To file under why Labour recovered/Lib Dems lost
ThoughCowardsFlinch – Sheer class, people cheering Gordon Brown. Solidarity
The Times: Liberal policies, including ‘amnesty’; failure of Lib Dem activists to congregate Rennard-style in lower hanging fruit; Cornish county council;
Alex commenting here: “The difference in Lib Dem vote (high 20s down to 23%) was mostly due to a gain in those voting “Other” (i.e. not the main three parties). Perhaps those who were voting “anti-establishment” decided that the Lib Dems weren’t anti- enough or something?”
To file under ‘We’re not Greece’
The Economist: “Greek politics still includes a Communist Party that is rigorously Stalinist (it damns Khrushchev as a liberal backslider) and commands some 8% of the vote”
File under ‘Cross Tories shouting at Cameron and trying to drive him right’
Heffer. Cameron is not a conservative, and should maybe try to be PM of England.
The Observer: Cameron faces Tory Party Anger
The Observer again: Hague memo exposing massive Conservative-LibDem gaps on European policy. Deliberate leak?
Under “Personality differences matter”
The Telegraph: Brown shouting at Clegg. “It was claimed Mr Brown’s approach was to begin “a diatribe” and “a rant” and the source said the Labour leader was “threatening in his approach to Nick Clegg”.”
Under Good election to Win
Hamish McRae: we are heading for strong growth(could also be under ‘we are not Greece’
David Smith: this need not be a poisoned chalice. Our floating exchange rate will make rebalancing much easier than in Europe
Under Left wing thinkers still hoping for a Rainbow something
Observer editorial: A lib lab pact, if Brown stands aside. Tories have no right to pre-suppose that Greece shows that a Right Wing government is needed – in fact, quite the opposite. There is nothing unconstitutional about Clegg dealing with Labour.
Will Hutton: Only Lib-Lab can deliver banking reform, electoral reform, and appropriately timed fiscal cuts.
Whereas Andrew Rawnsley is involved in commentary, not advocacy (like your author), and is keenly aware of the snares in Conservative offers:
Cameron very publicly dangles the opportunity to shoulder the burdens of power. One of his motives for offering cabinet seats is to try to turn this into a pitiless test of whether the Lib Dems are willing to step up to the plate in what the Tory leader calls “the national interest thing”. The two parties do have overlapping policies on education, the environment, ID cards and tax. They can probably paper over their disagreements over Trident, immigration and even Europe. They could split the difference on the timing of spending cuts. The two leaders get on well enough at a personal level. They certainly like each other more than either does Gordon Brown.
Could file under ‘personality differences matter’?
What do I conclude from this? Maybe LibLab is a few % points more credible, policy-wise, than I appreciated with my ‘tied to a half dead shark’ analogy. Still don’t understand why Labour are so scared of being in opposition for so long. Loss of discipline in the wilderness? GB himself becoming a major factor. Solidity of Labour’s activist/class base also, for longer term calculations.
Now I need to prepare a chicken for the mother-in-law*
*insert own jokes about pagan sacrifices