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robcat2075

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« Reply #20 on: Jun 09, 2017, 06:17AM »

There's some talk about the "progressives", ie Labour and Fallon's Liberal Democratic forming an alliance of sorts and forming government.


The Conservatives were too close to a majority to be denied. They've picked up a Northern Ireland pro-British party to get across the line.

Corbyn had a no-compromises policy for forming a government which made it even more unlikely for Labour to rule with someone else.


The on-air pundits noted that "everyone lost". Conservatives lost their mandate. Labour still didn't come close to winning. Most everyone else finished so far back as to be irrelevant.

Corbyn seems to have repaired his image a bit, but that's about it.

One of my UK Facebook friends was telling me a year ago that Corbyn was a crackpot but now was voting for him. 20-somethings declared him to be the one they'd "most like to have a beer with".

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Robert Holmén

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« Reply #21 on: Jun 09, 2017, 09:18AM »

BBC has a summary of the more unusual also-rans...

WT* moments of election night

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Robert Holmén

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« Reply #22 on: Jun 09, 2017, 09:25AM »

The Black Knight won?
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Graham Martin
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« Reply #23 on: Jun 09, 2017, 03:57PM »

British Prime Minister Theresa May did not seem to change her pre-prepared election win speech, which did not contemplate such a disastrous election result, and in front of No 10 pledged to deliver a "successful Brexit".

She also confirmed that she will seek to form a minority government with the Northern Irish Democratic Unionists Party (DUP) and has advised the Queen accordingly. The deal with DUP gives the Tories 329 seats in parliament.

Opposition Leader Jeremy Corbyn has predictably called for her to resign but, despite the catastrophe of calling the election and losing so many seats, Theresa May is seemingly determined to get on with the Brexit negotiations which start in only 11 days time. I think the Euros will eat her alive. Bad dog.  No Biscuits.
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Grah

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« Reply #24 on: Jun 09, 2017, 06:56PM »

BBC has a summary of the more unusual also-rans...

WT* moments of election night



Lord Buckethead, evidently.

And he has a manifesto.

MY 2017 MANIFESTO: Strong, not entirely stable, leadership

1. The abolition of the Lords (except me).

2. Full facial coverings to be kept legal, especially bucket-related headgear.

3. No third runway to be built at Heathrow: where we’re going we don’t need runways.

4. Ceefax to be brought back immediately, with The Oracle and other Teletext services to be rolled out by the next Parliament.

5. Regeneration of Nicholson’s Shopping Centre, Maidenhead.

6. Buckethead on Brexit: a referendum should be held about whether there should be a second referendum.

7. Nuclear weapons: A firm public commitment to build the £100bn renewal of the Trident weapons system, followed by an equally firm private commitment not to build it. They’re secret submarines, no one will ever know. It’s a win win.

8. Nationalisation of Adele: in order to maximise the efficient use of UK resources, the time is right for great British assets to be brought into public ownership for the common good. This is to be achieved through capital spending.

9. A moratorium until 2022 on whether Birmingham should be converted into a star base.

10. Legalisation of the hunting of fox-hunters.

11. New voting age limit of 16 to be introduced. New voting age limit of 80 to be introduced too.

12. Katie Hopkins to be banished to the Phantom Zone.

13. Stop selling arms to Saudi Arabia. Start buying lasers from Lord Buckethead.

14. Prospective MPs to live in the seat they wish to represent for at least five years before election, to improve local representation in Parliament.

15. Free bikes for everyone, to help combat obesity, traffic congestion and bike theft.
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robcat2075

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« Reply #25 on: Jun 09, 2017, 07:13PM »

The requirements to run for MP are a bit odd by American standards

-a £500 "deposit" required, refunded if you get more than 5% of the vote
-the only residency requirement is that you be a citizen of the UK, a Commonwealth nation or... the Republic of Ireland?
-must be nominated by 10 "parliamentary electors" (voters) of the constituency in which the person intends to run.

