back to article Lib Dem manifesto: Spook slapdown, ban on teen-repelling Mosquitos

The Liberal Democrats published their election manifesto today, promising stronger protections for freedom of speech and claiming to be the party pushing back against mass state surveillance. While many of the tech promises echoed those of the two bigger parties, the main difference for the Lib Dems appears to be a pushback on …

  1. Vimes

    'Protections' - complete and utter bollocks.

    This is the party that voted *FOR* DRIPA amongst other things (and in the case of Julian Huppert voted against any review of DRIPA before 2016).

    Don't believe a word they say.

    'We need more civil liberties!'

    ...only because they helped to destroy them in the first place...

    1. Bob Vistakin
      Devil

      British politics in a nutshell

      Taxpayers only get to choose the method their cash is swiped, not the amount. Your choices:

      The Party of Corruption: Tories - in it for themselves and chums

      The Party of Incompetence: Labour - even if they mean well, they'll screw it up

      The Party of the Clueless: LibDems - Policies change with the wind and even when in power none get implemented

      Some combination of those plus a token minnow will get power. You can try to change things by choosing the minnow, but the system is rigged so even if elected in a coalition, the bigger party will behave as if they are the sole ones in power. Just look to the current lot being the best example, and see what policies in the LibDems similar waste of paper before the last election were implemented.

      It's been that way from the start and ain't gonna change any time soon.

      1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

        Re: British politics in a nutshell

        I think that's unfair - New Labour has shown it can be just as corrupt as the Tories.

        Since the only parties that seem to have a consistent set of policies that they actually believe in are the various nationalist/independence movements can I propose that the UK is broken up into 650 separate nations who can all have their individual national parties who campaign for their independance.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: British politics in a nutshell

          I think that's unfair - New Labour has shown it can be just as corrupt as the Tories.

          Those two are the same party but use different colour rosettes. They are as bad as each other, nothing they say can be trusted except their releaving the the British tax payer of their hard earned cash with the help of the Libdems.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: British politics in a nutshell

        "It's been that way from the start and ain't gonna change any time soon."

        That, sir, is where you are wrong. On a balance of very strong probabilities we'll end up with a Labour/SNP coalition. That'll keep Labour in power and happy to 2020, but they'll have to give something big away to the SNP to keep control. The vermin of the Labour party are determined at any cost to try to cling to power (see postal vote fraud, "open door" immigration, "carriers for votes" etc etc). Now, anything they give to the SNP strengthens the case for English votes for English laws - and that'd routinely keep the Labour party out of power in England & Scotland (SNP would supplant Labour, and Labour usually only gain power over England through the combination of Scots and Welsh socialism plus the over-representation of Scotland & Wales at Westminster.

        Sooo,..... coming up to 2020, we can expect that on the basis that "coalitions are now the norm" the Labour party will attempt to stiff the country with a proportional representation system. All the smaller parties will support it, Labour will simply for short term expediency, and we'll end up with the sort of shit headed muddle the Belgians and Italians have.

        So if 5 years is "soon", I'll wager you £5 that the system will change soon. I'll also wager that through self interest, the Labour party will find some way of making a system that is systematically worse than FPTP, and still favours a scenario that is biased towards the incumbents when the change is made.

        1. James 51

          Re: British politics in a nutshell

          You would need Finland, Iceland and Germany to that list of basket cases too.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: British politics in a nutshell

            Having lived in some of those countries they actually seem slightly better for the average man than ours.

            1. James 51

              Re: British politics in a nutshell

              Which was my point. It's nice to have first hand confirmation.

        2. DanDanDan

          Re: British politics in a nutshell

          "On a balance of very strong probabilities we'll end up with a Labour/SNP coalition"

          Twaddle. The whole post, but that sentence in particular.

          http://www.theguardian.com/politics/2015/mar/16/ed-miliband-labour-will-not-form-coalition-with-snp

          http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-31906463

          http://labourlist.org/2015/03/ed-miliband-officially-rules-out-snp-coalition/

          http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/politics/ed-miliband/11475189/Ed-Miliband-rules-out-formal-coalition-with-SNP.html

          http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/generalelection/ed-miliband-rules-out-a-coalition-with-the-snp-10111058.html

          1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

            Re: British politics in a nutshell

            On the basis of "never believe anything until it has been officially denied"

            Looks like a Labour SNP coalition has already been agreed

            Although these days I think a NewLabour/Tory coalition would be more practical.

