Your are viewing a read-only archive of the old DiS boards. Please hit the Community button above to engage with the DiS !
what a pathetic attempt by the torygraph at a smear
they must be frantically going through all their phone-taps of the last 25 years
...on R4 this morning, a guest was telling of a story that happened yesterday. Apparently, James Murdoch and Rebekah Wade (Chief Executive of News International and former Sun Editor) turned up unannounced at the offices of the Independent, demanding "a word".
This was supposedly in response to the Independent opting to take a balanced view of all parties during the run up to the election*, and that they were supposedly giving out a huge number of free copies during the election campaign.
Trevor Kavanagh (former Sun Political Editor, currently 'upstairs' at News International) was on R4 as a pundit, and in response to the above story, spluttered that he'd been asked to come on the programme to discuss the rise in Lib Dem media coverage, gave a flat out denial that he knew anything about it, that it was the first he'd heard of it, and that he couldn't possibly comment.
* yes, I know the Indie seemingly has LibDem sympathies, but that doesn't change the thrust of the claim (you could say it accentuates it), so no points for pointing it out.
In addition to the Telegraph, the Mail, Express, Metro and Sun have all seemingly gone on the offensive. Check out their front covers - http://tinyurl.com/LD-slur-frontpages
Interesting article here - http://tinyurl.com/yelland-on-media-bias - from Daivid Yelland (another former Sun Editor) about how locked-in the papers are to the Lab/Con hegemony.
Seems that Murdoch and Wade breached security at the Indie late last night, and properly had a go at the editor because of an Indie ad campaign pointing out that Murdoch (they say) owns 40% of the media in this country but he shouldn't be able to control the election.
C4's Gary Gibbon reckons that there's a chance it might be a stitch up in collaboration with Dacre of the Mail (as the Mail and the Indie share the same office block).
And still have a few quid left over for shop-bought sandwiches.
good on the Telegraph, showing real class
physically able to look at all that, in one place
Mail front page “Clegg’s NAZI slur on Britain”
based on articles published 7/8 years ago that they've only now deemed deserving of front page news.
In The Guardian in 2002 Clegg wrote: "Watching Germany rise from its knees after the war and become a vastly more prosperous nation has not been easy on the febrile British psyche. All nations have a cross to bear, and none more so than Germany with its memories of Nazism. But the British cross is more insidious still. A misplaced sense of superiority, sustained by delusions of grandeur and a tenacious obsession with the last war, is much harder to shake off. We need to be put back in our place."
In 2003 he wrote about "Britain’s culture of superiority", a British "belief in our innate difference from our mainland continental cousins" and said "No other culture in Europe is quite so enamoured by such a false notion of difference." Going on to say that "We Brits concoct a historically illiterate notion that we are divorced from outside influences. Maybe it was loss of empire, the choppy waters of the Channel, or the last war."
Pretty much on the button observations, I'd say.
The irony of the Mail being sensitive about supposed Nazi-leanings just adds to the absurdity of the attack.
Seems like we've finally got an explanation for his punditry.
I get the feeling the Lib Dem bounce won't last long but it's funny seeing the papers rattled for now.
Asked about another story that Mr Clegg worked for a lobbying firm that helped weaken EU financial rules, Mr Huhne said: "That's the sort of smear that we are getting in the Tory papers this morning."
We're entering bizarro land when Tory media are slagging a man for WEAKENING EU financial regulations...
Does it work? I think I'd be a lot more comfortbale with your post if you added an 'ORF!' to it.
Trevor Kavanagh slated him for facing down John Humphrys. And went on to say that The LibDems don't get their policies scrutinised enough. Seconds later he said that they were receiving too much attention in comparison to their prospects of having any political powers.
not for investigative journalism, the MP expenses row would not have come to light. Nobody sneered when he was front-page poster-boy after last week's Britain's Got Politics? Clegg's comments, albeit many years ago, are deeply unpatriotic and indicative of their extreme pro-european stance, something the voting public are entitled to know.
