The mop in action
The mop in action Reuters

The advantage of being the party in power is that you get to have the last word. Given the successful British Labour Party conference last week, the Conservatives had to come up with a response, particularly to Labour leader David Miliband, who had dressed up the opposition in the reassuring tones of a one party nation opposed to class warfare.

The Conservative Party leader David Cameron had an additional problem – the growing popularity of London Mayor Boris Johnson, whom the Prime Minister referred to as the 'blond mop', a playful reference to the mayor's unruly hairstyle.

Boris Johnson denied any intention of challenging David Cameron or even seeking a parliamentary seat parlance before his term as mayor has expired in 2016. However from the standing ovation that the witty mayor received from the audience, it is clear that should the Prime Minister falter, the party could very well turn to Boris Johnson.

Johnson, riding the glow caused by the London Olympics, invoked the successful games as a reason for Britain to have confidence in itself. If he was a mop, the Prime Minister was a broom and the Chancellor of the Exchequer a dustpan - with similar descriptions meted out to other cabinet members whose collective responsibility was to clean up the mess that Labour had left behind.

(This was a lead-in for David Cameron on the next day to blame the previous Labour government in much the same way that the Democrats this year are laying responsibility for the economic conditions on George W. Bush).

Education Secretary Michael Gove responded to the charge that by his reinstating old competitive examinations, he was consigning underprivileged children to dead-end careers. Gove defended competition as a prerequisite for succeeding in a competitive world and he wanted to make sure that the British education system could prepare British children for the real world. The true culprits were the teachers unions, whose low expectations and job actions were holding back British students.

Finally, it was the Prime Minister's turn and he attacked the Labour opposition as talking one nation while in reality practicing class warfare and as a party with one discredited idea of constant borrowing. He rejected the attacks on his privileged background and described the travails of his physically deformed father.

The Conservative party was not the party of the better off, but of the people who wanted to be better off, "those who strive to make a better life for themselves and their families – and we should never, ever be ashamed of saying so."

His Conservative party announced that David Cameron was not against welfare, but wanted "welfare that works and schools that teach" if he had received excellent schooling, this did not make him indifferent to the plight of others; in fact,  he sought to extend the same schooling to others.