George Osborne’s right to speak out as a voice of reason

Yesterday’s tragic events in Westminster were a reminder to us that we need to continue to move forward as a people in defence of British values. To me, those values are respect, tolerance, openness, integrity and getting on with things – but above all, a commitment to freedom and democracy.

In not giving into fear, we demonstrate that we are not afraid. By sticking to our values and trusting our police, armed forces personnel and the response of our politicians, we ensure that we do not let those bastards who seek to destroy us win.

Developments in George Osborne’s editorship

Today saw the latest development in George Osborne’s new job. He has written an open letter to his constituents in his local newspaper, the Knutford Guardian. It is, as you would expect of the exceptional former Chancellor, erudite, and makes an important point about how he can contribute to politics in this country outside of Government.

The specific part of the letter to which I would like to draw your attention is this: “Now I have left Downing Street I want to continue to take part in the debate about the future direction of our country. No longer being Chancellor gives me time to do that in other ways – yes, in the Chamber of the House of Commons; but also as the editor of a major newspaper, the Evening Standard.  There is a long tradition of politics and journalism mixing. One of the greatest newspaper editors ever, CP Scott, combined editing the Manchester Guardian with being an MP. In our age, politicians from Iain Macleod and Richard Crossman to, of course, Boris Johnson have combined the role of editor and Member of Parliament.”

Mr Osborne is now in a position in which he can continue to communicate and influence outside Downing Street. This is only a good thing: as a Tory moderate, it is important that he is allowed the right to continue to ensure that our politics remains stable and secure in this country.

He is also someone who I consider to be committed to upholding all the values for which we stand.

The Evening Standard, is, of course, the paper of the “metropolitan elite”, so despised by those on the right of the Tory Party. Something tells me that having known his sense of humour during the five-minute period in which I met him, he might well have taken the job for this reason.

What I can say is that, knowing his politics and his vision, it will only lead to good things in terms of ongoing work by a man forward-thinking man.

This weekend, I might finally open a special bottle of of whisky I’ve held onto for a couple of years. This will be for a multitude of reasons: a solemn recognition of what happened yesterday, a toast to our values, our press, police, and to hope that we can continue to uphold the values in which we believe in the face of direct evil (£).

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