Friday, 7 September 2012

Jeremy Hunt; rewarding failure.

Deep in the ruins of GHQ in fortress Stalingrad General Paulus mused over the situation. His army was dead, dying, captured or starving. He held in his hand a memo from Berlin that effectively promoted him to Generalfeldmarschall, no German army had ever been defeated in the field, nor had a GFM surrendered nor were they expected to. The implication for failure was clear.

After the failure of July plot General von Treskow walked out into a minefield.

Generals Clinton and Burgoyne never held a significant command after failing in the Americas.

Asquith and Chamberlain slipped into obscurity after their respective administrations failed to cope with war in Europe.

My meandering point is that failure should not be rewarded and in many cases punished. Yet somehow this reshuffle has failed to address this.

I take the point that George Osborne being kept could be a good thing as the policies do receive mixed reviews - though personally I think Cable, Lawes and Alexander would be a dream team in the treasury.

My big issue is Jeremy Hunt's promotion to Health minister. Ok Lanesly had to go, that's very understandable. In fact many commentators have been expecting it for sometime.

What I don't understand is that Hunt failed in an epic way - truly it was the proverbial cock-up. His appointment to oversee the BSKYB bid was predicted, on the twitter-sphere, to give Murdoch the bid before he'd got the job.

The Leveson enquiry has shown a lot of discrepancies in the process including many questionable actions by Mr Hunt. Whether guilty or not, the public consider it a dirty deal.

Further to that questions were asked in parliament about the conduct of Mr Hunt, questions that were not satisfactorily answered.

I can understand David Cameron standing by his minister at the time, it's the right thing to do after all you're a team but he should, like Lanesly, been sidelined at this reshuffle.

Fair enough his work on the Olympics and Jubilee are worthy of praise but he was a cog in a monstrously large machine and cannot take all of the credit. Indeed his failure and the accusations of corruption far over over shadow anything else.

To promote him to the Health portfolio is just sheer madness. The Conservatives are always open to attack over the NHS and it is easy for the opposition to frighten the populous with talk of privatisation whenever there is any well meaning reform and with Jeremy Hunt's track record there will be a lot more worried people and serious scrutiny of his offices.

I'm sure David Cameron has his reasons but they had better be good ones. May be I'm being judgemental. After all Churchill failed on many occasions before his premiership resulting in the General strike and Galllipoli massacre. Yet he went on to win the Second World War. Some how though I don't think Jeremy Hunt is in the same category as Churchill.

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