Wednesday, August 18, 2010

100 Days of Coalition Crap

So we've had a new government for 100 days. Big deal!

Clegg's authoritarian attitude to the smoking ban illustrates what a bunch of statist, patronising pinko liberals minced into government when the Coalition was cobbled together to satisfy the egos of Cameron, Clegg, Osborne and company. OK the smoking ban isn't the most important single issue, but Clegg inviting the public to suggest laws that are to be scrapped, but qualifying it with a refusal to even consider reforming the smoking ban, shows what stinking hypocrites those in government really are. And mugs are falling for it.

What really has struck me in the last 100 days is the demise of the Liberal Democrats. They are losing members at an alarming rate and are getting hammered in council by-elections such as Bilston North Ward in Wolverhampton, where they even came in behind UKIP and their vote dropped over 10% on the last electon.

But Simon Hughes is now obviously jockeying for the post of post-coalition leader with his call for Lib Dem backbenchers to have a veto over govenment policy. Hughes isn't daft and can see the end of Nick Clegg in the not too distant future. When the Coalition collapses the Liberal Democrats will be left with a rump and Hughes will be the ideal leader for the type of activist that will be still milling around come that time.

In May I gave the coalition two years before it collapsed. I would now say that it is more likely to collapse around May 2011, if not earlier.


Steve Allison said...

Hi Greg, a government should protect its people from exploitation but cannot protect people from their own stupidity; the line unfortunately sometimes gets very blurred. I'm very much one of you "libertarians" when it comes to freedom of choice but do think freedoms of one person cannot be allowed to remove the freedoms of others. Smoking is one of those areas. I would allow anything between consenting adults in their own homes but am in favour of the smoking ban in all public places, including the streets. I would remove speed cameras but would have life with hard labour for any driver who killed someone through reckless or dangerous driving, maybe make them diffuse road side bombs in Afghanistan? Similarly I'd not enforce seat belts or crash helmets but would remove the right to free medical treatment for anyone injured in a car or motorbike accident who wasn’t wearing one. Some of those ideas make me quite far to the right; others make me a libertarian, other left wing! The labels are meaningless these days.

Gregg said...

Don't see why businesses, such as pubs and even offices, should be forced to be non smoking. In the case of the pubs why can't the landlord decide? If he decides a smoking pub and people don't go in he changes or goes bust. If I am in my own office, in my own business, with a colleague, and we both smoke who the hell is anybody else to tell us to stop?

What's wrong with smoking in the streets? It's open air, don't tell me it's harmful to others, that's pure propaganda.

And why the hell should I be refused treatment if I don't wear a seatbelt? Do you also refuse it for a stupid child who runs in front of a car that isn't speeding?

It's a thin line between freedom and fascism.

Steve Allison said...

Hi Greg, I actually agree with your point regarding pubs and offices as these are not public places and I can chose whether to enter them. If you are in your own office, in your own business then that is your business. In the same way as I can chose whether to go into a smoking pub I can chose whether I want to do business with you. It is PUBLIC places I object to smoking. I don't shave my hair off (even if I had hair these days) but I do object to people smoking my MY house as I don't like the smell and it is MY house so its up to me. As regards the seat belt thing, if you exercise your rights to refuse a seat belt, or a crash helmet on a bike, and are injured as a result then the reverse of rights is responsibility, you take responsibility for your own action, which means you pay for your own stupidity. Yes, its a thin line between freedom and fascism but its also a thin line between libertarian and ancharcist!

Gregg said...

So, again, does the child who runs into the road get refused treatment on the NHS?

What about somebody playing football, rugby, cricket or other sports and gets injured. Refused treatment?

You speed round a bend and crash. Refused treatment?

Scrap the NHS and we can pay higher insurance premiums if we are involved in dangerous sports, drive without a seatbelt etc. But refusing NHS treatment for activities you may not approve of is pure fascism.

Steve Allison said...

Hi Greg, I didn't say "refused treatment" you are the one who introduced that concept, I said "remove the right to free medical treatment" I think anyone who comes through the doors of an NHS Hospital should get treatment based on their clinical need but the NHS should then recover the costs from people who had avoidable injuries. So no I wouldn't refuse treatment to a child who runs into the road. Nor would somebody injured playing football, rugby, cricket or other sports be refused treatment but they would get sent a bill for it! Speed round a bend and crash, not refused treatment but you would be sent a bill for it as indeed I believe some NHS Trusts already do!

There is a clear hierarchy of risk that can be applied in most cases, eliminate, minimise, protect. I'm not proposing we eliminate everything dangerous, that is taking things to the extreme, but we should minimise as far as possible and protect as far as practicable. That's why we still drive cars but they now have air bags and we all (should) wear seat belts. Yo are the only one talking about refusing NHS treatment, not me!

Anonymous said...

How about the NHS being purely for life threatening conditions. Leave out the fertility treatments, sex-change ops, viagra prescriptions, battered drunks on a saturday night etc etc.

Gregg said...

You're playing with words Steve, and not very effectively. People who you judge as unworthy for our glorious NHS will be forced to pay for private treatment, in NHS hospitals!!! I assume that includes the irresponsible child who runs in front of a car.

That was not envisaged by the founders of the NHS.