The right-wing nationalism of the United Kingdom Independence Party By Jordan Shilton

19 April 2014 —WSWS

The promotion of the UK Independence Party (UKIP) in the lead-up to the European elections in May is part of a strategy within ruling circles in Britain and across Europe to move politics sharply to the right. (See “France’s new government: A political turning point for Europe” )

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Clegg Predicting Riots

10 August 2011 — Via New Left Project

The ‘I told you so’ of the week:

In the run up to the 2010 General Election Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg warned of riots if the Tories were elected, stating that, ‘There is danger that having any government of any composition led by a party which doesn’t have a popular mandate across the country trying to push through really difficult decisions.  I think a lot of people will react badly to them.’

“When cuts reach Brits, coalition popularity will drop”– expert

19 August, 2010 — RT.com

Britain’s first coalition government since 1945 is marking 100 days in office since elections in May gave no single party a clear majority.

Conservative Prime Minister David Cameron heads the coalition, along with Liberal Democrat Nick Clegg, the deputy prime minister.

Since its formation the coalition has unveiled sweeping public spending cuts to tackle the UK’s record budget deficit.

Critics say the cuts have been too drastic and opinion polls show mixed support for the performance of the government.

Gavin Hayes, general secretary of Compass, a left-wing think-tank, says it is only a matter of time before the coalition’s popularity drops.

‘The coalition government is inflicting huge cuts on public services here in Britain, cutting public spending even deeper and harder than Mrs. Thatcher did in the 1980s. This is going to have dramatic effects on those in both lower and middle incomes,’ he said.

‘We now in this country face the real prospect of a double-dip recession which is a direct consequence of the huge cutbacks that in part Nick Clegg is responsible for, and as I say when these cuts really start to kick in, really start to hurt people, then we are going to have a hugely unpopular government on our hand,’ Hayes added.

Coalition of the unwilling? I don’t think so By William Bowles

25 May, 2010

The London Independent (19 May, 2010) carried a positively euphoric front page that compared Nick Clegg, leader of the Liberal Democratic Party and now deputy prime minister in the Tory/Lib-Dem ‘coalition’, to the man responsible for the 1832 Electoral Reform Act, Lord Grey.

“Clegg makes his bid for a place in history

“Nick Clegg, prepares to unveil ‘the biggest shake-up of our democracy since the Great Reform Act of 1832”

clegg-2

The act and those that followed, has kept the ruling political class in power ever since, allowed some working men the vote (if you were a property owner or paid rent of at least £50 per year) was followed by three other ‘reforms’ (women were not to get the franchise until 1918, the final ‘reform’) .

The Independent calls Clegg’s demand for reforms ‘the birth of people power’.

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The carve-up in ‘the national interest’ begins By William Bowles

10 May, 2010

“The public and markets want…to see a “government in place”” — Alistair Darling

You didn’t need a visit to the Delphic Oracle in order to figure out what would happen, in any case I doubt that many want to visit Greece these days. So, on 8 May the carve-up began with Nick Clegg, leader of the Liberal Democrats meeting a team of Tory advisors in order to strike a deal to try and form a ‘coalition’ government. So much for ‘first past the post’ electoral system, designed in pre-historic times to maintain the hegemony of the ruling class. And if a deal can’t be struck with the Tories the next stop will be the Labour Party, though a deal with Labour is unlikely as it would require every party, aside from the Tories that is, to vote with the Lib-Dem/Labour coalition on the substantive policy issues.

Perhaps an analysis of the vote is in order or the ‘first past the post’ system as it is called. As you can see from the stats on the vote tally, there is actually very little between them, so how come seats in Parliament doesn’t reflect the three-way split?

Conservative 306 seats 36.1%
Labour 258 seats 29.0%
Liberal Democrat 57 seats 23.0%

The turnout averaged around 65%, the highest it’s been for decades, a reflection of two things: 1, an unprecedented media onslaught exhorting the punters to vote and 2, an electorate who do want change. But in real terms the numbers above represents much less than two-thirds of the electorate so the Tories actually got about 25% of the potential vote, Labour 20% and the Lib-Dems around 16%, a clear case of a ‘plague on all your houses’ even though it was the highest turnout since the 1970s when turnout was in the 70+ percentile range.

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Parliamentary ‘democracy’ – a triumph of Victorian engineering? By William Bowles

1 May, 2010 — Strategic Culture Foundation

To understand what’s going on with Britain today we have to look back to the 19th century and the rise of industrial/mercantile capitalism, for it was during that period that the Victorians got into the business of myth-making in a big way, rewriting our history almost completely. Truly a triumph of Victorian engineering.

The vast movement of people not only from country to city but from artisan to wage labourer fractured our collective memory so completely that inventing a new, more capitalist-compliant version of ‘our’ history was relatively easy to do. Add to this the fact that even the oppressed working masses still benefited from the wealth of England’s slave/colonial Empire, persuading people that ‘Britannia Ruled the Waves’ wasn’t such a difficult task to accomplish. And we need only look at the USA for a current example of how Empire corrupts totally.

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MEDIA LENS ALERT: THE ART OF LOOKING PRIME MINISTERIAL – THE 2010 UK GENERAL ELECTION

28 April, 2010 — MEDIA LENS: Correcting for the distorted vision of the corporate media

On April 15, news media broadcast the first of three live, 90-minute “prime ministerial debates” between Gordon Brown, David Cameron and Nick Clegg, the leaders, respectively, of the Labour, Conservative and Liberal Democrat parties. By the end of the second debate on April 22, the word ‘Iraq’ had been mentioned a total of five times over the course of the three hours of discussion.

One day later, April 23, a wave of bombings in Baghdad were reported to have killed 58 people and wounded more than 100. Seven people also died that day in a series of bombings in the western town of Khalidya. (news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/middle_east/8639223.stm)

As usual, the carnage was mentioned in passing – presented as routine in the way of a traffic snarl on the M25 – and then forgotten. By the end of the following day, the death toll had risen to 85 with hundreds seriously wounded from a total of 16 bomb attacks.

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