      3. bdam
        Facepalm

        Re: British politics in a nutshell

        One leaders Cast Iron Guarantee is worth as much as anothers Boom And Bust promise - and both equal anothers Tuition Fee Pledge.

        I was painful watching the helpless LibDems during this parliament. Even at every party conference during their once-per-century stint in power, Nick Cleggs main message was "I'm sorry".

      4. D@v3

        Re: British politics in a nutshell

        http://www.votenone.org.uk/protest_votes_count.html

  2. Captain Hogwash
    Coat

    Horsefly says no to mosquito!

    OK, I'm going.

  3. Elmer Phud

    Curse those pesky kids!

    "Among its other pledges, the party wants to ban Mosquito devices "that discriminate against young people" by blasting them with a high pitch noise"

    Maybe, just maybe, Mr Clegg there wouldn't be so many kids hanging about if thier parents could stump up the fees for Uni.

    The most painful and irritating noise at the moment is you speechifying all over the place while forgetting we remember your promises and your track-record being Cameron's puppy.

    1. tony2heads

      Re: Curse those pesky kids!

      Can I ask for a ban on crap 'popular' music in shops while I am there.

      The worst is supermarket muzak.

    2. JDX Gold badge

      Re: there wouldn't be so many kids hanging about if thier parents could stump up the fees

      What utter clap-trap. The kind of kids hanging around a)aren't university age b)are not would-be university students. They're hanging around when they should be at - totally free - school.

      University attendance is already too high.

  4. James 51

    The lib dems get a lot of stick because of the tuition fee pledge and they probably deserve it but if they had convinced the British public to vote in favour of the single transferable vote referendum it would have been worth it.

    1. dogged

      > if they had convinced the British public to vote in favour of the single transferable vote referendum it would have been worth it for them because it meant that every single future government would contain the Lib Dems. Forever.

      Fixed that for you. Luckily, the British people don't want the LibDems in government forever. Or the SNP. Or UKIP.

      1. dogged

        Lot of downvotes here - are you saying that single transferable vote would NOT have led to the LibDems being a minority partner in every future government forever, or are you saying that you actually want that?

        No snark here, it's a genuine question.

        1. Graham Marsden

          @dogged

          What people are saying is that we want a government which represents how *we* voted, rather than the one that we get with our incredibly broken First Past The Post system.

          I invite you to consider the Blair government that got a majority in Parliament despite only getting 34% of the votes. I then invite you to consider what it's like to live in a "safe seat" where Party X can parachute anyone they like in to be your MP knowing that the people there would vote for a donkey with the right coloured rosette on it and if you vote for someone else it's a waste of time. Finally try considering the fact that a lot of the electioneering at the moment has been on the lines of "if you vote for X, you'll get Y..."

          It doesn't matter whether it's the Lib Dems, the Greens, the Monster Raving Loony Party or even (gods forbid!) UKIP, the fact is that if 10% of the population vote for them, that 10% should be represented in our Parliament or, if not, we could have the House of Lords elected on that proportional basis.

          It is my hope that this election will be the last one which is carried out under a system which only benefits the Tories and Labour whilst ensuring that almost nobody else can get a look in and, instead, we get a Parliament which means that if a Party wants to pass the Snoopers Charter or the Bedroom Tax or any other such piece of nonsense, they'll actually have to *convince* others of the value and validity of such legislation, rather than simply bulldozing it through with a sneer because they have a "majority".

          1. Fred Dibnah

            Re: @ Graham Marsden

            Well said, sir. I almost considered creating several account just to give you several upvotes.

            1. Robert Helpmann??
              Childcatcher

              Re: @ Graham Marsden

              I almost considered creating several account just to give you several upvotes.

              Well, it is a discussion about voting, so... Vote now! Vote often!

              1. James 51

                Re: @ Graham Marsden

                If I remember my history correctly it was 'vote early, vote often' but same idea.

            2. dogged

              Re: @ Graham Marsden

              I'd rather have safe seats and wasted votes than minority parties ruling the country.

              Some people SHOULD NOT be represented. In the forthcoming election, there's a chance that the SNP will be ruling England, Wales and Northern Ireland by proxy - how is that acceptable? If the BNP hold a balance of power, how is that acceptable?

              It isn't acceptable. It's never acceptable.

