It was a remarkable thing to sit in a crowded Commons chamber today for the first time.  For all that has happened, it is still the place within which we will make the decisions which will turn this country around.

Persuaded by both Jonathan Isaby this morning and Rt Hon Sir Malcolm Rifkind MP in the chamber, I was among those new members who abstained in the election of the Speaker. I would have voted in a division. I trust Mr Bercow will live up to Sir Malcolm’s recommendation.

Douglas Carswell commented that the chair has been moved and that the LibDems are a little cosier. Of course, I could not possibly comment.

One Comment

  1. These are what the Chinese proverb calls interesting times. This Coalition is a remarkable occurrence in British politics, particularly the spirit in which it is being presented, i.e. one of enthusiastic cooperation rather than grudging acquiescence. Whether that is real or spin, we must of course wait to see. It is fascinatiing just wondering what the history books will say. It is something that may either make or break both the Tories and LibDems. I wonder which?

    I just watched David Laws interviewed by Paxman, thanks to Youtube, and the impression I got, for waht it’s worth, is that there is genuine shock at what has been found at the Treasury. I wonder if the Liberals, who traditionally pontificate and promise the Earth, confident of never having to deliver on their promises, have had a bit of a cold shower at suddenly being in a position of responsibility.

    Anyway, a few hours ago I left a comment over at Samizdata, the gist of which I will bore you with. It seems to me that the ConDem coalition is going to have to admininster some very unpleasant economic medicine. Governments like to bribe us to vote for them with money, but there will be no money available to create that kind of feelgood, not before the next election. But something you will have available to bribe us with is returning liberties. The wonderful thing about freedoms is that they can be restored with a single parliamentary act, and do not cost a penny- indeed, often saving money as enforcement costs are ended. Both your party and the Lib Dems might find it profitable, at the next election, to compare the freer society you have created to the previous New Labour tyranny. People will give you credit for ending the surveillance state. For abolishing internet snooping. For abolishing the rubbish bin stasi. And for ending the decimation of community by allowing us again to smoke at the landlord’s discretion.

    Freedom for votes. It’s a fair trade, and a far more honest one than the previous money-for-votes system. Let’s be a free country again. It’s cheap, it’s simple, it’s popular. What’s not to love?