Sorry on behalf on all of the bulsonline team for the lack of activity lately. The end of term shenanigans have kept us all busy these past few weeks and I personally have been away in Edinburgh for the past few days.
Anyway, first thing on my blogging list to write about is, yes you guessed it, the Cable incident. In some ways, like potentially many Lib Dem grass-root members, I’m quite glad that Cable is fighting his own corner for the Lib Dems (it sure is a better alternative to the other option). In some respects, I can sympathise with Cable. Like I said on the whole Mervyn King incident via the wikileaks, people often let slip their own personal view points, we are human after all. However, that is where my sympathy stops. A Business Secretary has to rule on each case on the facts and evidence, you can’t go in with a pre-existing views. This applies to every case, despite the idea that “declaring war on Mr Murdoch” is something I very strongly sympathise with. It is a direct breach of the ministerial code and should result in nothing less than resignation. This is where the double standards come in.
I’ve always been rather sceptical about the Coalition claiming to “come together in the national interest” (naturally). But, it certainly seems in this one case that what happened was that DC’s decision not to sack Cable was in the Coalition’s interest rather than “the nation’s interest”. It’s blatantly clear, if this had been a Tory Minister, they would have been left out to dry long ago. What is also interesting is that Cable described the Coalition as “Maoist”, given that he believed they were trying to push through too many radical changes at once, many of which he disagreed with. Which neatly leads onto the next event I missed.
Apart from taping Cable’s views on the Coalition, the Daily Telegraph also recorded Scottish Secretary Michael Moore, Business Minister Ed Davey and Pensions Minister Steve Webb doubts over the Coalition’s claim to “fairness”. They criticised Child Tax Credit reforms and the Trebling of fees. Now rather than criticising the Lib Dems as a whole for supporting these measures, we should be working to encourage not only Lib Dem MPs, but party members and voters to think again about the Coalition and whether it is truly taking the right direction (although with the latter part, little needs to be done there). This is why I welcome Ed Miliband’s move to start calling the Coalition a “Conservative-led Coalition”. Also, I welcome (more or less) the reduction party membership fees for Young Labour members (15-27…ish) from the already ridiculously low £1 to 1p(!!). I know if Labour wants to increase membership amongst the younger generations sound policies are far more important, but you can’t say it wont help a bit.
Finally, on a completely different note. Yet even more genuine change has come to America. The old “don’t ask don’t tell” policy on banning gay people in the armed forces in the USA has finally, been repealed! Now some may say this won’t be good for the army as it’ll stir up homophobia, but if it is stirred up because of this at least it’s tackling homophobia. Consequently, because of this logic, not repealing this ban would have meant homophobia culture would have gone unchecked and unchallenged in the US armed forces.
Overall though, a rather good few days….shame I missed it all.