Friday 5 July 2024

British General Election over and done with, thank goodness.

 

So - after little more than one month of campaigning we now have in Keir Starmer a new Prime Minister - and a Socialist to boot (which some evangelicals, of whom we have negligibly few here, may class as 'Communist', which is just risible!) though he's actually more likely to be socialist in name rather than in practice. Nevertheless, I'm reasonably content (so far) with the result. More delight felt at having had the Conservatives chucked out with their worst result in history than Labour's stonking triumph with their own best ever result in terms of seats won.

The direction I come from is having voted Green in every election for 27 years - at least whenever there was a Green candidate option. If there wasn't a Green I'd go Liberal Democrat (mainly because of their very pro-European Union stance) though without an equivalent enthusiasm.

The Greens managed to quadruple their number of seats won.... to four! - out of a total House of Commons membership of 650. I'm happy at that. Though still minuscule, if these four are anything like as vocal, measured and effective as the last sole member was, she having stood down this time after 10 years dutiful service, it should raise the profile of Green issues, which I rate as the single most grave threat (even certainty?) facing the world - before everyone is either drowned or burnt to cinders in the final conflagration. This won't happen in my own remaining time but I feel ever more sure that it's now pretty well past any hope of avoiding dire, horrible fates to come. I can only fervently hope that I'm wrong, but even so I cannot comprehend how anyone having children for whom they have regard - and especially grandchildren - can possibly be a climate-change denier in the face of the ever-accumulating evidence while the small percentage of scientist deniers dwindles yet further. Of course many of us are madly exasperated at China's uncaring, reckless behaviour above all, though I'll have to write at length on that subject another time.

So we've kicked out our first Hindu P.M., Rishi Sunak - hardly the worst ever though, frankly, not far from it. He was our first non-Christian, non-Jewish, non-atheist (openly), political leader - and, frankly, none the worse for having been of his faith, towards which I had quite agreeable feelings. Although Premier for a little over just 21 months, Sunak was the richest P.M we've ever had. His wife being a billionaire (through inheritance), he himself reputedly has more money than our King Charles himself!

Now Sir Keir (rhymes with 'near') Starmer will have to prove himself. Under our crazy first-past-the-post electoral system he's won two-thirds of the seats available with just one-third of the votes cast, with a thumping majority of 174 seats over all 13 other parties combined. It's actually turned out to be the most disproportionate General Election result ever in terms of relation between total votes cast and seats won. (Liberal Democrats won 71 seats - their best result in over 100 years, yet the Reform Party, although receiving over half a million votes more than the Lib Dems, won just 5 seats. That's got to be hopelessly unfair!) Starmer managed to get significantly more seats than even Tony Blair won in 1997, even though his Party's share of the national vote was 8% less than then. 

Incidentally, the newish far-right Reform Party was a major factor in the final result, deflecting perhaps as much as some few millions of votes from the Conservatives who, they considered, weren't quite as adamantly anti-(illegal only?) immigrant as much as Reform wanted. It's led by one Nigel Farage, a very familiar name here at home though maybe not so well known overseas. A blindly passionate supporter of Tr*mp, he's even spoken in America at some of the BLOTUS rallies. Attention-grabber, this dangerous and colourful Farage has now at last won a parliamentary seat at his 8th attempt! Should be....erm....'interesting'.


So, overall a strange and unique result, positive or not depending where one's sympathies lie, but which I'd rate as 'fairly promising, though by no means overwhelmingly so'. However, Starmer already gets a big  thumbs-up, even two, for having appointed, in his first few hours, the most ever number of female Cabinet members, more than a few of them taking some of the most senior offices including Angela Rayner as Deputy Prime Minister - and not before time! Rather oddly, Labour is the only one of our larger parties - as well as some smaller ones - never to have had a female leader. Even the Conservatives have had no less than three female Prime Ministers to date, even if one of them had been the totally calamitous Liz Truss, P.M. in 2022 for all of 45 days!  (Btw: Mrs Thatcher famously never allowed any other women at all to join her Cabinet during her 11-year premiership - as well as placing a bar against men with beards!)

