Strange Adventure 92

Well, here we are on the first morning of a new government. I continue to wait to see what the government actually does. What we know for certain is that we have got rid of a government of war criminal torturers who attacked our civil liberties. Some commenters were indignant yesterday that I refuse to presume this government will be worse. It hardly can be worse – but we shall see.

In terms of cabinet posts, the Lib Dems do not appear to have got that much. Nick Clegg is to be Deputy Prime Minister. That post has to date been famously powerless, even when it was “beefed up” nominally to put Prescott in charge of everything you could name. More to the point, we are going to have the odious George Osborne as Chancellor. Spending cuts are required, but are not made more acceptable by being delivered with a patrician sneer. The Tories seem like they are going to have all the “Great offices of state” – PM, Chancellor, Foreign Secretary, Home Secretary and Defence Secretary. That will dominate the government agenda. The Lib Dems appear to have sold their soul for scraps.

Danny Alexander has been given the most thankless task of representing a Tory government in Scotland. I still believe this coalition will be an electoral disaster for the Lib Dems – and their being wiped out in next year’s Holyrood elections will be the start of it, which is a shame as I like Tavish Scottt.

Danny Alexander will be pitted against Alex Salmond. Alex is the most charismatic and talented politician in the UK – and gives the lie to the idea that a modern leader has to be “telegenic” to be popular. Scotland has a more collectivist view of society and will hate the spending cuts – which if Scotland could access its own hydrocarbons would not be necessary. The growing political distance between Scotland and the UK will in retrospect be the most important narrative of the next five years, with a hapless Danny Alexander able to do nothing about it.

It would seem to be too much for the Lib Dems to be given the other graveyard of political ambition, Northern Ireland, but don’t rule it out. Vince Cable’s precise role is unclear just yet, but plainly it will be subservient to George Osborne. The Lib Dems will also get given schools and something like paperclips. There will be a plethora of junior ministerial posts, but junior ministers have no influence at all on their Cabinet minister bosses.

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92 thoughts on “Strange Adventure

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  • Craig


    I agree entirely this wil be an electoral disaster. But I still think it could be a better government than the one we got rid of – that-s a very low bar indeed.

  • Reality check

    ‘Oh what a tangled web we weave,

    When first we practise to deceive!’

    The three-way coalition

  • Duncan McFarlane

    Craig – most Conservative MPs voted for war on Iraq. More Labour MPs voted against it than Conservatives (though still a minority of Labour MPs).

    The Conservatives are just as much neo-cons as ‘New Labour’

  • Terry

    Well at least Gove didn’t get Justice or Home. I’m sure he’ll be doing damage somewhere though.

    It seems as though the Tories have put two relatively nice Tories into Home and Justice, just to put us all at our ease.

    How long this situation will remain is the question.

    But clever move anyway. No point frightening us yet. Blair was a very nice man in the beginning too.

  • MJ

    There is one outstanding seat to be contested – Thirsk & Malton – postponed due to the death of a candidate. Will the Lib Dems be standing against the Tories? What about future by-elections, or the next general election for that matter? It seems to me that the Lib Dems will have to bust this coalition before they can stand again as an independent party.

  • Anonymous

    ‘There will need however to be a formal maritime boundary negotiation – which I hope I will be ble to be part of.’

    After all this I don’t think any sane person would have you judge anything Craig, sorry, but it is the truth.

  • Craig

    Duncan –

    I don’t think that’s true (5 of support for the war). I am pretty certain most New La MPs voted for the war, by a large majority. You are propagating a silly left wing myth.

  • bert

    angrysoba, Tom Lund-Lack, a retired detective inspector working as civilian with the Counter Terrorism Command at

    Scotland Yard, became aware of an ‘Al-Queda’ plot in April 2007, _scheduled_ to happen when the prime ministership was to change in June/July 2007:

    See page 15 of this PDF:

    “[Thomas Lund-Lack] was jailed for eight months in 2007 for leaking information about a planned al-Qaeda attack on the West…”

    The Sunday Times article arising from Lund-lack’s leak is reproduced here:

    “Another plot could be timed to coincide with Tony Blair stepping down as prime minister, an event described by Al-Qaeda planners as a “change in the head of the company”.

    ” _

    THE TIGER TIGER/GLASGOW AIRPORT PLOT, happened right on cue.

    Those wacko Met Police Conspiracy theorists……..

  • angrysoba

    “angrysoba, try looking up Operation Gladio.”

    Oh, I’ve looked that up in the past. So, what’s your point? Hezbollah is a front-group for the Tory Party?

  • Terry

    Duncan is correct.

    “Tony Blair has won Commons backing to send UK forces into battle with Saddam Hussein – but also suffered another major backbench rebellion.”

