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Brown is the new Blair! [UK Politics]

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    ShintoShinto __BANNED USERS regular
    edited June 2007
    BROOOOOOOONNNNNN

    Shinto on
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    Grey GhostGrey Ghost Registered User regular
    edited June 2007
    Does anyone else think Brown seems like he'll be a real hardass? I'm just going by the limited footage of him I've seen so far. And I should point out that I'm American so I have no real conception of what the Brits would consider a hardass Prime Minister.

    I also just realized what a cool title that is. Maybe it's the word "Prime" that does it.

    Grey Ghost on
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    ScikarScikar Registered User regular
    edited June 2007
    Tastyfish wrote: »
    I've not seen so much of the 'Brown is a foreigner!' stuff (but then I avoid the Mail and the Sun/Star), most of the people commentating on him being a Scottish MP usually referenced the SNP's big push for independence in the run up to the election and the possibility (even though there isn't one) of the PM being from another country.

    That's the thing though, and what particularly angers me. It's not just shitty tabloid rags that are doing this but the BBC. I watched, about a year ago now, an edition of the Politics Show, a one hour Sunday mid-day discussion/package show on BBC One that focused on the question "Is it right for a Scot to lead Britain?". I was simply gob smacked. Since then I've noticed, what BernardBernoulli rightly points out as the gratuitous use of the word Scottish when discussing Gordon Brown (or indeed any Scottish minister).

    The thing is, there are many fascinating things that can be said about the legislative make-up of the United Kingdom yet they're ignored in favour of focusing exclusively on the tedious issue of "fairness". They[1] weren't that bothered with it during the previous 300 years of the union so I don't see why they are so upset now[2]. As a result, instead of intelligent debate, we get have joking references to a Scottish political mafia and a 'foreign' takeover. In my view that kind of language is corrosive, a long term drip-drip-drip of poisonous thought that leads down the avenues of the worst kind of exclusionary nationalism.

    [1] The media in general
    [2] I do understand why, it's due to the boot being very marginally on the other foot. However they still ignore the fact that purportedly English (and Wales and Northern Ireland) only legislation can deeply affect Scotland in a way that is adverse to the Union as a whole.

    I actually think it's a legitimate question. Should a Scot lead Britain when there's such a push for Scottish independence? Of course the answer is that there is no reason why he should not, but I still think there is room for at least some debate there. It's mostly irrelevant anyway, given that if it weren't for Scotland the Labour party wouldn't be in power - there's already a huge Scottish influence on Westminster.

    As regards the Union, as an Englishman living in Scotland, I don't really mind either way. If the Scots vote for further independence, I can see two immediate benefits for England:

    1) England currently is a net giver to Scotland each year. It's not a huge amount but I cannot see England being financially worse off as a result. Perhaps if North Sea Oil was worth something today it might be an issue, but it's almost all gone now and England wouldn't lose much without it.

    2) Better accountability in Westminster. I know it's a tired argument but as a student it still upsets me. Pushing through tuition fees for English students with Scottish ministers when Scottish students have their fees paid by the government is just plain wrong.

    There's an argument that 3) Labour wouldn't be in power but since Hague was booted the Tories have looked like they don't want people to vote for them.

    Scikar on
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    Mr_RoseMr_Rose 83 Blue Ridge Protects the Holy Registered User regular
    edited June 2007
    Seriously, I'd kill for an independent to win but its not possible in our system. I hate all the parties, they're all out to screw us over so much and if you tried to fight back, youd go away for a few months as a terrorist or be registered for life as a sex offender for peeing in public.
    An independent clearly can't win a majority in parliament, what with being the only guy in his party there, but if she so chooses, the Queen can pick anyone she damn well pleases to be her Prime Minister. The only real legal proviso is that they are a member of parliament and that she figures that the one chosen can actually form a government.
    It's like, the only real power she has left, but there it is...

    Mr_Rose on
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    Mojo_JojoMojo_Jojo We are only now beginning to understand the full power and ramifications of sexual intercourse Registered User regular
    edited June 2007
    It's her only power and it's a great power that she needs to dick about with more.

