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Brown is the new Blair! [UK Politics]

ColdredColdred Registered User regular
edited June 2007 in Debate and/or Discourse
SHOCK NEWS: Blair to step-down!

Because the Beeb is better at this than I:
Blair succession
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After announcing in 2004 that he will not run for a fourth election and a few years of speculation, Blair has finally announced that he will step down on the 27th June. This leaves the way for patient Brown to take up the Premiership (at least for a few years). Admittedly I don't know much about Brown (except that we share surnames and that he is Scot and was Chancellor), but he doesn't seem quite as charismatic as ol' Teflon Tony although as ex-Chancellor you would hope he would be at least fiscally competent (a big assumption I know). Although there are other contenders for the throne (supposedly), it seems that Brown is pretty much a sure-thing.

Blair leaves an interesting legacy and will probably be remembered for the Iraq and Afghanistan wars, although as a nation I don't think we've done too badly under him. In the positives he helped the Northern Ireland situation a lot (although it could be argued that Major did a lot of the groundwork). Public Services have seen huge investment under the Labour government, although some argue that it has been slow to see improvement and bogged down under bureaucracy and the introduction of minimum wage, tax credits and expansion in child care have done something towards reducing domestic poverty.

So, while Blair will never be remembered as a Churchill, will he be remembered as a good PM or a bad one? Will Brown (or maybe someone else?) make a good PM? In the longer term will Labour stay in power with a new PM, or will the Tories rise up and reclaim the majority under Cameron? How will this effect foreign policy? How does having a Scottish PM effect Scottish devolution? Does anyone really care?

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Coldred on
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    ShintoShinto __BANNED USERS regular
    edited May 2007
    BROOOOOOOON!

    Shinto on
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    ShintoShinto __BANNED USERS regular
    edited May 2007
    Blair will probably be remembered for his continuation of basic Thatcherite economic policy and his foreign policy successes. I doubt the Iraq War will seriously burden his image in the eyes of history. It hasn't cost Britain the way it has cost America.

    I think maybe his most interesting legacy will be in making the Tories a little colder toward America.

    Shinto on
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    jgreshamjgresham Registered User regular
    edited May 2007
    Shinto wrote: »
    Blair will probably be remembered for his continuation of basic Thatcherite economic policy and his foreign policy successes. I doubt the Iraq War will seriously burden his image in the eyes of history. It hasn't cost Britain the way it has cost America.

    I think maybe his most interesting legacy will be in making the Tories a little colder toward America.


    In terms of human lives lost and cash spent, the war hasn't cost us much compared to America, but the very fact that we could be dragged so quickly into a conflict that a lot of people were so vehemently opposed to, against the instructions of the U.N. , disturbed a lot of people greatly.

    Actually though I'm more worried about the two disasterous policies Labour started pushing after Iraq - namely identity cards and road pricing.

    jgresham on
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    ShintoShinto __BANNED USERS regular
    edited May 2007
    jgresham wrote: »
    Shinto wrote: »
    Blair will probably be remembered for his continuation of basic Thatcherite economic policy and his foreign policy successes. I doubt the Iraq War will seriously burden his image in the eyes of history. It hasn't cost Britain the way it has cost America.

    I think maybe his most interesting legacy will be in making the Tories a little colder toward America.


    In terms of human lives lost and cash spent, the war hasn't cost us much compared to America, but the very fact that we could be dragged so quickly into a conflict that a lot of people were so vehemently opposed to, against the instructions of the U.N. , disturbed a lot of people greatly.

    This is what I mean when I talk about the opposition Tories adopting a cooler attitude toward America to capitalize on that feeling. That reprocussion of the Iraq War will be the main legacy, rather than any more direct effect of the military engagement.

    Shinto on
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    GorakGorak Registered User regular
    edited May 2007
    He's managed to do what the tories never could - kill off socialism.

    Gorak on
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    ShintoShinto __BANNED USERS regular
    edited May 2007
    Boo Hoo.

    My understanding is that Brown cares a lot more about equity than Blair. He might kick up the social angle a bit more.

