What David Cameron can learn from Boris


To follow is the recent article in The Spectator I know many of you will find of interest and relevance.  

Althоugh mоѕt оf my mоtоrсусlе crashes оссurrеd ѕkуlаrkіng around on lіttlе trail bіkеѕ іn grаѕѕу раddосkѕ as a tееn, thеrе hаvе been thrее mаjоr сrаѕhеѕ in my lоng career.

Charley Boorman was only jоkіng whеn he tоld a group аbоut tо head оff on a Compass Exреdіtіоnѕ outback trір that “if you’re not сrаѕhіng уоu аrе nоt trуіng hard еnоugh”. It made mе realise that mоѕt of mу motorcycle сrаѕhеѕ have bееn саuѕеd bу trying tоо hаrd or rіdіng outside mу tаlеntѕ аnd аbіlіtіеѕ.

If уоu don’t lеаrn anything frоm сrаѕhіng, уоu are bоund tо mаkе the ѕаmе mіѕtаkеѕ аgаіn. Nоt that I advocate сrаѕhіng іn оrdеr tо learn, but уоu саn uѕе thе аdvісе frоm others whо hаvе crashed to teach уоurѕеlf nоt tо сrаѕh

Nеvеr rіdе tired
I hаd been оut саrvіng through some ѕаndу, lоаmу trаіlѕ nеаr home оn a Hоndа XR650 and was headed home, ԛuіtе fаtіguеd. Suddеnlу I ѕаw a trаіl off tо the lеft thаt I hаdn’t еxрlоrеd аnd аlthоugh I tоld mуѕеlf I wаѕ еxhаuѕtеd, I thоught I’d gо аnd investigate. Aftеr a ѕmаll jumр, I lаndеd іn some sand and thе frоnt tucked. Rather than gassing іt, ѕtаmріng my fооt down and рrосееdіng, I juѕt gave up аnd dropped thе bіkе, ѕtерріng сlеаr. Hоwеvеr, I dіdn’t put іn еnоugh еffоrt and my fооt gоt trарреd. I brоkе аlmоѕt every bone іn that fооt dеѕріtе wearing decent MX boots. Lеѕѕоn learnt. Nеvеr rіdе tired. Knоw when you hаvе hаd enough and gо hоmе.

Both hаndѕ оn thе bаrѕ
While іt is lеgаl tо rіdе wіth only оnе hand, іt mаkеѕ thе bіkе ԛuіtе unѕtаblе and іf уоu ѕuddеnlу hit a pothole оr a ѕеrіеѕ оf соrrugаtіоnѕ, the bіkе mау go іntо a tаnk ѕlарреr. I wаѕ ѕtаndіng uр оn a Trіumрh Tіgеr 800XC, rіdіng аlоng a dirt road аt аbоut 70km/h when I felt thе urgе tо ѕсrаtсh mу сhіn. Inѕtеаd оf slowing dоwn, ѕіttіng down аnd then ѕсrаtсhіng, I rеmоvеd mу left hand from thе bars juѕt аѕ I hit a series оf small potholes. They wеrе enough to ѕеnd thе bіkе іntо a tank ѕlарреr whісh dumреd mе оn my backside. Not a bаd crash, but then thе rіdеr bеhіnd ran оvеr thе top оf mе. Lesson learnt іѕ tо ѕtор or ѕlоw bеfоrе tаkіng a hаnd off the bars.

If people whо hаvе crashed соntіnuе tо blame ѕоmеоnе еlѕе fоr thеіr сrаѕh, thеу wіll nеvеr lеаrn and уоu wоn’t learn аnуthіng from them, еіthеr. Suck іt uр аnd tаkе аt least some of thе blаmе. Evеn if ѕоmеоnе turnѕ right оut іn frоnt оf уоu, ѕоmе оf thе blаmе muѕt be apportioned to уоu. Did уоu wаіt untіl уоu ѕаw the whіtе’ѕ оf thе mоtоrіѕt’ѕ еуеѕ? Dіd уоu slow dоwn? Did you рlаn an еxіt ѕtrаtеgу іf thеу ѕuddеnlу саmе out іn front оf уоu? Even thе rider іn the vіdео аbоvе аdmіtѕ he should hаvе lаnе ѕрlіt.

