August 14, 2010

WHICH IS WHY ANGLOSPHERIC GOVERNMENTS ARE KILLED FROM WITHIN THESE DAYS:

The dangerous rows behind the scenes are between Tories and Tories (James Forsyth, 14 August 2010, The Spectator)

Coalition politics has thrown political journalists for a loop. For years we have been used to members of government claiming that there is not a cigarette paper of difference between them and their colleagues — even when the disagreements were obvious. But now Cabinet ministers happily admit that they differ. And when they disagree, the coalition partners set about resolving their differences in a civil and reasonable fashion. The lobby journalist’s bread and butter — the splits story — is in danger of disappearing.

But the old politics is not dead. There are still vicious rows going on in government, but they are blue on blue: Tory versus Tory.

This is not as odd as it might seem. The Tories and Liberal Democrats expect to disagree. No one feels betrayed when they find out that someone from another party has a different view. Vince Cable and David Willetts know that they are not of one mind on the question of how to fund higher education. But this knowledge actually liberates them; it makes it much easier for them to sit down and try to work out a mutually acceptable compromise. It is, though, quite another matter when someone who you feel should agree with you doesn’t. As one Cabinet minister puts it, ‘the emotional baggage and tension is all with your own side.’


It is the sniping from the folks on your own side, who can't accept governing in the Third Way, that takes its toll on the leadership. With the exception of SS Reform, W had an a fairly easy time getting what he wanted from Democrats. It was the Right that brought him down.

Posted by Orrin Judd at August 14, 2010 7:12 AM
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