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John Drake

Who'd be in Nick Clegg's shoes...

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1. I'm sorry your MP is a Tory. So is mine. Your vote wasn't wasted or didn't count, it's just that the person you voted for lost because more people voted for the other guy. Bad luck.

2. Nick Clegg didn't mean to lie to you. He's just a very stupid man who has no grasp of what coalition politics should be about. He's very open that the Lib Dems will, in a future hung parliament, have a preference to form a government with the largest party. Not necessarily the party he feels is best placed to allow the implementation of Lib Dem policies. He has reduced the status of a Lib Dem vote to a proxy vote for the largest party - with the fun twist that at the time of casting your vote you won't know who that largest party will be.

Is Nik Keggs stupid as I bet he is set up for life.

We as a nation will do Sweet F.A. as apart from the elite we (as normal people) have so many difference's.

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So... you've had a free education then if you can't pay it back?  You're not contributing towards it.

 

I'm sure I said that I'm paying a monthly amount?  So yes, I am paying it back.  It's just that I was a mature student and I don't earn a whole lot so I won't be paying it all back.  Unless I suddenly find myself earning 40 grand a year or something.  I might do so then, yes.  And I'm paying more than I would if I was just graduating as those who now graduate only have to start repaying at £21,000 whereas when I took out a loan the trigger salary was £15,000. 

 

The rest of your post was childish.

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I'm too old to ever pay it off.  But I wouldn't have it any other way. 

 

Scrounger.

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As we move into an era of coalition governments we are going to find more political leaders apparently going back on their promises.

 

I have no doubt that if the Tories had won an absolute majority and had been in government without the Lib Dems, Clegg would have been doing what the piece of paper's he's holding said he would do.

 

But he unexpectedly found himself in government, and had to compromise on his manifesto, as did the Tories. Both parties are unable to deliver on certain of their promises, and that's the price of entering into a coalition.

 

They may look like liars, but there's little alternative if they are to govern in coalition.

 

Those who favour coalition government should perhaps stop moaning about the consequences of such a system. We are going to see them far more often.

He looks like a liar because he is a liar. If you read Andrew Adonis's book "Seven days in May" which is the story, from the Labour side of the negotiations after the 2010 election, you'll find that Clegg could have had a coalition with Labour and got much more of what his party wanted.  But he played a double game, just using Labour to force concessions from the Tories.  As for the objection that it wouldn't have worked, bear in mind that Brown already had the Ulster Unionists on side and was willing to retire from the scene. It would have worked, Clegg (a closet Tory IMO) chose to go with Dave. Let's see what it gets him and his party next year!

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 Clegg could have had a coalition with Labour

 

Labour + Lib Dems = 305.  21 short of a majority.

 

A rainbow coalition was impossible from the moment the Greens (Caroline Lucas) stated they had no desire to join it.

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I'm sure I said that I'm paying a monthly amount?  So yes, I am paying it back.  It's just that I was a mature student and I don't earn a whole lot so I won't be paying it all back.  Unless I suddenly find myself earning 40 grand a year or something.  I might do so then, yes.  And I'm paying more than I would if I was just graduating as those who now graduate only have to start repaying at £21,000 whereas when I took out a loan the trigger salary was £15,000. 

 

The rest of your post was childish.

On the rest of my post being childish, I admit the wording was probably a bit tongue-in-cheek but the sentiments were stony-faced reality.

 

Is it fair that just because someone had an education, that they're both far more likely to be taxed at a higher rate than the average non-degree educated person AND that they're forced to repay the government through the medium of "loans" which are effectively a tax on education.  An educated state is the gateway to a more prosperous future for everyone so why the regressive and punitive tax on education when other taxes are being cut every year, such as taxes on share options and other purely pecuniary gain related taxes.  Instead this government has been reducing the state's overall taxation income position to give more money to those who do nothing but circulate money while helping to compensate for it by taxing those who want to educate themselves.

