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Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by zimv20, Sep 18, 2004.
Ouch. If true, could this have consequences for Blair & Co? Bush certainly seems to have weasled his way out of them over here.
The world will be a better place when Bush and Blair are out. Hopefully this will be in the next elections. I hope they both get their asses handed to him.
Blair is king of the weasels! He has a massive parliamentary majority and the main opposition party (Tories) are a joke and pose no threat whatsoever.
Over the last 10 years Blair has re-positioned the political landscape in the UK by moving so far to the right he has in effect disenfranchised millions on people (myself included) who now don't have a left of centre party to vote for.
I have become politically active for the first time in my life and now help the Lib Dem party with their local and national electioneering (they were the only party who opposed the war throughout). Unfortunately because of the two-party system in the House of Commons they stand little chance of becoming the ruling party in the near future.
So, to answer your question, Blair will get away with it, in the short term at least. What remains to be seen is the lasting damage that this will do to people's faith in politics and trust in politicians.
I follow British politics with some interest. Years ago when I was visiting in the UK during a national election I asked some Britons for which party a young, progressive person might vote. This was during the days of Maggie Thatcher and before Tony Blair "reinvented" the Labour Party as something much more centrist than it was at the time. The answer it seemed to me then was the LDP, but nobody told me that. In fact I generally got a blank look. This left me wondering how it was that the LDP got to be so marginalized, and now thinking they should be able to capitalize on Blair's chumminess with Bush far more than they seem be able. Why is that?
As I said the way the political system works here is essentially by tradition a two-party system. There is the Government (party with majority of elected members) and the official (Queen's) opposition party (with the second-largest number). They sit at benches opposite each other in the House of Commons, each with a lectern (dispatch box) from which their ministers (or shadow ministers) speak.
Other parties have to make do with spare seats wherever they may be in the chamber. They have fewer rights in terms of Parliamentary procedure and traditionally are sneered at by both of the main parties.
Does this sound antiquated, unfair and even childish? That's how it is.
This is reflected in the press coverage they receive. When there is a political news item to cover, a Government spokesman is sought, and usually a comment from the Tory shadow cabinet minister. Only occasionally will a Lib Deb spokesman be asked.
That being the case, it's perhaps not surprising that Lib Dems & other minority parties get such short shrift. Lib Dems actually do very well in local government elections, having almost as many members as the Tories. But when it comes to National elections people vote for parties with a realistic chance of being elected - it is a viscous circle (almost literally!)