    Seems to be the theme he is laying out in his opening remarks I read this morning.

    Shinto on
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    jgreshamjgresham Registered User regular
    edited May 2007
    I doubt the Scottish thing will help Brown much though. The English won't like it much, and we've just handed over the majority up here to the SNP.

    jgresham on
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    ShintoShinto __BANNED USERS regular
    edited May 2007
    jgresham wrote: »
    I doubt the Scottish thing will help Brown much though. The English won't like it much, and we've just handed over the majority up here to the SNP.

    They'll come back to Labor eventually. It seems like they wanted to register their disatisfaction more than leave the union.

    Shinto on
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    oldmankenoldmanken Registered User regular
    edited May 2007
    Brown is going to create problems just because of the way he operates, aka he likes to have total control. Labour would have been much better served if Miliband (sp?) had decide to challenge for the leadership.

    oldmanken on
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    ShintoShinto __BANNED USERS regular
    edited May 2007
    oldmanken wrote: »
    Brown is going to create problems just because of the way he operates, aka he likes to have total control. Labour would have been much better served if Miliband (sp?) had decide to challenge for the leadership.

    The battle between the two would have broken Labour. It doesn't seem like there was a realistic scenario in which Miliband would actually have managed to become Prime Minister with a secure base of support. He's not going anywhere. He'll be around to pick things up in five or six years.

    Shinto on
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    jgreshamjgresham Registered User regular
    edited May 2007
    It'll be interesting to see what happens with Old Labour, now that old Prescott has retired from punching reporters and diddling his secretary. The party has drifted a long way from its trade union roots, and without a charismatic leader they might struggle. Especially as the Tories have finally got a leader who doesn't look like he's just risen from the grave.

    jgresham on
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    ÆthelredÆthelred Registered User regular
    edited May 2007
    I voted "reform of the Labour party" on the Beeb's "what will Blair be remembered for most" poll. Taking the long-view of everything it's one of the most important things to happen to British politics ever and will far outshadow Iraq - which whilst bad, come on, we've done a lot worse. Labour will miss Blair, probably the most gifted orator of our age. The man's been going for a decade and is embroiled in a highly unpopular overseas adventure, yet he still charms. Interesting note: he's been in power ten years, yet will still be the youngest PM to ever leave office.

    Æthelred on
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    Willeh DeeWilleh Dee Registered User regular
    edited May 2007
    I liked Blair allot, sadly he was the leader of the wrong party, he would of made a great Conservative. I dislike how the tabloids have turned on him even though hes Labour, im looking forward to when the big guns come out as we get closer to the next election and Brown Vs Cameron.

    Hopefully Cameron will drop this silly green movement hes trying to get going and instead turn on Brown and his socialist taxation of the British public and the crutch he allows the scroungers of society to lean on.

    Willeh Dee on
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    BernardBernoulliBernardBernoulli Registered User regular
    edited May 2007
    Greatest orator of our age? Since when? He might be persuasive, but he does things like put pauses in the wrong places and have a complete inability to pronounce "ideology" correctly.

    Shinto - I don't know what you've been hearing, but you sound totally off about some stuff. I think that at the moment, there's more British opposition to Iraq than in the US, and there always has been. There never was any jingoistic "let's get Iraq!" sentiment on the same scale as the US, in fact there was massive opposition to the war - partly the reason why everyone was so outraged when Blair told more than half the British public he wasn't going to listen to them and went ahead. Blair hasn't gone a week since he started calling for the war without someone having a go at him about it, he gets protesters following him around, hell, his whole leaving announcement basically boiled down to him asking forgiveness and understanding about "mistakes" which he implied at least included Iraq. Also, it had much more of an impact on him that it did Bush - you should see how he aged during the run up to the war.

    About the Tories being cooler towards the US - that's not happening. Hague, the Shadow Foreign Minister, has given speeches in the US representing his party, if I remember correctly, and there's no "we should move away from them" sentiment within the Tories, that's the Lib Dems and some Labour MPs, and possibly the majority of the public.

