Tonight’s YouGov poll for the Sun has topline figures of CON 38%, LAB 41%, LDEM 9%, Others 12%. A three point Labour lead, but not out of line with the average Labour lead of five points or so that we’ve seen of late. Note that the fieldwork of YouGov’s daily polls goes from roughly 5pm each day to around about 3pm the next day, so the overwhelming majority of the fieldwork for this poll was done before George Osborne’s autumn statement – if you are looking for any impact in the polls it’s tomorrow’s poll and those in the days following you’ll need to look at.


134 Responses to “YouGov/Sun – CON 38, LAB 41, LD 9”

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  1. Rob S

    Lionel Barber had it spot on. Danny Alexander’s gauche honesty has just exploded the LDs’ electoral strategy. They were toast from May 10 onwards. After today, they are toast dipped in petrol and thrown into a blast furnace. They now have absolutely no room whatsoever to pull clear water between th and the Tories over the next 3 years. And there will be no feel good factor for them to tap into. Their only card now is to prostrate themselves and say, “We did it for the greater good.” Not that any political party has ever gained any electoral benefit from self immolation of course.

    I’ll stick a fiver down now to say that the LDs will get fewer than 15 seats in 15. And a further fiver that the rump formally merges with the Tories by 2020. We’re all but there as it is. I heard a hysterically strangulated voice from the Treasury on R4 this afternoon jabbering at 200 words per minute about the over riding need for Austerity today, tomorrow and for the rest of recorded time. I thought, blimey, that’s a bit extreme even for the Tories. Turned out it was some Lib Dem Treasury lackey.

  2. @Hooded Man

    This is really simple… The automatic stabilisers prop up growth.

    What happens if you remove something propping something else up?

  3. @Ken

    What a good idea. We’ll sell the BBC in a 2-way split between Murdoch and Al-Jazera, and use the money to augment the impoverished bankers’ holiday fund.

    At least I’ll have a chance in the Soaring Soaraway Beeb to win my free one-way ticket to somewhere more enlightened (ie anywhere else in western europe).

  4. Joe James B/ Statgeek etc

    Any current Labour shadow chancellor is going to look repetitive and unconvincing (at best) and useless and shifty (at worst) because Labour have not worked out their detailed economic policy yet. Or any spokesperson as well- as the normally effective Rachel Red did under the glare of Paxman.

    These are new times not only politically but economically as well. Staying policy lite / policy non-detailed will not suffice for the current chaotic and disastrous situation. This was as unforeseen 12 months ago to the labour leadership (the need for quick detailed policies) as was the extent to which their confidence and demand stripping austerity would shudder the UK economy was to the Conservatives.

    As I argued on the previous thread once Labour has an thought through detailed alternative sponsored by various industrialists, business people and the great and good- and you know its always possible to get an endorsement (…unless you are Gordon Brown)- that is a whole new ball game.

    If (IF) the Labour Treasury team are on-the-ball they will bring that forward to early in the new year by working their socks off on it over the coming two/three months. I should imagine key elements would be (very broadly)

    (1) Announce clearly and categorically that the deficit should be reduced. No more deficit denying or pussy footing around. Indeed if they were clever both EDs would mea culpa that element of their leadership campaigns…and move swiftly along;

    (2) Contest the OBR’s ‘model assumption’ that we have permanently lost as much capacity as they claim- by using the IFS amongst others- such that the ‘structural deficit’ is not as high as the current government pessimistically claimed today (a claim that premiums their preferred philosophy of extensive and rapid hollowing out of the state);

    (3) Explain the fundamental axiom that- whatever figure you calculate/ settle upon for the SD- you do not need to get rid of all your structural deficit in one parliament, or even 7 years: especially if the policies you utilise to achieve that ‘goal’ actually undermine your ability to curb borrowing and bring down the SD by reducing confidence, production and consumption to a screeching halt (the fundamental (schoolboy?) error of George in these last 19 months;

    (4) Utilise the money you have available for the immediate term (outside of the spending cuts package of your policy platform) because of (2) and (3) as this can provide the basis of both an infrastructural (investment) and tax and/or income (demand) stimulus to the economy creating a much more favourable medium term employment and output outlook for the markets and CRA’s to observe

    So both a spending cut and deficit reduction programme balanced with targeted investment and demand stimuli to boost output and growth: so rather like Osborne’s approach today but much less (gratuitously?) brutal cuts and much more significant growth support.

