A blog by Luke Akehurst about politics, elections, and the Labour Party - With subtitles for the Hard of Left. Just for the record: all the views expressed here are entirely personal and do not necessarily represent the positions of any organisations I am a member of.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Where to place the Lib Dems on the political spectrum

Any remaining pretence that the Lib Dems are on the centre-left has been smashed by Nick Clegg's nauseating praise for Margaret Thatcher in the Spectator today (http://www.guardian.co.uk/politics/2010/mar/11/nick-clegg-praises-margaret-thatcher; http://www.spectator.co.uk/coffeehouse/5831523/clegg-heir-to-thatcher.thtml).

There's a useful way to work out exactly where the Lib Dems are on the political spectrum, which is to look at the proposed mix of tax increases and public spending cuts the three main parties are proposing for tackling the deficit. These are:

Labour: 33% tax rises, 66% spending cuts

Conservative: 20% tax rises, 80% spending cuts

Lib Dem: 0% tax rises, 100% spending cuts

As a graph that's:


Anonymous Nicky said...

Presumbably Kampfner is still totally convinced that the Lib Dems are the only party who meet his exacting leftist progressive standards.

Is Kampfner ...?
a) an idiot
b) a closet Tory
c) both the above

Answers on a postcard please.

2:40 pm, March 11, 2010

Anonymous Anonymous said...

This doesn't make any sense when looking at what Lib Dem's are saying :

"tax reforms penalising the rich to favour those earning under £10,000 a year"


Lib Dems are clearly in favour of some tax hikes.

2:45 pm, March 11, 2010

Blogger Hughes Views said...

Nice graph but it'd never cut the mustard on a Lib Dem blog. Linear scale and starting at zero? Some mistake surely!

I place them on the political spectrum where I've always* placed them viz. all things to all men. Or, as that nice Mr Blair once put it, "utterly unserious on the national stage"...

* actually only since I stopped toying with fantasy politics and got involved in the real stuff

2:55 pm, March 11, 2010

Blogger Hughes Views said...

for "blog" above read "leaflet" (or not, as you wish).

2:57 pm, March 11, 2010

Anonymous Anonymous said...

more postings attacking the Lib Dems than Tories? - a sure sign that you are afraid, very afraid!

8:22 pm, March 11, 2010

Anonymous Anonymous said...

What was it Thatcher famously said about her greatest achievement? - 'Tony Blair'

8:24 pm, March 11, 2010

Blogger Merseymike said...

I think there are those on the left within the LD's, but I think that Clegg is clearly right-wing and that he has taken the LD's away from the social democratic stances favoured by Charles Kennedy

12:54 am, March 12, 2010

Blogger Tom said...

"Lib Dems are clearly in favour of some tax hikes."

I'm pretty certain all Lib Dem tax proposals are explicitly revenue neutral - a rise in one tax will be countered by a reduction elsewhere. So they won't do a thing to help the deficit - that'll be solely done by cuts, in a Lib Dem world.

1:30 am, March 12, 2010

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yes, but how many times has Brown welcomed Thatcher to Downing Street?

And he has decided that she should have a state funeral!

12:30 pm, March 13, 2010

Anonymous Anonymous said...

How many times has Thatcher visited Brown at Downing Street?

And he decided that she could have a state funeral!

12:33 pm, March 13, 2010

Blogger southhackneypunter said...

I could be shooting in the dark, but given the London-centricity of most Westminster politicians I expect Clegg is trying to convince his followers to imitate the Lib Dem - Conservative coalition pact which successfully took over Camden Council from Labour in 2006 after 30 odd years of them holding power. Trouble is that eyebrows are now being raised at the sell off of council houses there allegedly on the cheap, and didn't I read somewhere that the NAO questioned why Islington Council sold off loads of commercial property to ***censored*** at an alleged undervalue after the Lib Dems got in there too? Not that I'm suggesting a pattern or anything just wondering about good asset management - hope we don't see Trafalgar Square on the market for £500,000 (sealed bids only) come June!

2:21 pm, March 13, 2010

Blogger Miller 2.0 said...

Not only are they right wing on a whole bunch of stuff, but the Lib Dems have no idea what every day people prioritise. They're obsessed with constitutional reform and getting 16 year olds into porn films.

Nowt wrong with voting reform, but the front of any manifesto should involve how food will be put on tables.

Commenter above:

"What was it Thatcher famously said about her greatest achievement? - 'Tony Blair'"

Yes, but that's only because Nick Clegg can never be great.

4:28 am, March 14, 2010

Anonymous Rich said...

The problem now is that non of the parties really offer what people want or need.

We all know that all parties want cuts despite that 67% of voters being against them. Not one of the parties are being honest about public spending.

I personally feel that a hung parliament would be the best outcome. If our political parties can't be honest then why should they complete power, much better to share that power.

I really don't know what the lib dems stand for or who they represent. It's weird that the lib dems will probably hold the key to power.

11:15 pm, March 15, 2010

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Miller.2: ...but the Lib Dems have no idea what every day people prioritise'
Really? So redistribution of wealth, ie lower taxes for the poorest, while the richest pay more, isn't what 'every day people'want? -They want bankers to pay more in taxes, redistribution of wealth, and more spent on the poorest children for their education. ALL Liberal Democrat policies! Sad and pathetic ramblings from a Labour drone

6:46 pm, March 16, 2010

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Miller.2 - "getting 16 year olds into porn films" - sick and nasty smear from a sicko. What are you on?

6:50 pm, March 16, 2010

Blogger PoliticalHack said...

Birmingham has had a similar Tory/Lib Dem coalition - or Progressive Partnership as they term it(I kid you not) since 2004 and much good has it done us. The LDs have loyally stood by their new friends, backing sub-inflationary council tax rises and enjoying thumpingly big increases in grant aid (courtesy of the Labour government, of course). Now, after a discredited re-engineering 'Business Transformation' programme has failed to deliver the goods, heavy cuts in services and jobs are the order of the day. And where are the LDs? Right behind the Tories.

The truth is that the LDs will be right beside anyone who can offer them a sniff of power and to hell with principles. They'll be whoever you want them to be.

10:42 pm, March 16, 2010

Blogger Rational Thinker said...

It's them dastardly Orange Book Liberals like David Laws, that have taken the party in a hard right direction, where Dan Hannan would probably feel more at home.

2:26 pm, March 17, 2010

Blogger mickeyjack said...

Hey Miller 2.0

Is this how you think you'll be best serving the people of Woking by making sly inept little comments like that against other parties?

No wonder you're party is so far behind that they are now irrelevant in the borough...

4:21 pm, March 19, 2010


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