              FPTP, despite its undoubted flaws, moderates and equalizes the vote and crops out the insane outliers and the fucking Lib Dems - who, even before the coalition fiasco, were known for nasty, power-grabbing politics and the dirtiest possible election campaigns - and that is its saving grace.

              1. Graham Marsden

                @dogged - Re: @ Graham Marsden

                Please, hyperbole much? The BNP or anyone other minority party won't be "ruling the country" but to suggest that some people "SHOULD NOT" be represented simply pisses all over the idea of a representative democracy (even more than FPTP does!) and ends up with the situation in certain parts of the world where only "approved" candidates are allowed to stand.

                And if you think that the Lib Dems are the only ones who engaged in "nasty, power-grabbing politics and the dirtiest possible election campaigns", you really need to take a better look at electoral campaigns in the past (Hint: New Labour - New Danger for one)

                1. dogged

                  Re: @dogged - @ Graham Marsden

                  No, I really do not want neo-nazis reepresented in Parliament, thanks all the same. Fuck 'em. If they want representation, move to somewhere with PR. I don't want situations like, for example, Israel where Sha'as ( a psychotically right-wing ultra-orthodox Jewish party) gets to decide who makes policy and who gets bombed. I don't want 70's Italy where the motto was "if you don't like the government, wait fifteen minutes".

                  To be blunt, I don't want to empower loser parties to spread their minority ideas (which are bad ideas or they wouldn't be minority). PR is like the Special Olympics - you get elected just for showing up! Aren't you special and worthwhile and deserving of the opportunity to represent the fourteen bitter old fascists who voted for you when they weren't polishing their SS memorabilia. No, you're not. Fuck you.

                  PR is bad. FPTP is bad too but nowhere near as bad as PR.

                  (As for the LibDems, I know a lady who was nearly harassed out of a fucking parish council election by LibDems leafleting that she's a slut who doesn't know who her kids' father was. All untrue. Their father died in Afghanistan. I seriously hate the LibDems).

                  1. Andrew Meredith

                    Re: @dogged - @ Graham Marsden

                    @dogged "No, I really do not want neo-nazis reepresented in Parliament, thanks all the same. Fuck 'em. If they want representation, move to somewhere with PR."

                    Wow, you really don't "get" democracy do you. I suggest that you are the one that needs to move. You seem to want to live in a one party state, with no dissenting voices allowed and no room for other points of view. You rail about every other opinion than yours as being disgusting and unbearable, I guess you must be omniscient.

                    If there are people that are that cheesed off with the status quo that they want to vote right wing, then that is their right. My grandparents generation fought and died to keep that true. Yes, that means that right wing nutters will have a voice in parliament. It also means that left wing nutters, Greens, nationalists, communists etc etc etc might also have a voice in parliament. Those voices are a representation of those opinions in the country at large.

                    You don't make opinion go away by denying it airtime, you make those holding those opinions more and more frustrated and in the end, bad things happen. if you give them a voice and then argue it down in open debate, then they had their say but they didn't persuade. Whole different ball game.

              2. Roj Blake

                Re: @ Graham Marsden

                "I'd rather have safe seats and wasted votes than minority parties ruling the country."

                The Conservatives an Labour are both minority parties. It's generations since either managed to poll more than 50% of the votes.

          2. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: @dogged

            @ Graham Marsden

            Dear Graham,

            You really do not understand how the FPTP system works do you. You do, indeed, get exactly who *you* vote for. *You* vote for a person to represent you and your electorate in parliament.

            Presumably *you* have a choice of candidates from whom to choose, and you make your selection accordingly, as does every other voter in your electorate. The candidate with the most votes gets elected.

            Simples.

            A 'safe' seat is 'safe' only because the majority of voters vote for the person (or party) who best represents their views - consistently. If people are really concerned about safe seats then it simply requires more voters to cast their vote for an alternative candidate, or perhaps even better, get yourself involved in politics in your electorate influence your choice of candidate that way. I fail to understand what is difficult about that. If you really want to vote for the Monster Raving Loony Party, UKIP or some other party, (it's obviously not one of the 3 major(ish) parties) again that is your choice but don't be surprised that everyone else maybe doesn't share you view.

            Now whether you consider that the candidate for whom *you* (as in 'the electorate') voted really DOES represent your views is a different matter altogether and can be rectified at the next election - if you can persuade enough of your fellow voters to your point of view.

