an enhanced majority, say I.