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"Campaign managers also realise people pay more attention to… - Sally's Journal
April 5th, 2005
01:21 pm

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"Campaign managers also realise people pay more attention to unofficial communications rather than party propaganda - so the role of third party sites and blogs set up by activists will also be important." BBC NEWS*

Gosh. Err, will they?

I feel pressurised to say something important now... Not that I'm much of an "activist". It's bad enough being the local religion troll without dabbling in party politics. I don't like what the government has done to the university system, and with the whole ID cards, terrorism acts, marketing approach to politic, Iraq war etc etc etc I'm scared they're turning us into America. And I don't like the tories full stop because they care too much about britain and not enough about the rest of the world (and by implication, too much about themselves and not enough about the rest of britain). The greens are too idealistic, and at this point you've run out of parties except for the Lib Dems.

*Which is actually a really depressing article. I mean, you get "parties think that spam is a good way of advertising the election" right through to "The PMs interview with Little Ant and Little Dec"... sorry, I'm not trying to belittle the importance of informing children about politics, but he's had 10 years to do that. If this is the sort of thing that the PM thinks is important the month before the election... What if he's right? What if your average UK adult does decide who to vote for based on how amusing they are on childrens breakfast TV?

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From:edith_the_hutt
Date:April 5th, 2005 12:35 pm (UTC)
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Sally, rest assured that should you start whittering about politics then so shall I. :)
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From:atreic
Date:April 5th, 2005 12:37 pm (UTC)
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But, err, that *was* me wibbling about politics :-) I'll stay tuned...
From:nlj21
Date:April 5th, 2005 01:09 pm (UTC)
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The greens are too idealistic, and at this point you've run out of parties except for the Lib Dems.

Rather strangely one of the things I like about the Lib Dems is that they are idealisitic, or at least there are some of them with a strong Liberal ideology which I feel quite comfortable with. Whereas the Conservaties I see with a lack of any ideology at the moment (mainly 'cause New Labour nicked it). And Labour as having a kind of paternalistic statist ideology which I really don't like.

I've got a copy of Reclaiming Liberalism you might want to borrow if interested in where the Lib Dems are coming/going. It's a number of articles by Lib Dems defining future policy directions in positive terms, rather than in terms of not being Labour or Conservatives.
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From:atreic
Date:April 5th, 2005 01:12 pm (UTC)
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Sorry, not clear. I like idealism in a "actually have some beliefs way". What I should have said was "the greens are so green I fear they actually oppose my comfortable lifestyle, and I like my car and not to have my national parks covered in useless windfarms"
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From:ilanin
Date:April 5th, 2005 01:13 pm (UTC)
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But the Lib Dems aren't liberal, they're socialist.

The standard-bearer of true, Gladstonian liberalism in the House of Commons is a man the Liberal Democrats are doing their darndest to unseat - my own political hero Oliver Letwin - presumably on the grounds that anyone who says that the Emperor has no clothes isn't allowed to remain in the House of Commons...
From:fluffymormegil
Date:April 5th, 2005 01:23 pm (UTC)
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Letwin might or might not be the champion of Gladstonian liberalism, but I sincerely doubt that Howard would let him free rein to exercise that liberalism.
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From:ilanin
Date:April 5th, 2005 01:35 pm (UTC)
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Howard is about to commit the cardinal sin of a Conservative leader - he's going to lose an election.

He will not, with any luck, survive this. Anyone who outright scares large sections of the electorate is not a good choice as a party leader.

This will, I think, leave David Davis as party leader and Oliver Letwin (who doesn't want to be Prime Minister) as shadow chancellor; and the liberal wing of the Conservative party in the ascendant for the first time since 1979.

If, and only if, the LibDems don't unseat Letwin, who has a tiny majority in Dorset East.

From:fluffymormegil
Date:April 5th, 2005 01:44 pm (UTC)
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Hm. I'm having trouble laying hands on electoral results online.
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From:edith_the_hutt
Date:April 5th, 2005 04:16 pm (UTC)
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From:nlj21
Date:April 5th, 2005 01:30 pm (UTC)
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But the Lib Dems aren't liberal, they're socialist.