Sounds like a recipe for carpetbag government. I guess it is how a party puts its important candidates, like cabinet minsters, into safe districts.
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Robert Holmén

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« Reply #26 on: Jun 09, 2017, 07:28PM »

This has been parodied many times by Gilbert and Sullivan.  Look at the operetta Iolanthe where Strepon is sent to parliament because the Queen of the Fairies has a "borough or two at my disposal".  Also look at Sir Joseph Porter (KCB) song in HMS Pinafore (When I was a Lad).
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Bruce Guttman
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« Reply #27 on: Jun 10, 2017, 09:11AM »

Headline in the WaPo:

"Pressure in Britain builds on Theresa May to step aside as her top aides resign, her party plots her possible ouster"

No word if Lord Buckethead is being considered as her successor.

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« Reply #28 on: Jun 10, 2017, 09:24AM »

Headline in the WaPo:
 
"Pressure in Britain builds on Theresa May to step aside as her top aides resign, her party plots her possible ouster"
 
No word if Lord Buckethead is being considered as her successor.

They're welcome to our "Lord Buckethead".
 
May have to give it a few more months though, before absolutely everyone rational will be quite happy to see him go.
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« Reply #29 on: Jun 10, 2017, 12:16PM »

It is interesting how easily Mrs. May could be replaced as PM.

She could resign.

She could lose a confidence motion in the house.

The Conservative party could replace her as leader.
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robcat2075

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« Reply #30 on: Jun 10, 2017, 12:52PM »

I was surprised that Cameron stepped aside so quickly after Brexit.  Just to give the job to someone else who also said they didn't want Brexit? But then somehow was going to enthusiastically do it anyway?

I'm also surprised that no one had the courage to say, "hey, it was just an non-binding referendum that didn't pass by a huge majority. Let's take time to think about it."

It should have been Cameron saying that.
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Robert Holmén

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« Reply #31 on: Jun 10, 2017, 03:51PM »

First signs of the end of Theresa May as PM are that her co-chiefs of staff Nick Timothy and Fiona Hill have resigned as the party prepared to launch negotiations to stay in power. The two formed part of the leader's small inner circle and were blamed by many Conservatives for the party's lacklustre campaign and unpopular election platform.

I feel that there are so many Conservatives who were not in favour of Brexit that she had no chance of increasing her majority and it was stupid her to call the election, whoever's decision that was. Yeah, RIGHT.

Personally, I was very much in favour of Brexit and I do not think the Brits have to kowtow to their old Euro partners to get acceptable conditions of exit. The boot should be on the other foot with GB resuming its old position of world leadership - certainly needed with Trump dropping the US from that position. Not that I think May could do that. Or Corbyn.
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Grah

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« Reply #32 on: Jun 11, 2017, 02:15PM »

Does Britain have many cards to play in getting a Brexit that's better than plain old non-EU status that all the rest of us have?

They talk about threatening to stop buying French wine and German cars but they're a WTO member which wouldn't allow that without sanctions, right?  Are they going to quit the WTO too?

There isn't much Britain can do that the rest of Europe can't do back.

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« Reply #33 on: Jun 11, 2017, 02:21PM »

I think that's something that wasn't well explained in the runup to the Brexit vote.  Much like our election, the people supporting it believed they were voting for something else.
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« Reply #34 on: Jun 11, 2017, 11:07PM »

Lord Buckethead makes an appearance on John Oliver tonight.
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« Reply #35 on: Jun 12, 2017, 01:55AM »

I'm somewhat surprised that the press coordinator of a candidate for national office has not presented the media with a better photo.

Our media seem to play a game of trying to find the least flattering photo possible, in order to make the politicians that the particular outlet doesn't favour look ridiculous. These photos are pretty tame by comparison. It is a tiresome thing, a symptom of how our discourse has been trivialised.

And it's a wasted effort - so many of them will do that job for themselves, the minute they open their mouths.