    Which is one part of Blair's legacy - the British public generally was okay towards the US before the Iraq War, after it the US is perhaps more disliked than in what you'd consider hostile countries, like France. Which probably has something to do with a lot of British people seeing Blair acting like the UK is a satellite state of the US.

    The thing is, Brown's already talking about reversing some of the changes that've been made, apparently he wants Parliament to be stronger, for example. You could say that Blair made people more cynical towards politicians in general, and more wary of spin. You *could* say that, but people seem to really like Cameron and think he's great, so apparently that's not true.

    He might've made it easier for Cameron to win an election, though with the corruption, whitewash reports covering himself, and Iraq

    BernardBernoulli on
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    Willeh DeeWilleh Dee Registered User regular
    edited May 2007
    Shinto - I don't know what you've been hearing, but you sound totally off about some stuff. I think that at the moment, there's more British opposition to Iraq than in the US, and there always has been. There never was any jingoistic "let's get Iraq!" sentiment on the same scale as the US, in fact there was massive opposition to the war - partly the reason why everyone was so outraged when Blair told more than half the British public he wasn't going to listen to them and went ahead. Blair hasn't gone a week since he started calling for the war without someone having a go at him about it, he gets protesters following him around, hell, his whole leaving announcement basically boiled down to him asking forgiveness and understanding about "mistakes" which he implied at least included Iraq. Also, it had much more of an impact on him that it did Bush - you should see how he aged during the run up to the war.

    The only British people I know who were against the war originally were student's who saw a huge conspiracy theory behind it all (omg war for oil etc etc) and the far left who didn't believe in war at all. Even now, from my experience, the British public tend to think its merely the Americans being stupid who have messed up Iraq (Duh Bush is stooopid etc etc) rather than it being an impossible and pointless war to begin with.

    Willeh Dee on
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    BernardBernoulliBernardBernoulli Registered User regular
    edited May 2007
    Willeh Dee wrote: »
    The only British people I know who were against the war originally were student's who saw a huge conspiracy theory behind it all (omg war for oil etc etc) and the far left who didn't believe in war at all. Even now, from my experience, the British public tend to think its merely the Americans being stupid who have messed up Iraq (Duh Bush is stooopid etc etc) rather than it being an impossible and pointless war to begin with.

    Well, I'm pretty sure that opinion polls showed more than half the population was against the war before it began. Additionally, there was that tiny rally in '03 in London protesting against the war. You know, that tiny rally between 1 and 2 million people. I'm sure all they were nutcases. And conspiracy theories thrive in situations where governments blatantly lie and people have to figure out why they are and what's actually happening. Maybe you only know far right and far left types, but I've known all sorts of people on both sides of the argument - irregardless of party affiliation or anything

    Also, trying to make the opponents of the war sound like fringe lunatics doesn't work anymore considering we were clearly right and have been right all along. And the British are increasingly *annoyed* at Blair and the US, to the point where a lot of people are infuriated about the whole thing

    BernardBernoulli on
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    Zetetic ElenchZetetic Elench Registered User regular
    edited May 2007
    Willeh Dee wrote: »
    Shinto - I don't know what you've been hearing, but you sound totally off about some stuff. I think that at the moment, there's more British opposition to Iraq than in the US, and there always has been. There never was any jingoistic "let's get Iraq!" sentiment on the same scale as the US, in fact there was massive opposition to the war - partly the reason why everyone was so outraged when Blair told more than half the British public he wasn't going to listen to them and went ahead. Blair hasn't gone a week since he started calling for the war without someone having a go at him about it, he gets protesters following him around, hell, his whole leaving announcement basically boiled down to him asking forgiveness and understanding about "mistakes" which he implied at least included Iraq. Also, it had much more of an impact on him that it did Bush - you should see how he aged during the run up to the war.

    The only British people I know who were against the war originally were student's who saw a huge conspiracy theory behind it all (omg war for oil etc etc) and the far left who didn't believe in war at all. Even now, from my experience, the British public tend to think its merely the Americans being stupid who have messed up Iraq (Duh Bush is stooopid etc etc) rather than it being an impossible and pointless war to begin with.

