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Tuesday, 11 May 2010

An Expected Betrayal

Apparently, on election night Jenny Willott, getting her words mixed, hit the nail on the head. "Tonight," she declared, "we witness a triumph of politics over democracy."

Never has a truer word been spoken. Cameron, the leader of a party that a majority of people voted against, has been made prime minister with the help of Nick Clegg, leading a party that even more people voted against, by the assent of a monarch that nobody voted for.

The Liberal Democrat MPs who couldn't resist joining the tories in government have shattered any illusions their supporters have had in them that they offer an alternative to the main parties and the big business interests that they represent. They did it for the country, they said - for stability and the national interest, so that massive cuts to public services and jobs could be made and the markets reassured. If this was the issue which had such veto-power over all others why not just urge their supporters to vote Tory in the first place?

The yellow ministers have won nothing but an increase in their salaries. Liberal Democrats will be whipped to abstain in votes even on those issues they made manifesto commitments, giving the Tories a majority they did not win at the ballot box. Already, Chris Huhne, Lib DEM MP and energy sec, has admitted that new nuclear power stations could be constructed.

And only is electoral reform of any kind in all likelihood off the agenda (because the Tories' massive campaign chest will be used in a referendum to finance opposition) but the legislation the Libservative government is proposing will technically rule out a vote of no confidence in the government within a five year term. This paper commitment, however, will not live up to the stress and strain of reality - in seeking to make the government stronger they've only made it rigid, and more brittle, and the movement that will develop to fight the cuts in the period ahead will smash it to pieces.

As the Independent joked, Clegg and Cameron are married, "till debt us do part."

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