Monday, May 31, 2010

Sunday, May 30, 2010

Just got tech support for my ipod off a 7yr old on YouTube. I love living in the future. (But not predictive text).
Just for tech support for my ipod off a 7yr old on YouTube. I love living in the future.

Friday, May 28, 2010

Caught end of million pound drop. It's bollocks, but is it real bollocks or fake bollocks. I'm suspecting a bb tie-in.

Friday, May 14, 2010

Probably should have tagged that better.

I done a post: #ukelection2010
I done a blog post earlier, if you're interested:

ConDem the Coalition

After spending the majority of my voting life as a supporter of the Labour party, it took a great deal of introspection and will to change my allegiance and vote for the Liberal Democrats this year. I remember the optimism of 1997 and those first years of hope and transformation. I wasn't one who rushed to condemn Blair for the invasion of Iraq. The charges were trumped up, but the goal - I believe - was a good one: to increase stability in an area of the World that we are dependent on. When Blair left office, I wasn't all that keen for him to go. When Brown took over I didn't think it was illegitimate that he was PM - we don't live in a Presidential democracy where our leader is directly elected. The PM is not the Head of State, he is the leader of the party in power. If we did have elections for Head of State, the Queen would have probably been voted out in favour of the Beckhams a few years ago. I even thought that he did a pretty good job of protecting us from the worst of the recession.

So I'm not a typical Liberal, on paper at least.

But I believe that along with much of the good that Labour has ushered in has also come a fair bit of bad. Civil liberties have suffered greatly and looked set to do so even more if they stayed in power. The evidence/results based approach to policy that Labour originally had seems to have been replaced with something much more knee-jerk and tabloid. Their stance on immigration is awful, with a neglect for presenting the facts properly in favour of headline grabbing statements of showing who is toughest.

It was this tendency - a tendency to respond to the baying of the public rather than to silence them - that made me lose faith in the Labour Party.

After looking into it further, I found that the Lib Dems are more closely aligned to my view of the world. They're keen on science (although their fantastic Dr Evan Harris lost out in the election, which is a tragedy) and are rational in their approach. An ethical pragmatism seems to permeate their policy decisions.

So as a left-leaning liberal, I greeted the election result with a certain amount of confusion. I was genuinely conflicted in my views. My heart pushed me towards a Lib Lab coalition. This seemed to be the best way to guarantee that an agenda closest to the manifesto that I voted for would be drawn up. But then other factors weighed in:

1) Most importantly, the numbers weren't there. A Lib-Lab coalition would still be a minority government. Sure, they could bring in other lefty parties to form a rainbow coalition. But either leading as a minority or as the head of a rainbow coalition would be tenuous. The last thing anyone needs right now is another election. It's costly and would put us in limbo for longer than we already have been. It would crush liberal support as the electorate would be desperate for a "decisive" result and any hopes of collaborative government would go down in a blaze of outrage at how bad the coalition had performed. Worse, the Tories are the only party that have the money to mount a successful campaign, so you can imagine how that decisive result would go.

2) The bulk of the Labour party seemed to be settling for a reboot in opposition as early as the Saturday after the election. Not only did this not bode well, but it hinted at the ill-discipline of the party. One thing that a coalition needs is discipline and if it's breaking down even before the coalition has been formed, this doesn't bode well.

3) Labour seemed to have a preconceived notion that the Lib Dems would automatically make a deal with them. This was perhaps natural as they are more happy bed-fellows on the surface and also because I believe they miscalculated in how much the swing would be and how bad things would turn out (in terms of seats) for the Lib Dems. But this complacency seemed to imply a lack of compromise. I didn't vote for the Labour manifesto, I voted for the Lib Dem one. I certainly didn't pay for the Lib Dems to prop up Labour.

4) The noises coming from the Conservatives were genuinely encouraging. People that I naturally dislike were actively flirting with the Lib Dems. Whether it was a cynical grab for power or a genuine act of collaboration remains to be seen. But it was better than the assumption that was coming from Labour.

So the options were:

1) A minority Conservative Government, standing virtually alone. This would likely be voted down on the Queen's speech and lead to an election that we could ill afford and would likely leave us with a majority Conservative government and fewer Lib Dems in parliament.