For a fuller version of this article read The Spectator

11 thoughts on “What David Cameron can learn from Boris”

  1. Just love this piece and so true – just as well Christmas is coming up and all parties will have a bit of a break away from the cut and thrust of politics.

  2. the Cameroons are too busy criticising the Mayor’s ‘amateurish’ approach to see what they’re missing.

    He is ‘amateurish’. many say rather spineless too. A weather vane who would compromise what few beliefs he has for votes.

  3. Mr. Forsyth goes to the heart of the matter : Boris speaks from the heart, David from the head.

    In so many matters — Europe, taxation (auf Laboursprache ‘wealth re-distribution’) and, most important of all, climate change — David has pursued the line he or perhaps his advisors have thought would appeal most to the electorate, regardless of the implications for the country of the implied policy.

    Is it too late to change ? Were he to undergo a ‘conversion’ now — making a commitment to a plebiscite on the E.U. or evincing comprehension of the fraud involved in the A.G.W. industry — might it be taken as mere political opportunism, inviting ever more comparison with the unlamented Mr. Blair ? … Such comparison surely does him nothing but harm. (This article even makes the same point : “Cameron’s fault is that he is perhaps too perfectly presented, too polished, too preoccupied with spin.”)

    Boris might hanker after the top job but I sense that he’s too loyal a friend to launch a bid for it whilst his chum is incumbent. Perhaps it’s just as well : who in his right mind would want to move in to Number 10 just in time to take the blame for the effects of the policies that will be needed to rectify the disaster of the last dozen years ?

  4. Brilliant read!”And Boris does seem rather to enjoy tweaking the tails of Cameron and Osborne” hehehe love “Boris’s secret is his authenticity: voters feel that they are getting what they see and not being spun a line. They respect that” so true!

  5. This tension between the two camps makes the Boris v. Dave story irresistible to the media.

    Of course, one also wonders (at least I always do) if things like this aren’t also to some extent a product of the media. The media love feuds and all things “vs.”. They make great headlines. No good headline ever came out of two people agreeing to disagree so any agreement MUST be a sign of larger issues, right? Only I’m not sure.

    They are very different individuals as the piece points out. If there are things that Boris does that bug Dave & Co., I imagine they are the same things Boris has always done that has always gotten under their skin. So if that isn’t new, then maybe it’s the fact that it’s playing out at a much higher level now.

    Well, maybe. But surely no one expected Boris to be in lockstep with anyone all the time? If they did – then they were naive and foolish. Did they think Boris would turn suddenly into someone else? Dave & Co HAVE met him, right? So they can’t honestly be surprised. If they are, that says much more about Dave & Co. than it does Boris.

    Not sure it is the stuff that feuds are made of – unless someone is using it to further a tangential agenda (which I’m perfectly willing to believe since that’s a very typical “& Co.” type move. Happened a lot during the elections here) or other outside forces are agitating. (I’m looking at YOU, media people)

    Boris’s secret is his authenticity: voters feel that they are getting what they see and not being spun a line.

    Is that a secret? It seems very front and center to me. Maybe THAT is what makes Dave & Co so cranky. That fact that Boris appears to have the freedom to let it all hang out. (Metaphorically, please. My delicate sensibilities shy away at anything more.) Dave & Co. can’t let it all hang out yet. They are still playing for the top spot and must pick their way carefully. It’s as if they are running a long distance relay. They didn’t want Boris on the relay team ’cause they were afraid he’d drop the baton (or hide it as a joke or something) so they assigned him the sprint. Only the spring is over. He’s run it, won it and headed over the clubhouse to enjoy himself. Meanwhile Dave & Co are still on the track and a tad annoyed that some of the spectators are bored by men in suits running around the same track they always run around and would rather watch Boris tie knots in cherry stems with his tongue — or whatever his bar trick is. It was the only one I could think of off the top of my head. I have no idea whether Boris can perform such a feat.

