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Lib Dems in Brighton: the prattling of the pointless

25 September 2012

12:16 PM

25 September 2012

12:16 PM

Are there any words in the English language more soporific or depressing than: ‘Liberal Democrat Party Conference’?

My paucity of blogs in the last few days can be put down solely to this fact. Even the many fascinating and disturbing things occurring in the world are somehow made damp by the knowledge that this annual general meeting of the bogus is going on.

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I suppose it comes down to one thing in particular. There is simply no purpose in the Liberal Democrats. There never has been. It is just a collection of people who for various reasons – understandable dislike of the other parties, hilarious opportunism or simple ignorance – wandered into a party and then tried to agree on what the people they find themselves among could be said to agree on or believe in.

Each speaker assumes that register now adopted by almost all politicians – a tone no human being ever naturally employed. It is something like the voice of a parent trying to persuade a child that the child is making a decision for itself when it is all the time apparent that the parent is making the decision for them. Nick Clegg and colleagues each seem to assume that if they only give that little bit of extra emphasis – of hand gesture or intonation – the people will understand and vote for them in hordes.

What they cannot address (because if they ever did their careers would end) is the fact that there is no point in them. All we are left with is a charade, in which rich and privileged men like Ming Campbell and Vince Cable, for instance, pretend that there is some vast difference between them and the Conservatives (claiming they themselves are ‘plebs’ and so on). None of it rings even remotely true.

The only bright spot is that after 2015 these conferences will be historical curios. Then Nick Clegg can take his place somewhere in the second rank of Liberal leaders, in front of Paddy Ashdown and somewhere behind Jeremy Thorpe.

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Show comments
  • rndtechnologies786

    Nice blog.

  • KarlC

    The Liberal Democrats are socially conscious Tories. Or ex Labour voters who like capitalism too much to remain Labour. Oh with a green tint added.

  • Anthony Makara

    I don’t think Clegg can ever compare to Thorpe, Steele or Ashdown, all men of political principle, neither of whom would have rolled over and played the emasculated Cuckold, happy and grateful to merely be in the room, while a deeply ideological Conservative government abuses everything that Liberals hold dear. Only Danny alexander has been more cringing than Clegg. The LibDem conference has been pure political farce. A fawning LibDem leadership embeded in a Right-Wing Conservative government, yet still claiming to be the progressive ghost in the machine.

  • Paul

    “Are there any words in the English language more soporific or depressing than: ‘Liberal Democrat Party Conference’?”
    How about “Vince Cable cracks a gag/espouses mansion tax policy” or “son-of-a-banker and husband-of-senior-partner-at-top-law-firm Clegg laments people earning money”?

  • IRISHBOY

    Whilst not disagreeing with Douglas’ article, there is something more that needs to be said and repeated ad infinitum. Yes, the Lib Dems may appear pointless in their smug self-congratulatory way, but they are not without purpose, that purpose is pushing relentlessly towards Marxist totalitarianism which is too well masked by their superannuated hippy image. I would rather that they were constantly referred to and revealed as the “hard-left” Lib Dems. That is inarguably what they are, they know it but, like all the hard left, just hate this being spelled out.

  • David Ossitt

    “There is simply no purpose in the Liberal Democrats. There
    never has been.”

    I do admire Douglas Murray, his prose is so succinct, always
    getting directly to the heart of the matter, the example above is typically
    Douglas Murray.

    Just read it and you can hear the
    echo, ‘as useful as an ashtray on a motorbike’ or ‘couldn’t organise a piss-up
    in a brewery’, he is right they have no purpose other than to make the labour
    party look half-way normal.

  • anyfool

    Good old Douglas has finally come out of the closet, at last someone in the msm has shown a lead in showing how all people should treat these sewer rats masquerading as the caring class,

  • Douglas Carter

    A wee bit unfair Douglas.
    The LibDems are people who really want to be interested in politics, but don’t know where to start, but need a justification for liking sandals.

  • Austin Barry

    Charles Kennedy was the finest Liberal leader: when he finally realised what a cadre of pious, pontificating self-stimulators he represented, he leapt into an ocean of the finest clarets with cries of “F**k Bunnies, Charlie can and will go to France. ”

    • Noa

      Despite the red hair and even redder complexion he was a very photogenic man.and proud of his Scottish lineage.

      Which was probably why he acquired the nickname of Bonnie Prints Charlie…

  • Nicholas

    Beautiful and deadly like a sword in the hands of a master unlike the Lib Dems who are like every barrack room lawyer, malcontent and grievance monkey gathered together on a coach for a second rate works outing to some second rate resort. All they need to complete the picture is “Kiss Me Quick” cowboy hats and stuffed donkeys.

  • Andy Car Park

    Three possible reasons spring to mind for your choosing not to position Jeremy Thorpe behind anybody else:
    (1) You genuinely think he was a great Liberal leader;
    (2) You are having a laugh;
    (3) Delicacy.

  • trevor21

    ‘Somewhere behind Jeremy Thorpe’. A position one would imagine old Jezzer found most agreeable.

  • Noa

    A cruel and heartless post. I enjoyed it very much. Thank you.

  • Laurence

    Douglas, you ask ‘are there any words in the English language more soporific or depressing than: ‘Liberal Democrat Party Conference’?’ what about: ‘Please welcome Simon Hughes’?

    • Austin Barry

      Yes: ‘…. and joining Simon will be Lynne Featherstone’.

      • David Ossitt

        Just imagine if he and she were to
        breed together!

  • Sunfish

    An excellent post, Douglas. Not sure what I like more – the dig at Paddy Pantsdown in the last sentence or the spot-on description of the Lib Dem’s genesis in paragraph 3.

  • Sunfish

    An excellent post, Douglas. Not sure what I like more – the dig at Paddy Pantsdown in the last sentence or the spot-on description of the Lib Dem’s genesis in paragraph 3.

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