"Shall I be tempted by the devil thus?"
"Ay, if the devil tempt you to do good."
Richard III, Act IV, Scene IV
"…and I for one welcome our new Liberal Deputy Overlord!"
Kent Brockman, Springfield News
For a moment yesterday, the Liberal Democrats in Parliament looked like they might actually be wooed away by the siren voices of Lord Mandelbrot and Lord Hephaestus.
And, at least is seemed to me, the Liberal Blogosphere replied with a sudden hardening of the line: a whole string of people came out saying we HAD to do the deal with the Conservatories.
Auntie Caron weighed up the pros and cons, but look how everyone decided.
From Mr Lord Bonkers, Mr Mark Reckons, Mr Paul Burblings, Mr Scary Andy, Mr Stephen of the Glenn, Mr Jonathan Wallace-and-Grommet, and Mr Andrew Porrer and Mr Keith Nevols and Mr Tom King and Mr Tony Koutsoumbos, and even in these wonderful words from Auntie Jennie you can see the REJECTION of Hard Labour.
It's not because people on the Internets are YOUNGER or RICHER, they've not FORGOTTEN what a Conservatory government is like – and if they HAD, they've just had a thirteen-year long IMPERSONATION of a Conservatory Government by Hard Labour to remind them!
For reasons of policy, and pragmatism, for the national interest and for the mathematics, for what the people actually voted for, for the change that we promised, for the hope we HAD to agree to deal with Mr Balloon.
The sight of the Pie-faced Etonian in Downing Street did made me QUAIL, though, I have to say.
What, I said to Daddy, have we DONE?!?
"We did what we had to," he said. "We won."
THINK what the alternatives were for us: sit on our fluffy behinds and let the Conservatories run riot as a minority government? Is that RESPONSIBLE? Does that deliver ANYTHING for the MILLIONS of people who trusted our policies and voted for us? No.
Join Hard Labour in a rainbow coalition, forever in hock to the Irish Unionists and Scotch Nasties (not to mention Dead-Men-Don't-Wear-Plaid Cymru). And Radio Caroline Lucas of the Sickly Greens if she decides to agree on that issue. Does that sound even REMOTELY plausible? With Ms Diane Abbott-and-Portillo, and Mr Tom Harris, and Mr Blanket the Security Blunket and NICE Mr Dr John Reid and Ms Kate "Hong Kong" Phooey, and Mr Andy Crash-and-Burnham all saying they wouldn't join a coalition with the Liberal Democrats? Does that sound like a recipe for anything other than total CHAOS? No.
WE promised that EVERY vote would count and LOOK – they DID! There will be Liberal Democrats at EVERY level of the Government and in every department of the Government. WE have a QUARTER of the CABINET!
(And people are going to have to TALK to each other in Cabinet again – no more of this Government by stitch up between Lord Blairimort and Mr Alistair Henchman hanging out in "Tony's Den". Liberal Democrats are going to have things to SAY to the Cabinet and will SAY them. And Conservatories are therefore going to want to SAY things too. We might even get some responsible collective responsibility, rather than a bunch of unimaginative sheep bleating whenever the Prime Monster says "boo".)
And now Hard Labour are hooting that there's only one "progressive" Party left in Great Briatin.
Darn tootin' there is – it's US.
We've just had a decade of the NASTIEST, most CENTRALISING, most AUTHORITARIAN, most ILLIBERAL, most ANTI-SCIENCE, , most in-Hock-to-VESTED-INTERESTS, most BACKWARDS, semi-literate JUNTA that this country has seen since the age of STEAM ENGINES!
They haven't just IMPEDED progress; they've KILLED IT STONE DEAD! They've taken it out and SHOT IT. And then jumped up and down on the pieces and LAUGHED about doing so.
Look, just LOOK at the PROGRESSIVE POLICIES that the new Liberal-Conservatory Government is promising:
ID cards scrapped; ContactPoint database scrapped; DNA protection equal to Scotland, rights to non-violent protest restored, review of libel laws… better CIVIL LIBERTIES policies than Hard Labour.
No third runway at Heathrow, no expansion at Gatwick or Stanstead, flight tax per plane not per passenger, the Government signed up to 10/10, carbon capture and storage... better ENVIRONMENTAL policies than Hard Labour!
No income tax on the first ten thousand pounds you earn, lower earners protected from Hard Labour's NI rise too, tax cut for millionaires shelved… better TAX policies than Hard Labour.
Immigration… BAD… but we'll stop locking up CHILDREN so actually BETTER than Hard Labour!
Benefits… BAD… but not actually WORSE than Hard Labour!
Fixed term Parliaments, right to recall your MP, clean up of Parliamentary standards, limits on donations, controls on lobbying, more devolution, asking the people about the voting system, House of Lords Club to be elected… BY PR!!!… and Captain Clegg in charge to make sure it all happens… better FAIR POLITICS policies than Hard Labour.
Today, TODAY, the new Government has stopped the third runway at Heathrow, and I.D.iot cards are on hold.
That's more FREEDOM and PROGRESS within TWENTY-FOUR HOURS!
Meanwhile, SCIENCE has detected a SUPER-MASSIVE BROWN HOLE being ejected from its galaxy causing destruction all around it.
Daddy Richard, because he is a big SOFTIE, was almost feeling SORRY for Mr Frown, at least until the incredible sulk started speaking:
"I loved the job for its potential to make this country I love fairer, more tolerant, more green, more democratic, more prosperous and more just - truly a greater Britain."
Just a shame you didn't DO any of those things then, really, isn't it, Mr Frown.
People are praising the DIGNITY of his exit… but even THAT was (a) a political manoeuvre to try and stay in Downing Street as "caretaker" until September and, failing that, (b) storming off in a strop in order to leave Mr Balloon and Captain Clegg having to scramble for the deal at the last minute. So much for Mr Frown doing his duty to see a strong stable government installed.
Is it worth a tenner on him being sat in Mr Grocer Heath's old chair in the commons for the next, oh, ever.
I am quivering with terror. And also hope. You can't have one without the other. Hope REQUIRES change, and that is always FRIGHTENING. This could go so, so, SO badly wrong.
But what if it doesn't?
What if Mr Balloon ACTUALLY MEANS IT?
If we're right about democracy and fairness and freedom and the environment, then we should have our polices actually put into effect.
And now we will.
So, when it's the worst that could happen APART from ANYTHING else that could happen… we'd better get this right.