It's an interesting idea and an interesting position for the tories to take. I instinctively have more sympathy for political parties who tell voters the uncomfortable "truth", rather than what they want to hear. But as Grice points out:
"Vote for me, I'll freeze your pay" is hardly an election-winning slogan.The other side of what Grice says is that if the tories come to power and take an axe to the public services, no-one will be able to say they weren't warned.
A good piece is spoilt by the common mistake of asserting what Labour and the tories "think" and "believe", with no objective evidence other than the line Grice was spun:
Labour ministers suspect that people may not necessarily translate their general view into a personal sacrifice.
The Tories ... want to be "honest" about the sort of medicine they know they would have to administer. The £158bn a year public sector pay bill cannot be immune, they judge.
Some senior Tories think they would get the benefit of the doubt for two years. Mr Cameron thinks he must hit the ground running, unlike Tony Blair who, the Tory leader believes, continued to act as an opposition candidate after becoming Prime Minister. The Cameroons think the first six months would be decisive.