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It's UK election day!

Posted by Adam54 on Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Figured I'd start a thread and steal Dalty's thunder.

I'm gonna go out on a limb and say that the fine people across the pond fail to learn from our mistake known as George W. Bush, vote Conservative in for a slight majority over Labour which will just edge out Lib Dem. No party will get an outright majority, and Slimeball Cameron will become Prime Minister in a Tory/Lib Dem coalition with Clegg taking a very high level position in his administration.

Results will be coming in right around the time I get home from school tomorrow, and I can't wait.

That's right. I'm geeking out over a foreign country's election. And ladies, I'm single!

Daltons chin dimple
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Posts: 12800
Posted: 10 years 42 weeks ago

I must respectfully disagree sir.

The UK Conservative party are significantly more centrist than the US Republican party has ever been. There was a time when the two shared a close bond, specifically between Thatcher and Reagan in the 80’s. This was primarily based on a mutual belief in the power of the markets, and a hatred of everything they thought of as the ‘proper left’ (not what our friends in the US call “the left”, more on this later) i.e. Communist Russia, it’s environs and it’s sympathisers.

The Conservatives (also known as the Tory Party, a historical throwback and a nickname similar to GOP for the US Repubs) are very different to the US Republicans, even moreso since Cameron became their leader. To state that electing them would be choosing a continuation of George W Bush’s Republicanism is, at best, mistaken.

Anyway, wall-o-text imminent......

In the US, you call the Democrats ‘left wing’ which may be correct on the US political spectrum, but against just about everywhere else on the planet with a left/right split of ideologies, the Democrats would just about be classed as centre right. The US is fundamentally a right wing country (capitalist/market driven, power to the people and not the state, intrinsic suspicion of “Big Government” etc. etc.). So your idea of ‘Left’ or ‘Liberal’ – two labels frequently thrown about – are not consistent with the UK or most of the rest of the Western democratic world.

It is also important to remember that “Toryism” or “Conservatism” in the UK are different from “Thatcherism”.

The Labour party are traditionally left wing, and by that I mean ‘proper left’, not left as the US sees it. They are a party with more in common with Socialists. They were originally founded to represent the working man against the wealthy and exploitative industrial barons. This was a worthy and noble cause.

However they are now idealogically extremely left. In bed with the unions, believe in a big state as the solution to everything. Indeed, many of its members have been politically active as Marxists etc. in their younger days and believed in things like leaving NATO and closer ties with the Warsaw pact.

They have also, through a fundamental failure to grasp economic reality, been responsible for the major industrial meltdown that hit Britain in the 70s that culminated in the national humiliation of the approach to the IMF.

Every time they are in power they leave the country with an unholy economic mess to deal with and this time is no different. In 1997 they were left with a miracle economy by John Major’s outgoing Conservative government and they have been profligate beyond words, spunking cash ineffectually, imagining the boom would never end and failing to adequately prepare for the inevitable bust. They failed to fix the roof when the sun was shining, and are now angrily stomping about blaming everyone but themselves for the fact that the rain is leaking in and ruining everything. Do not forget that Gordon Brown was Chancellor of the Exchequer before he was PM so his fingerprints are on everything.

You cannot underestimate the mess the UK is in, both socially and economically, all as a direct result of Labour policies.

Blair dragged them to a Centre Left position through his “New Labour” project to make them electable after 18 years of Tory rule, and it worked. However the party always felt it had sold its soul to get elected and has been slowly slipping back further to the left ever since.

Now, onto what we call the Liberal Democrats. Nick Clegg’s party. They have traditionally been viewed as the middle ground between left and right, but this is only because Labour are traditionally much more left wing than Blair made them appear, and the Tory party under Thatcher was, at least financially, very right wing.

For a long time they were a distant third in the polls so could pretty much say whatever they liked, safe in the knowledge they would never have to do anything about it.

However in the UK a while ago there was a massive scandal around the expenses claimed by members of parliament that has led to a complete disgust with the established and traditional political class. This is behind the surge in interest in the Lib Dems, which Clegg smartly capitalised on in the TV leadership debates. However now their policies have actually come under scrutiny (scrapping Trident, joining the Euro etc.) they have fallen away a little in the polls. They have been caught flip-flopping on issues.

You call Cameron slimy? You wait until you see Nick Clegg placed under really pressure. Jesus! It’s uncomfortable.

They have also been exposed as further to the left than traditionally thought therefore they are hovering up disillusioned left wing voters.

