When David Cameron (DC) and Nick Clegg (Cleggy) first had their first press conference in the No. 10 garden last May, they urged the reporters there and the wider public that this is the new politics, “co-operation in the national interest.” which no one can deny is not a good thing. But, a new politics that breaks with the past is a politics that leaves behind the petty point scoring and squabbling of the House of Commons that has plagued most notably PMQs since the late 1960s and particularly since the 1980s.
This is something DC failed to demonstrate today in (Ed Miliband’s very first) PMQs as the Coalition’s new politics often very much looked, sounded and seemed like the old. After five years of complaining that his predecessors did NOT answer the vast majority of his questions, DC seemed very unable to answer Ed Miliband’s questions on Child Benefit. What seemed to happen in the end was DC questioning Miliband on his own policies to which quite rightly he didn’t answer to (to simple fact that this is Prime Ministers Questions) instead brilliantly replying “I may be new to this game, but if I remember rightly it’s my job to ask the questions.”.
Ed Miliband was at least trying to break this mould, let’s only hope the Coalition follows suit.
It’s incredible how personal interest stories can so effortlessly transcend borders. As BULS’ twitter officer I have been following “trending topics” very closely this year, and I can safely say that I have never seen such concentrated interest in one topic. As the 33 are being winched to the surface (as I write they are rescuing number 7 – José Ojeda Vidal) the story swamps 9 of the 10 top trending topics worldwide.
BULS would like to offer congratulations to all the brave people involved, particularly Luis Urzúa, the shift leader, who kept himself and his co-workers alive by dispensing sips of milk and teaspoonfuls of tuna every 48 hours for the 18 days before they were discovered, and wish them well over the recovery period. Here are some of the twitter highlights:
mine rescue It’s like the first moon landing all over again.The waiting,the tension.Tears down my cheeks with every rescued miner.
Rescued Chilean miner vows to return to work underground… Brave Souls!!
The first Chilean miner leaves the mine. How does he look so good after that ordeal? He’s really, really good looking!
@Rosental Way Chilean authorities transformed #miner rescue into an emotional TV show will become classic case study
Chilean Miner merchandise ideas? Top Trumps definite goer. Psychological state, Number of skin lesions, Number of wives/mistress on top etc
and my personal favourite:
@SamMannion: I do love the irony, it’s Thatcher’s birthday and the whole world is focused on a mine.