Tuesday, September 28, 2010

That Ed Milliband speech in full

In a big scoop for the Extra Bold Blog, I have obtained an early draft of Ed Milliband's speech.

For copyright reasons, I won't release this until after the actual speech has been delivered.

[check against delivery]

Friends, comrades, it is 72 hours since I became leader of this party. I want to say how incredibly honoured I am that you have chosen me over my brother to lead our party. David that'll teach you to nationalise my train set.

And let me pay tribute to two colleagues who are standing down. Alasdair Darling: you kept cool while Mandelson and Brown were overriding you. And Jack Straw you were always good as the butt of my unfunny jokes. Like this one.

The gift my parents gave to me and David is what I want for every child in this country: an indoctrination into the revolutionary road to socialism.

We have a responsibility to leave this world in a better state than we found it, except when it comes to public debt.

Freedom and opportunity are precious gifts. This is something I learned not to be true from my dad's books.

But lets face facts we had a bad result. Every day out of power is one where we can blame the coalition for the consequences of our deficit. So lets resolve to be back in power when the deficit has been removed, er, hopefully just 5 years.

Remember the spirit of 1997. But by the end of our time in office we had lost our way. Tony and Gordon took on conventional wisdom and lost. Let's do that again.

The old way of thinking said that public services would always be second class. And they still are. I'm proud of, er, something. But we saved the National Health Service, apparently.

The old thinking was that the world was too big and this country too small to make a difference. But look at our wars!

So Tony and Gordon took on established institutions until they became them.

But we also have to understand where we went wrong. How did we lose 5 million votes? A party taking on old thinking became trapped by its own dogmas. We became friends of the city, insufficiently racist on immigration, corrupted in the expenses scandal, and piling the debt on students.

But this week we embark on the journey back to thinking. We don't know all the answers yet. Dis generation wants to rule the nation with version. This generation wants to change our foreign policy so that we don't always start wars when we have the chance.

As we emerge from the global economic crisis we need to reduce the deficit. We are in no position to oppose what the coalition does because we would have had to do much the same. The fiscal credibility we earned in 1997 was hard won, and Ed Balls has being doing his best to throw away the last shreds of it.

But I'm now going to pretend I didn't say any of that, and have a go at all the cuts we would have had to have done anyway.

This government has no 5 year plan for growth, and no 5 year economic plan is no way to a planned economy of any kind.

I have a much bigger vision - to emerge from the financial crisis learning to listen to Vince Cable next time.

I want our businesses to benefit from the globalised economy. But not if it means hiring foreigners. Except people like my dad. We didn't listen on the doorstep to complaints about immigration. [camera cuts to some black people in the audience]

We want to win an argument about the danger the coalition government poses to our party. So let's have no truck with overblown rhetoric about waves of strike action. Labour would have had to do the same. In case that sounds evil, I'll talk a bit about caring for children.

This is one of the hardest issues for our party - but those who can work should do so. Reforming our benefits system must not be about stereotyping everyone out of work, like it was under Labour, but a genuine plan to make sure those in need are protected, and those who can work do so, like under the coalition.

We are a generation that yearns for things business cannot provide - green spaces and family. We were right to introduce markets, but naive about them. We shouldn't have closed all the post offices. We shouldn't have put all those pubs out of business with the smoking ban.

We stand for these things not because we are social conservatives, but because we are just conservatives.

Family, family, family, family, family, family, family, family, family, family, family, family, family, family, family, family, family, family, family, family, family, family, family, family, family.

So as we rebuild our economy, family, family, family, family, family, family, family, family.

But government can itself become a vested interest. I know the value of a good school, and I know that many parents are frustrated that they don't have them. But we wouldn't let them set up their own schools.

I believe individual freedom and liberty matter and should never be given away lightly. [Do I need to duck for cover at this point? Ed] Locking up innocent people undermined the good things we did like the database state.

We, me and my brother are the new generation. And we need new thinking in foreign policy.

Troops, troops, troops, troops, troops, troops, troops, troops, troops, troops, troops.

I've got to be honest with you about Iraq. Iraq divided our country. I'll say it divided our party, although we didn't show it at the time. But we were wrong.

Politics is basically broken. We have a huge responsibility to reform it. I support changing the voting system and will vote yes on AV. And we need to elect the house of lords. And we need more decisions to be made locally. I am so happy we have a government that understands all this unlike the last lot.

Hooray for Red Ken being our candidate for London Mayor. We can be the Red brothers. Sorry David.

Wisdom is not the preserve of any one party. Keynes, Lloyd-George and Beveridge are among my heroes. When Ken Clarke wants to review short sentences, I won't call him soft on crime, sorry Jack. Let's have a more grown up kind of politics. [Do make sure this early draft of the speech isn't leaked.]

We are the optimists, the new generation, the optimists and the new generation. Hooray for us.


Jennie said...

"We stand for these things not because we are social conservatives, but because we are just conservatives."


Anonymous said...

It's funny, I sat through the whole thing, and the speech I heard him give was almost exactly the one you've written!