    IMO having- by the next GE- suffered years of misery under Brown and then George the voters will be in the mood to be receptive come 2013-2015.

  5. Comparing the last time these English councils were elected in 2007:
    Con 40%, Lab 27%, LD 26%

    with the 2011 results:
    Con 35%, Lab 37%, LD 15%

    all the more surprising when you consider that 2007 percentages are for England + Scotland, while for 2011 it was England + N Ireland.

  6. SERGIO / STATGEEK…………..Al Jazeera would be able to raise the money. But why stop at the Beeb ? We have roads, a health service, properties galore, from National parks to an entire coastal tract, how much do we as a nation own?
    It would be interesting to value the nation’s assets with a view to sale and leaseback…………..plus our cash balances, which must be significant.
    This crisis is painted as the worst in modern history, let’s bite the bullet and reduce our debts to a sensible and comfortable level, it’s only sentiment that stops us from doing so. I would rather be free stress, than have to constantly battle against the tide because I won’t get rid of my sentimental attachments.

  7. Rachel Red?

    Should be ‘Reid

    LOL

  8. SERGIO / STATGEEK……..” free of stress”

  9. @Ken
    As long as we disband the police and army too, yeah?

  10. LeftyLampton
    ‘I’ll stick a fiver down now to say that the LDs will get fewer than 15 seats in 15. And a further fiver that the rump formally merges with the Tories by 2020’

    I hope you read my words of praise about you in the previous discussion forum; however on this occasion I believe you are wrong, and while (if you were right) you would make a pretty penny on this with the bookies; perhaps a tenner donation to your Party would be a better idea; and they will need it once the rules on donations have been reformed.

    There will be a gradual improvement in the LD polls between now and the election with a boost in 2015 as the electorate praise both the Tories and LDs for saving the country with brave decisions and effective action. As usual the LD MPs will poll far better than the LD Party in general.

    Not I see the LDs will making an inroad against the other two for at least ten years; however by this time the LDs will be well on the way to replacing Labour as the centre left alternative to the Tories. Unfortunately I shall not be around to see the glorious day.

  11. Jayblanc,

    Now you are really being ridiculous, as well as patronising. Perhaps set aside the literal translation of ‘ automatic stabiliser’ for just a second. I ask once more, are you saying that the future of the UK economy depends on those on benefits getting a 5.2% increase based on a single month’s inflation figure, as opposed to any other group receiving equivalent tax breaks/wage increases? If you believe that, then you have genuinely lost the plot……

  12. If the bailiffs are banging on the door for £1k, while I’m checking the time on my £10k gold watch………I think I’m missing the point.

  13. @Hooded Man,

    Last attempt to discuss this with you. Understand the amount of money flowing around in the out of work benefits. This is a huge amount of money, that would suddenly drop out of the economy if these benefits had a real terms cut. This is multiplied, because people on benefits don’t save. All the money they get is cycled right back into the retail economy because they don’t get enough to save. So cutting out of work benefits translates direct into the retail market growth cuts. And that causes a direct and immediate growth drop. Again, remember the amounts we’re talking about. This would be an immediate drop in retail that would put some retail chains out of business.

    Now, I expect you to ignore all that, and insult me again because you don’t like the ideas being presented to you.

  14. FWIW, I think ChrisLane is spot on, if election winning is the thing. Blair was a winner. Ed may yet be of course, but it looks a whole lot less likely. And it is rather unseemly to boo and hiss a leader that won three elections. Mrs T would never get that sort of reaction at a Tory conference………

  15. @ Ken

    No bailiff is banging on the door.

  16. Henry. Your praise is noted, but I think, misguided if based on my status as a small business man. I’ve been a private sector employee, a public sector worker and a private sector employer. Looking back, I don’t see that any of those statuses made my opinions either more or less valid.

    Good luck to the Lib Dems. I know that the foot soldiers are committed and hard working. But I have had a thirty year opinion that there was an intellectual vacuum and a political amateurishness at the core of the party (in its many guises). The events of the last 18 months have thrown the intellectual vacuum into sharp focus. And tonight, the amateurishness was excruciatingly on show. Danny Alexander (the second most senior LD Cabinet Minister) looked like a schoolboy politician asked a hard question by Sir. He has given the Labour party a whole magazine of bullets with which to destroy the LDs’ credibility as a centre-left party in 15. Utterly, utterly out of his depth.