    Plenty of conservatives I knew were vehemently against the war, since they didn't see it as our war to begin with.

    And there was quite a lot of general protest.

    "Organisers claimed up to two million people took part, with police estimates putting the figure at "in excess of" 750,000."

    edit: Beat'd.

    Zetetic Elench on
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    ÆthelredÆthelred Registered User regular
    edited May 2007
    Most people were in favour of the Iraq war at the time and for a long while afterwards. I hate how anti-war people try to make the argument that most people were against it or it was undemocratic. There's plenty of other facets to complain about.

    Also worth noting is that the Foreign Secretary left in protest at the assumption of war. That's a pretty big event.

    Remember also that the war was sold differently to the British public than to the American. Americans were convinced by the Bush administration that Iraq had something to do with 9/11 and that an invasion would destroy the terrorists and spread democracy. Britons instead were chiefly told that Saddam had weapons of mass destruction - that was the main justification for the war. Since whatever you say about terrorism and democracy can be debated, the US government's claims have been a little less shattered - whereas there are demonstrably no WMD in Iraq. Some papers ran a "56 days with no WMDs found" and so forth following the end of the invasion.

    Greatest orator of our age? Since when? He might be persuasive, but he does things like put pauses in the wrong places and have a complete inability to pronounce "ideology" correctly.

    He blows away nearly all of MPs' abilities, who are the people that matter. His pauses habit is recent and a little annoying, yeah. That 24-hour period whilst hosting the G8 summit where he flew to Singapore to help win the Olympics, then made a speech after the July London bombings was pretty impressive. He's certainly brought Britain more onto the world stage - for good or ill - during his tenor.

    I'll just be amused at international events from now on when people wonder why the "english prime minister's" voice sounds odd. First Scottish PM since the twenties I think.

    Æthelred on
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    Willeh DeeWilleh Dee Registered User regular
    edited May 2007
    Willeh Dee wrote: »
    The only British people I know who were against the war originally were student's who saw a huge conspiracy theory behind it all (omg war for oil etc etc) and the far left who didn't believe in war at all. Even now, from my experience, the British public tend to think its merely the Americans being stupid who have messed up Iraq (Duh Bush is stooopid etc etc) rather than it being an impossible and pointless war to begin with.

    Well, I'm pretty sure that opinion polls showed more than half the population was against the war before it began. Additionally, there was that tiny rally in '03 in London protesting against the war. You know, that tiny rally between 1 and 2 million people. I'm sure all they were nutcases. And conspiracy theories thrive in situations where governments blatantly lie and people have to figure out why they are and what's actually happening. Maybe you only know far right and far left types, but I've known all sorts of people on both sides of the argument - irregardless of party affiliation or anything

    Also, trying to make the opponents of the war sound like fringe lunatics doesn't work anymore considering we were clearly right and have been right all along. And the British are increasingly *annoyed* at Blair and the US, to the point where a lot of people are infuriated about the whole thing

    The huge protest was indeed inspiring, but you gotta also remember, whilst supposedly around 2 million people were at this protest according to the organizers, the police claimed there were less than half that, putting the figure closer to a million, I guess its in the interest of both sides to exaggerate or play it down, however, whilst 2 million people attended this protest (admittedly an impressive size), 58 million people did not. So whilst at the protest there were lots of cries of "oh look Tony isn't listening to us, how undemocratic", they failed to notice that 50 million people's silence on the issue spoke louder than there well organized protest and maybe Blair was listening to the silent majority.

    I also remember secondary school pupils organizing not going to classes and staging a walk out after 12 o clock on a certain school day in protest of the war, out of those that didn't attend class that day and walked out, how many do you think did it because they were appalled at the war, and how many do you think saw it merely as a chance to skip school?