    “But the revolt among Labour MPs was still up on the last vote with 139 backbenchers opposing Mr Blair compared to 122 at the last vote.

    Fifteen Tories defied their leadership by voting against the government.”

  • Steelback

    angrisoba used to hang out with Cathouse Larry and the hopeless 911 disinfo gang.Neither of them have a scintilla of reasoning capability.

    angrisoba probably thinks a gladio is a flower with sword-shaped leaves!

    Check out the guy’s blog-I rest my case-a complete half-wit.

    That an oxymoron?

    Look it up,angri!

  • Duncan McFarlane

    Sorry Craig, but it’s no myth – it’s an easily checked fact (see the links below)

    More Labour MPs voted against war on Iraq than Conservative MPs on every division – by a factor of 10

    It’s a fact, not a myth. The majority of Labour MPs voted for war – but a large minority – over 100 – voted against it. The highest number of Conservatives to vote against any Iraq war bill was 15.

  • other richard

    >I refuse to presume this government

    >will be worse. It hardly can be worse –

    > but we shall see.

    What a load of crap, Mr Murray. According to you, Obama was going to be great.

    In 1997, the Tories were kicked out because people had had enough. Labour told us “things can only get better”.

    Now, we’re meant to believe the Tories and Clegg, who are telling us, albeit in different words, that things can only get better.

    You really do take the public for idiots. But that’s what I expect from a former British Ambassador who calls Labour “evil”, while overlooking all the atrocities – domestic and foreign – committed by the Tories. It was the Conservatives who facilitated the Rwandan massacre, Mr Murray, in which one million people were butchered and hacked to death, including children and babies:

    “The US and Britain also argued that before…troops could be deployed, there needed to be a ceasefire, even though one side was massacring innocent civilians. The Czech republic’s ambassador confronted the security council saying that wanting a ceasefire was ‘like wanting Hitler to reach a ceasefire with the Jews’. He later said that British and US diplomats quietly told him that he was not to use such inflammatory language outside the security council.

    “Britain and the US also refused to provide the military airlift capability for the African states who were offering troops for this force. The RAF, for example, had plenty of transport aircraft that could have been deployed.

    “Britain also went out of its way to prevent the UN using the word ‘genocide’ to describe the slaughter. Accepting this would have obliged states to ‘prevent and punish’ those guilty under the Geneva Convention.”

    All these facts, and more, are in a book entitled “Rwanda: A People Betrayed” by Linda Melvern, a journalist.

    The only reason you set up this blog, it seems, is to get back at Labour for how you were treated. You don’t give a damn about anyone in this country, otherwise you’d be calling the Tories evil, too.

    There is no democracy in this country anymore – that’s the reality you’re denying, Mr Murray.

    When are Craig’s fans going to wake up and realise he’s as corrupt as the politicians.

  • Duncan McFarlane

    other richard – I agree with you on Rwanda, but you’re wrong about Craig.

    We are still a democracy too – a corrupt democracy that’s far too easily influenced by Murdoch and his cheap tricks, but still a democracy.

  • Chris


    “Oil prices are going up. In the medium to long term, supply is dwindling and demand is rising inexorably – due to China, India Brazil etc. Our wind turbines are insignificant.”

    China, India, Brazil and others are also coming under increasing pressure to get their energy in a far cleaner manner. I’m not certain why you mention wind turbines as they are “old” technology when I was talking about how new technologies will be developed (including new generations of batteries being developed in Japan)?

    “Spending in Scotland has never exceeded Scotland’s hydrocarbon revenues.”

    Never is a very long time, perhaps you’d care to be more precise on the period that you are talking about. If you do actually mean never I would also be interested to hear where you get your spending figures. Are you saying that less public money went to Scotland than the following(year and total oil revenue for UK – HMRC figures):

    1980/81 3.7 Bn

    1988/89 3.2 Bn

    1989/90 2.4 Bn

    1990/91 2.3 Bn

    1991/92 0.9 Bn

    1992/93 1.3 Bn

  • Terry

    I see that Millipede has already got his supporters out punting his candidacy for Labour leader, both Postman Pat and Hissy Fit Flint having already declared their support.

    I think the Labour party needs to have a good long hard look at itself and reject those responsible for its crimes, the Blair gang, Lord Manderlay and associates of.

    As we saw in the substantial vote against the Iraq war by Labour MPs there are quite a few who would reject Millipede’s candidacy even amongst the parliamentary party.

    Millipede has little or no support amongst the Unions and certainly not amongst local Labour activists.

    It’s important to ensure that his campaign doesn’t gather a head of steam.

