No Victims

And so now we know what our core vote is 8%!

If anybody is at all surprised by that, then they simply haven’t looked at election results over the longer term. Winning a few “Personality” seats simply doesn’t cut it (two of our best known personalities were after all Jeremy Thorpe and Cyril Smith). Our less well known MP’s are there, usually, as a result of of much hard work by a core of local supporters fighting for dustbins and against dog mess. We still have a substantial body of support in these seats.

Shortly after that meeting in the garden, I spoke with one of our more optimistic, long serving and successful, Lib-Dem Councillors. He, being the optimist he is, stated that that moment would set us back twenty-five years. He went on to concede that it was still probably the right thing to do. That was the optimistic view.

Those of us who hate Tories with a deep, utter and sincere loathing, and yet found ourselves most reluctantly accepting the arrangement, had visions from a German past where such arrangements were akin to a suicide pact across the entire party. The nation dealt with us as we deserved and as we should have expected. There were no victims on election night, just volunteers.

But hell! We’ve still got 8% of the voting public, and they knew that what they were doing was not going to lead to a Liberal or even a liberal Government, and then we’ve got fifty thousand members and growing. That’s not a bad base from which to start.

The question remains as to why we do it. There’s no question mark at the end of that statement for the simple process of opening your eyes and looking around gives you all the answers.

With only eight MP’s the questions to ask are very simple:

1. What should we do with only eight MP’s.?

2. What can we do with only eight MP’s?

To have any elected member or peer trying to cover several portfolios is a total waste of time. We need to concentrate our efforts on those things which give us a distinct identity and can be covered in broad sweeping cross departmental ways.

Our campaign seems to have boiled down to “Vote for us and we’ll stop the big boys from being naughty.” Not exactly inspiring. Not positive. Not true. Worst of all it shows us as the creepy little kid who nobody, quite rightly, pays any attention to. They didn’t.

We are growing our membership. The other parties are, sort of, promoting our policies: on regional government (Tories); PR (UKIP); environment (nearly every one else)..

The Government is going to make cuts which are likely to be seen as too harsh, or as failing to deliver what they promised.

They are unlikely to make any genuine headway in Europe before the referendum. If we vote to stay in Major’s Bastards will bring forward the Leadership election. If the vote is to leave then the SNP (who can otherwise be entirely ignored) will want a second poll north of the border.

With a bit of luck Labour will turn Sigmoidoscopy (think Dyno-rod), into an art form.

So if there are wounds to lick, get them licked and lets get on with it. This is a good time.

The Welfare State is simply bloody marvellous! It needs both reform and promotion. Advocate it from a position of positivity.

The NHS needs other sources of funding. This could well be from insurance, not just motor insurance, but insurance from all sports and activity clubs who’s members need treatment as a result of their sport or activity. The NHS is poor at collecting this so pass it onto the Collector of Taxes and ring fence 90% of the take).

Think the unthinkable. In an overcrowded England (does anyone really think Scotland, Wales and Ulster are overcrowded), do we really need more people, do we need to encourage larger families. Consider the realities of the cost of children. The first is the most expensive (not just actual cost but loss of earnings etc.). Each subsequent child is less expensive. Consider ending Child Tax Credits for future second or third and subsequent children. If the Tories really want Regional Government there’s no reason why fiscal policies should be universal.

Civil Liberties are a reality. Civil Liberties are a real and present danger.

There never has been a time when people in the UK, and the West in general, have been able to say and do more without the fear of State retaliation. This very freedom is what challenges and motivates the extremely religious and/or dictatorially inclined. The greater our freedoms, the more they fear their decline. Do we really want to cut back on our freedoms in an attempt to appease, which is doomed to failure as our reasonable step is their first victory. Exercise your freedoms to keep them.

That’s how it looks a week after we got our comeuppance.

Fear Nowt

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