    I apologise if you thought I meant all who were against the war were nutcases, I did not, Labour MP's who quit the party over the issue have my full respect (whilst I may think there a bit cowardly ;-) )

    Willeh Dee on
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    BernardBernoulliBernardBernoulli Registered User regular
    edited May 2007
    Æthelred wrote: »
    Most people were in favour of the Iraq war at the time and for a long while afterwards. I hate how anti-war people try to make the argument that most people were against it or it was undemocratic. There's plenty of other facets to complain about.

    Also worth noting is that the Foreign Secretary left in protest at the assumption of war. That's a pretty big event.

    Most people were in favour of the Iraq War when they found out war had been declared - before it was declared, a majority was against, the numbers changed when people thought they had to "support the troops" by supporting the war. And I personally found that the people who were against the war were very strongly against it, while the people in favour tended to shrug their shoulders and mutter something about Saddam Hussein being a dictator

    Also, what Foreign Secretary? I think you mean Robin Cook, Leader of the House. Yep, that was pretty big
    &#198 wrote: »
    He blows away nearly all of MPs' abilities, who are the people that matter. His pauses habit is recent and a little annoying, yeah. That 24-hour period whilst hosting the G8 summit where he flew to Singapore to help win the Olympics, then made a speech after the July London bombings was pretty impressive. He's certainly brought Britain more onto the world stage - for good or ill - during his tenor.

    Blair's speaking ability and his foreign policy choices are quite separate. He's not a great speaker, giving speeches or just responding to questions. I just mentioned Robin Cook, *he* was a good speaker
    Willeh Dee wrote: »
    Snip

    Well, 2 million's a lot of people, considering it wasn't like it was a holiday. People were actually paying money to go to London from all over the country to protest the war, spending at least 6 hours in London without travel time. I actually went to that, it was great fun, but walking at 3 MPH for at least 6 hours wasn't the easiest thing in the world, yet at least 1 million chose to do that. Which shows the strength of people's convictions about the issue. Then consider it was by far the biggest protest in British history, I'd say it reflected public opinion quite nicely

    I didn't see any similarly-sized pro-war rallies. Or similarly-sized "we should be able to murder whatever animals we want to" rallies, either

    BernardBernoulli on
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    ÆthelredÆthelred Registered User regular
    edited May 2007
    Cook was a good orator too, but he doesn't have the look. He's more a Commons speaker than a public one. I guess I need a different word, one that involves presentation more. I think you could probably agree that Blair was the greatest election-winner ever. For rhetoric, whilst the whole affair was one of the most shameful in British history, look at after Diana's death. "People's princess" was an incredibly powerful line and one that people still use today when talking about the dead princess / bitch.

    Æthelred on
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    BernardBernoulliBernardBernoulli Registered User regular
    edited May 2007
    Cook was a good orator too, but he doesn't have the look. He's more a Commons speaker than a public one. I guess I need a different word, one that involves presentation more. I think you could probably agree that Blair was the greatest election-winner ever. For rhetoric, whilst the whole affair was one of the most shameful in British history, look at after Diana's death. "People's princess" was an incredibly powerful line and one that people still use today when talking about the dead princess / bitch.

    Blair's an excellent PR bloke, no doubt about that. When it comes to selling something, he's usually very good at it. Doesn't make him good at speaking, he's just got a team behind him who can use the media the right way, give the right presentation, etc., and he's part of that process.

    Greatest election-winner? Absolutely not. People go on about this all the time, Blair having won three amazing elections, but it's not true. Fact is, everyone hated the Tories so much in '97, it hardly mattered who was the Labour leader - the Tories were going to lose very badly. They're still hated today, which is why Cameron's trying to make them out to be friendly good guys

    BernardBernoulli on
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    ÆthelredÆthelred Registered User regular
    edited May 2007
    It's hard to gauge Blair's influence on something like election winning, since we'll never get to re-run them without him. But I think you have to appreciate how different Blair was in the 90s. He had good hair, played guitar and had a child-producing wife. We've seen with "call me Dave" how that sort of image is becoming modern politics.