So then, what will coming years bring? Can only wait and see - but here's hoping!

17 comments:

  1. I hope our elections in November see more liberals swept into office that conservatives, all up and down the ballot!

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    1. It was reassuring to see our country take the opposite route to which countries like Hungary and, currently, France, are turning. I can only hope and, if I was a 'believer') pray that the U.S.A. will take 'our' way. If you don't the whole world will have a darned sight more to lose than if a puny country like ours hadn't.

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  2. Feeling happy. Some really awful Tories gone, as well as George Galloway and Scottish Terf Joanna Cherry

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  3. Been a really nasty election, though. Glad it's over

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    1. I hadn't realised that about Galloway, Isobel - to which I can only add 'Good riddance!' Another reason why many of us can now breathe again.

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  4. May this new page be good for you and lead us to try likewise.

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  5. I hope this is a very good sign... And then there’s Farage!

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    1. Farage's influence is, alas, to our detriment far greater than his relevance, Mitch.

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  6. May the U.S. follow your path, Ray. The situation here is beyond dire. The fact that a man like Trump is the candidate just boggles the mind. My family (who we have no contact with) are huge Trump supporters; they don't care about his convictions, lies, etc. They hate the same people he hates; people of color, women who want and deserve equal rights, gay couples. Roe is gone; Obergefell will be next. It is so hard to even watch the news here anymore; I just hope more people like me get out there and vote.

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    1. Absolutely, Elle. Believe it or not, it's the subject which keeps me awake at night more than any other - even my own financial predicaments! I agree with all you say, though I worry that it's not just you-know-who who, I fear, but he now may well win by default if Biden doesn't give way very, very soon - and that is going to be the worst legacy any incumbent could possibly want to be attached to his name - with Biden being the culprit for it himself not being around to witness what he caused! But I seriously fear it may now be too late to prevent the worst thing happening, though let me be wrong, PLEASE!!!! I feel for you and your country, I really do.

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    2. .........and feel for us ALL!

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  7. Hoping beyond hope we can share similar good news in November. As likely as it seems sometimes, the alternative is unthinkable.

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    1. I know, S/b. Come Nov I'll be following your election results no less avidly than I did our own, though with FAR more at stake to the entire world with yours than ours had.
      Virtually NO ONE here admires or is supportive of that American fool, not even ANY of our prominent Conservatives - only our own vastly less influential clown, Nigel Farage, mentioned above, who few take seriously anyway (though his castigating of immigrants coming from France on boats does, unsurprisingly gather him votes).

      Btw: I've been wondering (and I'll be amazed if millions of Americans are not doing likewise) surely since the SCOTUS ruling that Presidents are immune from prosecution for doing what is within their 'official' duties, then Biden, alarmingly and disquietingly senile as he so evidently is, must therefore enjoy the same. Could he not take advantage of that? If reinstating Roe is too much of a reach without first getting approval of both(?) Houses, could he not do something rather more modest but essential, like disqualifying all the recent gerrymanderings of recent times, intended solely to maximise the chances of Repubs being elected - or even something like extending voting (including postal) times - or where in at least one of the southern states, it's now been made so that Democrat districts have their voting points markedly reduced, with it being a criminal offence to offer refreshments, or even just water, for those standing for hours in queues to vote. I'm sure there's a LOT more which could be done by Presidential 'decree' right now rather than wait for that idiot to be the first to exercise that prerogative since that stupid SCOUTUS ruling.
      I could go on and on about such matters, but I'll leave it for now to those better informed on your country's politics.

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  8. And French voters have routed and defeated the right-wing in their country.
    Hopefully the same will happen in the USA as in France and the UK :)

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    1. USA is the 'biggie' that the entire sane world wants to see, Anon. If only the Dems out there (including Biden) can quickly come to some viable conclusion to bring it on with in confidence in victory I'll be happier than I am right now, 'cos it's looking riskier by the day.

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