Or at least more so than the other parties.
if we really live in a country where it's the Lib Dem's position on Europe that is considered 'extreme'.
don't marginalise yourself in the decision-making process by jumping into bed with those on the far-right.
isn't helped by lurching away from the dominant grouping (EPP/European People's Party) and aligning yourself with a bunch of properly bigoted far-right wingnuts (ECR/European Conservatives and Reformists).
You mentioned this in a previous thread, but then didn't back it up when asked to. Do you have a (preferably non-partisan) link so I can read more, as this genuinely interests me?
You've tried this one before and I showed how your argument had more holes than swiss cheese.
Your powers are weak old man...
"The Tories were in the EPP for a long time; didn't seem to do much good. May as well try a change of tack, there's little else to lose at this point."
That's broadly my opinion on Scottish independence in a nutshell. At least, when that was pointed out, you had the good grace to accept that the Conservative Unionist agenda isn't watertight.
Anyways... it's time for a fun game. Given an entirely free choice, where would you prefer to see the UK on the following diagram?
I'm gonna make a guess that it's alongside Liechtenstein.
If they were like the BNP then they'd be far-left (what with the BNP being in favour of nationalising large sections of industry and in imposing strict economic controls), but the little shits that the Tories have been cosying up with are boring old run-of-the-mill neo-fascists.
if this thread had anything at all to do with labour anyway.
I've seen what the EU has done to many of our neighbours.
I remember how Spain was when I visited twenty years ago, and how much it has progressed today.
The countries of central Europe have become stable, secure democracies. The EU's role in ensuring that can be overstated, but is certainly considerable. The pressure applied to those states which have achieved EU membership to accord to the Copenhagen criteria has, undoubtedly, transformed them for the better. The rule of law has been strengthened, human rights are better respected, and true democracy is in force in each.
If this isn't to the benefit of Britain, then that's taking a very narrow view. Of course, we could just leave it to our neighbours to stabilize and enrich the continent, but I'd prefer my country to be at the heart of this process, rather than on the fringe or outside it.
I suppose, to be honest, I accept the less democratic aspects of the EU, because I believe in the importance of the project. I would like for the Council to be reformed, but, as Marckee says, it should be changed from within.
Only if our idea of patriotism is 'never criticise anything about the country'. And their pro-Europe stance is preferable to having Rupert Murdoch contol our international relations.
the expenses scandal was hardly 'investigative journalism', rather someone leaking a CD.
And if a few miniscule and fully declared donations is all that can be found, I'm not sure they have too much to worry about.
Do me a favour... have you all been handed a crib-sheet of emotive journo-speak to spam every message board in the land?
The expenses row was brought to light by a disgruntled civil servant hawking around documents to every newspaper in the land trying to attract the highest bidder – it was hardly Woodward and Bernstein. Aside from that, dredging up stories that were reported years and years ago doesn’t really count as investigative journalism, does it?
Well, unless your name's Andy Coulson and you think that partaking in smears and muck-raking give your journalism some veneer of legitimacy.
sometimes your words just hypnotise me
and i just love your flashy ways
guess thats why they're all broke and you got paid
but there's a distinction between pro-European and anti-British, that needs to be addressed by the party.
just some pretty on-the-nose observations about a British superiority complex, for whatever reason.
TheWza's covered it up there ^
Saying that there can be ugly undercurrents to nationalism isn't controversial at all.
Did clegg blank you in a club once? You just seem to really hate him. Fair play perhaps, don't believe the hype eh? Flav would be proud.
Well, not massively, but you would.
Unless such a move ends up benefiting the British in some way.
Then they'd be seen as some kind of geniuses.
I was waiting for that one.
A nice plate of copypasta coming right up for you, sir:
When a political party puts enormous weight on a single issue, you’d hope they have their facts right about it. Unfortunately, UKIP has failed to do this with their figures on European Union legislation.
At UKIP’s manifesto launch this morning Nigel Farage, the former Party leader and Parliamentary candidate for Buckingham, claimed twice that, “75 per cent of our laws are now made in Brussels”.
[...]it is nowhere near as high as the UKIP estimate. In any case, estimates for the actual EU influence on UK legislation usually vary between 10 and 20 per cent.
