Was Cameron wrong with his Tesco comparison?

Was Cameron wrong with his Tesco comparison?

Is this like Thatcher’s “.. no such thing as society” comment?

There’s been a flurry of comment over David Cameron’s comment in his BBC “Westminster Hour” interview in which he suggested that the Tories would run the country like Tesco and Sainsbury’s if they get to power.

The exact quote was according to the Sun: “In the situation we will face if we win the election, a budget deficit of maybe 14 per cent, we must find ways to cut public spending in a way that can make our public services better and stronger..Sainsbury’s and Tesco, don’t think to themselves the reduction of costs, which they do on a permanent basis, is going to make their service worse..They say it’s going to make their service to their customers better. We need that thinking.”

This is how Labour MP Nick Palmer in a super marginal responded on the previous thread: “ it’s the absolutely perfect quote for my area: “Cameron thinks public services should be run like Tescos”. It’s the best thing since Maggie’s “There is no such thing as society”.

The problem is that although millions of us go to Tesco every day the company is not universally liked. Like all the big supermarket groups they have increasingly become a target for a whole range of campaigners whether it be on their impact on town centres, their treatment of suppliers and their reliance on third world manufacturers.

Also many people have very strong views about different supermarket chains and might be more negative about Tesco than, say, Sainsbury or Waitrose.

My guess is that this will stick with the Tory leader – the question is whether it will be damaging as Maggie’s “no such thing as society” comment. I’m not so sure.

At least we all know that Tesco is a whole lot more efficient than the Co-op – an organisation that now “taxes” its bank customers whenever they want to place a bet.

Mike Smithson

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