Friday, May 07, 2010

Hangin' Tough

Listening to: Nothing.

Firstly, please excuse the tragic pun! Although to be fair, you'll probably only get it if you're familiar with late 80s pop culture, and I'll be surprised if anyone actually owns up to that cardinal sin. But yeah, the reason for the pun: the breaking but-really-we-knew-it-all-along-so-it-wasn't-really-a-surprise news of the day is that the British people have voted for a hung parliament. In the 'first past the post' system prevelant here, no single party can win all 326 out of 650 seats required, so we have a stalemate. As it stands, even if Gordon Brown convinces the LibDems to form a coalition, it won't be enough to get a majority; indeed, the only way a Tory Britain can be avoided (assuming that is desired) is if the leading coalition is a patchwork of Labour, LibDem and a number of smaller parties with possibly opposing ideals and policies. That, to me, spells 'too many cooks...', but it's not for me to decide.

And therein lies a problem, as I see it. Let's assume I didn't vote Tory (that's not to say I did...). My vote is now effectively null and void, and the party I supported has the difficult task of deciding whom to form a coalition with...a task that I have absolutely no say in. I've heard a lot of people saying "I don't want to vote LibDem in case they form a coalition with the Tories". Well shouldn't those people be able to make that opinion known to the LibDems? The party has a responsiblity to its supporters; how can it gauge whether those supporters would rather be in the government with someone they dislike, or in the opposition? There have been lots of calls for porportional representation, but I don't think that alone can solve the problem.

But getting back to the overall result. I mentioned earlier that I didn't wholly agree nor disagree with any of the three main parties. What this hung parliament tells me is that I'm not the only one. The British people are as undecided about the next steps for the country as are the politicians representing them.

We live in exciting times, people. Uncertain, yes...but exciting, nonetheless.


  1. ohhh new kids on the block :D So you thought you can make a change eh? :P :P

    Seems like the conservative will pull up first. Dunno :S if there is a strong opposition it's good. lets see how it goes.


  2. Err yes New Kids... I can't believe you like that song :P

    And no, I didn't vote to 'make a change'...I'm way past that wannabe-revolutionary stage :P I voted because I wanted to exercise my democratic right, and fulfil my duty to the country I live in. And I did.

    Yeah the only question is whether the other parties side with the Tories or Labour. And there will be a strong opposition :-).

  3. New Kids on the Block rock! But that is expected with me and my taste in music! :P

    Man - I am distraught with the result. :(

    Scrumps (I just couldn't be bothered to sign in to get my name to come up!)

  4. Well, conservatives are typically good at balancing the budget yeah? ;)

    (That's the dirty capitalist in me talking)

  5. Scrumps - LOL yeah I'm not surprised :P
    So I'm guessing you didn't vote Tory? ;-) Well if you voted Labour, at least they'll make sure nothing crazy gets passed...and if you voted LibDem, there's a chance they might be in a ruling coalition. So it's not all doom and gloom :-)

    Chavie - If all that running a country required was 'balancing the budget', we would've got PwC to form a government :P


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