  17. It was kind of funny (tragic really) to see that neither the Tories nor Labour (I don’t know where to put DA) was ready to state what this Autumn speech exercise was. The Tories enjoy the situation that they could blame on the economic situation the measures that they wanted to do anyway and Labour that they would not have to do this when it is their turn (because the coalition would have done it).

  18. Interestingly, the magnificent HM Treasury building on the corner of Whitehall and Parliament Sq.,( where Gordon pored over the ramifications of the Post-Neo-Classical Endogenous Growth Theory ) is owned by an offshore tax-haven based company called Mapeley, sold to them in a sale and leaseback deal, by Gordon in a spare moment. In the light of political criticism of tax havens, the irony of this particular deal should not be lost on us. We got £ 328 million for the building, and now pay rent of approx £ 28million inc pa., not a bad deal for the Guernsey based Trust, bearing in mind they pay zero tax.

  19. LASZLO………..I know, but to read the prophets of doom, around these parts, you would think he was.

  20. @Henry

    The penny has dropped on Lib Dem Voice

    ***

    peebee
    Posted 29th November 2011 at 11:15 pm | Permalink

    Newsnight 29th November 2011

    Paxman – So you going into the next election promising further billions of pounds cuts in public spending. That is what you going to say in your manifesto for the next election.

    Alexander – I’m afraid so yes

    Paxman – I thought your promise was that in the last year of this government you would not necessarily be giving unequivocal endorsement to every government policy

    Alexander – Well, as a government we originally as you said earlier set out plans that would meet our targets a year earlier in 2014-15. Because of the way in which economic circumstances have deteriorated we need to make this commitment for future years so yes Lib Dems and Conservatives will work together in government to set out plans for those following two years and of course we will both be committed to delivering them.

    Paxman – So what’s the point of voting for you as opposed to the Conservatives then?

    No comment.

    Alexander – I’m afraid so yes

    Paxman – I thought your promise was that in the last year of this government you would not necessarily be giving unequivocal endorsement to every government policy

    Alexander – Well, as a government we originally as you said earlier set out plans that would meet our targets a year earlier in 2014-15. Because of the way in which economic circumstances have deteriorated we need to make this commitment for future years so yes Lib Dems and Conservatives will work together in government to set out plans for those following two years and of course we will both be committed to delivering them.

    Paxman – So what’s the point of voting for you as opposed to the Conservatives then?

    No comment.

  21. @Hooded Man – “Mrs T would never get that sort of reaction at a Tory conference…”

    It was probably 7 years after her demise before speakers at Conservative conference were openly critical… by 1999 even Hague realised that the party “could not live on the glory of the Thatcher years for ever”.

  22. ROB SHEFFIELD
    Paxman – I thought your promise was that in the last year of this government you would not necessarily be giving unequivocal endorsement to every government policy

    Alexander – Well, as a government we originally as you said earlier set out plans that would meet our targets a year earlier in 2014-15. Because of the way in which economic circumstances have deteriorated we need to make this commitment for future years so yes Lib Dems and Conservatives will work together in government to set out plans for those following two years and of course we will both be committed to delivering them.

    Paxman – So what’s the point of voting for you as opposed to the Conservatives then?

    No comment.
    I think it can`t be clearer…The Libs and Cons are going to fight the next election in coaltion…Labour beware

  23. Jayblanc,

    Not worth it. I have no wish to insult you. You seem keen to feel insulted, despite suggesting to me it was really ‘simple’. It is not. I work in retail so i know a bit more than you suppose. The extra £1 or £2bn in increased benefits as a result of the CPI rise being 5% rather than 4% will not make the difference between capsizing either the UK economy (£1,500bn+) or the retail market (£300bn pa), even assuming it all went into retail, and also ignores the fact that money may mostly end up there anyway if it had been put in the hands of other people who need it. Very few retailers would go bust. The money is only about 3% of Tescos annual sales *alone*
    I wonder if CPI had been 4.2% in September, and benefits therefore rising correspondingly, would you have made any comment ? Expect not.
    My point still stands, would you rather give those on benefits a 5% increase than public sector workers a 2% increase? Or is the economy in your view more dependent on benefits claimants than public sector workers,

  24. Gary Gibbon was on to this by 7.39pm on his blog:

    “It means the Lib Dems and the Conservatives, dragged somewhat by economic events, are being tied together in detailed policy that stretches way beyond the election. That could have enormous effect on how they go into the next election – if not bound together then allied and, as things stand, unified in a common stance against Labour.”

