Outside the marginals

a commentary on the politics that followed the UK 2010 & 2015 elections

Archive for the category “Coalition Governments”

Who will provide the next opposition?

A while ago whilst feeling frustrated watching a usually unedifying episode of Question Time I tweeted a poll asking:

Who will provide next opposition

Now a few self-selected votes is about as far from a representative sample as you can get and the response possibly indicates that SNP supporters watching Question Time are more likely to click on polls! However  Read more…

An Outside View

Sometimes it is sobering to read an outsider’s view of you. Today is one of those days. It does not help that I am already feeling depressed and not able to see a positive future.

Some people say that I only have myself to blame and it serves me right for being a small “l” liberal – although I can’t and don’t want to claim to be part of the “elite”. But early retirement does give me the luxury of time to follow current events and to read around a topic – and the internet means I have access to a wide range of views. The nihilists will claim that being informed makes me part of the “elite” and will delight at my discomfiture by recent events. That such people may be in a majority in “my country” I find incredibly depressing. Read more…

Post “The Day” Reflections

Ok, I think it’s a disaster and I am livid at what I see as the way both campaigns – but particularly Leave’s – were run. (Remain was inept, but Leave at times seemed deliberately devious.) If I had been active in the campaign I would also be feeling sore.
But the deed is done and we have to accept the result even if we can’t respect it. But there are a number of issues that bear closer examination.

Read more…

The (Current) Coalition Government

The Conservative Party has delivered the referendum.Now back to working with colleagues to deliver the reforms we pledged in our manifesto

As the polls close, worth reflecting on fact that we delivered pledge to have referendum. Now the Conservative party can come back together

Historic referendum vote is over, I’m proud a Conservative gvt gave British people their say. Now time for our party to come back together.

The brass neck! (Do I detect a party line?) They have been casting doubts on each others’ honesty and integrity and knocking seven bells out of each other with even more vigour than they attack Labour at General Elections. Read more…

Abolishing Opposition

Tim Farron is emailing about the budget:

Today we saw exactly what we’ve come to expect from George Osborne.

While gleefully abolishing vital services in our communities, he declared with his usual arrogance, that he had abolished the Liberal Democrats.
Email “They want to abolish us” from Tim Farron, Leader of the Liberal Democrats

He doeth protest too much! Read more…

End of Term Report: Liberal Democrats

The Liberal Democrats, possibly slightly to their surprise found themselves holding the balance of power at the last election and that led to them going into coalition. So how have they done in the last five years?

How do we measure what they have done? On one hand we can measure “how well they have governed” – if we can agree what we mean by “well”. On the other hand we can look at it from the point of view of raw politics. Read more…

End of Term Report: Conservatives

The Conservatives did not win a majority at the last election. So how have they done in the last five years?

How do we measure what they have done? On one hand we can measure “how well they have governed” – if we can agree what we mean by “well”. On the other hand we can look at it from the point of view of raw politics.

Read more…

BBC Bias? “Legitimacy”

The BBC is making much of what they are calling the struggle for legitimacy. By this they imply that the biggest minority in the new parliament is by default the “legitimate government”. Whilst the bulletins are pushing this line Nick Robinson is a bit more nuanced:

So, what is obsessing politicians of all parties behind-the-scenes is the debate about what a legitimate government would look like.

You might think that’s simple – one led by the winning party – but think again. In politics things aren’t nearly so neat and simple as that. …

So, what are the competing arguments?

1. A legitimate government is led by the party which “wins” – ie wins the most MPs and votes …

2. A legitimate government is one supported by a majority of MPs (of whatever party) …

3. A legitimate government must be backed by all parts of the UK
BBC News Website 5 May 2015 : Election 2015: And the winner is? Er…

This is so muddled-headed. Read more…

A Programme for the Majority?

Just imagine the following programme for government:

  • Reform
    • A shake up of Westminster
    • Abolition of the House of Lords
    • A fair voting system
  • Public Services
    • No tuition fees
    • Educational Maintenance Allowance including part-time college students
    • The NHS in public hands, halting the tide of NHS privatisation
    • Abolition of prescription charges
    • Explicit protection for the NHS on the face of the TTIP agreement
  • Fairness
    • Pensions that protect our older people.
    • A decent welfare system that helps people into work
    • Eradication of working practices that have no place in a decent, modern economy
    • a Living Wage nation
    • Strengthening of the law against domestic abuse – speed up the court process, give more support to victims, and expand schemes to help offenders change their behaviour
    • Gender Equality: Removal of Systemic and institutional barriers – the pay gap, occupational segregation, a lack of affordable childcare and, sometimes, just outdated attitudes
  • Other
    • No new generation of Trident nuclear weapons
    • Deficit reduction but not slash and burn austerity
    • Stay in Europe

If we could break the internal coalitions in the old elitist parties, could we envisage a parliamentary coalition to support this programme? Read more…

Ruling out partners

Will you rule out a coalition with?

Will you rule out any formal agreement with?

Will you rule out any agreement with?

These questions come from the politicians, the dimblebariat and members of the public (presumably learning from their elders if not their betters)

These questions should be banned. I know, what about “free speech”, but … Read more…

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