 

I understand the position that too many people are being educated to degree level and would compromise my position based on that.  I would award full fee exemptions for any degree that is a prerequisite for a chartered or recognised profession, including law, medicine, accountancy and so on, some will substantially more than repay to the state through their likely higher pay packets, others will repay to the state through service.  I would award full fee exemptions for any degree in a subject where we have national shortages, including engineering, mathematics and so on, they will repay to the state by helping plug our shortages, the more people that study, say, engineering, the more likely you are to find the next Brunel.  Any other degree would have to satisfy an interview where they explain what they intend to do with their degree, for example if they want to go into research or they have a credible ambition to expand the national cultural profile then they get a "pass" because all genuine education furthers the nation's civilisation, if they just want a degree and can't articulate why then that's a fail with full fees due.

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Labour + Lib Dems = 305.  21 short of a majority.

 

A rainbow coalition was impossible from the moment the Greens (Caroline Lucas) stated they had no desire to join it.

And due to the utterly childish nature of the Westminster playground we have no hope of ever having a minority government survive even one or two non-contentious votes without the brats destroying it out of petulance.

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And due to the utterly childish nature of the Westminster playground we have no hope of ever having a minority government survive even one or two non-contentious votes without the brats destroying it out of petulance.

 

It seemed to work okay in Scotland (and Wales?) but the yah-boo politics of which, oddly, Padge and Sadler seem so proud on the other thread would stop it happening effectively in Westminster.

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It seems to me that the yah-boo politics is really just confined to PMQs, a few ministerial and shadow ministerial media bites..and the pages of this forum. In fact, with it's gratuitous, ignorant and personal comments about two ministers in particular, this forum makes PMQs look like supper time at the Sacred Heart Convent.

 

If you have the time, spend some of it on the BBC Parliament channel where you will see our elected representatives behaving in a much more civilised manner.

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spend some of it on the BBC Parliament channel where you will see our elected representatives behaving in a much more civilised manner.

 

I note that speeches can be delivered in reverential silence a lot of the time because there's nobody there.

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But not all the time.  Imagine a full house debating the Tripe and Cow Heel Pie (Registration of Consumers) Act . 

 

Have a look at what is on now. It ( Holyrood)  is far from empty as Danny Alexander is being questioned in the Scottish Parliament's Economy,Energy and Tourism committee.

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But not all the time.  Imagine a full house debating the Tripe and Cow Heel Pie (Registration of Consumers) Act . 

 

Have a look at what is on now. It ( Holyrood)  is far from empty as Danny Alexander is being questioned in the Scottish Parliament's Economy,Energy and Tourism committee.

 

We've already said that Holyrood and Cardiff (and Stormont) are better examples of debating without braying than the Commons can muster.

 

Good to see you agree.

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I had a read of this YouGov article this morning and it makes some difficult reading for Clegg.  My analysis of it is that if Cleggie promises* to only go for a coalition with Labour then he'll be more likely to regain some lost votes but then he'll lose a few others as well as losing a lot of seats and is likely to go down in flames in 2015.  If he chooses Tory then he'll definitely not regain those lost voters and is likely to go down in flames in 2015.  If he keeps going with "we'll go for the biggest party" then no-one will like him and is likely go down in flames in 2015.

 

In short, he's screwed.

 

* not that I'd trust his word.  If he said today was Wednesday, I'd double check before believing him.

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I think everyone knows that there will be a total collapse in the number of Lib Dem seats at the next election.  How bad will depend on regional variations - I doubt the party machine will make the same mistake as in 2010 of trying to go all out across the country.  The vote went up but the seats went down.

 

The big danger I'd suggest for all the parties is their vote not turning up.  Nothing in this parliament has reached out to people who didn't vote in 2010 or the many on all sides who've walked away since then.  That's a big variable, especially in marginals, come 2015.

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We've already said that Holyrood and Cardiff (and Stormont) are better examples of debating without braying than the Commons can muster.

 

Good to see you agree.

 

You are wholly wrong. I don't agree.  But its hard for your party's guy to be in Westminster when he is in Scotland.   Yes the commons can muster braying during PMQs but generally it does not stoop to calling Ministers "c-words". Of course, you may have lower standards.

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We've already said that Holyrood and Cardiff (and Stormont) are better examples of debating without braying than the Commons can muster.

