That “all political careers end in failure” is no longer the truism it was once believed to be.
That David Cameron’s political career has ended in failure- even ignominy – is unquestionable.
Even now, as the nation begins to wade through the detritus of Brexit, the scale of Cameron’s failure and the speed of his departure is difficult to comprehend.
Watch: David Cameron fights back the tears as he announces his resignation https://t.co/N7H5RGRl0p
— Sky News (@SkyNews) June 24, 2016
At the supposed peak of his political powers, Cameron resigned. Without doubt, by any comparative measure, David Cameron will be remembered as one of the worst British Prime Ministers ever.
It’s an illustration of our changing political culture and of the extraordinary political crisis in which Britain finds itself, that its former leader has been neither mourned or mocked.
He has slipped away, unmentioned and scarcely remembered – within weeks of ceasing to be Prime Minister of Great Britain and Northern Ireland.
And so it is that David Cameron emerged from the political wilderness today to write about his “first job after politics” as the newly installed Chairman of the National Citizen Service a body he helped to create with the laudable aim of helping younger people to become more involved in their communities, invest time and effort in their local society and see the social rewards.
— David Cameron (@David_Cameron) October 12, 2016
In and of its own sake, such a scheme is worthwhile.
But as a political tool, its purpose was to help redefine the Tories as a socially responsible party; not just the aggregation of the scions of the detached and socially privileged.
In every respect, to paraphrase Margaret Thatcher, such a Tory Party could have been the greatest victory ever secured by the Labour Party.
Yet writing in the Daily Telegraph in a style apparently stolen verbatim from David Brent, David Cameron described the NCS as follows:
“16- and 17-year-olds from across the country come together for around four weeks, usually in the summer. First, they complete an outdoor challenge – usually staying away from home – that takes them outside their comfort zone and makes them work in teams.”
What is it with politicians that makes them double-down on literally their worst thing?https://t.co/TKNqdaTW7o
— Kate Godfrey (@KateGodfrey_) October 12, 2016
It’s extraordinary. In the space of only a few weeks, David Cameron has gone from being a genuine world leader to the chairman of an Outward Bound scheme.
None of this is to sneer at the superb work of the Outward Bound Trust or bodies like them, but to simply describe how our political culture has rapidly changed.
Tony Blair established a series of charitable organisations, Gordon Brown lectured at Harvard and undertook similar charitable works: David Cameron seeks redemption for his record at home and abroad by encouraging teenagers to fall backwards into each others’ arms and make rafts from plastic barrels.
Hey, it’s a start; and we should wish him well.