A couple of examples:

The Daily Heil show Jeremy Corbyn as a startled oaf
(sorry... Daily Mail... I don't normally go in for this kind of childish namechanging, but the DM pretends to be a legitimate news outlet while actually spreading hatred and fear, wrapped up in a reflexive habit of female body-shaming. It's  a truly horrible paper; famous for supporting the Nazis in the 1930s, and still under the management of the same family, it's been on the wrong side of every social issue ever raised. It can appear here in links from well-meaning US residents - understand that it's the British equivalent of linking to Fox News. It's the only paper whose content has been officially deprecated as unreliable by Wikipedia for citation purposes, if that helps to illuminate their values. Despite all this, it maintains a mass market circulation in the UK, a truly depressing fact.)

While The Mirror (pretty much the only left-leaning tabloid) shows Theresa May as a constipated snowman.

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« Reply #36 on: Jun 12, 2017, 02:32AM »

As i watch the coverage, the British pundits seem to be saying this...

- May has gotten an un-dorsement to her call for a stronger endorsement for Brexit. She was really dumb to call this election.
- No one is saying Brexit still won't happen, just that the "hard Brexit" May wanted may not happen.
- The good showing for Corbyn and Labour clouds the issue because he ran on a semi-Brexit platform, not anti-Brexit.
- "No one" wants another referendum.  They hated the last one.
- May was a lousy, negative campaigner
- Corbyn surprised everyone by being not insane and being a positive campaigner

This takes us a step closer to a world in which the idea of cancelling Brexit is a politically thinkable one. It is noticeable that the level of conventional media discourse on the subject has risen since the result; BBC interviewers asking politicians if it is going to happen after all - a completely unaskable question this time last week, to the great frustration of those of us who would dearly like it to be cancelled.

But it is a step closer on a long path. It is hard to see a route in which it doesn't happen, with so much political intent invested in it from the two main sides of the party divide. Those of us who still oppose it as an obviously stupid idea feel effectively unrepresented, with only the Liberal Democrats making a commitment to oppose it. The Lib Dems increased their representation at this election - from 8 to 12 seats out of the total 650... They are still politically broken after their 2015 wipeout.

