Saturday, 27 November 2010

Is T.I.N.A. Working?

More polling from the lovely people at IPSOS. And you know how Keir loves giving his view on what it all means.

It shows that 39% of people see the economy as the most important issue facing Britain today. And 54% gave the economy as an answer when asked to state which issues other than their chosen "most important" issue were important.

We could read this as being obvious given the times we live in.

However, Keir found the percentages of the other issues intriguing. Just 2% said the NHS was the most important issue. Also, 2% said education and 2% said housing. These are staggeringly low. Even in the second question, education only got 15%, the NHS 18% and housing 8% when people were asked to state other important issues.

What this tells Keir is that the Conservative narrative is working; T.I.N.A. is fooling the nation.

The Tory changes are going to hit education hard. The cuts and the barmy "free schools" policy are going to begin the ideological dismantling of the school system. The NHS is looking down a similar barrel.

And the cuts to housing benefit alongside changes to social housing tenure rules will, as the Tory Mayor of London put it, cause "Kosovo-style social cleansing."

So why don't these issues poll higher on the IPSOS Issues Index?

Keir thinks it's because the Tory line is working due to there being, in Political terms, no alternative. Labour is inactive. Whenever the Tories are challenged on a cut they are making, they respond with;

a) T.I.N.A.
b) "Difficult decisions to cut the deficit"
c) Big Society bullshit
d) "We inherited the biggest deficit since Alexander marched into Egypt"

Okay so the last one isn't quite accurate. But you get the point. They are smoke-screening all of their savage policies and cuts with these lines that are scaring people into going with the narrative. That is what is leaving issues like the NHS, education and housing so low down on the list of priorities.

Until Labour finds its alternative, that smoke will only get thicker.


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