Now let us all sing: God Save the Queen!
There is the national legend of doubtful origin, known as St George and the Dragon
Now, it’s David – David Cameron hath slain the Gordon Dragon and cut the Gordian knot asunder but it’s David Miliband if anyone who is already the next man of the moment, ready, willing and able and his fans would like to see him as Prime Minister now, and not as a pecking and heckling leader of the opposition that must carry on in the front pews at the House of Lords, confronting his namesake, separated by only two swords length from actual physical combat.
It’s always high drama in The British House of commons and much fun to watch. Much better than going to the theatre to see some George Bernard Shaw repartee and wit – and through that theatre effect, government is not as far removed from the everyday lives of the British masses – whereas Parliament here ( I’ve attended a few sessions and watched from the gallery) is a more roundly academic affair, without the human ingredient of verbalized emotion, aggression, ridicule, satire, and permissible invective all supervised by the House whip/ the speaker of the House who every now and then has to command and reprimand with that all too familiar word, “Order!”
A difference between the scene in Britain and what obtains here in Sweden just now is that the Alliance ( birds of the same feather ) is a pre-formed – pre-election coalition, whereas in the UK each party went it alone, before the elections and it just turns out, so they say, that even the bad personal chemistry between Nick Clegg and General Gordon Brown notwithstanding, the maths simply would not have added up in a coalition-alliance of the unwilling – between Labour and the Liberal Democrats, since that would have still fallen short of the required 326 majority – and would have necessitated Labour also bringing in the Scottish Nationalists and the Ulster Party to acquire the requisite minimum numbers that could guarantee some stability in government, especially in getting certain bills through – and avoiding the perpetual sword of Damocles nightmare of being brought down with a vote of ”no confidence” – at any, unpredictable, given time.
It’s been a most dramatic week in Britain – almost suspended animation for even the savvy political commentators as the whole world waited for King Maker Nick Clegg to decide who was going to be with him, in the next government. Gordon Brown offering to resign latest September – as it was thought that he was standing in the way ( Nick Clegg is said to not like him - and that it’s very personal – I guess that General Brown, especially during the debates , had the knack of making young Nick look and perhaps feel like a schoolboy in Gordon’s commanding military presence. So that must have only made matters worse for the former Prime minister. The lesson is that you can’t lose an election and still hope to cling on to power. Even Neil Kinnock who was all so set to win, but miraculously lost, knows that.
Britain and Sweden, there are differences that will eventually be narrowed down, should the Electoral Reform Bill ever pass unscathed, through the very conservative House of Lords, especially when it is to the advantage of the bigger parties, Labour and the Tories to retain that system and not go for the Swedish system of proportional representation.
There are other similarities. Anders Borg is comparable to George Osborne , Britain’s new Chancellor of the Exchequer, if not now, then certainly after the elections when, should he retain his post as Minister of Finance (and who else?) he will have to do what he’s gotta do. Osborne has had that portfolio in the Conservative’s Shadow Cabinet for a few years now, and so the electorate has known for quite some time, what to expect from him with the national debt, putting Great Britain in such a precarious position. What we don’t know in Sweden is who is the shadow minister of finance in the Social Democrat’s Red–Green Coalition of political forces – and how far to the left, the cuts will be.
There is so much more that could be said but that had better be left, unsaid.