Here are my thoughts on the results of the UK’s 2015 General Election results, in a nutshell and without the benefit, or otherwise, of reading what others are saying.
The SNP won because Nicola Sturgeon is a charismatic, feisty, articulate and intelligent leader who built on the momentum from last year’s Scottish Independence referendum. She’s tough and may well engineer an independent Scotland over the next five years. She is probably the most astute politician on the UK scene right now.
Ed Miliband and his party lost because his leadership and politics were weak and his second lieutenants, Ed Balls and Harriet Harman, were both universally disliked and distrusted. The Labour party’s demise was nothing to do with the rise of the SNP. It was because the so-called working class had become disillusioned with his leadership and with his constant attacks on the opposition instead of formulating a serious socialist policy.
Miliband was also seriously damaged when Tony Blair purported to support him as a leader but then said nothing about supporting Miliband’s policies. It was a double kiss of death for Miliband based on what Blair did not say plus the fact that Blair is nowadays considered to be toxic. Blair is the epitome of a champagne socialist and is universally hated by the British people.
Nick Clegg lost because nobody trusted him any more (his backtrack over student loans, particularly, caused damage to his integrity) and nobody knew what was and is meant by “liberalism”. His policies, if I can call them that, were wishy-washy and peppered with his trademark word “fair” when fairness had nothing to do with it.
Nigel Farage lost because his role in raising the awareness of the political effects of the UK’s continuing membership of the EU and the social effects of unlicensed immigration was finished once David Cameron announced the 2017 EU in-out referendum promise. But what a catalyst Farage has been.
David Cameron won because, finally, he decided to do something about the country’s unrest with our continuing membership of the EU; similarly uncontrollable immigration; and he finally grappled with personal tax, social benefits, problems in the NHS, inheritance tax and a host of other domestic issues close to the hearts of many many people. He has passion and conviction and, despite the belief of many pundits (including BBC left wingers, of which there are many), Cameron does appeal to “the common man”.
Miliband deserved to go. He was weak and ineffectual and too prone to being jerked by his spin-doctor controllers.
Clegg deserved to go. He was a waste of space – period.
Farage did not deserve to go. He would have been a welcome maverick in the House of Commons, reminding MPs of the things that people really care about. He would have been the country’s conscience. I wish him well and I hope he returns to front-line British politics.