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Neat reply

Posted by Helen Sunday, October 30, 2005

The Adam Smith Institute Blog muses on David Cameron’s rather fatuous comment:

“I don't think anyone wakes up and thinks 'gosh, I wish the state was smaller today than it was yesterday’.”

Madsen Pirie replies:

“He's mostly right, though there are a few of us who do put it in those terms (we tend to use the subjunctive were smaller). Other people probably wake up and think things like:

I wish I got to keep more of my pay without all those deductions.
I wish the planners hadn't stopped me building a conservatory out back.
I wish Ben were not facing prosecution for waving a cricket bat at those muggers.
I wish I could get some help in the house and looking after the kids without all that form-filling stuff when you hire anyone.
I wish my car didn't cost so much extra because of those EU rules.
I wish Gran could pass on her house and savings without all that inheritance tax.
I wish the nativity play and carol concert hadn't been banned by the local council.
I wish the local butcher hadn't been forced to close his business.”

I particularly like that little dig at Cameron’s inadequate understanding of grammar. On the substance of the posting: we can all think of a few “I wish” sentences. And, I am afraid, Mr Cameron, they do add up to what you say nobody thinks of.