    Mojo_Jojo on
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    Mr_RoseMr_Rose 83 Blue Ridge Protects the Holy Registered User regular
    edited June 2007
    Indeed. I very much wish that she would fuck with peoples heads more, but unfortunately, the whole "must be an MP" thing does rather preclude some of the more famous shenanigans, like when one of the mad ones made his favourite horse his PM... Of course, I can't recall if you actually have to be human to get elected as an MP in the first place...

    Mr_Rose on
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    LeitnerLeitner Registered User regular
    edited June 2007
    Mojo_Jojo wrote: »
    It's her only power and it's a great power that she needs to dick about with more.

    Actually she has some other great powers. I believe she can still veto any bill she chooses. The problem is she can use them once before they get stripped away. So it's probably better that they get stored away for a time of real crisis.

    Leitner on
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    Mojo_JojoMojo_Jojo We are only now beginning to understand the full power and ramifications of sexual intercourse Registered User regular
    edited June 2007
    I was under the impression she didn't actually have veto power any more and that choosing the PM was all she did. Then again, I'll admit I'm not exactly up every outdated intricacy of our political system.

    Mojo_Jojo on
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    GorakGorak Registered User regular
    edited June 2007
    The Queen needs to dissolve parliament and take over.

    If you're in any doubt, ask youself which of these you think cares more about the lot of the average guy in the street.

    1. Gordon Brown
    2. David Cameron
    3. Mingus Campbell
    4. Elizabeth Windsor

    Vote The Queen!

    Gorak on
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    DarkWarriorDarkWarrior __BANNED USERS regular
    edited June 2007
    Mr_Rose wrote: »
    Seriously, I'd kill for an independent to win but its not possible in our system. I hate all the parties, they're all out to screw us over so much and if you tried to fight back, youd go away for a few months as a terrorist or be registered for life as a sex offender for peeing in public.
    An independent clearly can't win a majority in parliament, what with being the only guy in his party there, but if she so chooses, the Queen can pick anyone she damn well pleases to be her Prime Minister. The only real legal proviso is that they are a member of parliament and that she figures that the one chosen can actually form a government.
    It's like, the only real power she has left, but there it is...

    I know, I just wish it was possible. They're all so busy trying to fuck each other in the ass and squander our money. Its obscene how much of every hard working persons cash is wasted on stuff that doesn't benefit us in the slightest. 200,000 pounds to reduce energy waste in a hospital? 50,000 for a report on local opinion of the council? Jesus.

    DarkWarrior on
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    BernardBernoulliBernardBernoulli Registered User regular
    edited June 2007
    Scikar wrote: »
    Snip

    There are problems, but Britain still exists, so going on about a Scot being PM is the same as an English or Welsh bloke being PM - idiocy. There really isn't a drive for Scottish independence as far as I can tell, the SNP doing well recently is because everyone hates Blair. And at any rate, unless Scotland actually becomes independent, they still need representation in Parliament. Complaints about Scotland getting better treatment than England should be directed at the MPs and government, not saying we should split up the nation.

    Again, I still just see all this talk of separation as coming from nationalist nutcases and idiots from both England and Scotland, and all this "Scotland shouldn't have MPs in London" talk is a Tory attempt to get more control in Parliament

    edit: no offense, anyone

    Also, the Queen asks the MP who she thinks can claim support from the largest amount of Parliament to become PM. These days it's a party leader, but it could in theory be an independent if he has the support of enough of Parliament (which obviously isn't going to happen)

    BernardBernoulli on
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    Alistair HuttonAlistair Hutton Dr EdinburghRegistered User regular
    edited June 2007
    My main worry is people are saying how they like Cameron more than Brown because Cameron seems nicer and friendlier. Complete idiots, but it could cost Labour the next election

    Every time that I start getting worried that the Tories are getting slick and media savvy and they look like legitimate governmental material one of Cameron's shadow cabinet pipes up with "More Grammar Schools", "Bring back Hanging", "Lets discriminate against the gays and single parents, especially gay single parents" etc. and I feel a little safer.

    Alistair Hutton on
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    Mojo_JojoMojo_Jojo We are only now beginning to understand the full power and ramifications of sexual intercourse Registered User regular
    edited June 2007
    Splitting up schools into Comprehensives and Grammars was a brilliant idea, it just didn't get the positive spin it needed and everybody assumed that if you went to a Comprehensive you were stupid. It was a great idea which was poorly received and then scrapped rather than being fixed.

