Friday, May 07, 2010

An Hour Is A Long Time In Politics

Beaten Brown is holed up in the bunker. Puffed Up Clegg had the wind knocked out of his sails. Mandy's New Labour dream is disappearing down the drain. Dashing Dave is waiting in the wings. A general election on speed.

The Orange Party is still hungover with hung parliament horror. The game of political poker has begun.

Political pundits and politicians gasped in disbelief as the exit poll revealed the stark truth which had been clear before the start of the race: Cameron would win. Brown would lose. And Clegg would come nowhere.

The Orange Party has lost count the number of times a 'liberal' revival has been puffed up by the media only to fall flat on its face. Now Calamity Clegg and his clapped out crowd face winning probably less seats than they started off with. But the shameless one-trick pony did manage to puff up his personal share of the vote on the back of a single TV talent show.

Many drifted along with the well-spun media narrative but some sharp pundits had seen through the sham. The election was never about a three-horse race. The election was about the Mandy Plan for a dream ticket of an everlasting New Labour Project propped up by Wonderboy.

A plan which would see 'social democrats' who hijacked the Party finally in bed with their Clegg secret weapon, snuggling up to the 'Dems' in LibDems.

New Labour? LibDems? All "progressives" now. The stitch-up was on the cards well before the first vote was cast.

Beaten Brown seemed to be saying his goodbyes in his acceptance speech. Defeat was staring him in the face. Until the Mandy/Campbell spinners put a lid on such dangerous talk. Leaving room for one last political push.

Team Cameron has been staying schtum apart from stating the bleedin' obvious: Labour does not have a mandate to govern. But Brown, without a shred of decency, is clinging on to power until the bitter end.

The election is now a farce. Political posturing and playing by the con of 'constitutional' rules. Unelected Dark Lord Mandy still cannot stop spinning despite Clegg conceding that Cameron should be given a chance.

The struggling Supreme Leader is clinging on as 'prime minister' by his fingertips - with well-spun "constitutional continuity" - as he tries in vain to form a government. But the time to quit is approaching. All hope is lost and the odds so stacked up, a real constitutional crisis would blow up if he tries to carry on regardless.

Some kind of Con-Dem deal is the only show in town. A deal which would allow Her Maj to make that Queen's Speech on May 25 without it falling around her ears. A deal to work out an economic plan to settle the panicky money markets and make a start on rescuing bankrupt Britain from the brink of Borrowing Brown's disaster.

Cameron, winning most seats but not an overall majority, is set to state loud and clear that he can form a "strong and stable" government. For Queen and Country. In the national interest. Learnt on the playing fields of Eton. That's what Her Maj is waiting to hear. That's probably what most of her weary subjects want.

With tacit LibDem support, Tories could haggle and struggle on, using a 'confidence and supply' route pushing through an emergency budget and Queen's Speech. But soon voters could have to go through the whole election rigmarole all over again.

Some kind of Tory-Lib deal is a no-brainer. The only way to prise Bunkered Brown out of Number 10 and have a stab at Dave's 'strong and stable' government.

Calamity Clegg is left playing at being kingmaker on Fantasy Island. Mandy goes off in a sulk. An unelected prime minister and leader of a political party who cannot be trusted to be let loose anywhere near 'ordinary' people goes off to lick his tribal wounds.

"I want to be prime minister", Clegg once declared. The Orange Party is mindful of the old slogan with which mums around the land berate their children - I want never gets.

An hour is a long time in politics. Voters are on tenterhooks with an outgoing prime minister and a new prime minister-in-waiting and a total loser trying to call the shots.

Top picture: Peter Brookes, spot on again in The Times


Unknown said...

It is because of our electoral system that the LibDem vote ended up lower than the polls suggested which is heavily biased againt parties with support evenly distributed - to win in our system you have to represent a particular vested interest.

According to YouGov 49% of people would back the LibDems if they thought they could win, but the trouble is, our system, it's easy to say "vote LibDem" let in d the sworn enemy, be that Labour or Tory.

By the way, Gordon Brown is not "hanging on my his fingertips" - there can be no government until there is some sort of deal is struck. If Brown resigned today there would not be a PM because Cameron could not carry the support of parliament.

Unknown said...

Gordon Brown most definitely is hanging on by his finger tips.

