Current threats to the future Lib-Lab coalition

Amol Rajan

I thought that line - which Labour members, supporters, and propagandists are pushing very hard at the moment - about how the Lib Dems had sacrificed tens of thousands of real people’s jobs for 22 fake ones (in the Cabinet), a very good one. And I thought Harriet Harman delivered it well.

But it’s occurred to me that, if the Conservatives lose the next General Election, but Labour are unable to form a majority, it’s quite possible that another Coalition will be formed, a Lab-Lib one, in which Labour are dependent on their comrades from this country’s venerable tradition of liberalism.

In which case, that line might come back to bite them on the arse. Just as David Cameron’s stupid and unfunny response to Dylan Jones’ enquiry as to his favourite political joke (Answer: “Nick Clegg”) will be a running sore for the next few years.

These are the problems of coalition politics, of course. The Lib Dems have long espoused coalition politics so can hardly complain. The public like the idea of it, and so do I. But because it creates a situation where enemies very quickly become friends, and vice versa, many orthodox lines of attack will come back to haunt their original espouser.

  • CreamOnTop

    Essentially it’s economics at the heart of it. Practical analysis it’s best to leave it out. hence the ridiculous, in the context of the Labour party, label Progressives for a broad swathe of what would call themselves left wing.

    However the 3 main parties it really is the narcissism of small differences. Hence how they appear is often a function of what they consider effective rhetoric rather than a deeply thought out position based on any left/right ideology.

    Sadly there is no single line or issue. You can even believe what Marx said about Capitalism and not want a communist society and indeed be on the free market right.

    Immigration and racial issues clearly divide as well. With free market in the movement of labour opposed and supported across the spectrum. Indeed it’s hard to argue where NAZI and Ba’athist ideology belongs strictly speaking although they would both have locked up and murdered communists.

    Where guile-less value-less highly educated empty vessels like the Milibands and Balls for instance choose the left party may have more to do with personality than believing in anything. A patronising uber self esteem that says you can change things with legislation and telling people what to do.

    Sorry it’s less clear than even I started out thinking. However essentially if you think welfare is needed, a right and works then axiomatically you believe in less free markets and a bigger state and tend towards the left. However there are shades of grey everywhere.

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