    But as Barber said, it was Paxman who “bagged the tiger”.

  25. SMUKESH

    I think it can`t be clearer…The Libs and Cons are going to fight the next election in coaltion…Labour beware

    It would be the end of the Lib Dens, why vote for them, when you can have the real thing?

  26. Rob Sheffield –
    Agreed –
    The opposition hasn’t worked out their detailed response yet.
    Nobody is expecting full details from an opposition , but the big picture is the huge mess others have been left to clear up.

    This was confirmed on Sky News last night where Kity Usher was unable to explain an alternative to Kelvin McKenzie.
    (As a Tory who has long defended the BBC, and still do,
    I’m losing patience with Newsnight and the obvious sneery viewpoint of one or two people).

    Balls must have been influential in the reconfiguration of the Bank of England in 1997 – a system which failed to control the stock of printed money,
    although, alas, we have gone back to effectively doing just that.

  27. Billy Bob,

    Never booed and hissed though…..

    Hague wasn’t being tongue in cheek. It was a call to move on and stop living on past glory for the reasons (rightly or wrongly) that they were far from living up to those memories. Labour in an opposite way seem determined to destroy all traces of Blair, as if through guilt or shame. Quite different.

  28. I do partly agree that we have not lost capacity in terms of the long term rate of growth.
    With the right supply side policies, to create more businesses, that can be rebuilt and more.

    Under New Labour it was finance and obesity levels of consumption and public sector managers everywhere.

  29. SMukesh

    “I think it can`t be clearer…The Libs and Cons are going to fight the next election in coalition…Labour beware”

    I don’t think it could be clearer.

    Unless Nick can walk this back there is going to be turmoil in the Lib Dems for weeks if not months: which will likely only get sorted with an eventual climbdown by Clegg or a splintering of the party.

    Plus the idea that a ConLib coalition at the next election is something for other parties to worry about is patently absurd.

    Some of Camerons current right flank will not vote for that (even if they like the domestic economic policy) as there are too many Europhile and PC/ socila policy “flaky” aspects to the Lib Dems.

    Plus if that did happen the current 9 and 8 point VI numbers for the Lib Dems would be looked back upon fondly as the halcyon days !

    Personally (as a usual Labour voter- though not always) I would be infinitely more wary of a standalone Tory party with a Euro sceptic manifesto and an in/out referendum promise.

    Nationalism might just trump the economic mismanagement and societal chaos of 2010-2013/15 !

  30. Smukesh.

    Labour be jubilant. Tonight is the final nail in the coffin of the Great Centre Left Schism. Alexander will go down in history as the man who finally healed the rift that hobbled the centre left for nigh on half a century.

    I’ve been saying since May 10 that the centr-ist/left-ist voter has nowhere (in England) to go but Labour. But I harboured worries that the LDs might just make themselves superficially attractive enough to pull a million or so of these people to them.

    Alexander has taken the Big Bazooka to that idea tonight. He has firmly placed the Lib Dems on the centre-right for the foreseeable future. (Or else, has unleashed an internecine war, which will be equally disastrous to Lib Dem prospects.)

    I’m utterly gobsmacked. Did no-one brief Alexander? Did he expect Paxman to ask him about the weather? Did no-one think to give him a few straight-bat answers to the most obvious question of the day?

  31. Ken

    I must say I’m amazed by the untypical modesty of your proposals. Forget the BBC or the National Parks. We are always being told that the true wealth of Britain lies in the qualities of its people. We must capitalise on that. What we must do is sell the bankers

    Obviously not just the bankers of course. There are those running our most ‘successful’ companies; the management consultants; the top accountancy firms with their myriad experts; the bond traders and derivatives specialists. These people all tell us that they are the envy of the world and they are worth every penny of their very large salaries (plus bonus plus perks). So we should have absolutely no problem in raising more than enough money to pay off the deficit and indeed debt when they are sold off to the highest bidder.

    In the unlikely event that no one wished to purchase them (surely not, they have assured us of their value), then I suppose they could be allowed to redeem themselves, though the price will have to be high to make sure that someone isn’t buying cheap via the back door. But they don’t seem short of a few bob.

