Anyone who's read my earlier notes will know exactly what I think of the parties. So the fact we're on course for a hung parliament is absolutely no surprise for me, nor for much of Britain. Many pundits have been predicting it for weeks, in fact.
I'm shocked at the collapse in the Lib Dem vote after the TV debates, but it seems I misjudged the mood of the British people, at least with regard to the Lib Dems. My only consolation there is that everyone else did, too.
This election was Cameron's to win and he threw the opportunity away. FAR too many times he tiptoed quietly away when he could have delivered the killer blow to this useless, corrupt, inept govt. Well, THAT govt now, I suppose! ;D
I'm not quite sure what to blame the Lib Dem collapse on, honestly. Might simply be that a lot of people voted for whoever they thought could best keep out either the Conservatives or Labour, according to whom they hate most. Despite a lot of goodwill for them in the country, it would seem that just didn't translate into votes on the day, which has shocked pretty much everyone.
Probably did make a difference, Terror, yes. That and wanting to scrap the Trident missile system in favour of 'um... something?' but they didn't know what.
That said, all three major parties are definitely pro-EU. If the Conservatives had offered a proper referendum on EU membership, they'd likely have done a lot better. As things stood, Cameron's breaking of his "cast iron guarantee" of a referendum on the Lisbon treaty without offering something better cost him a LOT of votes. The rule of thumb is that if circumstances force you to break your word, you offer more, not less. To do otherwise is dishonourable and people will not forget.
The main issues remain immigration, the economy and the EU: topics which all three major parties ducked as much as possible during the election. No-one took a clear line where they could waffle and obfuscate instead. That cost them all in the end, I think.
Despite a lot of goodwill for them in the country, it would seem that just didn't translate into votes on the day, which has shocked pretty much everyone.
Look at the numbers. They got 23 % of the votes. Labour got 29, Tories 36. They didn't lose by all that much in pure votes, in fact they went up by 1 % there. It's just that despite having 80 % as many votes as Labour and 63 % as many votes as the Conservatives they're sitting on 20 % of labour's seats and 18 % of The Conservative's seats.
Compare the LibDem's with Sinn Fein. Sinn Fein got 2 % as many votes as the LibDem's and 15 % as many seats as the LibDems. It's not that pepole didn't vote for them, it's just that their votes were too spread out.
Whoever can see through all fear will always be safe.
But a 1% boost in these conditions is a shambles. They've been running Labour neck and neck in the polls, and everyone thought they might even beat Labour in terms of vote share on the day. As with the Conservatives, you have to measure their level of success against the fact that the Labour govt is the worst govt in living memory (No matter how old you are) and arguably the worst ever.
The Lib Dems should have been up by at least 5% over their last result and that would only count as meeting expectations. No-one's sure what happened to their expected vote, or why.
The one thing that can absolutely be said about this election is that it's been absolutely weird from start to finish.
I like that Clegg is keeping to his principles. He's always said the party with the most votes and the most seats should form the next govt. Wouldn't rule out a Conservative/Lib Dem alliance at this point...
It's never exactly stopped, Glance. No more than the buying of political influence has.
There are some areas of Britain so completely inculcated into the idea that one party is 'their' party that if that party put a promise to exterminate all of them into the manifesto, the party would STILL win the seat. Best kind of rotten borough there is: you don't even have to bribe them to keep them loyal because their own lack of sense does it for them.
Personally, I think the vote should be taken away from anyone and everyone who auto-votes, whatever party they auto-vote for. But then, I think Democracy is a useless mess that should be swept away, anyway. Fair it might be (Though that's debatable) but sensible it is not.
As for buying political influence, well, any system that allows direct donations to political parties rather than giving funding only through blind trusts is inherently corrupt. Which includes most of the world as well as Britain, I believe, but it's true regardless.
I'm still stunned that people think Labour is the way.
Immigration is out of control. The Public is now bankrupt thanks to Blair and Shitface (Brown). Public institutions are not exactly in their best working order.
The Conservatives now support homosexual marriage. They also now support the ideals of Health Care.
They also however, are the unfortunate party that is going to have to oversee bailing the country out. They'll probably be hated and won't see a majority, because of the Labour Party. Cameron is going to have to make cuts, and LOTS of them to fund Britain's drunken spending spree, and people will blame him for it. It sucks.
All true. But never underestimate the amount of tribalism there is in politics and the sheep-like mentality of the auto-voter. Combine these two factors, then add in that the Conservatives are pretty unconvincing...