    Let’s move away from the neocon influence and back to core Labour values, and then we can more easily attack the more committed neocons in the Lib Dem and Conservative party and do it with integrity.

  • Mark Golding - Children of Iraq


    We must set our sights on Riyadh and the Saudi neoconservatives. They want the benefit of a strike on Iran without taking any public responsibility for the American action.

    Riyadh is fully aware that the nuclear bomb threat from Iran is just hype, a raison d’etre for a strike. Clearly they are sensitive to Iran’s dominance in the area by her political links to powerful actors in states where the central government is weak. Those links are based on a mixture of shared ideology, sectarian affiliation, common antipathy toward the United States and Israel, and short-term self-interests, in different degrees in different cases.

    The Saidi’s were passive on Iraq in the beginning, now they strongly support Ayad Allawi for obvious reasons.

    Substantial majorities in both houses of Congress seem to be chomping at the bit to confront Iran. Even Barack Obama’s administration seemed to see its policy of engagement with Tehran as a “last chance” before more forceful measures.

    So here in the UK the foundations for war/strike/pre-emption have begun with the right people in the right places.

    Hague believes we have become a ‘foreign land’ a mindset influenced by the “compassionate conservatism” ideology of George W. Bush and he will attempt to ‘cure’ society by one means or another ready for the onslaught. I expect him to visit Riyadh soonest.

    Sorry Craig but I stand by my predictions.

  • Mark Golding - Children of Iraq

    Just one more fact I omitted – Trident – no, even under pressure from Nick, the Conservative party and backers will never ever give up our SSBN’s – why? -certainly not from a threat from North Korea or Iran; the fleet (ours and France)and their ‘targeting dossiers’ are the ‘stalemate’ in the game of chess with China – who will be furious when the oil pipeline feed abruptly stops flowing to them after the pre-emptive strike.

  • Vronsky

    “Different parts of the UK”

    Huh? Colonies must subordinate their wishes to the preferences of the conqueror, and there are no borders except those accepted by the emperor? Your ‘UK’ is a fiction, an instrument whose utility was limited to the cats who drank the cream. It is fading – it is a Cheshire cat. Its residual spectral grin is hideous.

  • Mark Golding - Children of Iraq

    Ian Duncan Smith – arch criminal – leading British War-monger!!!

    When the Washington administration started to twitch about Saddam Hussein, Duncan Smith was gung ho. He stated unequivocally that the Conservatives would support military action even if Bush did not seek UN authorisation.

    It was Duncan Smith’s ardent support for war that changed Blair’s thinking in that he was never going to risk allowing the Tories to be the pro-American, pro-war party and Labour to return to its 1980s position of being “soft” on defence and anti-American.

    The political calculation was therefore straightforward. As far as Blair was concerned, if he had opposed the war he would have destroyed the New Labour coalition and given up vital ground to the Conservatives.

    Rupert Murdoch’s newspapers were a key factor in this respect. Murdoch was a passionate supporter of Bush’s foreign policy. Blair knew Murdoch would have switched his newspapers’ support to the Conservatives if he had sided with the loathed Chirac and Shroeder in opposition to the war. In its 2005 election endorsement for Labour The Sun backed Blair for a single reason ?” his support for Bush in Iraq.

    Can you see how it all fits together?

    We are in trouble friends – serious trouble.

  • Duncan McFarlane

    I agree Mark – i hope the Lib Dems will vote down any plans for British involvement in an American war on Iran if one’s started – but it’s not guaranteed that they will.

  • Apostate

    tutti-frutti little richard seems to have done v.little research on Rwanda.

    The Melvern account largely follows the bog-standard Hollywood Hotel Rwanda genocide story/establishment narrative.This was the PR blanket under which the Anglo-US elites, who instigated the current wars across the Great Lakes region for the sake of gorging themselves on its vast mineral resources, covered themselves.

    “Darfurism” is a another product of the same establishment narrative used to cover the imperial ambitions of Western powers in Sudan.

    The idea that the Tories were uniquely responsible for the carnage in Rwanda is preposterous.It’s akin to the same one-sided view of the conflict in Yugoslavia peddled by writers like Brendan Simms in Unfinest Hour.

    At least even Simms made the point that NO-ONE who contributed in the Commons debates on the Balkan wars throughout the 1990s had any real expertise on the region at all!

    The same cross-party ignorance characterised the political response to Rwanda as well.

    The ethnic conflicts in both Yugoslavia and Rwanda were Western proxy wars where our clients, the Croat/Bosnian and KLA muslim militias in the former and the RPF in the latter, were sponsored and given diplomatic cover by the West.