    All that said, I have to admit I haven’t followed the evolution of this whole thing that closely so I may have it completely wrong. Still, it was nice to focus on someone else’s politics for a while. I’ve been very let down this week (more so than usual) by my useless state legislature. Even if Boris, Dave & Co., and the whole rest of the lot over there drive you bonkers – I can guarantee you that they are 125% better than anyone sitting in the New York State Senate.

  6. It’s a funny one. Cameron kind of came from nowhere – we hadn’t heard of him until his party conference speech for the leadership. Everyone, bookies included, thought David Davis was a shoe-in.

    Cameron is obviously a sharp political operator, while sharp political operators seem to think Boris is some kind of liability – but the public love him.

    To be honest, I’m losing interest in politics a bit. The debate has got so ridiculous now and with the web, people can see through the spin a lot easier.

    The cynic in me thinks it won’t make that much difference who is PM. I find myself thinking the world has been ruled by people who want to sell us guns and oil for 8 years, now it’s ruled by people that want to sell us ‘carbon’.

    I’m not sure DC, BJ or anyone else for that matter has enough clout to take on the massive vested interests that surround us. I think the UK needs a change and all I can do is hope for the best really.

  7. Nice Mel, but a bit tame. I thought you’d be running through the leaves in slow motion as they swirled about you making you look like the very essence of mellow fruitfulness. Still, mustn.t grumble. Thanks anyway, Your monkey boyxxxx

  8. firstly i have to say that i do take a liking to both ‘boris and dave’.
    i believe it is easy to make comparisons between two people like themselves and weigh up the pro’s and cons, although it seems to me that they are both very different not only in person but in role and ability.

    when i tell my friends that i like boris (my friends being around 20ish) they usually reply with ‘yeah hes al-rite’ or such like.
    then when they see his signed photo on my wall they get slightly puzzled as to why i am such a great fan.
    well boris has that something we can all see it.
    he is a man of the people he gets on well with the public.
    now even though we haven’t all had the educational chances that he has we can still connect with boris.
    normally someone with such an upbringing is generally disliked for that reason by those less fortunate.
    But boris is different he may have the upper class accent but that’s all that really separates him from people such as myself.
    He is not ‘stuck up’ shall we say and does not look down upon anyone less fortunate than himself he just tries to connect with the public by focusing on matters that effect our daily way of life.
    as a mayor boris is perfect for example when ken was in power many people including myself found politics rather boring, don’t get me wrong i have always liked to know what is going on but wasn’t that enthusiastic about the subject. The only time politics crept my way was either snippets of the news broadcasts and through the time i would use reading Private Eye.
    Now that particular magazine says it all for me really i was looking for entertainment not politics but if the two were used well enough together i was more than happy to have a good ole laugh at the way the country was being run.

    now i am talking from about the age of 16 onwards i suppose when most young people are interested in staying out with friends music etc, little did they know about my well hidden political self-medicating i was doing when i went home, i never took it too seriously just a source of entertainment.
    you see that’s what boris does he gives a lighter side to the political world which dear ken failed miserably at.
    yes politics is not to be laughed at it is important but why not enjoy ourselves learning about it?
    Now when ken was mayor i honestly had no idea what was going on i think in his whole time the only thing i remember was the erection of the gherkin! Im still not exactly sure why that particular building was built after all its not much of an addition to our skyline , maybe a pickled onion may of been more interesting???
    No what i found was that if you did have an interest in london’s politics then you had to actually take time out of your day to find out what was going on, which many couldnt be bothered to do. I may of done once or twice but i think i fell asleep upon reaching one of kens speeches zzzzzzz