Corbyn, Labour, and Brexit... This is a complex tale. Some salient facts:
 - The bringing of the question before the electorate was a project of the hard right wing, found on the Conservative party back benches and in UKIP
 - But there were historically also members of the left wing who opposed the EU, for jobs-protection reasons. Once upon a time, Jeremy Corbyn was one of these people.
 - He professes to have changed his view - saying that leaving the EU is a drastic step; better to work inside it - but he campaigned very weakly to remain in 2016, leaving many suspicious that he hasn't in fact changed his view
 - Corbyn is kept in place as party leader by the party members, which whom he is very popular, rather than his MPs, with whom he is less popular
 - Voters for both main parties are split on the desirability of Brexit. A sizable fraction of Conservative voters are more politically moderate than the current party direction, and wished to remain in the EU. A strong majority of Labour voters wanted to remain also.
 - UKIP in 2010 and 2015 became a vehicle for protest votes, for people who were more worried about life getting less good than about their actual policies or about their abhorrent personnel. Many of these people were historic Labour voters, working people that were struggling. And many of them took fully on board (primed by the decades-long campaigns of papers such as the Mail) the idea that blaming the EU for life not feeling good was a sensible thing to do. A fair bit of the referendum vote to leave came from this 'fed up' demographic, who, instead of blaming the Conservative party austerity policies that were the actual cause of their displeasure, chose to answer the question in the way that it became fashionable to think - by scapegoating the EU. This is the mechanism where the parallels with the Trump vote in the US become blindingly clear.
 - So UKIP had picked up votes from both main parties, but for differing reasons - from those who wanted the Conservatives to be more brutal, but also from across the core Labour demographic, in an act of protest. With Brexit apparently unalterably happening, these largely went back to where they had come from, with 75% of UKIPs 2015 vote share disappearing (and thank goodness to see them become marginalised again. Though our media still pay them an unwarranted amount of attention, given their lack of ability to return any MPs.).
 - Referenda are horrible things. They split the country from top to bottom, particularly if the answer is unclear, the question poorly phrased, and the parameters naively set, as they all were for us in 2016. And David Cameron gave us several of the damn things - on a change to the voting system in 2011, on Scottish independence in 2014, and on EU membership in 2016. Each was more bruising than the last - the first one a bit of a non-event (though it should have been treated much more seriously), the second leaving Scotland in a rare old state of animosity, and the third bringing that countrywide. There is no appetite at all in the country to do such things again for many years. Note that the SNP had raised the idea of a second Scottish independence referendum in the coming years (independence in a Brexit landscape seeming a much more reasonable idea than it did prior) - and for that they were punished heavily last Thursday, losing 21 of their 56 seats (Scotland has only 59 seats in total, so it was nearly a one-party state after 2015). Other factors were at play, but there's no doubt that that had a big say.
 - That said, one may become necessary. Who knows? If they try to negotiate Brexit, and come back only with terrible options such that aborting the process becomes the only reasonable course (this seems pretty likely to me... The idea is so foundationally flawed.), could any politician dare to do so without a direct mandate in the current climate? But then, the electoral mood on Brexit has shifted - there is a flavour around of "Come on, let's just get this mess over and done with", with people suppressing their appetite to cancel it. A referendum on terms, even if the terms were the most awful one could imagine, might well come out with an endorsement of those truly awful terms. The will of the electorate is a fickle and bizarre thing.
 - Corbyn has been brutally mistreated by almost all of our media since he took on the leadership of the Labour party after the 2015 election. So relentless and one-sided has the onslaught been that it's been hard to perceive either the man or the policies behing it. With this election campaign, he finally had a chance to be listened to. And despite the Conservative-supporting majority of our press throwing absolutely all the mud and smear they could at him, he came out of it looking principled, with integrity - and even smiling. Only those that unquestioningly take in their views from our right wing papers thought (still think) that he was (is) a loony, but many whose perceptions are formed more casually also had their take disrupted, by the uniformity of unfair condemnation of him. The increased focus of an election campaign allowed these people to develop their view - and we hearteningly found out that social justice policies still have a mass following in the UK, despite what many of our papers and our right wing leadership tell us to think. Corbyn's leadership still put off many potential voters, which could be a problem going forward - but he has at the least reminded us that socialist thoughts ought to be at the core of Labour party values, something they wilfully forgot under Tony Blair 2 decades ago.

The Conservative strategy was to scoop up former UK Independence Party voters. It would be logical for pro-Brexit UKIP voters to go Conservative, especially in constituencies where the UKIP has intentionally not fielded a candidate in order to help the Conservative candidate.

However, that seems not to be happening.  Very often, the shift in UKIP vote since the last election has gone to Labour or Lib Dem. Don't know

See above. I would be extremely surprised to learn that the 2015 UKIP vote went to the Lib Dems anywhere - from the party whose only reason for existence is to lose the UK's EU membership to the only party to officially oppose Brexit? That would reveal a startling shift in priorities. But much of it went back to where it had come from, and some of that was Labour.
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Dave Taylor

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« Reply #37 on: Jun 12, 2017, 03:05AM »

The Conservatives were too close to a majority to be denied. They've picked up a Northern Ireland pro-British party to get across the line.

This is more than a minor detail. They allied with the only other party that would have them - the Democratic Unionist Party, who benefited from a polarisation of Northern Irish voting (the two moderate parties lost all their seats on Thursday) to grow to 10 seats, enough to push the Conservatives over the line.

