Not quite sure how to put this, but I simply did not believe him. I thought that our Prime Minister was telling a bare-faced 'porkie'. A few weeks ago, Gordon Brown made a comment at PMQs about Conservative policy being developed on "the playing fields of Eton". At the time, I thought it was shameful, calculated and premeditated. I thought it was part of the deeply unpleasant campaign being orchestrated by the current Labour Government to bring 'class' into the General Election campaign. The first time we saw this nauseating strategy was in the Crewe and Nantwich By-election - where it failed miserably. You would think they'd learn. Its seems obvious to me that Labour's strategy over the last few months has been based on portraying the Conservatives as 'posh' and not concerned about the poorest people in society. It's made them look very nasty people. At first the 'Eton' jibe was thought to have been successful. To some extent, it worked in the House of Commons 'bear pit' - probably because it genuinely reflects Gordon Brown's approach to politics. But it hasn't worked amongst swing voters, who are not overly concerned about where politicians 'have been educated. And anyway, Labour just look incredible and spiteful, whenever William Hague, Ken Clarke and Eric Pickles are leading for us. The strategy is back firing.
But this post is about truthfulness, and credibility, rather than political strategy. Today, the Prime Minister informed us that the 'Eton' comment was just a 'joke'. Now I'm not sure whether I can be charged with any crime against the state for this, but I just do not believe him. It was not a 'joke'. It was deliberate. He meant what he said. He (or at least his advisers) now realises it was a crass comment to make - and some of his own Ministers have turned on him over it. And today he was trying to get out of it. Watch it, and tell me you believe him. Go on, try to change my mind.