He's lost the election in that a:) His party does not have the highest number of MPs and b)they do not have the highest number of votes from the electorate.

Whilst the Tories do have not a majority win, the fact remains that they faired better than everyone else, so they are the winners.

Does any one genuninely believe that Gordon Brown will go quietly? No, we've seen his bully character over the last couple of years, we all know he is absolutely determined to stay in office, come what may.

Dan is only partially correct, when he says "there can be no government until there is some sort of deal struck".
What's he's actually referring to is this idea:

It's incumbunt on the current prime minister to continue in office until a deal is struck as the 'constitution' requires there shouldn't be a period of time without a leader and government.

However, the prime minister *is* allowed to resign. In which case it's then up to the Queen to decide who becomes PM.

But as I indicated earlier, Gordon Brown I am sure will be determined to continue for as long as possible as PM, probably applying "It's within the constitution" even though he received fewer votes and has fewer MPs than the Tory party.

Would Gordon Brown try to form a coalition with Lib Dem and keep the Tories out of office when he's received less votes and has less MP's than the Tories? Of course he would. Is it morally right? No. Is it legal? Yes.

If Brown tries to remain in office in these circumstances then I predict there will be large protests in London against him.

There is no way, the electorate is going to allow Brown to govern this country for a second term when
a) he wasn't even elected by his own party
b)prior to this election, he never put himself to face the electorate and arguably shouldn't even be prime minister in the first place
c)He hasn't won (received the highest number of votes or MPs) this election, the only election which he has ever faced.

To do so would be fundamentally wrong and completely undemocratic.
Yes, it may be within the 'rules.' But's it wrong. And we all know it.

For Brown to continue in office as PM under these circumstances would be a serious abuse of the entire concept of democracy.

We the electorate will *not* tolerate this.

Householdknives said...

As with George Bush and his miracle 'win' in the 2000 US election, the Tories are of course artificially inflating their claim on power by suggesting they have a mandate from the people to govern. They don't. In fact, the Liberals and Labour party alone combined achieved 55% of the vote. The Tory party achieved just over one third.

In a fully democratic system, as would be provided by PR, the liberal and other parties would secure a much higher share of the vote and truly reflect the will of the electorate. The imposition of fixed terms on government, as in the USA and Europe, would also prevent any abuse of democracy. I'm sure a lot of Conservatives have been angered because they have had to endure such a long wait for an unelected prime minister, Brown, to call this election.

Nick P said...

Just a quickie - Brown will NOT be staying on. Even if Libs do a deal with Labour, you can bet your bottom dollar that Brown will have to go. The electorate don't want Brown and so he goes... but 14 million voters support Labour and Lib Dems combined, much more than support the Tories!

Chris Rees said...

Of course, Brown hanging on by his fingertips is plain wrong.

Remind me again what Edward Heath did? Which political party did he represent?

Pot. Kettle. Black.

The Conservatives haven't `won', they've failed dismally at what should have been a walkover if Labour were as bad as they claimed.

Unknown said...

Strong governement that leads us down the toilet seems to me to be the plan of the deluded and/or damned! What sane commentator can see any synthesis between a Lib - Con pact of any flavour. How is Cameron goig to accept the tax plaans of the Lib Dems?
How is Clegg going to accept the avoidance of Cameron's position on PR.
Please god lets not wish for the carnage that thiswill produce.

Jonathan Jones said...

Wow, I seem to be reading a lot about how the Lib Dems and Labour acheived 52% of the votes so Labour should be in government. I must be mistaken on this point but i thought that the Lib Dems are a different party to Labour so adding up votes like this is not relevent.

Lib Dems and Conservatives got 58% of the vote combined so much more support than for Labour. Do you see now how stupid your statements are.

Cameron has offered Clegg a much better deal than he would get from Brown. Anyone who thinks the Lib Dems would get PR by siding with Brown is as brainless today as they were before the election. Labour have a huge advantage in a FPP system, It would be political suicide for them to give it up (unless a lib-lab pact for perpetuity is on the cards). Also any referendum would have to be voted on first and numerically any coalition Labour might be able to cobble together wont have the numbers to get it through.

Clegg and Cameron seem to be honest blokes and so long as both of them can keep a lid on some of the old timers in thier parties the country could be on to a good thing here.