    Brown will have a tougher time of it at elections simply by virtue of not having Blair's easy-going demeanour. Personally I don't want a Prime Minister who could be my "mate", so I'll still be voting for him. Err, when the time comes around anyway. The world needs more tight-fisted Scotsmen. Join us.

    Æthelred on
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    BernardBernoulliBernardBernoulli Registered User regular
    edited May 2007
    It's hard to gauge Blair's influence on something like election winning, since we'll never get to re-run them without him. But I think you have to appreciate how different Blair was in the 90s. He had good hair, played guitar and had a child-producing wife. We've seen with "call me Dave" how that sort of image is becoming modern politics.

    Brown will have a tougher time of it at elections simply by virtue of not having Blair's easy-going demeanour. Personally I don't want a Prime Minister who could be my "mate", so I'll still be voting for him. Err, when the time comes around anyway. The world needs more tight-fisted Scotsmen. Join us.

    I'll agree Blair was a populist type in the 90s, he was good at portraying himself as young and hip, and I'll agree Brown will have a harder time. Like you say, it's hard to figure out exactly what effect Blair's hipness had on his results, and why Brown will have a harder time. Partially, Brown's going to run into difficulty because he's the competent politician against Cameron's populist persona, but Brown also has to contend with the public's dislike for Blair which I think will really hurt him

    Hopefully he will clearly drop some of the dumber policies like ID cards, I expect that'll make people somewhat happier

    BernardBernoulli on
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    ÆthelredÆthelred Registered User regular
    edited May 2007
    I'm honestly looking forward to see how it all pans out. [/politics geek]

    Ironically, David Cameron might run into some of the Blair-backlash himself. He's basically a Blair-lite after all. Brown's seriousness might do him well; you could certainly never call him smarmy.


    So very soon we'll have gone from:

    Tony Blair, George W. Bush, Jacques Chirac, Gerhard Shroeder

    to

    Gordon Brown, Clinton/Obama/Edwards, Nicholas Sarkozy, Angela Merkel

    Æthelred on
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    EchoEcho ski-bap ba-dapModerator mod
    edited May 2007
    bushresignsmay11.jpg

    Echo on
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    CarnivoreCarnivore Registered User regular
    edited May 2007
    I will not vote for Gordon Brown.

    Carnivore on
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    BernardBernoulliBernardBernoulli Registered User regular
    edited May 2007
    I'm honestly looking forward to see how it all pans out. [/politics geek]

    Ironically, David Cameron might run into some of the Blair-backlash himself. He's basically a Blair-lite after all. Brown's seriousness might do him well; you could certainly never call him smarmy.


    So very soon we'll have gone from:

    Tony Blair, George W. Bush, Jacques Chirac, Gerhard Shroeder

    to

    Gordon Brown, Clinton/Obama/Edwards, Nicholas Sarkozy, Angela Merkel

    Cameron's basically been trying to make out that Blair kind of copied him, which is kind of ridiculous. Thing is, people actually seem to be accepting Cameron and think he's this good bloke who's got these great ideas. In reality, he's giving vague, unrealistic populist promises purely to get elected, but people don't seem to realize that. They're also missing the obvious point that even if Cameron gets elected and wants to do the stuff he's promised, there's an entire Tory party who don't want it. He's also done a good job of pretending he's not old school Tory, when he's been around since the early 90s at least.

    Why are people so dumb?

    And it will be somewhat interesting to see how the new line-up works out, but I'm not hopeful. After the strong French and German opposition to the US, now we've got people who're more pro-US in power, and a Democrat will be elected who won't be as despised as Bush. One result of the Iraq War I was hoping for was the EU being able to become a stronger, peaceful, democratic opposition to the US
    Carnivore wrote: »
    I will not vote for Gordon Brown.

    Why not?

    BernardBernoulli on
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    saggiosaggio Registered User regular
    edited May 2007
    I doubt the Scottish thing will help Brown much though. The English won't like it much, and we've just handed over the majority up here to the SNP.

    A majority? I thought the SNP had only one more seat than Labour in the Scottish Parliament.