            The national total of votes for a particular party is irrelevant. It only matters at electorate level.

            It seems to me that you are complaining about a parliamentary democracy because the party of your choice did not gain sufficient candidates elected to gain the front benches, i.e. control of parliament

            As a final word, be very careful of what you wish for. It just might turn out to be far worse than FPTP depending on what form of voting system that gets chosen - and STILL may not be what you would like to see.

            BTW I understand that majority parties ram through legislation that is not part of a manifesto, but maybe that is a separate problem altogether. A coalition does not necessarily mean that unwanted legislation gets thwarted. Coalitions mean compromises so the LibDems manifesto pledges get watered down during the negotiations. Similarly the majority coalition party has to make some compromises as well, (although possibly not as many) but if both parties agree on certain legislation then it will go through - no matter what you may think.

    2. J.G.Harston Silver badge

      We've never had a referendum on the single transferable vote. The referendum in 2011 was on the Alternative Vote. STV for local government in Scotland and NornIron was introduced without a referendum.

    3. Roj Blake

      It would have been nice to have had a referendum on STV, but we didn't.

      It was on Alternative Vote (AV) which is a different system.

  5. Vimes

    'Clegg: It's Salmond, Farage or me'

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/election-2015-32311736

    So it's a choice between some weak willed politician with all the moral backbone of an amoeba or one of two narcissistic nutters? I'm not sure which is worse.

    1. Fibbles

      I'm stuck in the same boat.

      Perhaps it's time to make my own party... with blackjack and hookers.

      1. John G Imrie

        Re: I'm stuck in the same boat.

        The Flying Spaghetti Monster Party?

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: I'm stuck in the same boat.

        I'd quite like to also see more referendums in a similar way to Switzerland. That might help us get more of what we want and less of what we're told we want.

        Personally I've had enough of the false democracy of consultations which don't consult and being told how much I want something which I don't.

    2. Vimes

      Is it just me, or is there something unappealing when it comes to being told by politicians that they're the least worst alternative rather than give good reasons to vote for them?

      1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

        It is at least honest.

        1. Vimes

          It is at least honest.

          True, but if they fail to come up with a reason to say 'vote for me' that doesn't rely on unflattering views of other candidates then I wonder what good would come from them winning any election.

      2. MJI Silver badge

        Least worse

        That is how I describe Cameron, not that he is good, just least worse

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    The supine nature of Clegg and his mates, who seemed to me to betray their principles for a sniff of power they were never going to be able to excercise, has given me a problem this election.

    Normally, I vote for them, not because I necessarily like them, but because they are the closest thing to unseating our fat, flatulent, expenses cheating Tory (I live in a true blue, safe seat, rural consituency). Back in 2005, they got within 2 kilovotes of removing him. This time, they are going to be 3rd at best, because of their behaviour. To remove the Tory, the only real option is UKIP, which is intollerable, i feel faintly nauseous even thinking of voting for them. The main thing that strikes me, is the insanity of our electoral system in constituencies like mine. You have a choice between bad and worse, people who you like have no chance. Voting is completely pointless this time for me.

    1. Bloodbeastterror

      I voted for this smooth con man at the last election and the first thing he did was to sell my vote to the Tories. Never, ever, ever again, as long as I live. The Lib Dems are dead to me. And I shall tell their canvasser when/if they come to my door.

      1. Triggerfish

        I know what you mean its just who is better? Choosing any of the parties is basically like choosing whether you want the pliers applied to your right knacker or your left.

        I think I would have preferred it if last time we had a hung parliament.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Unhappy

          Hung

          yes, well hung - not not that but hung by the neck

      2. Rich 11 Silver badge

        And I shall tell their canvasser when/if they come to my door.

        I told that to their local party boss when he came knocking last year. Going by the expression on his face I'm sure I wasn't the first he'd heard it from that day.

    2. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

      Try oop-north.

      After a long and bitterly fought election campaign, inside the local labour party office to decide who is the candidate, they are then elected with a 90% majority.

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      I am completely with on you this.

      I live in a Labour dominated borough of North London. Labour basically own the borough council and have proven impossible to dislodge in the many years I've lived here - despite incompetence, corruption, scandal and simply naked contempt for the tax payer.

      My only other option has previously been the Liberal Democrat representative - who to be fair as an individual has been making a concerted effort to champion local issues for many years now.

