Saturday, May 08, 2010

Don't Do It Nick Consultation: LOL Minority Report

The word has gone out from Lib Dem Federal Executive that they now, very tediously, are being pressed to make some decisions. This is what always finds them out at Local Government level. And it's why they've been losing control of councils left right and centre when the people at large weigh up their records.

I shall always remember the gist of the statement of the just busted Oldham Lib Dem leader in the 2004 all-out I think it was. He had lost his own seat and his party had been kicked out unceremoniously after just one failed year at the helm.

And he said something very true but very silly too:

"In opposition we can say anything at all and do nothing whatsoever. But in office you have to make tough decisions. We just weren't up to that."

Being a stickler for accuracy and fairness I'll try to find the exact quote which appeared in editions of the Manchester Evening News, but that was the gist.

They Lib Dems also face the difficulty of often being elected by quite extraordinary rainbow coalitions. Popular fronts. With at best a small nucleus of proper Liberals and Social Democrats they then build up a Misery Massive.

An Abilene Paradox:

There are the dyed-in-the-wool Anyone But Tory and their polar opposites the dyed-in-the-wool Anyone But Labour .. sometimes co-existing within the same local government area, surprising bed fellows in a kind of Abilene Paradox. [No coincidence that the letters L I B can be found in there if you play the word back to front.] In which a decision is reached which no-one particularly wants, even that all parties would normally reject.

These squeezed long time protest curmudgeons, detached from their tribal Labour or Tory roots by: that drip drip drip "Only Lib Dems can beat your tribal enemy here". Those Central Scaling bar charts. And racing donkey lineart. Or latterly post Michael Brown the upscale full colour racecourse equivalent. Or new this year donkey derby silouettes in party colours.

Added to these tribes there are dabblers with a grass is greener, change is good as a rest "rationale". And the two tribe members who've gone cold over something. The Iraq War or PFI for Labourites perhaps. Europe or Cameron for the Tories. And then one step beyond these the socialists, anarchists, nihilists and their balancing agents of the right and far right.

Never mind a "Balanced Government" here's a balanced party for you right here. With all shades from far left to far right, and much muddle in between.

Assembling this great cortege to principled democracy is a trick mostly achieved using the feelgood quackery of impossible policies that few could oppose. Less tax for you! More stuff for you! Unaffordable tax bribe! Bankruptcy for Liverpool! Politicians are bastards! We're not politicians!

On top of which we have: being against any change that's unpopular with anyone at all. Whether it is popular with others or not. People feeling miserable negatives about something are far more likely to act on this and protest. They know this. And we even have MPs pointing at potholes, demanding gates be fixed, claiming credit for everyone else's achievements, shirking responsibility for anything wrong.

Don't get me wrong. These Libdemologists can be bloody good at this game. And it does work. Though not so much last week as oft times before. But what I want from my MP is someone who will stick up for Manchester and Manchester people and make us proud, not someone who spends 90% of their time running us down, exaggerating and scaremongering; and what's more cries "smear" when anyone tries to hold them to account.

Until 7:30 am on 7 May 2010 I had a bloody good principled left of new labour Labour MP in Tony Lloyd. Now alas, for the first time in my life, I have a misery guts cry baby failing to represent me. But enough of private grief.

Back to the main business. The Liberal Democrats have publicly asked for contributions to their decision making process. It really ought to be a no-brainer. Progressive 63.9% sticks reactionary 36.1%! Up yours Cameron. Populus in today's Times have the nation 50:50 on whether Brown or Cameron should now be PM. With 7% regretting their vote - I'd guess mainly Lib Dem voters unhappy with pandering to Tories.

Anyway, Nick, there's no penalty there for choosing the progressive route, true to your supposed party roots. But apparently for you no-brainer it's not. You need help.

Lib Dems've used twitter and blogs like this one from Helen Duffett.

So they've done this in public. Don't know why. They're mostly after Lib Dem member opinions. Don't they have huge mailing lists and Facebook pages to reach them? And yes, of course, inevitably they've been whining when their tweets - mostly unclear about who's invited - have been RT'd by non-Liberals. Like we're born slippy like them. As if.

Here is LOL's contribution. No doubt convincing Nick Clegg to tell Cameron to "go swivel!" even as we speak.

  • 1. I am not a Lib Dem member, I prefer a Lib-Con govt over pure Tory evil, but I think the electoral reality is that (like me) the nation prefer a progressive alliance
  • 2. I live in a constituency #mancsw which has re-elected a Lib Dem super-councillor MP

  • 3. 88% of us voted against the Tories, though there is an unknown proportion of the backers of the Lib Dem winner who are at heart Tories following a successful "Tories can't win here" squeeze going back for fully four General Elections
  • 4. Student/FTV votes - vibing on Nick - critical in this seat and when canvassed these reported of the order of 15-1 preferring a progressive flavour government, Labour over Conservatives
  • 5. This pattern repeats with other young voters and professionals, older voters are more likely to be tactical Tories - but the critical younger and urban intelligensia EXPECT progressive
  • 6. Imagine a committee of 11; biggest bloc is 4; but 7 oppose their pro-rich fast-cuts agenda; so that's 7-4 isn't it? We progressives win.


