Friday, May 06, 2005

Morning After

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The preceeding post (from last night at 11pm or so) is what happens when you think you are over your love of the Labour Party and then the town where your parents live goes from Labour to Tory. I was tired and grumpy and a little disconsolate.

Still in the bright light of day:
a) The Conservatives did not improve on their share of the vote even while claiming seats and did not even match the electoral performance of the Michael Foot-lead Labour Party at their weakest ebb against Thatcher in 1983. Michael Howard, the immigrant baiting son of immigrants and all round cynical nasty piece of work, will step down as the Tory leader, causing yet more chaos and civil war in that benightened organization.

b) The Liberal Democrats were the only party to gain vote percentage and also reached an all time high of 62 seats (so far). Indeed, many of the Tory victories in former Labour seats came about due to a strong performance by the Liberal Democrats in that constituency.

c) We have a Labour government. Not a perfect government, but not the Tories. Also, its a Labour government who, unlike in 2001, will be disinclined to misread the signals sent by the voters and hopefully will display less arrogance and more critical thinking. With many of Blair's automotons whittled from the rightward leaning seats, maybe the more progressive wing of the party can assert more influence. Maybe this time Blair and Brown can draw inspiration from the example of Clement Attlee led 1945 Labout government rather than from Mrs. Thatcher. Even so, this is what being a Tory in 1992 must have felt like.

d) George Galloway is the man I least want to be the voice of the anti-war hard left in Parliament, but you can't win them all.

5 comments:

Jim said...

Weasel,

Just wanted to offer a hearty "thanks" for manning the parapets while I was off to my escapism.

I read several of the posts in the wee hours of the morning and came back just now to finish. I've learned a few things about politics, British-style.

Why don't you like Galloway? I must say, when would you ever find a politician in America driving a subcompact ala Ms. King?

weasel said...

Jim, just because he's left wing anti-war, doesn't make him a good man.
Galloway cuddled up to Saddam (literally) and is alleged to have been paid by the former Iraqi dictator. Despite having represented a Scottish seat (and being a Scottish resident) for his whole career he cynically chose to target a London constiuency with a large small-c conservative muslim population which happened to be represented by a black female jew.
And my oposition the Iraq War was and is not based on some isolationist, can't we all get along, mindless sloganeering like Galloway's; mine is exasperation over diverting needed resources from properly attacking Al Qadea.
He's an odious man, Jim; a left wing Pat Buchanan.

Jim said...

You see, that's exactly the type of analysis I'm looking for. I know little about Galloway, other than his opposition to the war.

Where else would I get the following:

"He's an odious man, Jim; a left wing Pat Buchanan."

We live in a state of information overload. The key to avoiding being swamped or washed ashore by the extraneous is finding places where you can get information you trust about a subject, in a succinct format.

The Wisdom Weasel is now my official blog for British politics.

Mondale said...

"Like being a Tory in 1992". Wrong.
In '92 the tories scraped in against the odds. The polls and genuine opinion were against them, they were deemed incompetent and out of touch (something they were to prove beyond all knowing in the ensuing 5 years). Anyone who actually admitted voting tory in 1992 (and you had to really search for those who would admit it) must have felt like a spawny bastard who gatecrashed someone else's rehearsal dinner and made out with the bride.
This is more like 1987 and in more than just the third term sense. I think that by that time people were seeing the results of Thatcher's economic policies, She was all over Reagan and she seemed unstoppable. I think Blair sees his own political mortality write large and he has to distance himself from Bush but that aside I see more in common with the 1987-1990 period. We now have a Labour government who can actually fashion an epoch. Just as we are 'Thatcher's children' there will be kids growing up in Britain who will come into consciousness knowing nothing but Labour. If you were 5 in 1997 you'll be able to vote in the next election, your entire understanding will be of a Labour PM (whoever it may be by then).
If Labour win again in 4 or 5 years time, then the 1992 comparisons might work.

weasel said...

1992 based on feelings not on result: people liked Thatcher and the tories in 87. The feeling I refer to is the "I don't much care for X but Y is not the alternative." Apologies for not expanding on that (I think also I must have got your goat by calling you a life long lib dem: I'm off to check your blog).

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