There’s not only a statistical problem here but also one of definition. “Laws” is a very broad term with broad connotations – to most people, laws would cover virtually everything that governs our daily lives from rules on crime to policies in our health service. Misleading statistics can, therefore, make the issue more emotive than it actually is.
When we break down the figures on EU legislation, it’s clear that a lot of it relates to the EU’s regulatory influence. Had UKIP been honest about this, their latest argument about why we should leave the EU would have been further weakened.
Their position is that Britain should maintain its free trade partnership across Europe and bring back political control from Brussels. Looking at the reality of the EU’s ‘political’ influence over Britain, beyond the shaky statistics, it’s clear that the EU doesn’t have as much legislative influence over the UK as UKIP would like us to believe.
If anything, the EU’s tentacles all over Britain – to loosely use UKIP’s leader, Lord Pearson’s analogy – relate mainly to the trade relationship that UKIP seems to support.
Yes this is about a specific UKIP claim, but many, many Conservatives are always banging on about "being in Europe, but not run by Europe". It's a fallacy.
As long as *any* laws and regulations are imposed from the EU onto Westminster then it's going to clash with the cultural tradition of independence that kind of marks out the UK within Europe.
Ireland was the only country to have a referendum on it, and in fact they did so twice: the first time they rejected it, the second time it passed.
that every country who voted against the Lisbon Tready did so because of 'a cultural tradition of independence' rather than anything else. I'm assuming he's got a source and he hasn't personally been going around asking the population of entire countries and recording their answers.
But if you'll allow me some massive generalisations of the historical kind, I'd say that there are strong traditions of integrationalist (is that even a word?) thought within the mainland European countries (whether peacefully or by the sword) that comes, in large part, due to their proximity to each other. The UK, as an island, has tended to see itself as somewhat aloof and separate by comparison - which were heavily reinforced by the empire, and then by that plucky resistance to the Fuhrer that Clegg so accurately wrote about back in 2002.
Of the three 'big' EU countries the UK is the one that acts as the reluctant one to the cheerleading of France and Germany. The UK has a philosophical, political and economic history that is markedly different from most mainland European nations, and whilst it's not like we're talking the difference in culture that you'd find between, say, Nigeria and China, the European Union's federalist core is definitely (and defiantly) at odds with what your average British man on the Clapham omnibus would feel is correct. And he'll be feeling it in his gut, not his head, because from birth he's been raised to see such projects as a bit dodgy.
But, hey, someone needs to be unashamed about sticking up for something that has many positives. I'm no EU fanboy, we all know it needs to be kept in check, lest it becomes even shadier than some parts of it already are.
But this kneejerk Europe=bad mindset is corrosive.
I guess the problem is that selling many of the positives of 'Europe' requires an understanding of the complexities of the world beyond primary level. It's sad, because many of these critical folk think nothing of jetting across the continent for their holidays, etc, but cling on to some sort of 'Empire' mindset.
The media don't report on the EU's law-making processes very much and, somewhat despicably I think, they then know that they can safely report nonsense stuff about the banning of bendy bananas and know that people will take it on face value. And there's also the thing that many of the laws which are supposedly 'imposed' upon the UK by Brussels are actually irrelevant consider existing legislation already passed at Westminster often does the same job - whichever body gets the blame for the 'bad' legislation, UK or EU Parliament, tends to depend upon whoever that paper wants to whip at that point in time. Shameless propagandising.
I like the idea of the EU as trading bloc and political forum, not federalist body, but that doesn't mean it hasn't done some good. Not that you'd know that from reading the papers over here, or, indeed, in most EU countries. There are several nations where none of the domestic news agencies maintain correspondents at Brussels - that's very worrying, as the EU gets away with enough stuff unchecked as it is.
and force people to eat croissants, and make all pubs become cafes.
That and force everyone to recycle and take a siesta.
You've got my vote.
who is not anti-British then? SNP? they want to split from the UK. Hang the traitors!
When it comes crashing down and it hurts insiiiiide
You gotta take a stand, it don't help to hiiiiide
the fact the electorate are entitled to be informed. I'm not necessarily disagreeing with Clegg, nor would I use the term hate as speculated.