    Signed: Chris Paul
    Full address and phone numbers

  • Here's some exclusively leaked footage of rehearsals for the Lib Dem's next flashmob outing, secret code: The Abilene Paradox:

    IMAGES: The lowest one positionally is from the Steve Richard's analysis in The Independent. Like all the MSM pundits but unlike this blogger Mr Richards muchly overestimated the Lib Dem seat haul. The higher image positionally but the lowest conceptually is from some student Libdemologist whose other image is even more hilarious, nonetheless indicative of the mindset of the stop-at-nothing franchise.


    GaelGivet said...

    Hurrah! I was waiting for your first bitter rant about John Leech's victory.

    You just can't bear the fact that he beat the woman with whom both you and nasty little Mike Joslin are clearly in love can you? Are you more obsessed with her or Nadine Dorries? Pray do tell.

    John Leech works his socks off for Manchester Withington; he's not flash, not for show, just an honest, hardworking bloke who cares about the area and wants to do his best for people. I'm glad the electorate realised that on Thursday. It's a shame you're too blinkered to see that.

    Just for the record, I actually think Lucy was a reasonable candidate. But it's to her detriment that she surrounded herself with such a nasty, vicious, immature crowd. She'll be ok in a safe Labour seat. But John Leech will always be the man who beat her. That'll hurt.

    benchilltory said...

    oh deary me,you socialist don't like it when the electorate speak!
    there was a time when you labourites had some principles and called yourself you choose to use he term "progressive" which is a meaning less label.
    The big problem with new Labour is that its only function is power for powers sake.i am old enough to remember the time when labour people held socialist principles.
    we now have a situation whereby the country faces vast economic problems.we are now faced with the facebook generation who think that all we need to do is change to voting system and all will be well.
    i worry because i don't think that we can get out of our current economic problems without severe pain, (i dont believe the growth forecasts).we have a small manufacturing base , which i feel no party had any good policies to deal with.I despair of the new divide between the private and public sector, what ever we may want to provide as public services,it is dependent on having a thriving industrial sector.
    This current situation regarding our next government is highly worrying.We have great financial problems to deal with,i prefer a strong government to deal with it, (even if is was a Labour government).
    Unfortunately the result of the election is very disappointing,and is not sustainable.The libcon alliance is not something that can provide stability ,as the lib dems are a motley collection of individuals rather than a political party and they would look for a way out at the first difficult decision they were faced with.
    we need another election to sort this mess out its a shame that the combined seats of labour and lib dems wasnt enough to form a majority ,in which case cleggy would have to choices.
    we have craven types like Salmond urging some great coalition of "progressives " to usher in electoral reform.
    a change of voting system will not address the issue of unequal sized constituencies,the widespread abuse of the lax postal voting system nor the problem of too much power being in the hands of the executive and individual MPs being just lobby fodder.
    Keep Lucy nearby, she may be needed come October!!

    Chris Paul said...

    Well Gael, do be quiet. Mr Leech won. But you're not very gracious winners are you? His ridiculous rant at the declaration will come back to haunt him. Labour did not fight a dirty campaign but although Mr Leech did not repeat the huge whoppers about the Christie and the War of 2005 he did run a smudgy smeary negative campaign. People in Withington will regret this result at their leisure.

    As for your personal attacks. Do put the knives away. Ms Nadine Dorries is a ridiculous woman and should not be an MP. Your party is in second place - albeit a distant second now - in that seat. You colleagues in Mid Beds welcome the exposition of Nadine's foibles.

    Chris Paul said...

    BHT: always good to see you on here writing twaddle. I'm using "progressive" here for the broad alliance - backed by 64% of those who voted - that is against pro-rich and fast-cuts Tories.

    I believe that the Lib Dems should support that as first preference even though it's clearly more messy.

    Anonymous said...

    Doesn't seem bitter to me. Chris is just saying. How it works for the Lib Dem franchise. A coalition of misery, voting against things. Being misled. Being whipped up by cant.

    Meanwhile terrible projection of "immaturity" from extraordinarily immature and silly Lib Dem ratgirl.

    GaelGivet said...

    I don't think John Leech was necessarily talking about the campaign as such; I think it was more a reference to the drip feed of smears and attacks over the course of the last 5 years. Accusing him of blaming students for their getting raped and things like that are just despicable; calling out the fire brigade to investigate fire risks during the immediate run up to the election is just petty. I'm glad that the voters saw through it all though and backed John Leech - it's a reflection of his hard work despite what the Labour students' Facebook groups would have you believe.

    As for grace in victory, I did say that I thought Lucy was a good candidate. But it's hard to show grace in the face of such bile.

    I agree that personal attacks are unpleasant and unwarranted. So I'll stop them when you do.

    SMY said...

    GaelGivet. Watching Chris Paul's eyes well over when the results were announced will stick with me for ever, such a rant was to be expected.

    Chris. Labour - If they ever want to make progress again in this area, will do themselves good to dissociate themselves with the likes of you and the petty nonsensical bilge that you churn out.

    To call Labour 'progressive' after taking us backwards in their 13 years of government is ridiculous - and to start bleating about electoral reform now is just desperate.

    Labour don't want electoral reform, they would be decimated should proper proportional representation be implemented - more so than the Tories.

    Anonymous said...

    Gael Givet is a left back, so I can't see him supporting a Con-Lib govt. Vote Liberal get tory...

    benchilltory said...

    you got 29% of the vote in the you fiddle about withthe figures to turn this into 63%,amazing, Mugabe would be pleased.
    To quote from Diane Abbot, "the thing with elections is sometimes you win and other times you lose".

    Robert Gabriel said...

    unless you are Mugabe, BHT.

    and the ZIM president likes Cameron...