There is still a real chance that they grab 2nd place, pushing Labour into 3rd in the popular vote (i.e. percentage of all votes cast). But you don’t win an election in the UK on the number of votes you get, alone. You win it on the number of parliamentary seats you win.

In effect, you aren’t voting for David Cameron, Nick Clegg or Gordon Brown. You are voting for your local MP or candidate who happens to be a member of one of those 3 parties (or one of the other parties such as BNP, Green, UKIP etc. or an independent). These MPs sit, on your behalf and representing your constituency, in the House of Commons (UK Parliament). The party that has the most local MPs forms the Government, and the leader of that party (Cameron, Brown or Clegg) gets to be PM.

You get a “Hung Parliament” when no single party gets enough MPs to have an overall majority. This is when coalitions are formed. This is where you become like Italy with 61 governments in 65 years. Our last brushes with this ended in disaster, with 5 PMs in 6 years.

Unfortunately for us, the polls suggest Cameron will win most votes, but not enough MPs to have an overall majority in the house. This leaves the UK in the shit!

....says "Kill Bond, NOW!"
The Swollen Goi...
Location:
Posts: 14343
Posted: 10 years 42 weeks ago

tl;dr

The Swollen Goi...
Location:
Posts: 14343
Posted: 10 years 42 weeks ago

(I spent a couple minutes deliberating whether that or "Source?" would be the funnier response.)

Daltons chin dimple
Location:
Posts: 12800
Posted: 10 years 42 weeks ago

You should have spent a couple more.

....says "Kill Bond, NOW!"
The Swollen Goi...
Location:
Posts: 14343
Posted: 10 years 42 weeks ago

You're right. "Source?" was funnier.

The Swollen Goi...
Location:
Posts: 14343
Posted: 10 years 42 weeks ago

Also, the "tl;dr" was a lie.

Quasar
Location:
Posts: 7588
Posted: 10 years 42 weeks ago

Ol' Beau Watkins would've made the correct response.

Faster and faster, a nightmare we ride. Who'll take the reins when the miracle dies? Faster and faster till everything dies. Killing is our way of keeping alive. - Virgin Steele, Blood and Gasoline
Daltons chin dimple
Location:
Posts: 12800
Posted: 10 years 42 weeks ago

Ol' Beau Watkins would have voted Labour.

All the polls from the final day of the campaign point to a hung parliament. This could be very, very bad, but I suppose this is the beauty of a democracy.

Like Adam, I am actually going to be sad enough to watch the results come in.

....says "Kill Bond, NOW!"
Adam54
Location:
Posts: 2082
Posted: 10 years 42 weeks ago

I'll tackle the brunt of your post later on today Dalty, but I just wanted to say that over here now, "Liberal Democrat" is about on par with where a Moderate Republican used to be, and the Republican Party is now just a collection of racist, paranoid, religious zealots. Or at least it's certainly heading that way. Scary how far right we've shifted in the last 30-40 years.

I'm envious of your electoral system in a ton of ways, but I'll break all that down later when I have a bit more time.

Daltons chin dimple
Location:
Posts: 12800
Posted: 10 years 42 weeks ago

Oh fuck, and now I am seeing Nick Clegg's face learing at me from a bloody banner ad. Damn the ad server and it's contextual serving.

....says "Kill Bond, NOW!"
Adam54
Location:
Posts: 2082
Posted: 10 years 42 weeks ago

Did you know he spent one year at the University of Minnesota Grad School? That's enough to secure my endorsement in and of itself!

Daltons chin dimple
Location:
Posts: 12800
Posted: 10 years 42 weeks ago

He went to a fee paying school yet attacks Cameron's background.

The Lib Dems make a manifesto commitment to join the Euro then he denies it, then backtracks when he is caught.

He is a documented pro-European federalist but denies it in the face of voter reaction. Despite both of these he and his party are strangely silent on the fate of the PIIGS.

He wants to scrap the Trident replacement without a strategic defence review.

He wants to put in place an early release scheme despite the ridiculously high rate of re-offending amongst early released prisoners.

He wants to have an amnesty for illegal immigrants despite uncontrolled immigration being 2nd on voters concern lists and behind an alarming rise in support for the far-right parties or organisations like the BNP and EDL.

Basically, he is only gaining any traction from not being Conservative or Labour. When you look closely at the Lib Dems, they fall apart.

....says "Kill Bond, NOW!"
The Swollen Goi...
Location:
Posts: 14343
Posted: 10 years 42 weeks ago

Daltons chin dimple wrote:

When you look closely at the Lib Dems, they fall apart.