But in Northern Ireland, "moderate" and "extreme" mean different things than they do in Great Britain. The two parties now in possession of all the seats, the DUP and Sinn Fein, both have a long history of alliance to paramilitary groups, and there is still great controversy over their failures to condemn such violent means. After having seen the Conservative press vilify Jeremy Corbyn for the duration of the campaign for having contacts with Sinn Fein from the 1980s (a hugely controversial position at the time, their paramilitary wing (the IRA) murdering innocent civilians as they were) - we now see Theresa May propping up her government with their opposite numbers.

The DUP were founded by the infamous Rev Ian Paisley, a giant bully of a man who cast a long shadow over the peace process in Northern Ireland, hindering it greatly with his intransigence and seeming desire to drag out harm. The party was made in his image, embracing a kind of Christian fundamentalism that you in the US see frighteningly much of from your Republicans, but that here (outside Northern Ireland) just seems massively peculiar. The DUP fight to oppose bringing NI into line with the liberalising 1967 abortion act, they openly promote hatred of and discrimination against LGBT people, they literally embody the principle of sectarian tension, they've been quoted giving Young Earth Creationist and climate-change-denying views (their environment minister Sammy Wilson is a climate change denier). These are the bad guys, there's no mistaking that. And now they have a lever over our government. Do not forget that it is the former one-man party whose leader was fond of proclaiming from his pulpit that the Pope is the Antichrist. They came in Ian Paisley's old age to embrace their enemies in the name of healing NI, but their mediaeval attitudes still persist.

Corbyn had a no-compromises policy for forming a government which made it even more unlikely for Labour to rule with someone else.

Yes. This has always struck me as being short-sighted. Would he/they stick to it if push came to shove? I suspect not, but who knows.
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Dave Taylor

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« Reply #38 on: Jun 12, 2017, 03:11AM »

Brexit will happen  84% of voters voted for the two main parties both of which supported brexit in their manifesto's... if Corbyn (who has a lifelong dislike of the EU)tries to move this then he risks losing the Norther MP's as the North voted leave.

The electorate rejected the unliberal undemocrat party who are the only pro remain and will do anything to overturn the vote, even their leader saw his own majority slashed from over 7000 to 777.

And just to remind Dave that the last labour prime minister Brown tried to do a deal with the DUP in 2010 to cling to power!!
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« Reply #39 on: Jun 12, 2017, 03:16AM »

The requirements to run for MP are a bit odd by American standards

-a £500 "deposit" required, refunded if you get more than 5% of the vote
-the only residency requirement is that you be a citizen of the UK, a Commonwealth nation or... the Republic of Ireland?
-must be nominated by 10 "parliamentary electors" (voters) of the constituency in which the person intends to run.

Sounds like a recipe for carpetbag government. I guess it is how a party puts its important candidates, like cabinet minsters, into safe districts.

An accusation often levelled at the main parties is that they 'parachute' their favoured candidates into safe seats. Carpetbagging is alive and well.

These rules are aimed at solving various things - the £500 deposit tries to ensure that only people serious about standing do so. In practice, it largely prevents the proliferation of joke candidates, but doesn't eliminate them entirely, witness posts above. Some people think £500 is a worthy price to pay for the pleasure of prancing around a constituency dressed as a brick for two months... I don't understand them, but I wish them all the luck with it.

The Republic of Ireland clause I suspect relates to the peculiar historic constitutional interrelation of the two countries. The ROI was a part of the UK until 1922, when it broke away, and ever since ROI citizens have retained their UK voting rights.

This has been parodied many times by Gilbert and Sullivan.  Look at the operetta Iolanthe where Strepon is sent to parliament because the Queen of the Fairies has a "borough or two at my disposal".  Also look at Sir Joseph Porter (KCB) song in HMS Pinafore (When I was a Lad).

G&S = 19th century. The system's been overhauled substantially since then on various occasions. At the start of Sullivan's life, there were "rotten boroughs", where a tiny (even single-figure) number of electors returned an MP, and it was common practice to bribe them.
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