The New Statesman’s rolling politics blog


Cameron co-opts Gandhi

Election 2010: Guffwatch.

Dave's up next, inevitably. There's a lot to choose from, but let's stay topical and look to today's launch of National Citizen Service with Michael Caine. (On that point, Dave really should have worn a sign round his neck saying: "Hurrah! Bona fide film star!" What a step up from Carol Vorderman, though -- the Tories must be thrilled . . . )

Anyway, there was a lovely, reflective moment as Cameron considered the principle of the project:

Gandhi put it beautifully, as he did so often: "The best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others."

Oh, Da-ave! You've already got Caine, do you really need to co-opt Gandhi, too? The "as he did so often" -- so knowing, so wise -- particularly grates.

The other good bit was the effect the new plan would have on disaffected teens, giving them fire in their bellies, steel in their backbones, joy in their souls. I quite like the bellies and souls: solid, stirring stuff. But steel in their backbones? It sounds like a Victorian torture. Still, a good one to win back all those ex-army majors from Ukip.

So far in the Guff Wars, it's 1-1 Brown-Cameron. (Clegg, don't you worry. We'll come to you soon.)