UK Politics


Life must be very difficult for Michael Howard. The scion of a jewish asylum seeking family, he must know that any proposal on immigration – indeed, any proposal at all with an authoritarian flavour – will invariably bring out the lazy charge that he is “behaving like a Nazi“.

The dangerous assumptions raised by that analogy have been well canvassed by Prof Norm and Eve Garrard in recent, linked, posts. Nevertheless, and not withstanding that note of caution, is there not something both absurd and revolting about a party which puts forward travellers, along with speed humps, as the key issues on which they will challenge Labour? And in a week which has seen a series of Tory election posters which say something like “I’m not racist but …”, aren’t comparisons at least with Alf Garnett warranted?

The appropriate metaphor, as Yusuf Smith notes in a spot-on post, is that Howard is seeking to pull the ladder up after himself:

A better likeness is the western politicians who refused to allow Jewish refugees into their countries, particularly the USA. I’m sure that none of these politicians actually intended that the people they were sending on to other countries, including the Netherlands which was subsequently invaded by Germany, would end up being murdered, but they had the opportunity to save millions of people’s lives, and passed it up for political reasons.