Essentially, to centre-ground, LibDems need to affirm that their views on joining the Euro, handing more power to the EU and perhaps most crucially, immigration policies, are not construed as anti-British. The public could easily perceive the latter to be prioritising EU migrants over British workers.
I don't believe that's true, but that's what they need to make clear to everybody. Starting tonight, with the debate on foreign policy. So let's all tune in to that, yes?
Naturally, he's retaliated by sending a QRT team to all the youth hangouts of the internet to reassure his base that these accusations are... just smears?
time for a cup of tea.
I think what some of the more rabid newspapers seem to have forgotten is that we don't consume newspaper media the way we used to.
It's no longer the case that we blindly pick up your paper or two of choice during the dash to work, they feed you a front page headline, and that's the end of it.
OH HAI U GUYZ, the intertrons are here. In the quick pasting of a link - http://tinyurl.com/LD-slur-frontpages - we can bluntly lay out the apparent agenda that spans across the front pages, we can search the archives for the exact article that's being quoted, we can analyse it for, and between, ourselves, and we can have a spoof billboard about it posted on our facebook wall by 9:14am.
The folk who avidly read those papers might not be quite as internet savvy as those who don't, but it hardly matters as they probably aren't prime LibDem target material anyway. They're in a self-imposed ghetto of ignorance.
These shoddy rags are not only preaching to the converted, they're doing it, obliviously, inside a golfdfish bowl while the rest of the world looks, and points, and laughs.
This is a heartwarming assumption - but I'd recommend consulting the depressing beyond belief comments section for all those papers - filled with the inane ramblings of people who have no interest in accepting any information that doesn't already conform to their world view - before you start proclaiming the grand depurating effects of the internet.
are not the Lib Dem targets in any event.
A party that professes a desire to take leadership of a country should have all that nation's citizens as a potential target.
Or is that me just being naive?
but realistically, it doesn't make sense for a party like the Greens or Lib Dems to go after the Conservative's core vote in the same way that the Tories would probably be wasting their time on a core Lib Dem.
Given they've got limited resources, targeting time and effort spent to those that are more amenable (but not yet supportive) in the first place is by far the better strategy.
but the press certainly won't have expected the reaction they've sparked on twitter.
some of these are fantastic...
and the influence of the interwebs.
If anything, the papers are more likely to represent mainstream opinion than anything you'll find on here.
The vast majority of people in the UK, especially those that are more likely to vote, are not the young, educated, web-savvy people in which you seem to be (slightly naively, perhaps) placing a lot of hope.
But if I didn't retain some naivety, I'd got batshit insane.
The media's constant squawking about Twitter is particularly revealing here, as it's constantly talked up as being something with the apparent potential to change the world despite the vast majority of people a) never coming into contact with it, and b) having no real use for it even if they did.
claimed to have watched last week's debate - about double the amount who actually did? I love that kind of thing.
The weird thing about that debate was I was already a LibDem enthusiast going into it, but thought he actually seemed a bit lightweight in the delivery - the polar opposite of what this week seems to have been all about. So maybe they're better off having fewer people watching, but reading about the hype afterwards.
That doesn't include anyone who watched it on the interwebs, nor anyone who recorded it, nor anyone who saw it on BBC News after the event, nor anyone who used ITV Player/iPlayer to see it afterwards...
Given the hype in the last week - and the fact that catchup TV is becoming more common - it's entirely possible that a large number of people deliberately looked it up. Even now (a week later), it's still in the most watched list on ITV's online service.
as people would no longer see it as a wasted vote
And there's no way the Tories would ever get more than 50% of the popular vote anyway - they would need to form coalitions. And there's arguably more popular support for the various centre-left and left-wing parties combined than there are for the Tories and the dribs and drabs that constitute the rest of the right-wing support in the UK (who else could they form a coalition with? UKIP?)
Though I think that introducing PR would, at least for the first two or three election cycles, massively help to unify the centre-left in this country which has been somewhat splintered for the past century since the decline of the Liberal Party. The Tories have done a pretty good job of keeping the vast majority of the centre-right within their fold, and so under PR their potential allies for coalition-forming are more limited than for others.
