Monday, November 26, 2007

Saj Karim - a double tragedy

I heard the news of Saj Karim's Damascus Road revelation at the Moorside Grange Hotel in Higher Disley. This was already a bittersweet visit for me - my son was born down the road in Stepping Hill Hospital - my daughter went to Disley under 5's - and I still recall what must be the most stylish GP's surgery in the country, like walking into the pages of Ideal Home...............So, as I opened the curtains onto a misty world of moors and grey where the Cheshire plain should be, the Today Programme told me the sorry tale. I am sorry. I frankly expected better. I wonder exactly when Saj started to regard our party as a "spent force"? Presumably on discovering he had only made it to number 2 on the Euro list? Surely he was not so cynical as to have stood in the Euros believing this, but out of self interest choosing to ignore his feelings? Maybe I am not in a position to judge, however, as someone who was quite prepared to be thrown off the Eurolist for my own principles, I abhor anyone who is prepared to throw out their principles for their own ends (always supposing they have any in the first place). I perhaps, naively, expect better of Lib Dem politicians, and whilst I would not agree with him on a lot of things, David Laws is an example of what I am on about.

So, the second part of this tragedy? Frankly that we have lost one of our pitifully few BME parliamentarians. It throws into sharp relief the scale of the mountain we have to climb. I am glad that Nick Clegg has been talking about an academy, but frankly - its not about developing talent, we have it in spadefuls already! So, to Nick and to Chris - a new and more urgent challenge - you have to act and you have to act now. What are you going to do that will make a difference, not tomorrow, next week or next parliament - that is too late - what are you going to do today?

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