One suspects C. P. Scott would be annoyed with the sub editor who wrote this headline:

Liberal Democrats to fight next election as totally independent party

What's next from the supposed bastion of liberal journalism? Pope confirms Catholicism? Bear faeces found in woodland? Hazel Blears is short?

Note to journalists: In Australia, the Coalition parties have maintained separate identities and run independently despite governing together for the best part of the last century. In the UK, the last Liberal National / Conservative coalition effectively started in 1931, they agreed an electoral pact in 1947, and the Nationals eventually gave up and formally merged into the Conservatives in 1968. That was 37 years, not 6 months.

So in the incredibly unlikely event that history tries to repeat itself, it'll take 3 decades of perpetual coalition. I don't think that's at all likely myself.

Ye gods, they call themselves a quality newspaper?
So, Boy George did his first budget yesterday, and it was nasty. But I somehow suspect the nastiness was inevitable, and it was a lot less nasty than it would've been if it'd been a Tory-only administration. Labour have decided to spend their political capital attacking the Lib Dem junior partners for the nasty, instead of the senior party, and there's no sign whatsoever from them of what they'd do instead.

I agree, completely, with Sunny on this one, their attacks are misplaced. One of the leadership candidates, currently rated as "second least awful" on my scale, has even set up a tool to email the LD leadership. Because apparently ameliorating the Tories and getting clear committments to help the lowest paid through increased tax credits and personal alloances, while increasing taxes on the wealthy through increased CGT is something we should be ashamed of. So, he wants to recruit former Lib Dems, and wants us to email the leadership. Using his tool, here's what I send:
Email to Clegg and Hughes )
Do I like the VAT increase? No. Do I like the cuts in some benefits? No. Do I like that spending cuts were inevitable and would have to happen this year or next regardless of who was in power? No. Do I like that they've ring-fenced the NHS budget so waste there isn't being hit, meaning spending elsewhere will have to fall further? No.

Have Labour said what they would've done instead? No. If the LDs weren't in coalition, would the Tories have even considered raising the personal allowance, increasing tax credits to the lowest incomes, pegging pensions back to earnings, increasing Capital Gains Tax? No.

I've voted Labour in the past. At the next election, odds are very good I'll have a second preference to allocate as well. Dear Labourites, it would be nice to have a choice as to where I'll put my second choice, currently, you're not giving me one. Wake up, FFS.
matgb: Artwork of 19th century upper class anarchist, text: MatGB (Default)

British Liberal, house husband, school play leader and stepdad. Campaigner, atheistic feminist, amateur baker. Male.

Known to post items of interest on occasions. More likely to link to interesting stuff. Sometimes talks about stuff he's done. Occasionally posts recipes for good food. Planning to get married, at some point. Enjoying life in Yorkshire.

Likes comments. Especially likes links. Loves to know where people came from and what they were looking for. Mostly posts everything publicly. Sometimes doesn't. Hi.

Mat Bowles

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October 2015


Stuff and nonsense

I'm the Chair of the Brighouse branch of the Liberal Democrats & the membership secretary for Calderdale Lib Dems and run the web campaign for the local candidates. I have a job, a stepdaughter and a life.

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