22 Jan 2011

Week Commencing 170111 - The Joys of Politics

Sometimes, a week in British Politics is a long time. This week must have seemed very long for a lot of people in public office.

But what a week!

January 17th

Monday morning we had Cameron on BBC Radio 4's Today Programme being grilled quite delightfully by John Humphries.

First thing that leapt out at me as I drove to work was the numerous times Cameron lost his cool. We are not talking about a junior minister here, or even a back bencher, so to hear Cameron raising his voice and arguing vociferously was quite shocking. This man is in charge of the country, he should be better controlled.

Listen to it here.

Getting defensive and frustrated over questioning on reforming the NHS gives the impression that (a) he was not sufficiently briefed on the issues at hand - again, this is the Prime Minister we are talking about, and (b) the issues are not as clear cut as the tory-led government would like us to believe.

Being challenged over potential postcode lotteries, to which Cameron responds evasively, there are striking differences now, is political ignomminy. And that is just the tip of the iceburg in concerns about NHS reform, explored by The Guardian's Politics Live.

Now, of course, John Humphries wouldnt let the opportunity of the PM on the radio go to waste and queries him over Bankers, to which Cameron is equally evasive, fuel prices, ditto and Coulson, tapping on that little crack in the damn that is about to explode.

Embracing Equal Childcare Leave

In the same day, Clegg announced a spectacular policy change to maternity and paternity, which will have had feminists and lesser confrontational "equalists" celebrating.

Proposals to provide paternity leave for longer periods will (hopefully) continue to sand away at entrenched ideological roles of parents and gender stereotypes.

It's a victory for society in Britain as a whole, and to continue chipping away at structural misconceptions that, as Clegg identifies, are little more than Edwardian and "have no place in 21st Century Britain".

To filibuster or not to filibuster

Fillibustering: an informal term for blocking or delaying parliamentary processes.

The Lords are determined to make the agony of the AV Referendum (Electoral Reform Bill) last as long as possible to delay campaigning for and against.

This also commenced Monday!

EDIT: I'm struggling with tonsilitis this week and not up to blogging more today. Back later-when I can't sleep!

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