Friday, 8 May 2015

Reflections on the General Election

Given the overcast sky somewhat reflects my mood today it is with some trepidation that I begin to try making sense of the quite unexpected general election.

A Conservative majority government.

As soon as the exit poll was published after the polls closed last night my excitement began to change to worry as the election results gradually and decisively confirmed this early prediction from the pollsters.

All the previous polling had suggested a "hung parliament" with no party having any overall majority. The Liberals were earmarked for a severe decline (though the actual result was far worse for them than anyone would have predicted) and the Scottish Nationalists on course to virtually take over in Scotland, which they did with a vengeance leaving the other three major parties with just one seat each. UKIP, despite polling a high number of votes ended up with just the one seat, that of Tory defector, Douglas Carswell.

So far today three party leaders have fallen on their swords. Ed Milliband, Nigel Farage and Nick Clegg. The latter having only kept his seat through tactical voting by Tory voters.

An obvious winner of the night was Nicola  Sturgeon who not only captured the imagination of the majority of the Scottish electorate but gained credibility amongst many voters south of the border. Her "anti-austerity" message was certainly well received, but whether we like it or not the real winner of the night was in fact David Cameron.

He did the unthinkable and won a majority in Parliament with 36% of the vote.

This was not the result I had expected or wanted but it is the one that will determine how this country is run for the next five years.

There were a couple of bits of good news on what was a terrible night.

First the odious George Galloway was overwhelmingly defeated in Bradford and his speech attacking his "venal, vile" and "racist and Zionists" opponents exposed him for the man he really is. His claim to be part of the Labour Movement" is false. His bastard creation "Respect" is a mixture of religious communalism and a career vehicle for the man himself.

Equally welcome was the defeat of the "vile" Liberal Democrat MP, David Ward in the neighbouring Bradford east constituency whose tweets and comments about Israel and Zionism took him over the line of respectability.

Labour will need to have a serious period of reflection as indeed will the unions. Without Scotland the prospect of a Labour government is now more remote than it ever has been and a solution for the future must be found.

Both Labour and the unions should ignore the shrill calls of the comrades of the far-left.

The time for the socialism of old is long gone.

We need a new direction.

That debate needs to begin now.

1 comment:

  1. I recall Unite the Union and it's leader saying about a year ago they plan to split from Labour and launch a new workers' party if Labour lose the General Election.

    Now this talk worries me as it will wipe out a lot of funds for our party and if done then others may follow suit. I can see much infighting on what the Labour Link with the Unions means anymore.

    I think personally we need Unions to keep the faith in Labour. We need to re-look at why we got it wrong and how to fix it.

    Unions are very important but I don't think the far left is the answer somewhere we need to capture the centre left ground and centre ground and make policy for the Common Man/Woman regain the trust and the people will follow.