‘Young, Bright and On The Right’, This Is Not The Future Of The Party
Whoever was watching this must have had a smile on their face, knowing this was almost a comedy sketch in comparison to the modern Conservative Party.
For those who didn’t see, this is a show about two students with ideas above their station of their standings in their University Association and the impact on their future careers as politicians. As nice as Joe Cooke and Chris Monk are, by becoming a stereotype of the creation of the Oxford and Cambridge University Conservative Association they are not helping themselves by becoming a parody of themselves.
There have been calls from many saying this being part of the biased BBC programming, the reality is that if anyone managed to line up this as a documentary there would be queues of people wanting to show this.
The modern Conservative Party is not one where if you act ‘Upper Class’ you will get noticed and progress to become a Cabinet member. It is one that is now run by the members with many Conservative MPs being selected using open meetings reducing the inherent boys club from trying to push in one of their own. The only elitist aspect is the on the bias of ability, substance and personality. There is no longer a divide and it is clearly a Party that I am proud to be a member of due to it’s inclusiveness. Anyone who attends any Conservative events will see this.
A shining beacon of this can be seen in York Tories, an organisation that has seen its scandal in the past. The one thing that has always run through the York University Conservatives is no one cares where you are from, Rich, Poor, Overseas or Eccentric. The one thing that is embraced is they will welcome anyone who shares their conservative values and love a bit of healthy debate. There is a distinct lack of plotting and scheming which was so apparent in the programme.
The reason Oxford University and Cambridge University have produced so many politicians is not down to the fact it is prime networking or it is how you act, but it is the students are going to the two top Universities in the country, and as such will produce people going to the top of their chosen field. So there is an abundance of people in the Labour and Conservative Cabinet who are Oxbridge educated. We want to have the brightest and best involved in running the country so this is an expected result.
The modern era is not like it used to be though with a diverse mix of people who are the best in their field; a degree in Politics, Philosophy and Economics is no longer the fast track way to becoming a top politician. Looking at the 2010 Parliamentary intake there was such a diverse range of career backgrounds bringing their own expertise to the House of Commons and not shoe in politicians from the stereotypical mould. Trying to follow someone by wanting to become them is completely different to coming from the same University and same University Association.
The one good thing to come from Joe Cooke in this programme was his leaking of details to the Press about the about the behaviour of the association. The only reason he did this was to get back at his former friend who didn’t agree with him, which is most definitely not a quality of someone I would like to see in Cabinet. Then again we are discussing students at University who are young, and as such do not have the real world experience on how to achieve your goals. There is plenty of time for these people to grow and learn that it is a lot better to achieve your goals without trying to wreak revenge on a former friend, as there is no need to oust someone you don’t like. Eventually it will come back to bite you.
As someone who is part of Conservative Future and Deputy Chair of the York Conservative Association I am yet to see, throughout the country, where your background has had an impact on anything.
You will not get very far being a plastic politician and becoming something you are not. You should embrace your upbringing and just be who you are, there is no more any need for ‘fakery’ to get anywhere in the party, merely passion and competence.