Unknown said...

Householdknives says that Tories don't have a mandate.

By what criteria is this statement judged to be true?

What you seem to be saying is that a mandate is only awarded to the party when they have 50% or more of the number of MPs in parliament.

In one definition of the word mandate this is arguably true. In another sense the fact the Tory party have the highest number of MPs and the highest number of votes, they do have a mandate to vote and that mandate has been given to them by the people.

That is to say, the majority of people that voted in the election want them to run the country.

Does that not constitute a mandate?

If you stick to the definition of the constitution, the way our electoral system works, then yes, they don't automatically have the authority to govern the country because they don't have 50% or more of the total number of MPs, but that's just the way our system works.

Morally, they have a mandate to govern, and it's been given to them by us the electorate.

If we now take a look at Gordon Brown himself. Does have have a mandate to be Prime Minister?
He was never elected by his own party, and he has never faced the electorate which he alledgedly represents.

He most definitely does not have a mandate to even be PM in the first instance.

It's hardly reasonable to claim the Tories do not have a mandate and as such shouldn't be in power, when yet the PM most definitely does not have a mandate.

Unknown said...

A YouGov poll today as the result of
1) 48% say new government should be led by the Conservatives

2) 62% favour a more proportional representation system

I assume that this is a single group of people which has been surveyed and as responded in both these ways.

This is a nonsensical result.
62% want a more proportional representation and if that had been in place, the Tories would have received a much greater number of seats, but have even more authority to govern, perhaps even so far as a majority.

Yet, only 48% say the new government should be led by the Tories.

Well, Mr. Joe Public, you can't have it both ways! If you believe in proportional representation then Tories would have had an even greater number of MPs and have the authority to govern in which case a much higher percentage should be saying they believe the new government should be led by the Tories.

This shows alack of understanding and ability to think critically within the electorate.

Perhaps it's just as well somethings are left to the core 'elite' rather than the masses.

Unknown said...

Now today we learn that Brown has had a telephone conversation with Clegg and word has leaked out that it was an acrimonious conversation.

As the incumbent prime minister it is Brown's duty to stay in office as PM to help try to form a stable government in the interests of the country.

Whilst I can't stand Brown I don't think he should resign as many people wish him to, he is morally obliged to fulfil that obligation as the representative of the Queen.

What's becoming clear now, is that Brown is becoming seriously hacked off with the fact that LibDem is in negotiations with the Tories to form a government.

There is no doubt in my mind that Brown will do absolutely everything he can to remain in office.

But this is good old classic Brown isn't it? He has lost the election and his job now as laid down in the constitution is to help form a stable government, and this is defintitely what he is not doing. He's doing the exact opposite.

Labour have been in government 13 years and throughout that entire time the issue of proportional representation has never come up.
Sure, they mentioned it at the start before they were elected, the same old "let's make up a policy which the public want to hear to get us elected".

The fact is, Labour are now only making such a big deal of PR because they know it's something LibDem want, and it's the only bargaining point they've got to keep themselves in office!

If Brown forms a government with the LibDem a minority government will be formed, and it's highly likely Tories will issue a vote of no confidence and win, the whole thing will fall apart, and a new general election called.

The only way Brown can form a majority government is to form a coalition with LibDem, SNP and a few other parties to gain enough MPs.

With so many parties, MPs of different beliefs, polices, there is no way the government can govern effectively. Think of all the infighting that will take place, everyone fighting for their own slice of the pie, we will be extremely lucky if any legislation is passed by such a disunited bunch.

Brown's job now is to try to form a stable government. Quite clearly, by trying to form an agreement with Clegg he's actively working to create a government which will be incredibly unstable.

He's working not in the interests of the United Kingdom and us, the electorate, he's working in a way to keep himself in office.

Pure and utter selfishness.Not interested in anyone else, he just wants to stay in power,
Brown to a T.

CSTAR* said...

Hey you have all forgotten about the vote rigging and dirty tricks like not having enough ballot paper or staff to man the ballot stations, or tactical voting orders from the Labour high command at the last minute, so typical of a desperate dirty Nu Labour. In spite of all this Dave has got such a vast majority and some of you are so naive to say that he was not voted in as a majority, wake up! When all the dusts settle I would like to see Brown and Blair and all his cronies who rob our country folks of their democratic right to vote put in Jail, out on an island in the Pacific with a Union Jack round their necks.