    Anyway, I was watching BBC World and the CBC awhile back and they were talking about the impending departure of Blair. One of the things they said regarding his legacy was that while his foreign policy was a complete failure, his domestic policy was quite successful. I don't know how accurate that is, but wasn't he the one who devolved the Scottish Parliament, and helped orchestrate the Good Friday Agreement? Those are two fairly large successes in themselves, I'd say.

    saggio on
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    Mr BubblesMr Bubbles David Koresh Superstar Registered User regular
    edited May 2007
    Carnivore wrote: »
    I will not vote for Gordon Brown.

    You won't need to, hes getting the job anyway. Which seems a little wrong to me really

    Mr Bubbles on
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    Anarchy Rules!Anarchy Rules! Registered User regular
    edited May 2007
    Man I hated Tony Blair. The constant use of spin has now meant that I believe or trust anything the government says. I also hated the way he orchestrated any public appearances and never had any proper interviews - GMTV just doesn't count.

    Whilst he did do some good stuff for the country, for me it is overshadowed by a stupid war, propogating terrorism and eroding civil liberties (I'm looking at you ID cards).

    At least Brown seems to be old labour - a lefty. At the moment it appears labour is further right than the tories. Whilst the libdems are meant to be centre they're are the only real party (apart from greens) who are on the left.

    Anarchy Rules! on
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    GorakGorak Registered User regular
    edited May 2007
    saggio wrote: »
    One of the things they said regarding his legacy was that while his foreign policy was a complete failure, his domestic policy was quite successful. I don't know how accurate that is, but wasn't he the one who devolved the Scottish Parliament, and helped orchestrate the Good Friday Agreement? Those are two fairly large successes in themselves, I'd say.

    There's also the NHS IT fiasco, millions of pounds wasted in PFI contracts, a Home Office that's "not fit for purpose", problems with the educcation system - despite him coming in ten years ago chanting "education, education, education!" - and the loans/cash-for-honours scandal, to name a few. On the other hand, he got rid of hereditory peers in the House of Lords of which I definitely approved.

    Undoubtedly, Old Labour needed a bit of a shake-up to ever stand a chance of winning, but they went to far towards spin-doctoring and control. At first the rest of the party just did what they were told because didn't want to look dividided and weak when they'd only just taken power. They've started to come back from that a bit and I think Brown will probably keep with that. There comes a point when a strong party line starts to hamper debate and makes the party actually weak instead of just appearing that way.

    On the whole, I think he's suffered from the same problem the tories had before him - no strong opposition leading to arrogance. Whoever wins the next election, I think we'll probably have a better parliament. My ideal solution would be the Liberals gaining a ton of seats and bringing us closer to a hung parliament - the closer the results, the more they've got to concentrate on keeping the public happy.

    I won't vote for Brown unless he ditches ID cards and announces some policies to deal with the problems I mentioned above and I don't know if I could ever bring myself to vote for the Conservatives - I grew up under Thatcher and her successors and Blair's first election was my first vote.

    Gorak on
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    ShintoShinto __BANNED USERS regular
    edited May 2007
    Carnivore wrote: »
    I will not vote for Gordon Brown.

    Why?

    Shinto on
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    Anarchy Rules!Anarchy Rules! Registered User regular
    edited May 2007
    Thatcher did some good things for the country, whilst I was born in 1989, and never knew the period, her legacy is good.

    At least Cameron is the only decent alternative. I would vote for Charles Kennedy, but Campbell has a non existance charisma and just doesn't seem to get involved in major issues.

    Anarchy Rules! on
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    BernardBernoulliBernardBernoulli Registered User regular
    edited May 2007
    saggio wrote: »
    Anyway, I was watching BBC World and the CBC awhile back and they were talking about the impending departure of Blair. One of the things they said regarding his legacy was that while his foreign policy was a complete failure, his domestic policy was quite successful. I don't know how accurate that is, but wasn't he the one who devolved the Scottish Parliament, and helped orchestrate the Good Friday Agreement? Those are two fairly large successes in themselves, I'd say.