2) A minority Conservative Government, with some kind of tacit support from the Lib Dems. This would be more stable than (1) but would probably still lead to an election in a couple of years with the same result. In addition, the Lib Dems would get very little for their tacit support. They wouldn't have given enough to have any of their policies put through and they would lose a great deal more as the blame would be levelled at them when the government inevitably fell.

3) A minority Labour Government. This would definitely be voted down on the Queen's speech and lead to an even more disastrous election.

4) A minority Lib-Lab coalition or majority rainbow coalition. This might be able to limp on past the Queen's speech but would likely be brought down as soon as any cuts needed to be made in Scotland, Wales or NI as the nationalist parties revolted.

5) A majority Lib-Con coalition. The only real hope of avoiding another election, so the only real hope of stability.

As it turns out, we've got (5) but we seem to have got quite a good (5). Some of the excesses of both sides seem to have been curtailed. We've lost the inheritance tax changes that the Tories would have liked to bring in. We've also got rid of one of the few policies that I was iffy on in the Lib-Dim manifesto, which is their opposition to nuclear power (where it seems that it might be our only option in terms of a relatively non-polluting option).

In addition to this, we seem to have got some biggies through, chief among them Electoral Reform. Not just a referendum on a voting system (AV) but also a possible introduction of PR in the House of Lords. The two in combination may actually be a better bet than PR on it's own for the House of Commons as it creates two differently elected (and therefore slightly conflicting) houses. Plus, we seem to have got quite a few Lib Dems in relatively senior positions.

The signals being sent out are positive. There seems - at the moment - to be a genuine will to make this work. I have my reservations (the 55% no confidence thing seems good from a stability standpoint, but not from a constitutional one) and I know that there will be trying times ahead. But for the moment, Nick and friends have my wholehearted support. And Dave - just watch yourself, OK. Cos I've got my eye on you. I don't trust you, but for the moment you're doing OK.


All this stuff about Gordon Brown squatting in Downing Street is bollocks. He behaved as a true statesman from the Sunday before the election to the day that he resigned. With the election result that we had he could either hand power over to a minority Conservative party by resigning - which would have strengthened the Tory hand in negotiations with the Lib-Dems and perhaps given encouragement to those Tories that wanted the party to go it alone - or try to form a minority or coalition government himself, which he did (while honouring the Lib Dem commitment to talk to the party with the most seats first). When it became evident that the Lib Dems would never enter a coalition that had Brown as leader, he stepped down in the only way he could (constitutionally). If he resigned immediately, he would have lost the right to form a government. Resign in a matter of days, weeks or a couple of months and he would have curtailed a proper debate about his successor - let alone interrupted the important work that a new government would have to do. Personally, I think he behaved impeccably in those final days.

And this crap about the Lib Dems behaving like harlots is rubbish too. They behaved like a party negotiating for the best deal for the people that voted for it. They talked to both sides - as you do in negotiations - and they held out for what was most important to them. When it became apparent what was best for them (and in turn for the country - I don't believe it was entirely altruistic, but do believe that what the country believed was best for it would in turn be best for them... if that makes sense) they went with that option. They weren't virginal saints in their approach, but they were what they should have been - discrete, pragmatic and in the end, decisive when they needed to be.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Wow! Final two episodes of Skins. Brilliant TV.
"Electioneering - Radiohead". A theme for the Lib-Con coalition? #ibelieveinnick
Feeling oddly calm about the Lib-Con coalition. Seems to be a government of civil liberties and moderation #ibelieveinnick

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Thank god it was Jordan. He was weird. And let's face it, he'd get bullied anyway.
We might have a Tory pm, but not a Tory government. Lots of concessions. Labour have a lot of work ahead as they now have least influence.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Gonna take a break from Cameron and watch something about aliens who look like humans taking over the world.
Ah. That familiar feeling of having a pm you despise. #eightiesnostalgia
Some random just got pics of Cameron and was warned off by the secret service.
All bend over for the Tories. Nick - ask them to be gentle, please #ukelection2010
Good on ya Gordon. You seem a good and honorable man. It's a shame that doesn't seem enough to be a good pm #proudofgordon
Well it's looking like PM Dave & Deputy PM Nick. Sounds like the Lib Dems might've got some concessions on Tax. Might be best of a bad job.
My head says Lib-Con. My heart says Lib-Lab. Glad I don't need to choose.

