Healthy dialectic is made by oppositions that oppose, not hand-wringing centrists who wonder why we can't all get along. Spain has got a right-wing government and a left-wing opposition, until the last election it was the other way round. You've had Blair saying he was an admirer of Thatcher, and Cameron saying he was a bit Blairite, for fuck's sake. Spain is every bit as screwed as anywhere else, or more so, but at least there's a bit of ideological clear water between the two options, it's not occupied by some ramshackle party of bleating sheep half of whom want to run one way and half the other. Just make your minds up which side of the divide you're on and let the Lib Dems wither away. The UK isn't meant to have three main parties.
Absolutely - triangulation is perhaps the biggest problem with British politics as it stands. Cameron is pretty much a straightforward Blairite, and Gove is another who's an open admirer of St Tony (which goes to show how far to the right he took Labour). It might not have been enough to get him a majority in 2010, but Cameron has been fairly successful in parking his tank on the New Labour lawn, so to speak. That's just one of the reasons why I don't think running into the arms of David Miliband would be the solution to all Labour's woes. Events are moving quickly and I don't think the Blairites in the Labour party quite grasp the depth of the slump we're currently in, nor its long-term implications.
Malcolm Armsteen wrote:
I'm not sure about the number of parties, but I think that Clegg might be achieving Blair's Third Way, a realignment of the liberal left around a new Labour caucus - I'm just not sure how long that will take, and the relationship will be less favourable to the social liberals. Certainly the neo-liberal entrists will find themselves happier in the Tories, especially after today.
There was a Tribune article around the time of the last election speculating that certain figures on the Labour right (headed by Mandelson and Adonis, natch) were plotting to form a permanent pact with the Lib Dems under Clegg, freezing out what remains of the Labour left in the process.http://think-left.org/2012/01/17/is-the ... he-tories/