    Blair's foreign policy wasn't a complete failure by any stretch of the imagination, the Iraq thing just overshadows everything else.
    Mr Bubbles wrote: »
    Carnivore wrote: »
    I will not vote for Gordon Brown.

    You won't need to, hes getting the job anyway. Which seems a little wrong to me really

    I don't know what people are whining about, that's the way it works - there are far bigger problems with the British style of government I can think of. Major was in power in '90 and had an election in '92, Churchill was in power in '40 and had election in '45. Chances are, Brown will be in power in '07 and have an election in '09. Boo hoo. The Tories are calling for an election because they're worried about Brown becoming more popular in the next couple of years.
    I also hated the way he orchestrated any public appearances and never had any proper interviews - GMTV just doesn't count.

    I have to disagree with this, as well. Blair's had Paxman interviews, he does monthly press conference things taking questions from the media, he's been in some pretty tough interviews. His problem is he regularly dismisses legitimate questions and treats whoever's asking the question like an idiot
    Thatcher did some good things for the country, whilst I was born in 1989, and never knew the period, her legacy is good.

    At least Cameron is the only decent alternative. I would vote for Charles Kennedy, but Campbell has a non existance charisma and just doesn't seem to get involved in major issues.

    Thatcher wrecked the NHS, privitised the railways, wrecked the coal mining industry, upped unemployment, among other things. Her legacy is another argument... Blair's part of it, though. A lot of people despise her

    Why's Cameron a decent alternative? He just says "whatever you're worried about, whatever problems you have, whatever things need fixing, I'll sort it out". It shows that he's all about PR that he hasn't announced any policies beyond vague populist promises and people are still thinking he's "the only decent alternative". Additionally, like I said before, he was from at least the Major government, he's not untainted by the screw ups of the Tories. Hell, wasn't he there on Black Wednesday?

    BernardBernoulli on
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    GorakGorak Registered User regular
    edited May 2007
    I don't know what people are whining about, that's the way it works - there are far bigger problems with the British style of government I can think of. Major was in power in '90 and had an election in '92, Churchill was in power in '40 and had election in '45. Chances are, Brown will be in power in '07 and have an election in '09. Boo hoo. The Tories are calling for an election because they're worried about Brown becoming more popular in the next couple of years.

    I'd like to have seen Blair go last year and an election in '08. Cameron is worried that if Brown is given too much time then we won't be viewing him as Blair's mate anymore.
    His problem is he regularly dismisses legitimate questions and treats whoever's asking the question like an idiot

    Gorak on
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    Salvation122Salvation122 Registered User regular
    edited May 2007
    Thatcher wrecked the NHS, privitised the railways, wrecked the coal mining industry, upped unemployment, among other things.
    And your economy became vastly stronger because of it.

    Salvation122 on
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    GorakGorak Registered User regular
    edited May 2007
    Thatcher wrecked the NHS, privitised the railways, wrecked the coal mining industry, upped unemployment, among other things.
    And your economy became vastly stronger because of it.

    In the same way that the housing market is "strong" because house prices are too high for most people to get on the property ladder.

    The economy would also become stronger if we re-introduced slavery.

    Gorak on
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    Aaron LeeAaron Lee Registered User regular
    edited May 2007
    I'm sad to see Blair step down. I feel like he got pressure into a war his country didn't want, and though he often acted as the voice of reason, I just think a good run was pulled down by the Bush machine. I may not have agreed with his decision to follow Bush into Iraq, but nonetheless I liked the guy.

    Aaron Lee on
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    GorakGorak Registered User regular
    edited May 2007
    Aaron Lee wrote: »
    I'm sad to see Blair step down. I feel like he got pressure into a war his country didn't want, and though he often acted as the voice of reason, I just think a good run was pulled down by the Bush machine. I may not have agreed with his decision to follow Bush into Iraq, but nonetheless I liked the guy.

    We are quite capable of seperating Bush and Blair.

    There are plenty of domestic reasons that people don't like him.

    Gorak on
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