The center cannot hold. Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world.

Daltons chin dimple
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Posts: 12800
Posted: 10 years 42 weeks ago

They are not the centre, on any political spectrum.

....says "Kill Bond, NOW!"
The Swollen Goi...
Location:
Posts: 14343
Posted: 10 years 42 weeks ago

The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere the ceremony of innocence is drowned; the best lack all conviction, while the worst are full of passionate intensity.

Daltons chin dimple
Location:
Posts: 12800
Posted: 10 years 42 weeks ago

Oooooookkayy, ignoring the lunatic for a moment...

So, I just went and voted. The polling station was packed out and I had to queue. Apathy has been the name of the game in the last two elections and in both those and the council and EU elections I could walk right in. A high turnout cannot be good for the incumbent, right? People get off their asses as they want change?

Of course, my polling station was just one out of 40,000 or something.

Also, I went straight from the train home from work so I was wearing a suit, driving a BMW 4x4 and had to park in a disabled space. I couldn't have looked like more of a c*nt if I had been smoking a fat cigar,burning five pound notes and shouting loudly into a cell phone that I was here to vote Capitalist!

....says "Kill Bond, NOW!"
Jakester
Location:
Posts: 5753
Posted: 10 years 42 weeks ago

So your demeanor fit your personality, then?

Richard Gozinya, Harold Snatch and Wilbur Jizz. Together we are the law firm Gozinya, Snatch and Jizz.
The Swollen Goi...
Location:
Posts: 14343
Posted: 10 years 42 weeks ago

Daltons chin dimple wrote:

A high turnout cannot be good for the incumbent, right? People get off their asses as they want change?

Surely some revelation is at hand. Surely the Second Coming is at hand.

Daltons chin dimple wrote:

I couldn't have looked like more of a c*nt if I had been smoking a fat cigar, burning five pound notes and shouting loudly into a cell phone that I was here to vote Capitalist!

Once again, Dalty sells himself short.

I'd say Ol' Beau Watkins sells himself tall, but he don't sell himself.

Less'n it's funny. And bein' as it ain't never not funny, he don't sell himself tall. He don't sell himself a'tall.

Daltons chin dimple
Location:
Posts: 12800
Posted: 10 years 42 weeks ago

Jakester wrote:

So your demeanor fit your personality, then?

I am starting to get seriously concerned that you don't love me anymore Jake??? Who is she, you two timing bitch?? ;)

First result in. Labour hold Sunderland South but with a 12% drop in support from 2005. Conservatives up 5% on last time. Over 8% swing to Conservatives which is enough to get a majority, however the unofficial exit polls show a Conservative win nationwide, but not enough to form a government.

Long night ahead, I need another beer!

....says "Kill Bond, NOW!"
Quasar
Location:
Posts: 7588
Posted: 10 years 42 weeks ago

Who are we rooting for again?

Faster and faster, a nightmare we ride. Who'll take the reins when the miracle dies? Faster and faster till everything dies. Killing is our way of keeping alive. - Virgin Steele, Blood and Gasoline
Daltons chin dimple
Location:
Posts: 12800
Posted: 10 years 42 weeks ago

Reports coming in of the polls closing at 10pm as the law states, however hundreds of people left outside in queues in some areas. This could get interesting.

....says "Kill Bond, NOW!"
Daltons chin dimple
Location:
Posts: 12800
Posted: 10 years 42 weeks ago

Quasar wrote:

Who are we rooting for again?

It depends what you believe in.

....says "Kill Bond, NOW!"
Daltons chin dimple
Location:
Posts: 12800
Posted: 10 years 42 weeks ago

Second result expected, Washington and Sunderland West..... It was a very big Labour majority in 2005 so they are expected to hold it, but the question is how much will their majority be eroded and how much of a swing to another party that will demonstrate.

....says "Kill Bond, NOW!"
Daltons chin dimple
Location:
Posts: 12800
Posted: 10 years 42 weeks ago

I'll make a prediction now. This whole thing with people unable to vote because of queues at 10pm when the polls closed......

I think we might be about to have our very own version of your issues when George Bush won an election that was immediately disputed. If this happened in any marginal seat there will be a hell of a row!!!

....says "Kill Bond, NOW!"
Daltons chin dimple
Location:
Posts: 12800
Posted: 10 years 42 weeks ago

Washington and Sunderland just got held by Labour, but with an increase in voter turnout and an 11% swing to Conservative in a massively safe Labour seat. Whilst held by Labour it is not good news for them.

....says "Kill Bond, NOW!"