    Of course, unless they change how comprehensives work there isn't much point in making grammar schools.

    Mojo_Jojo on
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    Alistair HuttonAlistair Hutton Dr EdinburghRegistered User regular
    edited June 2007
    Mojo_Jojo wrote: »
    Splitting up schools into Comprehensives and Grammars was a brilliant idea, it just didn't get the positive spin it needed and everybody assumed that if you went to a Comprehensive you were stupid. It was a great idea which was poorly received and then scrapped rather than being fixed.

    Of course, unless they change how comprehensives work there isn't much point in making grammar schools.

    I think you're confusing Comprehesives and Secondary Moderns?

    I'm all for setting/streaming within a school based on academic ability in a particular subject but selective schooling on an institutional basis is a devisive, anchronistic class based tool for seperating your children from the undesirables.

    Alistair Hutton on
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    Mojo_JojoMojo_Jojo We are only now beginning to understand the full power and ramifications of sexual intercourse Registered User regular
    edited June 2007
    That's the one, didn't think I had the right name.

    The point was that you should cater education to the students and some students gain nothing from academia. People saw it as a pass or fail system, which was the problem. I just don't see the point in teachers having to deal with kids who quite rightly point out that they are highly unlikely to ever need to know Latin.

    Pretending everybody is the same wastes everybody's time, the students who would do better with something more akin to an apprenticeship should be getting just that and not sitting in a classroom all day pissing off the teacher and other students.

    Mojo_Jojo on
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    RookRook Registered User regular
    edited June 2007
    Gorak wrote: »
    The Queen needs to dissolve parliament and take over.

    If you're in any doubt, ask youself which of these you think cares more about the lot of the average guy in the street.

    1. Gordon Brown
    2. David Cameron
    3. Mingus Campbell
    4. Elizabeth Windsor

    Vote The Queen!

    ... is that some sort of trick question?


    Anyways, fun fact. Tony Blair was born in Scotland, and went to college there. So it's not like we're suddenly having a Scot for PM, we've had one for 10 years.

    Rook on
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    Alistair HuttonAlistair Hutton Dr EdinburghRegistered User regular
    edited June 2007
    Mojo_Jojo wrote: »
    That's the one, didn't think I had the right name.

    The point was that you should cater education to the students and some students gain nothing from academia. People saw it as a pass or fail system, which was the problem. I just don't see the point in teachers having to deal with kids who quite rightly point out that they are highly unlikely to ever need to know Latin.

    But that is the point of the Comprehensive system, broad based education that offers everything from Latin to Woodworking, Art to Technical Drawing. Just because they are all available doesn't mean they should all be taken.
    Mojo_Jojo wrote: »
    Pretending everybody is the same wastes everybody's time, the students who would do better with something more akin to an apprenticeship should be getting just that and not sitting in a classroom all day pissing off the teacher and other students.

    Yes, everyone is different, but setting up different institutions for them and determining at the age of 11 who is destined for academia and who is not is made of equal parts poor show and fail. Grammar schools were supposed to be part of a 3 tier system with Secondary Moderns and Technical Schools. The Technical Schools never existed and Secondary Moderns turned out to be just poor schools as the Grammars absorbed all the best teachers. As a result the 11+ basically determined if a child would be able to go to University or not (I'm talking old-school University not a converted college). That's just crazy talk.

    I can see an argument for some form of selection at, say, 14 or so. At that point a child's education could switch from broad based to more focused, either academically or vocationally. To detemine so early on (at 11) a child's future and to seperate children so that they don't mix ith each other is just, just, so utterly wrong in my mind.

    Alistair Hutton on
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    I made a game, it has penguins in it. It's pay what you like on Gumroad.

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    devoirdevoir Registered User regular
    edited June 2007
    I think we can all safely say we would have preferred things to have turned out differently.

    Say, like this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kzlOBn029b8&mode=related&search=

    devoir on
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    Mr_RoseMr_Rose 83 Blue Ridge Protects the Holy Registered User regular
    edited June 2007
    devoir wrote: »
    I think we can all safely say we would have preferred things to have turned out differently.

    Say, like this: david_tennant_01.jpg
    A hundred more years!

    A hundred more years!


    (I would so vote Tennant...)

    Mr_Rose on
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