 

Good to see you agree.

 

The point is that, away from the ludicrous set piece PMQs and other odd occasions, Westminster is actually a pretty good example of debating without braying.

 

And away from the actual Commons, there's plenty of good, sensible stuff going on.   As you well know.

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Westminster is actually a pretty good example of debating without braying.

 

And away from the actual Commons, there's plenty of good, sensible stuff going on.  

 

The sensible stuff is rarely in the Commons chamber.

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I think everyone knows that there will be a total collapse in the number of Lib Dem seats at the next election.  How bad will depend on regional variations - I doubt the party machine will make the same mistake as in 2010 of trying to go all out across the country.  The vote went up but the seats went down.

 

The Lib Dem vote has held up quite well at council level in many places.  I think this is a function of the general distancing of local Lib Dems from the national Lib Dems.   Although the famous "Focus" leaflet has been a rare beast of late, when it has turned up it's been really hard to find a reference to the Lib Dems on it, and it isn't even yellow anymore.  It's also very critical of central government policy while neglecting to mention who it is that is enacting that policy. 

 

But it'll be quite hard to pull off that trick in a national election.

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The Lib Dem vote has held up quite well at council level in many places.  I think this is a function of the general distancing of local Lib Dems from the national Lib Dems.   Although the famous "Focus" leaflet has been a rare beast of late, when it has turned up it's been really hard to find a reference to the Lib Dems on it, and it isn't even yellow anymore.  It's also very critical of central government policy while neglecting to mention who it is that is enacting that policy. 

 

But it'll be quite hard to pull off that trick in a national election.

We have a Lib Dem county councillor for this area.  An outstanding guy who puts in a massive amount of effort, he'll still get my vote next time round because I agree with you that there has been clear separation in the last few years between local and central parties.

 

The guy who will be standing for election here under the Lib Dem banner for Parliament in 2015 won't get my vote, not because of who he is but just in case it got him elected and he was the deciding MP to make another Tory government supported by Lib Dems.  A genuine case of me looking at the central party rather than the person.  There are very few sitting Lib Dem MPs who I'd vote for now if I lived in their constituency.

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But it'll be quite hard to pull off that trick in a national election.

 

Which is why I don't think it'll even be attempted.  I think you'll see a concerted effort in between 12-25 seats.  Anything else would be folly.

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The point is that, away from the ludicrous set piece PMQs and other odd occasions, Westminster is actually a pretty good example of debating without braying.

 

And away from the actual Commons, there's plenty of good, sensible stuff going on.   As you well know.

The whole point is that what goes on at PMQ and other Parliamentary set pieces is much better than what is currently going on in the Ukraine.

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Labour + Lib Dems = 305.  21 short of a majority.

 

A rainbow coalition was impossible from the moment the Greens (Caroline Lucas) stated they had no desire to join it.

Adonis says differently, if there was no prospect of a Lib/Lab coalition, why did Clegg bother talking to Labour at all?

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The whole point is that what goes on at PMQ and other Parliamentary set pieces is much better than what is currently going on in the Ukraine.

Or many other places in the world.

 

A good test of a free society is to check whether the people are frightened of standing up to their political leaders.

 

PMQs may be noisy and bad mannered, but they are far preferable to many places in the world where leading politicians are able to escape scrutiny.

 

And as several others have said, there are plenty of examples in Parliament of reasoned debate without the bells and whistles of PMQs.

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Adonis says differently, if there was no prospect of a Lib/Lab coalition, why did Clegg bother talking to Labour at all?

 

Probably to explore how they might make a minority government work and if not could they bring in the SNP, the Greens, everyone else ...

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Or many other places in the world.

 

A good test of a free society is to check whether the people are frightened of standing up to their political leaders.

 

PMQs may be noisy and bad mannered, but they are far preferable to many places in the world where leading politicians are able to escape scrutiny.

 

And as several others have said, there are plenty of examples in Parliament of reasoned debate without the bells and whistles of PMQs.

 

And just think how much better things would be if in Prime Minister's Questions questions were actually asked of the Prime Minister.

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