Monday, April 26, 2010

At a Glance Guide to what the main parties offer Scotland

As the last full week of the election campaign dawns, I thought I'd do a quick ready reckoner of what the four main political parties offer Scotland. Please don't expect this to be in any way objective, but it will be fair.

The Liberal Democrats:

If you vote Lib Dem, you get Nick Clegg. Yesterday on Andrew Marr he was brilliant, answering questions openly and honestly and sounding like he he could run the country. Go here and watch the whole interview.

Fair taxes: taking everyone earning less than £10,000 out of tax completely and giving everyone else £700 a year back. The situation where a city banker pays proportionally less tax than his cleaner on the minimum wage will end.

Clean up politics: a fair voting system for Westminster so we don't have the disgraceful situation where majority Governments can be returned on not much more than a fifth of the eligible vote, where some seats are guaranteed to stay in the same party's hands for generations.

A fair start in life for every child: meaning that the scandal of poorer children falling behind richer children at the age of 7, affecting their whole life chances, will end.

A sustainable,green economy: banks that dance to the government's tune, not the other way around, investment in renewable energy to make us carbon neutral in 40 years, jobs in sustainable industries,the Almighty Vince in charge.

Oh, and a Freedom Bill, already drafted and ready to go before Parliament which gets rid of the appalling erosions of civil liberties enacted by Labour, many of them with Conservative support.

AND taking the iniquitous Digital Economy Bill off the statute book and replacing it with something better.

An ambitions, positive programme, wouldn't you say?


Vote for us because we aren't the evil Tories and if you're lucky we might just get around to doing stuff we promised in 1997 like properly reforming the House of Lords. Oh, and we'll give you a referendum on electoral reform, but not on a system that actually gives you any more power. And we'll clean up politics by introducing measures we've already blocked.

The Conservatives

Vote for us because we aren't the evil Labour government and we don't want another 5 years of Gordon Brown, do we now?

Oh, and if you don't give us a clear majority to protect our rich friends and do nothing to help the poorest, well, the four horsemen of the apocalypse will be just around the corner.

But, Scotland, it doesn't really matter what you do, because we don't need your pesky votes anyway to get a majority. Mwahahahaha


If you don't let us in the leaders debate, we'll take you to court. Because we think that standing candidates in less than 10% of UK seats means we should have a place, despite the fact that there have been three debates between Scottish leaders.

You see, we need you to vote for us in outrage at this perceived injustice because, let's face it, we can't really offer you anything else.

We will stick our heads in the sand and refuse to acknowledge that there's less money available rather than actually looking carefully at how Government operates and how we could protect the vital frontline services on less money.

We have no serious detailed plans on how to deal with the tax and benefits and pensions systems

We support the Tories' plan to stop Labour's NI rise, which'll cost a fortune and we can't tell you how we'll pay for that but we will and there will be less cuts as well.

So there you have it - a brief smorgasbord of what's on offer to Scottish voters this election. Many votes will be cast today as ballot papers start landing on people's doormats. A vote for the Liberal Democrats, in any seat, will be a vote for real, positive, permanent change and even if you don't directly get a Liberal Democrat MP, you'll help to bring about that change. Without the Liberal Democrats, things will stay pretty much the same.

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