THE NEWSDESK: You're in denial, Mr Clegg
5:23pm Sunday 15th September 2013 in News
WATCHING Nick Clegg on the Andrew Marr Show yesterday made me think of all those times myself and other Argus reporters have been to court.
Clegg appeared the loyal spouse of the big, bad partner who runs roughshod over them, in denial, still believing that all will be well and that things will change for the better.
Never has there been more of a triumph of hope over experience than in Clegg's view that after the next election, if the LIberal Democrats are in government, he will push to ensure no one on the minimum wage pays income tax.
That coaliton politics has been good for the UK.
That the big, bad senior partner won't push though their own policies throwing just a few crumbs of comfort to their junior coalition partners.
Let's take a look at the track record. Tuition fees - don't see how the Lib Dems can claim they did anything other than a massive U-turn on that issue - and lost scores of student voters in the process.
The economy - seems to me that Osborne and Cameron's austerity agenda won out in that battle, despite the criticisms of the LIberal Democrat business secretary Vince Cable.
And, already, Clegg is starting to run with the hare and the hounds as the build-up to the next general election begins.
He told the Andrew Marr programme yesterday coalition governments would be more likely in future rather than "these slam-dunk results where one or the other of the two major parties always get a majority".
Clegg said the UK needed Lib Dems in government because they would act as a moderating influence on the bigger parties.
He said: "If we go back to the bad old days, not of coalition or balanced politics, but of either the left or the right dominating government on their own, you will get a recovery which is neither fair nor sustainable.
"I think Labour would wreck the recovery, and under the Conservatives - who don't have the same commitment to fairness which we do - you would get the wrong kind of recovery.
"Our message is that coalition is good, for the Liberal Democrats to stay in government is good, let us finish the job but let us finish it fairly."
But he wouldn't say which coalition 'partner' he favoured.
From what I can see coalition governments mean one thing: that the vast majority of people who voted, for whatever political party, get something they did not want.
Give me a landslide any day - because then the mandate is clear. Bad old days? Hardly.
I am sick to the back teeth of grubby political manoeuvring for power. I am fed up with coalitions, half-baked compromises or political parties who are so far in denial they can no longer see how twisted away from their core values they have become.
I am tired of people making promises they are in no position to deliver upon.
SO the warring Gallagher brothers are reportedly about to find peace and reform Oasis?
Oh Lord, how depressed I am by all of these Eighties and Nineties bands re-forming, going on tour and playing their 'greatest hits' to the faithful paying a day's wages at a time to see them shuffling about like its 1988 all over again.
It would be more honest if the ageing monsters of rock just put out a public appeal for aid with their pension funds. I'd be more likely to give them a few quid, provided I didn't have to witness the unedifying sight of any band with nothing new to add to the cultural pot.
Every musical act has a sell-by date. For some, the shelf-life is considerable because they are true artists who challenge boundaries, create something new and fresh and stimulate other acts to come into the industry.
Johnny Cash. Patti Smith. David Bowie.
For most, there comes a time when they have to recognise that simply churning out the same old same old is not doing anyone any favours, least of all the public who could be listening to something else.
I interviewed Newport musician and artist Jon Langford a few weeks ago, and he reminded me about the great line in Spinal Tap: "Who wants to be 40 and just milking it in Europe?"
It's high time for some fresh blood.
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