Well, it's over. The good guys won, democracy prevails! I wondered how Labour could have even considered a coalition of the losers, how could they have the bare-faced nerve? They were beaten far more soundly than Howard's Tories in 2005, and on a higher turnout. But it turns out the pressure was coming from the usual suspects, Campbell and Mandy, and their backbenchers saw sense.
coalition then. The two parties are, in my view, the best for the job.
Labour making tax (or more likely borrow) and spend concessions to the
beardies in the Lib Dems would have just been a disaster for the economy
and would have left us an economic basket case in 4-5 years time. As it
is, the Lib Dems have probably been the party that have most
acknowledged the deficit problem during the election campaign. The
government plans to reduce the deficit by £6 billion this year as is
Tory policy. But tempered by the Lib Dems' social liberalism, I think
this could be good for the Tories in their 'no-go' areas, leaving those
who say 'the Tories of today are just like Thatcher' looking a bit
irrelevant. Dare I say it, it may even be good for us in Scotland.
You've always got to have a bit of optimism as a Scottish Tory!
said that, lot of what the government has to do will not be popular.
The dogs on the street know there will be cuts and that VAT is likely to
rise. Remember though that all parties said 'no plans' to raise VAT.
rent-a-mobs are already mobilising on the social networking sites.
Unemployment hit 2.51 million yesterday and yet barely a squeak from
them. They also hate being reminded of this Alistair Darling quote http://www.guardian.co.uk/politics/2010/mar/25/alistair-darling-cut-deeper-margaret-thatcher.
We'll see what their reaction is if there is a similar increase in the
next quarter. I don't believe that the timing of these BA strikes is a
I read a telling comment from one Labour
supporter on Digital Spy Politics (not the most unbiased nor informed
forum) that 'no-one mentioned the national debt on the doorstep'. That
doesn't surprise me. Over 13 years we've had a government that has
insulated people from economic reality, a debt-fuelled boom, and a lot
of people can't see that the country is BROKE! AND that much of the
blame lies with Brown. Britain had a structural deficit problem during
the boom years instead of building up reserves to spend during
recession, because Gordon abolished boom and bust of course. I hope
Osborne delivers a scathing verdict on the books, in fact it is one of
the moments I most look forward to. If it is backed up by the Lib Dem
Chief Secretary to the Treasury, David Laws, then all the better.It's
widely thought that they are much worse than Labour have let on, in fact
there have been descriptions of Labour's figures on the economy as
nothing short of 'fraudulent'.
So pretty good on the economy -
Tories have been allowed to reduce deficit this year which I think is
the right decision. If you can't cut public spending by 1% without
damaging the recovery then it is no recovery. I'm happy that the Lib Dem
policy of taking the first £10,000 out of tax will be phased in over
the parliament. It makes a mockery of Labour's 'progressive' coalition.
area where Labour were anything but progressive (great to talk about
them in the past tense!) was on civil liberties and I'm delighted that
there is a detailed plan in the coalition deal to repeal much of
Labour's 13 years of authoritarian legislation. Amending the smoking ban
would have been nice as well but I realise I'm pissing against the
wind. Still, point 10 of the coalition deal is, quite simply, an epic
win, popular even with many Labour supporters.
few epic fails: Capital Gains Tax increase, AV, fixed term parliaments
and the 55% rule. I am heartened that so many Conservatives are already
speaking out in particular against the last one. I don't go along with
the hysterics though - if a majority of the House turned against the
Conservatives i.e. the coalition broke down, the government would not be
able to pass legislation and they'd be screwed. As with Labour this
week, there'd be too much pressure on them to do the right thing. I'm
confident AV would be defeated in a referendum, however. I don't think
people would want a repeat of this week after every election, however
exciting it is for us political geeks.
So good luck Prime
Minister Cameron! There's a tough few years ahead but if we're
disciplined in cutting the deficit now things could be looking a lot
better by the end of the parliament. The alternative doesn't bear