CSTAR* said...

Hey has anyone for gotten all those vote rigging and dirty Labour tricks like not providing enough staff at the polling stations to ensure that you the common citizen can exist your democratic right to choose your government. This is just so typical of dirty Nu Labour and some of you are so naive as to say that the young boy Dave did not have a majority to govern in spite of all this dirty play. Wake up! When the dusts settle and a new government has conducted its proper inquiry, I would like to see Blair and Brown lock up on an island in the pacific with a Union Jack round their necks!

Chris Rees said...

Cstar*, you are aware that it's a Union FLAG, right? A Union Jack is only on the flagpole of a ship...

Nick P said...

Well, the reality is that this country DOES have a progressive majority and there were MILLIONS more votes for left of centre parties than for right of centre. That is straightforward FACT. A progressive coalition WILL represent the MAJORITY of votes cast. That is straightforward FACT. Of course the right wing will never accept it because the ultimate conclusion is they will never hold sole power again. Good.

CSTAR* said...

The common electorate should need to wake up to some political realities and perhaps this country will then really move forwards. Every 10 to 13 years we have a ruling party be it Conservative or Labour who might be the great Messiah like Tony Blair or the the great deliverer like the Iron Lady. Well Absolute power corrupts absolutely and the voters only choice when complacency, corruption, incompetence set in is to play one against the other when the time comes for them to exercise their democrocratic right. Such a cycle will continue forever, like it nor not. As Winston Churchill said, democracy is the worst form of government, but the alternative is unthinkable (or words to that effect). The reason we are in this mess is because of the alternative suggested by Nick Clegg. Frankly does anybody really believe that his proposed electoral reforms will change the political reality as demonstrated again and again in all history. NO, it will only benefit him, as he struggles to try to be no 2, then he will not want proportional representation dumb dumb and propose a new referendum to change it all back. Well the reality is that if he or Labour and/or a Lib/Lab pact does not admit defeat now and regroup to become an effective Opposition, then the Tories will become an invincible force and a huge vacuum will exist for a long time leading to totalitarianism. With more and more ungracious attempts to safeguard themselves, everyday they are only playing into the Tories hands and handing more and more power to the Conservatives. Take the advice of the Dalai Lama: It is often better in life to not get what you want. In fact it is better for the country. Gordon Brown has learnt it today now lets not waste anymore tax payer resources and get it over with. What is going to happen when the Lib-Lab coalition fails which by default they will. Another 13 perhaps even 20 years of Tory rule with no effective Opposition. God must really help us then. No way, you cannot change the wind or the tide of history, but only stay in it until the right time comes for you. David Cameron has been siting there for the last 13 years, he understood that, and his time has come. No one can deny him, anymore than anyone can deny Obama his place in history. Everything the Libs and Labs do from now on will only back fire on them and making them less and less a viable strong opposition that this country needs.

Now on the subject of electoral reform: Why hasn't the Lib Dem who care so much about national interest bargain for (a) Compulsory voting and (b) making it illegal for any government to deny any citizen his or her right to vote. Those two issues must be more important than PR, AV, CVs etc. Well whose interest are they serving - national interest, my foot! In fact I should think that both the Queen and the Royal family too should be allowed to vote, if compulsory voting is law. Why not? she pays taxes. While she is to be apolitical in that she cannot appoint the PM, she too is a citizen of the country and need to abide by its law, so Her Majesty should not be denied her democratic right as well, just like the Queen of Holland, who votes as I understand. Of course like all good citizens I do not expect that she will tell anyone of us who she might vote for, but that's a different matter. Make everyone vote and fine him or her 200 pounds if they don't. Why with 50 m voters, we can pay off a lot of our deficit by all those who will not turn up in the next election, with or without TV debates.

Nick P said...

Ummm, where did you find that guff? I think you'll find that Cameron only became leader a few years ago so before spouting off about him waiting 13 years, I would check your facts!