      However, we have the same problem with the likelihood of the Lib Dems being a contender this year - they got massacred in the last bi-election.

      There is no other viable choice, so what now?

      1. J.G.Harston Silver badge

        Half an election? Or one that swings both ways?

  7. pwibble

    Mosquito device in a shopping centre.

    Small child, say aged 6: "Mummy, mummy - please can we go away from here with that terrible noise. It's really hurting my ears"

    Mum: "Shut up and stop complaining. We've got to wait here for dad to pick us up"

    And so, a device for torturing babies and small children (who have _better_ ability to hear high frequencies than teenagers, but often can't choose to leave the area) is just legal. Think about that before you install one.

    1. LucreLout

      @pwibble

      Mosquito device's are fantastic in the right setting.

      At the end of my street is a small Tesco, and a takeaway. When it was a small shop, pre-tesco, they closed at 7pm and there were few chavvy, noisey, kids hanging about - none on nights when the takeaway was closed. Now it more closely resembles the wild west, with 20+ chavs hanging around drinking, swearing, smoking, vandalising, and getting high.

      The takeaway staff were routinely racially abused, threatened, or had windows smashed. The police did nothing. The council did nothing. And sure as shit, the chav kids parents were doing nothing. So the takeaway bought a Mosquito.

      Now we have no chav kids hanging out at the end of the street. As a courtesy to the local residents and their children, the device is only activated if the chav kids congregate and is turned off promptly once they've dispersed. My small child can't hear it inside the house.

      Take that option away and what realistic and proven effective alternative are you going to replace it with? Either the parents will have to be forced to do some parenting, the police will need a lot more man power, or it'll be no good complaining when the local residents take matters into their own hands.

      1. This post has been deleted by its author

    2. Just Enough
      Megaphone

      Ban them all

      And what of torture by crap music, inane radio DJs, stupifying shouty adverts and obnoxious media "personalties"? Still legal to inflict on everyone within earshot of the personal gadget of your choice, boy-racer motor, or PA system on your premises. If you're going to ban mosquito devices it's only fair that these are banned too.

      While we're on the subject. Why is it that the people with the loudest in-car systems always have the crappiest taste in music?

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Coat

        Re: Ban them all

        I dont know that it is true they have bad taste in music - all the boom-boom-boom drowns it all out

    3. Munzly The Hermit

      I was under the impression that playing real classical music had a better effect than "mosquitos."

  8. Yugguy

    Clegg said:

    Lib Dems would "add a heart to a Conservative government and add a brain to a Labour one".

    What he meant was:

    "We haven't a hope in hell of getting power but we'll do a deal with ANYONE, and we mean ANYONE, who does."

  9. MJI Silver badge

    Rock and hard place

    I admire them for getting involved in the coalition and not shirking the job.

    They were shafted over tuition fees I feel, but remember they are their own party.

    It is not all parties vs Conservative, it is all parties vs ALL OTHER parties.

    There is NO RULE which says you must side with Labour if you are not Conservative.

    The Lib Dems went with Conservatives as they were the highest polling party.

    If parties are planning pre election tie ups just elect that other party.

    Will be interesting the day after polling.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Rock and hard place

      Beware the Braveheart SNP. They'll hook up with anyone who will give them Independance despite what the referendum said.

      If they can't get their way then like a spolt brat (turn on that mosquito now) they'll throw their toys out of the pram and force another election, and another, and another until they get their way.

      Mark my words, the SNP and Alec Salmond will become the effective government/PM of the UK and we doon south of Hadrians Wall won't be able to stop it.

      my other half is from Stirling can't stand the SNP but they seem to have bamboozled the Scottish electorate into believing that the SNP can lead them to a land of milk, honey and Free Scotch.

      1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

        Re: Rock and hard place

        >The SNP and Alec Salmond will become the effective government/PM of the UK

        Under the last lot of tories we had the shouty Northern Ireland lot (as opposed to the shooty NI lot) ) holding the balance of power - which kept any peace negotiations off the table and led to a few more years of killings.

      2. James 51

        Re: Rock and hard place

        There would need to be another referendum and the only way another one should be held anytime soon is if all the promises to the Scotish people made during the referendum campaign are not fulfilled. So here's hoping if the tories get in next time they stop lurching to the right and actually fulfil their campaign pledges.

