Saturday, March 13, 2010

The Lib-Dems 'Cyberlock'

The Lib-Dems seem determined to impose a Cyberlock on themselves after the election.

I reckon it's a bit of a stoopid move. I've reckoned so over there and not here though.


MatGB said...

Apparently, I can't comment on Slugger despite there being an open comment form, so here's what I typed there, and there's no clear link to a registration area, on either the page itself or on the "you must be registered" follow up page.

So here's my comment:
Paul, where do you get the 'delegate' parallel from? I may've missed it in party rules, but as a conference rep, I have a vote at conference (if I attend), otherwise I can send a substitute (which I've done).

The LDs don't have delegates, they have representatives, who act on the lines we would both want a representative to act.

Negotiators would be able to go in and negotiate, but the result would need to be ratified by either conference or MPs and FE. The latter requires a higher hurdle, the former costs more money to organise, so the latter would be tried first.

Democratic party, you have to have democratic procedures. I'd not want the 'smoke filled rooms' to have the final say, personally, even if I do trust the likely negotiators quite a bit.

Paulie said...

With slugger, you go to the homepage, register and then go to the thread and comment. Clunky, but it will be fixed soon.

"Negotiators would be able to go in and negotiate, but the result would need to be ratified by either conference or MPs and FE"

That's not a freedom to negotiate. I don't buy the idea of a political party being an entity that is always committed to take a precise decision on any policy. They only work if they are broad coalitions united by shared values. You pick your people, give them the latitude to make complex trade-offs.

I think that your Cyberman is doing to your leadership what DeValera did to Michael Collins back in 1921. It's very politically immature and it seems to be largely structured to allow people in the party to say that inelegant decisions are 'not in my name'.

The fact is, in the event of the hung parliament, your party will have to kiss a frog. You can't just say "Eww! Frogs!"

And during those negotiations, Labour and the Tories will both be pitching over the heads of the negotiators to the party. The tories will pitch libertarian goodies and Labour will pitch electoral reform.

Imagine if the prosecution and defence could offer bribes to the families of jurors? Not a direct parallel, I admit, but you see what I mean?

MatGB said...

When you put it like that you do in fact have a point. I'm not sure how strong a point it is.

The Scottish LDs went into coalition despite having similar restrictions; I think havign a requirement to at least have a conference to ratify a deal makes things more open and transparent.

It also ensures that a fundamentally unacceptable deal isn't made.

Regardless, I don't think it matters too much; the odds of a coalition deal being offered by the Tories are small to non-existent, and the odds of Gordon Brown offering one similar, and I don't think the leadership would be prepared to work with him.

Curious; do you think your party would be prepared to dump the leader as part of a coalition deal? As that's the only way I can see this discussion having any real relevence.

A special conference would be able to change the rules for negotiation as well, which might also be useful