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Put this on a poster, Rishi: the Tory message isn’t working

The Conservatives’ tin-eared new social media campaign bigging up tax cuts shows the party that swept to power with Saatchi & Saatchi’s iconic ‘Labour isn’t working’ campaign has forgotten how to talk to voters, writes Sean O’Grady

Thursday 23 November 2023 14:55 GMT
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<p>Social media ads for the Conservatives are a far cry from the election posters produced for it by  Saatchi & Saatchi</p>

Social media ads for the Conservatives are a far cry from the election posters produced for it by Saatchi & Saatchi

Even before his energetic “Ready for Rishi!” leadership bid, the prime minister displayed a taste for excessively exuberant propaganda, usually featuring him with rolled-up short sleeves and a dazzling grin – all inappropriately upbeat in a country struggling through permacrises.

Such hyperbole has been on display once again following the autumn statement. It’s becoming increasingly annoying, even by the crass standards of political propaganda.

Just look at some of the stuff being pumped out by Conservative headquarters and, more dubiously, paid for by the taxpayer on Treasury and Number 10 social media channels: ads with fist-pumping slogans like “We’re cutting taxes for workers”, “We’re backing our high streets” and “Biggest tax cut in British history”. You’d almost think that Britain was in the middle of some gold-rush style boom, rather than tiptoeing along the verges of recession, and that “Rishi!” was some sort of miniature messiah.

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