Even during the Thatcher era they only captured percentages in the low 40's
PR would allow the centre-left to dominate British politics for another generation - that is, if it was brought it and assuming that Labour and the Lib Dems would form a coalition. There has rarely been a point where the support for centre-right parties has beaten out centre-left parties across the voting population - it's the voting system and the split in the centre-left that's caused this.
Of course, apart from European issues, the Lib Dems and the Tories aren't hugely different either. There's a large bloc within the Lib Dems that is essentially classically liberal, more so than Thatcher was (the rump of the old Liberal Party, basically), and it's been gaining strength in recent years as the party has moved, economically, more to the right (though that's been held back somewhat by having Vince Cable as party economics spokesman). If I was a betting man I'd actually put money on us waking up on May 7th with Cameron in No. 10, Cable in No. 11. It's not beyond the realm of possibility. Just my hunch.
They'd basically be in government forever with it
given the dual handicap of being the least suited to the format and the fact he is the only one of the three who has to defend actual decisions and actions. He definitely seemed the most knowledgeable on the actual issues, if not the delivery
3rd parties always get a bounce from these things - I am amazed people have been as surprised as they are about the bump in support.
Cameron seemed to fall apart and needs a big one tonight to start cranking it back - perhaps not pledging to nuke China will be a godo start.
Brown laid himself out as the no nonsense man who knew what he was talking about. It was 6/10 tops, but it laid a foundation
should end up remembered in history as better than it is at the moment. He was basically given a sinking ship to salvage by Blair and pretty early on started to be hit by a whole series of scandals that had little to do with him or were hangovers from Blair's time in charge - all the various data loss things for example.
His presentational skills don't help and he's not been faultless as either Chancellor or PM, but nor has he been the utter trainwreck that anti-Labourites would half you believe.
COULD NICK CLEGG TAX THE CONSERVATIVE PARTY?
ho ho ho
Who gets to be MP where? How is that decided? Or does that go out the window? Are the days of being an MP for an area gone any way?
Do MPs have a say over local issue more so than national issues?.... if that makes sense. Is everything local dealt with by the council elections?
Let's say I liked my local LibDem MP and wanted Gordon Brown to stay as MP....who would I be best to vote for?
Many of them involve multiple-member constituencies, so you'd have more people representing your constituency, but it would cover a wider area.
1% of the votes to earn 1 seat...where would that seat be?
The constituency areas are massive (East England, Scotland, South West, etc), and each area has 3/4/5/etc MEPs.
The vote within that constituency is used to elect x amount of people (let's say, 3). If everyone in the constituency voted for one party, then that party would obviously get 3 MPs. But if the vote was split with a second and/or third party gaining sufficient votes, then the MPs for that constituency would come from different parties.
One way to put it into practice would be to merge groups of 3 adjacent constituencies, so the constituencies end up being slightly bigger, and they return 3 MPs.
You could say that this means that your local MP won't quite be as local, but presently it's the case that you're stuck with a single MP who you didn't vote for and who might have snuck in with more people voting against than for, and might not give a damn about your interests cos you're never likely to vote for them. If your slightly larger constituency had a range of MPs then it's more likely that there will be one that represents your vote. So, far from being less locally representative, PR can actually improve the local representation. And it will also represent the national popular vote more closely, too. Win win.
There are quite a few variations on the theme of PR. Some smallish countries are effectively one constituency and MPs are allocated to each party on the basis of the straight national vote. Most spread it out a bit more and have constituencies so that there's some local representation. Most systems allow you to gived ranked votes, so you give a 1,2,3,4, etc preference. Once you get down to 3rd and fourth choice, it tends to be negligable, but it means you can give positive support to some parties and omit support for others. In Scotland, there's a mixture. There are single MSP constituencies on a FPTP basis, and there are eight big regional areas that return multiple MSPs.