    There are far more reliable sources on Rwanda than Linda Malvern.

    globalresearch has extensive articles by real commentators like Keith Harmon Snow, Barrie Collins, Peter Erlinder.Robin Philpot’s Rwanda 1994, Colonialism Dies Hard is worth reading too and is available online.

    If you seek authentic knowledge rather than just to make cheap and inaccurate party political points these rather than Melvern should be your first port of call.

    Incidentally your reading of Melvern seems, like your criticism of the Tories, quite superficial.She certainly never made a case for their being especially responsible for the carnage.Like Andrew Willis in Silent Accomplice, Melvern lays responsibility primarily at the door of the French.

    Citing the French insistence at the UN Security Council in April 1994 that the conflict then ignited was a civil war and that the necessity for an immediate ceasefire overrode any need for the Council to discuss genocide, Melvern also noted the French role in propping up the Habyrimana Hutu-dominated government in the 1991-94 lead-up to the carnage.

    While the castigation of the French role in precipitating the genocide was a popular view within Anglo-US establishment circles because it neatly air-brushed their own role the writers above largely take the view that it was these powers as well as Belgium rather than France that began the conflict by backing the initial RPF invasion from Uganda in 1990 in the first place.

    The general point re-politicians meekly following the course prescribed by the military-industrial complex seems ominous for those of us who fear that the lot that just got into power will with the US and Israel instigate WW3 on the back of some false-flag event some time soon.

    By the way, in the case of Rwanda, the false-flag event that triggered the genocide was the double assassination of Habyrimana and the Hutu President of Burundi in the plane shoot-down that immediately preceded the Hutu killing spree.

    Former UN General Secretary Boutros-Ghali cited CIA complicity in this triggering event as key to what then transpired.Conveniently UN mission chief, Romeo Dalliere never accounted for the disappearance of the cockpit black-box voice recorder.Nor has the US pressed the UN to unravel the shoot-down mystery.The black-box is ensconced in a safe in the UN building in NY.

    Likewise Linda Melvern has re-iterated ad-infinitum on gate-keeper sites like DN that we will never know who was responsible for the events that sparked the killing.

    All very convenient for those who gained most material benefit from the numerous wars that have followed.

  • angrysoba

    “THE TIGER TIGER/GLASGOW AIRPORT PLOT, happened right on cue.

    Those wacko Met Police Conspiracy theorists……..

    Posted by: bert at May 12, 2010 12:07 PM”

    Bert, you’re the wacko conspiracy theorist. The man you are talking about didn’t say he thought there would be a false flag attack at all. That’s your wacko conspiracy theorist take on it.

    More dishonesty and lies.

  • Steelback


    For want of knowledge you’re always going to be at a disadvantage in any debate.

    If you have nothing meaningful to contribute-PISS OFF!

  • angrysoba

    “If you have nothing meaningful to contribute-PISS OFF!”

    Make me.

    As for nothing to contribute at least I don’t bung the same old vocabulary of “neo-con, Zionist, bankers, international finance, false-flag, war, revolution” into a Markov list and regurgiatate said words in any and every situation.

    Your supercilious garbage is boring.

  • Steelback

    “Make me”-quote of the decade from air-head angry.

    For razor-sharp wit and repartee you have no equal (LOL) !

    You infantile dingbat!

    With your playground mentality and desperate need for approval I can’t really believe you’re an adult yet.

    Are you feelin’ lucky,punk? Make my day!

    I’m embarrassed for you. Bet it took you all day to find “supercilious” in your JUNIOR dictionary.

    Stop lowering the tone of one of the better blogs and piss off back to your own Jackanory site!

  • Apostate

    Never mind “supercilious” angri can’t even spell “regurgitate”!

    These professional disinformationists are so amateur!

    Reminds me of those cretins like Cathouse Larry,technidick et al they deployed to defend the official 911 story.

    The establishment must be tottering on its last legs to imagine the likes of angri-airhead and Cathouse Larry can make their case!

    Just checked out angri’s blog.

    Jeez,what a load of horse-crap! The guy is special needs,I reckon.

  • juniper

    Dat angri fren a Larry bore me shitless!

    Since me anna Massa tungstein got togeder wid Larry’s lady I lerned a lot bout der world.

    I spendin’ mitey long time on der net dees dayz cozza I biginnin’ realize all da Goddam info anybody needs issa out dare iffa dey need it.

    Dissa angri anna Larry jussa hangin’ roun a stop us findin’ truth wos really happnin’ roun der worl’.

    Ingota tell ya iffa I wassa igorant assa dis angri guy I’d jussa shutta uppa my mowth cossa dares few lessa peeple less gon’ wase dare live wenna dey finly discover wossa really goin’ down out dare!

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