  32. LEFTYLAMPTON
    The Liberal voters would stay with the LibDems as they have always done and the Social democrats have already moved to Labour…Assuming the polling stays the same as present,Labour would be decimated if the two parties went into coalition…But I do think that rather than a formal coaltion,an electoral understanding between LibDems and Conservatives could work.In marginal seats,only one of the two parties would fight or put up weak candidates ensuring the coalition vote doesn`t split…Without something afoot,Danny Alexander is unlikely to admit a joint strategy on national television

  33. LeftyLampton
    ‘I’ve been a private sector employee, a public sector worker and a private sector employer. Looking back, I don’t see that any of those statuses made my opinions either more or less valid.’

    No, but perhaps a variety of backgrounds does you no harm.

    I am depending on small business, with the help of government, to dig us out of this hole. Most small business people have to fight hard to succeed or even keep their head above water; and very few make their fortune and but they enjoy the freedom of not having a boss, daily challenges and sense of achievement if the business even performs modestly. If anything goes wrong then they carry the can, unlike bankers, FTSE 100 directors, leaders in the public sector, and many workers, as well as unemployed. Of course it is my personal opinion, but generally (and accepting there are some rogues and some duffers), I hold them in high esteem.

    I have no arguements with you about the shortcomings of some of those who attempt to run the Party, and it is I who in previous bloggs have suggested that they are very amateurish compared to Labour and Tory. That is mostly down to money. In terms of MPs, of whom I know quite a few, some of them are nice and some less nice, but most of them are brilliant campaigners, and it will not be easy to shift any one of them from even a marginal seat even in times of low LD popularity. I am not sure if you are aware of how difficult it would be to remove so many of them in one GE.

    However, I think there is going to be a tide of change. This is a new scenario and none of us have expereinced it before. I know the picture I usually paint is one wearing rose tinted spectacles covered in daimonds; however, the opposite views appear to me unbelievably negative towards the LDs and I do feel that some of the views are coloured by some of the contributors’ annoyance with the LDs for forming an alliance with the Tories.

    If GO’s policies end in calamity then it is not just the LDs who are in trouble, and Labour will enjoy many years of Government. However I believe that the Coalition are doing the right things, for the right reasons, and despite inevitable errors on the way will lead us out of this unique financial storm. If I am right then the Tories may well be the main beneficiary but I believe the LDs will also benefit.

    You may be right in your gambles but I believe a better investment would be to donate the money to Labour rather than lose it.

  34. SoCalLiberal

    No. All the unqualified teachers in Scotland were dismissed in 1968. So all teachers from then on are professionally trained as well as having the academic qualifications.

    Although new teachers (like me in 1968) had to meet the standard of training required to enter their probationary period (during which time we were assessed for our competence by school management – all themselves teachers). It took the GTC some years to develop the specific set of competencies required for all teachers to have.

    Dismissal of a teacher, however, required the vote of three quarters of the councillors on the Education Committee until 2000. Consequently few Directors of Education even tried to get rid of a dud teacher – they were just passed from school to school.

    Since devolution that archaic protection against dismissal for teachers has gone, and normal employment law applies.

    Don’t ask about why the protection existed – unless you want a lengthy exposition on schism in the Kirk of Scotland in the 19th century! :-)

  35. SoCalLiberal

    “in Scotland where there is some dispute over whether there’s an official state religion,”

    Oh no, there isn’t! No dispute at all. Some people (usually outwith Scotland) sometimes aver that we have a state church – alas they simply demonstrate their total ignorance of both Presbyterian doctrine and the law of Scotland

    Apart from that, they can be very nice people. :-)

  36. @ D Abrahams

    “I understood him to be saying that the 2015 Lib Dem manifesto will need to be consistent with our record in government.”

    Yes, quite. But it does rather depend on whether the Orange Booker wing is still in control of the party? If Clegg goes as Commissioner to Brussels before 2015 as I suspect, Fallon and the Keynsians could win back the party. Then the manifesto could look quite different – and postion the LDs for a possible deal with Labour, if, and it is a big if, they save enough of their seats to count at all in the next parliament.

  37. @ Richard in Norway (from the last thread)

    “Thanks but I have already seen it, it seem to be a developing trend that judges are getting more strict with these corporate fraud cases, but we will see”

    It was a very good opinion (far better than the one from Georgia state court that you showed me). What I think is notable about it is how the government lawyers got slapped down because they were trying to come up with a settlement that was beneficial for the banks. It reflects government orthodoxy about the purity of free markets and the importance of supporting major financial institutions.