Have a gander at this example of the STV flavour of PR: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Single_transferable_vote#An_example
"The vote within that constituency is used to elect x amount of people (let's say, 3). If everyone in the constituency voted for one party, then that party would obviously get 3 MPs. But if the vote was split with a second and/or third party gaining sufficient votes, then the MPs for that constituency would come from different parties."
What would be sufficient votes?
So if there are 3 seats to win... let's say if Lib dem got 66% votes and the rest were made up of 4 or 5 another parties. 2 seats would go Lib Dems and the other to the highest of the other parties.
How much would be enough to win all seats or 2 or just one?
There would still be wasted votes under that system though, surely? Parties with 1-5% of the national or whatever would still end up with no representation...?
Depends on the system. In the one I linked to, there's a formula that states how many votes you need. The vote quota, if you will. The formula varies depending on the theory behind it. But not drastically so. Plenty of dry theory if you're interested (hardly anyone really is).
So, anyway, having picked your system (we'll work with the STV example I linked to)...
Let's have an election.
Everyone gets a first preference. Everyone is able to state a second preference if they wish. You're normally able to state any number of preferences, right through the ballot list (E.g. 1. Labour, 2. LibDem, 3. Green, 4. Tory, no vote for UKIP or BNP)
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Single_transferable_vote#Finding_the_winners puts the process of sorting votes in order to find a winner better than I could.
Essentially, if you 'make the cut' and exceed the quota, you're in. If you have 'excess votes', once elected, your spare votes are transferred to the other candidates.
As you say, there are some 'wasted votes'. The only real way to avoid any 'wasted votes' is to have the whole country as one whole constituency. Then, if you have 600 MPs, then 100/600 is your percentage for getting an MP in. Not much at all. Any old fringe party will probably be able to sneak an MP in. So very representative of the popular vote. But local representation is kinda lost.
FPTP is at the opposite end of the spectrum - very local representation. And impossible to get any MPs if you're not able to be number 1 in a particular constituency. In recent times the LibDems have managed to have a spread of their votes across the constituencies of the country more evenly than Labour (strong in urban areas, to put it crudely) or Tories (strong in rural areas, to put it crudely). So the Lib Dems are very often a 'second preference'. But you don't get jack for being second in FPTP.
"Let's say I liked my local LibDem MP and wanted Gordon Brown to stay as MP....who would I be best to vote for?"
It doesn't really work like that. You don't get to vote for the PM. End of. But STV PR would probably have constituencies of mebbe two or three times the size of the current ones. And they'd each have 2 or 3 MPs. So if you've got mixed LibDem and Labour sentiments, then it's very likely that you'll end up with at least someone from one of those parties in your constituency that you can go to to raise your issues.
I'll assume that as things stand you'd quite like a balanced (hung) parliament with Labour with the most seats but not a majority, and the LibDems making the majority.
Under the current FPTP, everyone has to make second guesses as to what's gonna happen in their constituency. Often voting for someone who's not their first choice. You'd basically be voting anti-Tory, for their strongest opponent.
Under STV you'd vote for Labour and LibDem as 1 and 2 (your choice), and you'd expect to get one of those guys as your MP. Not necessarily your first choice, and maybe alongside a Tory and A N other from any party, but you'd be casting a positive vote, rather than a strategic negative.
You do get do vote the PM really don't you? My vote for whoever means the leader of that party is more likely to be MP, surely. Though more so is smaller consituencies I suppose.
way to have no wasted votes would be a one constiuency country. 'Any old fringe party will probably be able to sneak an MP in' but if dont people who vote for them deserve representation.
What power do MPs have locally anyway?
The single transferable vote is blagging my head even more. Probably coming across as a right mong but I properly want to understand it. In the droop quota a party can only win one seat...?
No. You vote for your local MP, and your local MP only. If you want to vote for a party leader you have to be a paid up member of the party in question.
> "My vote for whoever means the leader of that party is more likely to be MP, surely."
Practically, yes. Technically, no. The party votes for their leader. The leader of the party 'in charge' is usually the PM. But even that doesn't strictly need to happen. The PM can technically be any MP. Any MP. I think that if you trawl the through the 20th C PMs, you'll find an example where the PM didn't come from the party of government. So it happens. Just not very often. See also: the talk of, for example, Vince Cable being appointed as Chancellor in the event of a Lib/Lab coalition government. However likely or palatable that may be, constitutionally, it's entirely permissable.