So far we have indeed swung between Labour and the Tories and that is definitely a bad thing. What is needed is government that more accurately represents the voters - and PR is the only way to achieve that. Of course that does mean a lot of horse trading at each election as each party jockeys to get its policies enacted, but THAT is indeed what politics is all about. The current system tends to mean a government with less than 40% of the votes and an even smaller amount of the overall electorate can ram through its policies unopposed, PR will force a more legitimate policy process.

As for compulsory voting, I am in favour IF the form has a None of the Above box.

CSTAR* said...

The smart voter will know history and vote to advantage the country well himself in a pragmatic way. Don't get me wrong I am no Liberal, Tory or Labour, they all swing from good to bad as their fortunes change in time. You cannot trust anyone, its a compromise deal for some stable government. You may ask why we need a government at all, well then read Henry Thoreau?? forgot his name a yank who said it quite clearly, its because YOU cannot trust your neighbour. So why trust any government. These days they are like CEO's, keep then and pay them when they deliver and sack them if they don't. Check the share price of the UK NOW; The GBP down 25% wrt to major currencies, deficit 12% GDP an all time high. Unemployment, hell do the stats properly, it will be 90% for those over 55. More of the same? There is no certainty in life its just like buying shares and right now I won't pay a penny for a Lib-Lab listing, the probabilities are stacked against them. 5 years down the track it may be a different story.

Now, When I say Cameron, of course I don't mean him as a person but those who enginner him, the way Obama, Bush, Reagan, Thatcher have been engineered by their interest groups. That is life! Even the Dalai Lama was engineered so get real and through off the idealistic clouds about changing history and PR and the lot. Read my thread again and convince yourself that what would a None of the above Box do, another hung parliament, anarchy or worse! Wait another week and no resolution, the national debt will increase by at least another 25% with teh fall of the GBP!

Come on, all these deal making its all a waste of time, let the country move on. We are here because of idealist, who deliberately want to hang parliament. Its does not work that way and never will! We need an effective Opposition against Tory dominance. Further delays by Clegg and his interest groups will in the end turn us into a one party government. Get real and start the resistance fighters moving. PR, AV, CV etc are all myths, they have that in China too! In the end the Market rules not the governments, they are there only to protect us against our neighbours. Look at how much tax payers money is being poured into defending the Euro against all its citizens wishes. What has PR done over there to give them their democratic right, over their own money!

Nick P said...

Hmmm... so you are a non-idealistic revolutionary? I'm afraid your comment is just gobbledegook so I think I shall bow out... whatever you say!

Nick P said...

When you can write properly, perhaps a conversation can be had but at present, you are just gabbling incoherently. The people did exercise their democratic rights and what they did was vote for a variety of parties - no surprise there. Whats needed is proportional representation to ensure that no single party has all the power, as this always means, whether Labour or Tory, that a minority of the electorate decide what happens for the rest. With PR, every government, even if after a couple of weeks of talks, would represent a majority of the voters. That does not happen at present.

Of course, it will never happen, because both Labour and the Tories are going to lose some power so that those of us who do not support them can finally get a voice at the table.

CSTAR* said...

Dream on! Just take a look across the pond and see whether the PR system really gives those who did not vote the major parties any voice in the system. If you want to have that voice, then stand for election and win! The rule book of history has always been that the winner takes it all. Meanwhile, judging by the tone of your response, you won't get my vote!

Nick P said...

lol, I doubt I would want your vote! When you say look across the pond, where exactly do you mean? The US (normally referred to as across the pond) doesnt have PR. Europe, however, does and so do Scotland and Wales closer to home, and it works in all three of those places, where smaller parties like the Greens, Libs, Nationalists, Socialists all have a say at the table. Clearly, you prefer FPTP because your attitude is uber-competitive but I prefer my politicians not to be completely tribal and to take heed of a wide range of views. That works in European countries, it works in Scotland and I suspect that by agreeing a coalition, the Tories and Lib Dems will prove it can work here too.

Fantastic! Even if I would have preferred a rainbow coalition but clearly some are too tribal!

CSTAR* said...

Further discussion is pointless as events have proved me right! As I have said before that Dave entering no 10 is as inevitable as Spring will follow after Winter. Good luck Mr Cameron and Good luck Labour Opposition leader whoever he or she may be. May you fight a strong Opposition against Conservative/Lib Dem excesses that are bound to follow down the track. We need you now more than ever, so make sure you do not fail us again!