        1. LucreLout

          Re: Rock and hard place

          There would need to be another referendum

          There can be no more referendums on this issue, the electorate have spoken. Any further voting on the continuation of the union is now a matter for the English, Welsh, and N.Irish.

          Those north of the border voting SNP to back a labour minority government should consider carefully how they would survive ejection from the union, for that is certain to come about the very next parliament after Sturgeon finishes using Milliband as a glove puppet with which to rape England.

          Based on the SNPs own referendum numbers, which were always wholly unrealistic, you'll be looking at public spending cuts greater than 50%.

          By all means vote SNP, but there must be no mandate or instruction to prop up any minority party.

          1. James 51

            Re: Rock and hard place

            Show me the law that forbids it. There can be and no doubt will be. My point is that given the coverage many people seemed to vote no because they were promised devo max. If devo max is not delivered, then they have every right to demand another vote on the basis they were lied to by all the major Westminster parties (which just puts them in the same boat as the rest of us).

            1. LucreLout

              Re: Rock and hard place

              Show me the law that forbids it. There can be and no doubt will be.

              There is no law. Any party proposing or agreeing to such a vote would find itself electoral history in England. That is no issue for the SNP, but will be a sizeable problem for labour, who are facing wipe out north of the border.

              The next vote belongs to those of us denied a say the first time around. Let's put it this way, if you have a none earning spouse that does little but berrate you, speak out against you, and who repeatedly threatens to leave you; how long do you let her persist before YOU divorce HER? (Or him).

              That politicians told lies to the electorate is not news. That conveys no requirement, in law or in actuality to allow another vote - no vote for the past 200+ years could be found valid if lying politicians were discounted.

              The matter is settled: There will be no further voting on it for a generation, not without the English having their say too.

              1. James 51

                Re: Rock and hard place

                This kind of 'spouse' and divorce talk always struck me as the kind of thing politicians used to talk down to people. It's not the relationship between husband and wife (or husband and husband/wife and wife), it's a relationship between nations. It's disingenuous to present it in another way.

                There are lies, dammed lies and statistics but there are a few stats that say Scotland pays in slightly more than than it gets out.

                As for being lied to presents no opportunity to have another referendum, saying if often and loudly might convince people it is so but that does not make it so.

                1. LucreLout

                  Re: Rock and hard place

                  There are lies, dammed lies and statistics but there are a few stats that say Scotland pays in slightly more than than it gets out.

                  There are no credible stats showing any such thing. There were, once, but those are years out of date and certainly not reflective of anything approaching the current and likely future price of oil.

                  As for being lied to presents no opportunity to have another referendum, saying if often and loudly might convince people it is so but that does not make it so.

                  I've already explained what makes it so. England makes it so. It's electoral suicide to allow another vote, certainly one in which the whole UK is denied a say. There's virtually zero chance the Scots could convince the rest of the UK to allow them to stay in the union, which is probably why Sturgeon is acting up the way she is - it guarantees Scotland is out; She cares not if it's thrown out. The English dog is all done being wagged by the Scottish tail.

                  Scotland is, for want of a better way of looking at it, a large county. Pretending it's an equal nation to England is fanciful. Democratically it's just the West Midlands with parts of West Yorkshire glued to it, and should rightly have no greater say.

      3. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Rock and hard place

        "...bamboozled the Scottish electorate into believing that the SNP can lead them to a land of milk, honey and Free Scotch."

        Okay, is that last one a real policy? If so, they could stand in the rest of the UK and get elected by a landslide.

    2. Triggerfish

      Re: Rock and hard place

      Thing is with doing that the Lib Dems have shown they will either fold/lie for a sniff of power over tuition fees, or are run by a politically naive leader who has managed to be maneuvered by the Cons as a scapegoat for a lots of things. Neither fill you with confidence.

      As for Salmond whilst I can understand the SNP movement, Salmond himself strikes me a bit like George Galloway (ok not quite has bad Galloway the demagogue), those who seek power and all that.

      1. LucreLout

        Re: Rock and hard place

        Salmond himself strikes me a bit like George Galloway

        An outrageous slur! While I cannot abide by Salmonds politics, he is without doubt the finest politician of his generation: Itself a slur that would offend any honest man.

        George Galloway is neither a good politican, nor someone I'd consider to be a good man.

        1. Triggerfish

          Re: Rock and hard place

          Actually you may be right there comparing anyone to Galloway might go to far.