> "don't people who vote for [fringe parties] deserve representation?"
Where do you draw the line. The absolute lowest practicable line that can be drawn is the 'country as single constituency' scenario. Such a situation would be 100% proportional - the number of MPs elected for each party would virtually exactly match the proportion of votes cast for each party (but you'd lose the formal local representation). If the bar were any lower for the entry of minor parties, the extreme end point of that setup would mean that anyone who got one single vote could be elected. That's pretty extreme. And for the vast vast majority of people it'd be completely undesirable. So we draw the line somewhere. The 'country as constituency' is practically possible and possibly philosophically desirable - examples of it exist in the real world. In the 600 MP example above, you'd need 100%/600 = 0.17% of the population. Take a look at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_Kingdom_general_election,_2005#Results and look at % of Votes to see how things would pan out if the country were one constituency. Compare that to the % of Seats to see the real spread dished out via FPTP. Many many countries tend to strike a happy medium between the (supposedly local representation of) small FPTP seats and a massive single 'totally PR' seat (with it's alleged lack of local representation).
> "What power do MPs have locally anyway?"
Good question. My take on things is that it's not so much what power they wield locally, but what power they wield as part of the national government, on behalf of the local population. Local 'power' (such as it exists) is, as I understand it, in the hands of Local Government Councillors.
> "single transferable vote is blagging my head even more. Probably coming across as a right mong but I properly want to understand it."
Not a mong at all. It ain't an overly simple process that can be copletely explained in a couple of sentences. At the base level, it comes down to statistical malarkey that tries to ensure things are as representative as possible after the shakedown following the vote and the count. The maths of all the different types are many and varied. Different versions of PR (STV, AV or otherwise) will yield different results (favouring smaller parties or otherwise). But they'll all geared up to strike a happy medium between FPTP and 'country as constituency'. And, as Holyrood elections in Scotland show, you can even have some mix and match.
> "In the droop quota a party can only win one seat...?"
I stand to be corrected on what follows (even more so than usual), but AFAIK... The droop quota is just the most common way to calculate a threashold. There are others. As I understand it, in STV a party could theoretically put up two candidates, but that'd tend to run the risk of splitting the party vote. Applied to the Wiki example, there could be milk choc and dark choc, but in that scenario, it might divide folk, and choc might not get elected at all. 'Party List' is probably the example yuo wanna be looking at for scenarios geared up for electing multiple party members for one constituency. Getting a full understanding of it is all a pretty mind-boggling and tedious philosophical and mathematical exercise. So I tend not to bother worrying about it, and just acknowledge the fact that PR in general is gonna return a closer match of % national vote to % seats won.
...if the 2005 results aren't convincing, take a look at some pre-97 election results, and how seats Vs votes is so skewiff for the third party with an evenly spread national vote but not enough regional hegemony to bag a slew of seats.
with the most seats? Strange.
I understand it would, obviously, mean that seats would be distributed a lot differently and fringe parties would find a lot easier to get a 'seat'.
Obviously if there was 500 seats they would only need 0.2% of the votes approx. But I feel that it's fair. Look at the Green Party 1% of the vote and 0 seats...
Yeah MPs represent the local population on national issues but they are hardly thinking about local interests when they vote they vote on a bill, surely, they will be thinking of there own ideology or their parties ideology. And they won't be representing a vast majority of their constitueny under the present system and the larger PR constituencies. It's really about 'local' when it comes to parliament is it... Someone from the other end of the country could be more likely to support what I consider 'local interests' than say the local tory MP candidate.
I suppose they could split the vote but in places where they could pracitally have 50% of the vote and their where 3 seats to win splitting the vote would still leave and chance of 2 seats, surely.
PR would be closer but I still think there's some flaws in it I suppose.
"Just talking to a schoolmate of nick clegg. He's had the Telegraph calling all week about alleged clegg drunkenness ON A SCHOOL COACH TRIP"