Women’s Institute members excepted, at the start of the Labour years nearly every charity, businessman or other social leader was fearful of saying anything negative about Labour.

That’s all changed now.

It was William Hague who said that the public would go through a number of phases in its relationship with Labour, ending in contempt*.  We’re close to that now.

Read this PDF
of a letter from the Independent Academies Association to Labour ministers Jim Knight and Ed Balls. It drips with anger and frustration. The letter doesn’t hold back from attacking the Government’s increasing meddling in Academies:

"Your proposals, and the concomitant encroachment on the independent status of Academies, seriously impact upon the ability of sponsors, governors and principals to lead and manage their institutions effectively and efficiently, placing at risk the transformational change in the education system the programme was designed to facilitate."

Thank goodness Michael Gove is going to smash planning rules and other bureaucracy to make it much easier to set up new independent state schools that parents can switch to and transfer the state per-pupil funding, while also tearing up the current system of teacher pay and conditions.  If David Cameron holds his nerve and lets Gove loose, this will change the face of Britain and consign much of the debate of the last twenty years to the history books.

Tim Montgomerie

* Can anyone give me the exact quote, circa 1999?

5.30pm: Thanks to readers who found the quote (from 1999): "For when I spoke to you in this hall two years ago I said that New Labour would bring first fascination, then admiration, then disillusionment and finally contempt. At that stage the admiration was running high; now the disillusionment is beginning; and mark my words, they are not so far away from contempt." The contempt has taken a little longer than WH predicted but it has come!

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