    3. Vimes

      Re: Rock and hard place

      There is NO RULE which says you must side with Labour if you are not Conservative.

      There is no rule either that says it's absolutely vital for any party to enter a coalition. Surely to assume it had to be one or the other, rather than let the Tories stay in a minority government is a false assumption? Avoiding election re-runs is no absolute need that some people think it is.

      The lib dems deliberately sacrificed their own policies to satisfy their desire for power. They *chose* to enter the coalition. Nobody forced them, and there are voters out there that won't forget what has been done.

      For a party that claims to promote fairer electoral systems, how on earth can they justify propping up a party that a large chunk of their voters would never want to go near? For all the intents and purposes they stole those votes, and I for one will never vote for them again.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Rock and hard place

        "The lib dems deliberately sacrificed their own policies to satisfy their desire for power."

        And their own party. There were something like 4,000 LibDem councillors in 2010, there are now something like 1,000, Nick Clegg has deliberately triquadrimated his own party in his quest for a seat at Cabinet without even a ministry.

      2. MJI Silver badge

        Re: Rock and hard place

        Hmm lets think

        Higher starting rate for income tax. That was good.

        Stop ID cards, great.

        As to Lib Dem voters, Lib Dems are voted for by Conservative supporters who are annoyed with their own party or when the LD is in the best position to unseat a Labour.

        OR

        Lib Dems are voted for by Labour supporters who are annoyed with their own party or when the LD is in the best position to unseat a Conservative.

        OR

        Lib Dems are voted for by centrist people where the MP comes before party.

        Now if you do not like Lib Dems teaming up with Conservatives, but would be happy for them to taem up with Labour, why are you not voting Labour?

        Personally I think the coalition has been a success and some of that success is due to Clegg getting involved.

        1. Vimes

          Re: Rock and hard place

          Now if you do not like Lib Dems teaming up with Conservatives, but would be happy for them to taem up with Labour, why are you not voting Labour?

          Because people don't want anything to do with either the conservatives or labour? Or perhaps they feel that labour have moved too far to the right and that the only option for them is to vote lib dem?

          1. MJI Silver badge

            Re: Rock and hard place

            Now you are saying you do not want them tying up with anyone.

            To get a stable 5 years, if we need a coalition lets just have one, Where is the win by forcing minority governments and stagnation of policies.

            Germany runs coalitions, they manage OK.

            We did OK last time.

            I do like the starting tax policy, great for anyone not earning a fortune.

  10. Dr Dan Holdsworth

    Why bother with actual torture when psychological tricks work better?

    Frank Sinartra's greatest hits, plus some light folk and maybe a spot of Enya to be going on with together with nice, comfortable seats and a fairly high ambient light level and maybe even a coffee shop. That will make that particular shopping mall a hit with the older generation, and a place where pensioners love to gather, read the paper, have a chat and so on is a place like one of the circles of hell to a teenager.

    Do that and the teenagers will turn up, shop and scarper as fast as their legs can carry them, whilst the oldsters (who are mostly unthreatening and non-criminal) will linger and spend money.

    1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

      Re: Why bother with actual torture when psychological tricks work better?

      >oldsters will linger and spend money.

      Linger - yes, spend money - no

      There is a reason that shopping centers around the developed world are closing and it isn't because pensioners aren't visiting them to buy the latest consumer fads due to a surplus of teenagers.

    2. DocJames
      Mushroom

      Re: Why bother with actual torture when psychological tricks work better?

      Frank Sinartra was welcomed to a club by the comedian on stage with the line "Hi Frank, make yourself at home: hit someone!"

      He was a evil bastard and his memory should be spat upon at all possible opportunities. The fact that he was a great entertainer (?greatest singer ever) doesn't mean he should get away with misbehaviour. See: Jeremy Clarkson.

      So yeah, playing Sinartra's music exemplifies poor taste.

  11. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I never will quite understand why this Clegg guy gets such a hard time!

    Just look at how Labour and Tories conveniently forgot promises and manifesto pledges when in powe ALONE!

    The simple fact is the Lib Dems have managed to scale back what would have been even more insanely drastic Tory attack upon the poor and non-elite of society.

    Congratulations to those who fell for the media redirection and now hate the Lib Dems. What a load of codswallop.

    Just as well SNP are getting the vote in my neck of the woods. I feel sorry for English based voters in this election.