The general feeling I get is that there are a number of different groups (my arbitary catogerization) in the Lib Dems.

  1. Woolly Liberals - who just don't like Labour or Conservatives

  2. Permissive Liberals - who want to legalise alcohol/pronography/etc. at the age of 16

  3. Doctrinaire Liberals - who actually have a Gladstonian liberalism ideology


I think the first two groups have had much sway in the party at times when people haven't really thought they could be in power and they've been more of a protest party. But I get the impression as they are thinking they could have more of a chance of winning an election the Doctrinaire Liberals are gaining influence.

my own political hero Oliver Letwin

I must admit, I think Letwin is great also! I do think he, and the people now doing Treasury stuff at the Lib Dems are actually quite close. I was recently trying to figure out what my fantasy cabinet would be and I think he would be Chancellor of the Exchequer.

Lembit Öpik I thought would be great in Defence.

Hummm, I think I might develop this and start a Fantasy Cabinet Meme!



[User Picture]
From:rmc28
Date:April 6th, 2005 04:23 pm (UTC)
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Maybe Letwin could defect ...
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From:atreic
Date:April 5th, 2005 01:13 pm (UTC)
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But yes, borrowing the book would be great :-)
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From:edith_the_hutt
Date:April 5th, 2005 01:42 pm (UTC)
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*Is in the middle of researching election issues in preperation for rant*

Having politicians on children's TV at election time is an important part of engaging young people in the way the nation is governed and helps spark an early interest in politics which may give way to later interest and activism.

Of course that's not how the article puts it but it's one possible take on it. (another being that it's an interesting manner of early campaigning for the election in 10 or 15 years time...)
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From:atreic
Date:April 5th, 2005 01:43 pm (UTC)
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Yes, I agree completely with that. But he's had years of being PM to go on kids tv and prepair the future generation. now seems a very odd choice of timing.

And I hated ant and dec as a kid. Making kids interested in politics is not the same as lowering it to the level of Saturday morning TV. At least I really hope it's not.
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From:edith_the_hutt
Date:April 5th, 2005 02:21 pm (UTC)
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Lots of kids do watch Ant and Dec though, so you can't really complain that he's trying to reach out to them through a popular medium. As for making kids interested in politics, I agree, the Newsround elections which are regularly run are a good example of how to do this right. But again, Ant and Dec isn't a bad way to do it, I remember politicians apearing on Going Live at election time back in the day and that didn't seem over-simplified, it provided a good, simple introduction to a lot of the basic issues and helped me understand some of the topics that were in the news, once kids get this then they can move on to some of the more detailed issues which now seem interesting.

And the start of an official election is the perfect time to do this, it gauruntees that politics and the elections will be high profile enough to generate an initial interest and curiousity which will ensure that many children aren't immediately turned off by the appearence of a politician not a pop star on their telly.

To be honest I think the real reasoning is that this is the time when politicians are willing to do TV appearences and it's one fo the few times the researchers for these programs are able to make a booking in the name of educating the young ad looking like you care.
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From:cartesiandaemon
Date:April 5th, 2005 03:56 pm (UTC)
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Campaign managers also realise people pay more attention to unofficial communications rather than party propaganda - so the role of third party sites and blogs set up by activists will also be important

Didn't the americans have the direct approach: pay someone to set up an impartial third-party website to praise you?

and at this point you've run out of parties except for the Lib Dems.

That's how we choose to be a democracy :)
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From:lavendersparkle
Date:April 5th, 2005 04:34 pm (UTC)
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Vote Lib Dem! Not that I'm biased.

I'd far prefer David to be the MP here than Anne Campbell but then that's not a very contraversial position.
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From:atreic
Date:April 5th, 2005 04:39 pm (UTC)
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I'm in South Cambridgeshire, I can't help you there...
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From:robert_jones
Date:April 5th, 2005 08:26 pm (UTC)
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local religion troll

That sounds rather fun.
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