The Obama Effect…

Something just occurred to me while reading this post by The Filthy Smoker over at The Devil’s Kitchen. Nothing to do with fake consultations, or the sheer (on the face of it) idiocy of the proposed scheme (to set minimum prices per unit on alcohol). These are all important issues, but I don’t think I could add anything to them that has not been said far more effectively over there.

What aroused my interest was this in the comments section:

Anonymous said…

I’m becoming more and more bewildered by the actions of this government. Either they have completely lost touch with reality, or they actually want to destroy their chances of ever getting elected again.
They are on a mission to piss off the entire electorate, one way or another, and I’d love to figure out why.
3/15/2009 02:44:00 AM

I believe I know why.

In the last few years of the Bush presidency, he and his administration were enjoying record lows in the polls. This allowed the Democratic Party candidate, one Barack Obama, to be virtually assured election victory. So much so that any talk of Parallel Security Agencies or false promises to bring the troops home (when he merely wanted a redeployment to another theatre) went unheard.
In other words, the public were so sick of Bush they would have voted for Obama if he had promised to paint a hammer-and-sickle on the moon, and he is making the most of his honeymoon period to push through the bulk of his agenda. And Change? Well, there hasn’t been a lot of that, has there? Not the kind you can believe in, anyway.

This is by no means a new phenomenon. Cast your mind back to that fresh, new morning in 1997, when everything seemed possible. A public sick to the back teeth with “Tory Sleaze” had finally voted for the young, progressive Tony Blair and voted out the Old White Men (sound familiar?).
With a groundswell of public support and a huge majority in Parliament, Blair then spent the next decade pushing through some of the most illiberal and oppressive legislation ever, completely under the radar of most of the public who were still thinking how glad they were to be rid of the last lot. The Tory Party was falling apart at the seams and it seemed like they may cease to exist as a party, much less ever win power again (sound familiar?).

This leads me to wonder whether those currently in Downing Street are now merely trying to ensure that the Conservatives win with the largest landslide (and so-called ‘mandate’) possible; returning the favour if you will.

How many times will we fall for the same smoke-and-mirrors bullshit?

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2 responses to “The Obama Effect…

  1. Here’s an alternative explanation: the Labour party is infested with interfering nanny state or big brother types, and always has been. Gordon Brown’s statement that he doesn’t like the idea of minimum alcohol prices is honest, and not an elaborate facade – although I imagine he’s flexible on the matter. The two main political parties, although both awful, are not in fact on the same side and working together. (Nor are they equally awful.)

    In short: Labour are crap because they are crap, and have crappy ideas, and they can’t help it, even though they do, to some extent, realize it.

    No need to imagine a conspiracy to explain that. They were elected, despite these bad ideas, partly because the public share the same incoherent, nannying morality as the Labour party, and partly because the winner doesn’t need the support of the majority of the population as such, and partly because of, as you say, the rebound effect, and because they seemed new and interesting, and because there wasn’t much choice. None of this requires the opposition to be trying to lose.

  2. It is possible that you are right, you are very definitely right about the Labour party being full of interfering big brother nanny state types! If you are right about there being no conspiracy then I will be very, very happy to eat my words.

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