    1. Vimes

      Just look at how Labour and Tories conveniently forgot promises and manifesto pledges when in powe ALONE!

      Except that in most cases that's because a promise was carelessly made that could no longer be kept. These are promises being deliberately sacrificed in a way that was entirely avoidable and only done as a matter of choice. There is a big difference between the two IMO.

      The simple fact is the Lib Dems have managed to scale back what would have been even more insanely drastic Tory attack upon the poor and non-elite of society.

      ...but only by supporting other dracanion programs themselves. Bedroom tax, tuition fee increases, secret trials and DRIPA to name a few.

      The only reason this government has survived so long is thanks to the lib dems. Forgive me if I don't think that's a good thing.

  12. Graham Marsden
    Meh

    "Promises from Clegg? (oi, stop laughing)"

    Promises from [Insert Party Leader's name here]? (oi, stop laughing)

    FTFY.

  13. Tromos

    "The party says it wants to continue to release government data sets"

    I look forward to finding more USB sticks lying around on underground trains.

  14. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    New Political Party...?

    Im seriously thinking of creating the "None of the Above" Party......

    We should do really well in the next round of elections!

    Anyone want to join?

    1. J.G.Harston Silver badge

      Re: New Political Party...?

      "None of the above" is illegal as a party name or description, however Above and Beyond were formed and stand on the single issue of getting "None of the Above" on the ballot paper.

    2. D@v3

      Re: New Political Party...?

      http://www.votenone.org.uk/protest_votes_count.html

  15. Richard Cranium

    coalition is what people want

    How many times do you hear vox pop complaining that politicians should stop shouting at each other and work together to fix the problems.

    Of course LibDems with 50(ish) seats with tory on 300(ish) didn't mean Torys would decide to follow LibDems manifesto but LibDems have exerted influence - placed a bit of constraint the loony right of torys - to the extent that some of them buggered off to UKIP.

    Lib-Lab pact would have still been short of a majority. The coalition was truly representative with around 60% of votes, when did we last see a government with that kind of representation?

    I'm old. I remember that Labour spells in office invariably end in economic near collapse. They can be guaranteed to max out the nations credit card. Think what better ways there are of spending the £50bn(ish) a year we're currently paying as interest on the national debt.

    Labour's promised end to boom-bust was an acknowledgement of that dismal record ...and then they delivered boom-bust yet again. Milliband says that's because of the unexpected global recession and the banking crisis - but all "busts" are unexpected, the solution is not to hope the unexpected won't arise but to have some cash down the back of the sofa as a contingency against unexpected problems. In any case global recessions are a fact of life - we don't know when it'll happen again but we can state with certainty that it will.

    We need Government finances to be subject to the kind of "stress testing" the banks are now subjected to.

    1. Vimes

      Re: coalition is what people want

      The coalition was truly representative with around 60% of votes

      Except that a large chunk of lib dem voters would never want to go near the tories. And nobody asked them before entering the coalition either, so how can anybody claim that level of support with a straight face - especially when quite a few people would have changed their minds had they been given the chance to do so?

      1. MJI Silver badge

        Re: coalition is what people want

        And also a large chunk of them would not want to go near Labour.

        There is an overlap between parties and the Lib Dems have both Labour tolerant and Conservative tolerant supporters.

        I would put most of the South West Lib Dems seats in the more Conservative tolerant side.

        Personally I am Labour intolerant and would vote for the party most likely to unseat them.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: coalition is what people want

          Whilst I have some characteristics in common with the less loony parts of the left, I'm intolerant of fiscal incontinence and Labour's history of "keep spending till it's all gone, then borrow up to the hilt to keep on spending" is not a viable model.

          Neither are their "let's get the rich to pay" policies as Ed Ball stated a few months before party policy was "go after the non-doms" (FYI I'm not one!). The Laffer curve supports the same view as many decades ago did Darrell Huff ("How to lie with statistics" IIRC). 1% pay the top tax rate and generate 30% of HMRC revenues. There is a tipping point beyond which tax increases result in a reduction in tax revenues as it becomes a disincentive for the individual to generate more income and/or an incentive to avoid, evade or move one's domicile to another legislature. But of course if you are innumerate and one of the 99% who aren't in the top tax band (FYI I'm not "higher rate", never mind "top band"!) "soak the rich" plays well for politicians.

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