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"So farewell then" 2006

It is pretty hard to avoid sounding demi E.J Thribb when saying goodbye to a year.

Politically it has been slightly inconclusive- although the Conservatives have advanced, it does not, as yet, seem enough to give them the chance to win outright, come the next election. Labour seem more becalmed than in actually stormy water, and while the Lib Dems have had a generally poor year, the party is at least becoming more coherent and although polls have been generally down, in local government by-elections, the Lib Dems have achieved considerable success. However, I think no party can look at 2006 with unalloyed satisfaction.

So from the perspective of Liberalism, some progress inside the party, but a generally poor press and falling polls have clearly hurt. Many of our political enemies would like to write off the chances of the Lib Dems- well, the world is littered with the bones of predictions that never happened. The only thing that I can do is to campaign for the core principles that this blog espouses. I believe that we are winning the argument. I also believe that unless the idea of freedom is explicitly incorporated into policy formation, then our society risks blundering in some very dangerous directions.

Another key area for those who advocate strict limits to the state: privacy, is also set to rise up the political agenda. Already I detect a backlash against the snooping state- and, for example, as more DNA is kept on record, the risks of intrusion increase.

Despite the mushiness of both the Labour and Conservative intellectual platforms, I believe that the electorate is seeking a more crunchy style of politics- I hope that the Liberal Democrats can provide it. 2007 may well be the year that we finally see whether the political pendulum will come our way, or whether we have to endure another dead end government.


Anonymous said…
Cicero cut andre-pasted for you. Lepidus...

Anonymous said...
My dear Consul I am flattered. The last time you got so worked up was over that Chap Catiline. Not having as much time as you I will have to reply in two parts the first shorter the "low" politics as you quaintly put it and second ly in a later post the loft ideals you go on about. B4 I began though if you have'nt had a look at last week's Economist article I referred to on Polish highlanders, do so your take would be worth hearing.

It is indisputably the case the Tories are on the up. Their vote share will increase and they will highly likely take votes and seats from the Lib Dems. However barring extraordinary events no one really believes more than 15 Lib Dem MPs at most will seriously be under threat anyway. That leaves a baseline of 47 MPs at the minimum probably a few more.

So why do Tory votes matter well take two case studies. Manchester Withington probably the most extraordinary Lib Dem result of all time. Bigger swings have been achieved but really only in By-Elections. Tory vote drops by a third, John Leech elected. Take two Islington South close marginal, Lib Dem vote rises but so does the Tory vote! result Emily Thornberry MP. That is is why Withington was won and IS not. There are scores of seats up the Country where Labour's machine has atrophied with decent Tory votes but with the Lib Dems having surged into second. The Tory votes in such seats will indisputably be key as to your seat count. I bet Lord Rennard thinks so. Agree do you not.......

More Later.


1:42 PM

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