End of an era, not the end of the world

Copenhagen was the MPs' expenses scandal writ large
In a speech last month, (Ed Miliband) said: "To make these changes requires leadership from government, but it also requires us to build and maintain consent. To take that consent for granted is a mistake and to assume we can sustain change without it would be wrong in my view too."

Just so. But if Miliband the Younger accepts this, why did he describe those who disagreed with him in the run-up to Copenhagen as "saboteurs"? To provide the context: he was attacking his political opponents, Nigel Lawson and David Davis, and was perfectly entitled to do so. None the less, his revealing choice of the word "saboteur" – disagreement equals vandalism – sent a clear signal to every member of the public who dares to wonder what all this is about, why the changes needed are so dramatic, whether the scientific consensus is as clear as ministers say it is. "Anyone who comes forward at this moment," Mr Miliband continued, "and starts saying 'We can stick our heads in the sand' is irresponsible." Again, the message was crystal-clear. You are entitled to your opinion, as long as it's mine...If you want a "green revolution" – and the evidence suggests that you don't – it must truly be from the bottom up. This Government's strategy – to sneer at the doubters – is doomed, not only because doubt is the cornerstone of democracy but because, on this specific issue, the doubters are in the majority. Copenhagen marked the end of an era: it demonstrated the poverty and self-regard of elite politics, the introspection and self-congratulation of a political class still in love with itself because nobody else will love it.
I'm not usually a fan of d'Ancona but he's hit the spot with this piece today. I particularly liked his description of the Copenhagen Conference:
...like a student union meeting, only with motorcades.
Boom, boom!