Monday, May 10, 2010

Finally watching the last "wonders". Something inspirational after all the political craziness.
Please can someone post a link to the Alastair Campbell vs Adam Boulton incident on Sky News?
@drevanharris sad that during the election, the media wanted nothing to do with you. Now, they can't get enough.

Sunday, May 09, 2010

Michael Gove seriously flirting with the lib dems on Andrew Marr.

Saturday, May 08, 2010

And that was why I voted Lib Dem.
I've never felt so close to democracy before.
Wow. Incredible scenes outside Lib Dem headquarters. The protesters represent the thoughts of a lot of the electorate.
I've just written to Nick Clegg

An open letter to Nick Clegg

Hi Nick,

This has been a historic election. I, like many others voted for your party for the first time because I wanted a new kind of politics. I think we now have the biggest ever chance to get this new kid of politics.

I urge you, please do not make a deal to prop up either Labour or the Conservatives. Nor should you deliberately bring down whatever minority government they want. But your highest priority should be a new kind of voting system. My vote was wasted, like a majority of other peoples' votes in the country. Don't allow us to go to the polls again and have us make a choice between wasting our vote by voting who we believe in or voting for the lesser of two evils.

We want proportional representation. We want a system where everyone's vote is equal.

Not only will this increase the Lib Dem share of the vote, but it will increase participation and bring true fairness.

Please, don't waste this opportunity.

Chris Waller

Friday, May 07, 2010

I have rarely seen anything so pretentiously middle class as "the edible garden". The wife and I are pissing ourselves.
Cameron - "we can work something out. We can have an open relationship" Brown - "don't listen. He hasn't changed. I'm here if you still want me"
Re-listening to the Neko Case album and it's ace. Not sure why I didn't think so earlier.
A sad day. Tories have most votes. Voting irregularities. @drevanharris lost his seat. Hope you're proud, Britain #ukelection2010
Starting to look grim. May need to go to bed and wake up to a nightmare. #ukelection2010

Thursday, May 06, 2010

Are there gonna be no-elections in seats with voting irregularities? #ukelection2010
Paxman and Ken Clarke are like those two old dudes on the muppets. #ukelection2010
I'm glad Cameron has a presidential look #ukelection2010
My God. How pissed was Tony Pardons? #ukelection2010
Waiting for the first marginal #ukelection2010
Wow. Two olive branches. Financial stability from libdems. Electoral reform from Mandelson. #ukelection2010
Wonder if Farage is being treated by a foreign doctor #ukelection2010

Wednesday, May 05, 2010

It'll all be over soon. Vote with your head, your heart or your gut but please God don't vote Tory #ukelection2010
Interesting guide. I'll be voting according to principles, but still useful: #ukelection2010
Nicely considered piece on voting #LibDem #UKelection2010

Tuesday, May 04, 2010

Just want to thank @hanson4delyn for his positive tweets. @billbrereton has my vote, but @sandbach4delyn could learn a lot from you.
No-one has explained to me why immigration by people who work, pay taxes and have no recourse to public funds is a bad thing #ukelection2010
May the fourth be with you, especially Dave and Irene on your anniversary.

Monday, May 03, 2010

@sandbach4delyn has run an unrelentingly negative and tabloid campaign. Please vote @hanson4delyn or @billbrereton for something positive.

Sunday, May 02, 2010

Tories want to destroy the BBC and cure gays. They must love Over The Rainbow.
Tory candidate Philippa Stroud founded church group 2 "cure" gays through prayer. No wonder she's scared of Twitter - 2 many deviants.
"But I wanted another go" - my son, Tommy on getting a strike in ten pin bowling.

Saturday, May 01, 2010

My God! Fast and the furious: Tokyo Drift is utter shite. It's like two slices of shite with shite as the filling.
Avatar on blu-ray. Complete eyegasm.


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