Prime Minister Gordon Brown and Conservative leader David Cameron have come to verbal blows in the wake of Mr. Cameron’s claim that his Shadow Cabinet would do a much better job of “f***ing up the country” than the current government could ever do.
Mr. Cameron’s comments came during an impassioned speech at the Conservative Party Conference in Manchester. After declaring that he wanted the Conservatives to win the next general election, rather than simply ‘let Labour lose it’, Cameron attacked the current government’s record.
“This government keeps telling us about all the great things it’s done,” Mr. Cameron said, “but they’re just claiming the credit for others’ work. It’s clear, for instance, that the current financial crisis in Britain is not the work of Alistair Darling, but the result of a global recession. Under a Conservative government, any crippling financial downturn would be of our own making.”
In a statement outside Number 10 this morning, Mr. Brown defended his Chancellor, whom he described as “every bit as useless as he appears.”
“Both myself and the Chancellor of the Exchequer are fully responsible for all the f***-ups that have taken place while I have been in charge, and probably some other ones as well,” Mr. Brown said. “We intend to continue our dismal record into a historic fourth term. The British public cannot afford to trust this inexperienced Tory front bench to do such a thorough job of screwing up.”
The two leaders’ war of words sparked a scramble from their respective ministers to outdo one another in making damaging and foolish policy decisions. Alistair Darling and George Osborne began by trading public sector pay freeze plans. Then, when Mr. Osborne announced that he would raise the retirement age to 66, the Chancellor responded by claiming he would raise it to 67.
The exchange between the two men then got somewhat out of hand, and is reported to be ongoing. According to the latest update, Mr. Osborne plans to extend the retirement age to 112, while a forthcoming announcement from Mr. Darling is expected to confirm Labour’s plan to keep people in work until they are 113.