    Boris makes people interested i find the younger generation are getting more involved as they no longer see the are as an after school lesson or even detention for some.
    instead they find it quit entertaining, and hey do not have to even look to find a source of information as boris makes sure everyone knows the ins and outs of every part of his job, what he is doing/ plans to do and makes sure he finds out exactly what it is the public are looking for instead of just pleasing those throwing money at city hall (my own opinion of couse).
    We cant move for boris we see him everywhere he uses the media to get through to all of us and is one reason why i started watching the news again, my aunt always rings me up if i am missing an appearence so i can switch over :O) .
    I am sure that almost everyone in the country knows what our mayor looks like by now , thats another thing the whole country seems to take an interest in boris not just london alone. Plus he does not use the media alone , he gets himself out there where the people are overseeing projects and community matters or even just a visit to an area to make sure we are all having a ‘jolly good’ time.

    Now this is a quality we do not see so much in mr cameron i doubt as many people are aware of him as they are of our boris and alot less can tell you what he actually looks like.
    now he does have a need to be in the public eye i suppose but it seems with any mp’s we only see them out and about when it comes to elections. Maybe they would be much more successful when the time comes had they built up a realationship with the people such as boris has done.
    Also once the chosen mp has achieved what they had set out to do ive noticed they again become less in-touch with the public than during the competition.
    when an mp becomes pri minister etc they tend to worry less about what the public’s needs are and views upon things as well… they’ve won haven’t they?
    But no our boris has maintained a brilliant relationship with the people and even though is secure in the place of mayor he still has a great active interest in Londoner’s lives he obviously wants to and is very keen on doing the job and i think is very proud of his achievements in this role.

    Now the place of pri minister is a whole new kettle of fish, you are not only looking after the public’s interest but also what is best for the country and many different rules/regulations and BUDGETS have to be taken notice of before any decision is made, and no decision is to be taken lightly. Well we do wish to continue being a land of hope and glory now do we not?
    So cameron must pay an awful lot more attention to the paperwork side of things which means alot less people time to make up for the extra homework needed to make sure he is always up to date on everything.
    We only really get to see him in action if we look into his work but i must admit it is well worth a gande over to the parliament channel (good ole freeview!) now and again.
    I mean will it really harm you if you miss that one episode of that particular chat show you so lovingly watch? After all you know deep down the woman will go back to him in the end its always the way lol
    i have been in stitches watching mr cameron air his views on pri ministers question time (although mr brown wasn’t quite so entertained lol)

    But teats the thing you see when we say that boris is more popular in the public eye we forget that this is because he has the time to get out there and be seen im sure we would all like mr cameron alot more than we do now after all he seems like a very nice bloke, had he the time to put in all the public appearances that boris has.

    (and no i am not saying Boris has loads of free time he works extremely hard)

    that’s the thing you see Boris has a job which focuses on the public what they want and need.
    the only way he can find out what to do for us (his top client) is by asking us in person so thats what he does, if the people are not happy he is not working to the best of his ability.
    where as mr cameron has 2 or 3 clients;
    the public,
    members of parliament,
    What is actually best for the country. (this sometimes means leaving the public unhappy for a while to produce a greater long-term result)
    As we all know if you are to go for the job of pri-minister you need as many members of parliament on your side as you can get, so you need to not only win over the hearts and minds of the public but also those of the mp’s around you, which is slightly harder as they not only probably all want the same job but also have their own strict views and ways of operating and of course preferences (in relation to old friends within the parties etc)

    so i must say i do like both of these men and understand where each is coming from but they have completely different job roles so must perform in a way most suited to their position i suppose.
    Though with both really having the same political views i believe that maybe we should not be comparing the two but looking at the amazing outcomes we could reach if they were both in power, im sure we would greatly benefit from such a partnership between the country and the capital ……

    Boris Johnson Mayor of London

    David Cameron P.M………

    A force to be reckoned with do you not think…….?

  9. Hi Melissa,

    I can say that it might be better fun for Cam and his gang to sit around listing the Mayor’s failings. Also once the chosen MP has achieved what they had set out to do I have noticed they again become less in-touch with the public than during the competition.

    – Vincent T.

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