Will this be the change that we really can believe in?
Socialism remains the failed experiment and the moribund condition of financial position of the U.K. remains the conclusive evidence that Socialism cannot hope to change society in a positive way.
For those of us from afar who remember the Margaret Thatcher government, we know that the U.K. can meet a crisis head on and turn it around. What we also know is that turning around the crisis causes a lot of pain. Margaret Thatcher was able to bring the U.K. out of the period of stagflation by being hard-headed and little bit bloody-minded. She fought against Argentina over the Falkland Islands and had a temporary win. At this point in time, there is another war brewing over the Falkland Islands, and now we know that what is at stake is an oil reserve. Argentina wants the profits from the oil discovery.
Last week the U.K. went to the polls, and after what was a tense time, the result ended up in a hung parliament with the British Labour Party losing more than 90 seats, the Liberal-Democrats losing 5 seats, and assorted smaller parties either gaining seats or remaining the same, whilst the Conservative Party, known as the Tories, won more then 90 seats, but did not win enough seats to avoid the hung parliament and to govern in their own right. This in turn led the Liberal-Democrats under Nick Clegg to negotiate with both the Conservatives and the Labour Party regarding forming a Coalition or at least allow the party with the largest number of seats to form a minority government. Since the declaration of the polls it has been a very tense time as the negotiations proceeded. At long last there has been a resolution and the U.K. has a new Prime Minister – David Cameron. The U.K. also has its first coalition since the end of the second world war – The Conservative-Liberal-Democrats have managed to make a deal to form what they hope will be a stable government.
The new coalition government in the UK faces many challenges in the near future. They must work together to turn around the budget deficit and yet at the same time they both need to work to protect the most vulnerable in British society – the elderly and the disabled.
In the future there will be a referendum on the vexing issue of the voting system. One of the platforms of the Liberal-Democrats is the move towards proportional representation. Another platform is a four year fixed-term parliament term, which would end the idea of going to the polls early (having seen how this works in Australia – there are several Australian states that have fixed terms, I have misgivings on the issue, especially when the government turns out to be corrupt).
Another area where both groups will work together relates to reforms within the school system. The U.K. school system has been moribund for a very long period of time. It needs a good overhaul but I doubt that this will be achieved during the life of this particular coalition.
Of the other differences between the two parties, I hope that they will be able to put their differences aside in order to contribute to having a stable government that will work towards dismantling the worst of the welfare state. I doubt that there will be an end to PC in the U.K. because PC attitudes are simply too entrenched. On the other hand, I do hope that both parties will seek to tone it down a few notches, especially in bringing to an end creeping sharia – does Nick Clegg have the stomach to end that creeping sharia? I do not know.
I hope that I will be found to be correct that this change will lead to some very positive results. It would not have been possible for a Labour-Liberal-Democrat to be formed. For starters the members of the British Labour Party have become either too corrupt or they tended to be ego-maniacs in their belief that only they can rule in Great Britain, even as they had continued to do great harm to the U.K. economy with their welfare state policies.
My hope is that what will be restored is the work ethic, rather than a welfare state mentality. This will be hard to achieve because the welfare-state mentality is so deeply entrenched. Yet, there are plenty of areas where a new government can begin to make cuts e.g. not allowing the entitlement attitude of some members of the community to continue unabated. As hard as it might be, I see no reason for some benefits to be means tested, and in fact even with something like housing, I see no reason why there should not be some form of means-testing, or at least changes that will mean an end to a certain sector will not be able to collect benefits whilst having 4 wives and lots of children.