Saturday, 7 May 2011

Voters reject Clegg ... and throw out electoral reform

In the referendum on electoral reform voter turn-out was less than half (60% didn't vote) and of those who bothered to vote, only 32% said they wanted to change the system. 

Nick Clegg, Liberal Democrat leader, compromised everything (e.g. the tripling of tuition fees, the scrapping of EMA, NHS reform etc) in order to secure a vote on electoral reform, but then failed to win the vote!  

And the irony of it all is ... Nick Clegg, by reneging on all of his promises and putting aside his moral compass (choosing power over principle), is the actual person who set doubt/alarm bells off in people's heads (e.g. about coalitions) and sounded the death nell for electoral reform.

Many will not have bothered to listen to the arguments, and simply wanted to deliver a protest vote against him (nb which is why the Yes campaigners tried desperately to stop him getting involved in their campaign)!

This would also explain why the Liberal Democrats suffered a rout in the Local Elections, whilst their coalition partners actually gained seats (nb even though their partners are the main party responsible for introducing the cuts)!

Nick Clegg is deliberately keeping his head down, but did say "When you have such a overwhelmingly clear answer you just have to accept it and move on. This is a bitter blow for all those people who believe in the need for political reform, but the answer is clear and the wider job of the government, and the Liberal Democrats in government will continue, to repair the economy, to restore prosperity and jobs and a sense of optimism in the country. That is the job we started and we will see it though. We will dust ourselves off and move on."

And the issue with this? ... well for many it was not a case of rejecting electoral reform at all, but the best way of voters showing they reject him (given it was Nick Clegg's key demand in coalition)! ... and to try to maintain power ... he's predictably saying the public rejected electoral reform (i.e. not him) ... and he will continue in power doing what he's been doing!  

IMHO if the Liberal Democrats could get rid of him they almost certainly would (nb calls are there already from the grass-roots), but because of the massive damage that he's done to his party, they are now in such a state they could actually potentially implode.  Looks like they are just going to try and hang on and hope for the best ... for now. 

Meanwhile, Nick Clegg will still no doubt be contemplating his lifeboat (a safe Tory seat in the next election), particularly as the Conservative vote went up! But he will sit between two stools ... wanting to please an increasingly rebellious party (by showing he's prepared to stand up for people), and wanting to please Cameron and the Conservative party (to ensure he has a free passage to one of their safe seats)!

Trust, honour, respect ... Here I do think the electorate have given their verdict on Nick Clegg. However, apathy ruled the day and ignorance helped to deliver a protest vote but not electoral reform (nb by voting for electoral reform, but not voting for the Liberal Democrats in the local elections, voters could still have delivered a protest vote!) ... so Poweromics will continue unabated.

Whilst Ignoromics prevails, Poweromics will flourish ...

Monday, 2 May 2011

Apathy ... a 'sign' of things to come?

Contrary to popular belief "Ignorance" is not bliss ... and levels of "Apathy" will determine the future ...

Levels of voter apathy in the forthcoming elections (local elections and the referendum on electoral reform) will signal to those currently in power, and misusing power (i.e. applying Poweromics), how much more than can get away with before people finally take notice and decide to do something about it!

Ignoromics is what allows Poweromics to flourish, and it's made up of two types - Ignorance (Type 1) and Apathy (Type 2). Why not take a look and see which type of Ignoromics those around you suffer from !

Whilst Ignoromics prevails, Poweromics will flourish ...

Sunday, 1 May 2011

The Effects of Political Decisions on Young People's Future ...

A 15-year-old boy was given a standing ovation at a teachers' conference after his speech on the axing of the education maintenance allowance (EMA).

Joe Cotton urged the National Union of Teachers to do all they could to keep education "affordable and accessible".

The GCSE student, from Calder High School, Yorkshire, said scrapping the EMA did not make economic sense.

The government is replacing the scheme to keep poorer pupils in education with what it says is a more targeted grant.

Joe, from Hebden Bridge, told the 1,100-strong NUT conference in Harrogate: "Like many other people, recent events have made me really aware of the effects that political decisions can have on my life.

"At the moment, education as we know it is under threat.

"Despite pledges and promises, tuition fees are trebling and vital schemes like SureStart and the educational maintenance allowance are being axed.

"Today, I'd like to stress how important it is that the EMA at least is protected."

He added: "In the words of Nadine, one of the 650,000 college students who currently receive it; 'EMA means I can go to college. Without it I just couldn't manage'."

He claimed that the EMA replacement announced last month was receiving £400m less funding and added: "Well I don't know how nifty Michael Gove thinks he can be with a loaf and some fishes, or even a bus pass and some text books, but he's going to need nothing short of a miracle to replicate the benefits of the EMA with that budget."

To applause from the floor, the teenager added: "I believe that if even one student is unable to continue education based on their family's income and not their ability, then the government has failed in its responsibility to uphold basic rights to education."

After he finished speaking, NUT general secretary Christine Blower took to the stage to congratulate him saying: "Now that's what comprehensive education can do."

And he was given a standing ovation by the delegates.

Joe predicted that many young people would be politicised by the cuts and changes to the education system.

He said politicians had their "heads in the clouds" if they thought scrapping the EMA and trebling university fees would not deter young people from staying on in education.

"It's a shame that Joe and many hundreds of thousands of young people like him will now find getting an education in this country is something that is harder than it was before," he said.

At the same time, a recent survey suggested over half of those currently at university would not have started their course if tuition fees were set a £9000. 

All these point to a worrying future - a combination of an indebted youth and a disenchanted, less educated and a jobless youth ... and the Government's plan - make them work for their benefits! i.e. send them to the 'workhouse' ... where they do a maximum working week, for less than the minimum wage! 

Well how did that happen? ... and how was that legal? Apathy will result in this kind of thing becoming a reality ... unless more people 'smell the coffee' and take it upon themselves to do something about it!

The NUT General Secretary Christine Blower referred to Joe Cotton's speech and told delegates it was vital they continue to protest against the government's planned education spending cuts. Speaking on the final day of the NUT conference, Ms Blower said, "the attacks we face ... go to the heart of the education service" and that resistance to the cuts is a "duty".

Looks like Michael Gove, Education Minister, might have to start listening a little more too ...