    “I don’t think there will be a replacement for the prevailing neo liberal theology anytime soon, the current thesis coming from the high priests is that we are being punished for our lack of devotion, and that the answer is more free markets and more deregulation, its a bit like the aztec’s, when ever anything when wrong the answer was to flay more people alive, which gives me a good idea for stimulus measure, we should build pyramids in the worlds financial centres so we can do the sacrificing openly, I leave it to others to expand on this idea. I’m sure we can all compile a list of likely victims………….”

    Three comments:

    1. I think that ideologues twist and manipulate facts to serve their own ideology. This is equally true of those on the right as those on the left.

    2. When you try something and it doesn’t work, why do people think that doing the same exact thing the second or third time around will get them different results. This is true of right wing economists preaching austerity.

    3. Don’t you favor Elizabeth Warren’s proposal for revenge vouchers instead of human sacrifices that would enable you to walk up to Wall Street executives and kick them in the nuts? I’m not sure we want to follow the Aztecs.

  38. Happy St Andrew’s Day!

  39. OLD NAT. Happy St Andrew’s Day.

    LEFTY and HENRY.
    I think it is clear now that the Liberals have, again, as in 1918 and 1931, become Conservatives. As Scripture says: Hving been joined together in marriage. They have become One Flesh. The ‘heavy petting- David Lawes’ words- has been followed by conjugal alliance.

    But, that does not give the game away to Labour. ‘The Party’ must not assume that people will then go to Labour.
    If the Coalition party grouping camps in the middle, does a few left-looking things and Labour does not get a decent team and philosophy in place, Labour will do worse in 2015.

    BILLY BOB.
    Thank you. The sniping against Blair reminds me that A prophet is without honour in his own country, and when we are not welcomed we must shake the dust off our feet and the fate of that town will be worse than that suffered by …..(too early in the morning)

    TOP HAT.
    On Attlee: The Kenneth Harris Biography, the Beckett biography and the Pugh History of the Labour Party are worth reading.

  40. Stockport Red

    “It would be the end of the Lib Dens, why vote for them, when you can have the real thing?”

    And in most of Scotland – why vote for them, when you will get the real thing?

    I didn’t think that LD support here could drop much further, but Danny Alexander may have done just that.

    The Ipsos-MORI fieldwork for their Scottish Public Opinion Monitor will have already been done, so we will need to wait (seemingly forever!) to see what the effect actually is.

  41. @ Old Nat

    “No. All the unqualified teachers in Scotland were dismissed in 1968. So all teachers from then on are professionally trained as well as having the academic qualifications.

    Although new teachers (like me in 1968) had to meet the standard of training required to enter their probationary period (during which time we were assessed for our competence by school management – all themselves teachers). It took the GTC some years to develop the specific set of competencies required for all teachers to have.

    Dismissal of a teacher, however, required the vote of three quarters of the councillors on the Education Committee until 2000. Consequently few Directors of Education even tried to get rid of a dud teacher – they were just passed from school to school.

    Since devolution that archaic protection against dismissal for teachers has gone, and normal employment law applies.

    Don’t ask about why the protection existed – unless you want a lengthy exposition on schism in the Kirk of Scotland in the 19th century! :)”

    I imagine that there was an uproar by the teachers unions when this occurred in 1968. Especially over those teachers who had taught a long time and were well regarded as teachers but lacking qualifications when they were instituted.

    The thing that I don’t like about Michelle Rhee (besides her hatred of labor unions, her lack of respect for the law, her ability to slander and libel teachers, the fact that she’s been proven a liar about her resume and the effectiveness of her teaching methods, and her general dislike of democracy) is that she believed that teachers were qualified based upon whether students did well on standardized tests. So she made sure to fire some very good teachers with good reputations based solely on how students performed on standardized tests (that are somewhat flawed anyway in measuring scholastic ability). That caused an uproar.

    That said, bad teachers and unqualified teachers should be dismissed and it shouldn’t be hard to do so.

  42. ChrisLane1945

    I liked the “heavy petting” leading to “conjugal alliance” theme in your post!

    It reminded me of all those articles in the Readers Digest in the 50s and early 60s which referred to heavy petting regularly – but never explained it! Strangely, my parents were equally vague in their explanations, when I asked.

    Since we got the American edition, I just thought it was something to do with a society where teenagers had cars.

    Seems I was right. It’s something to do with what LDs do when they get ministerial cars.

  43. SoCalLiberal

    There wasn’t really any uproar. There was a famous case of a qualified teacher in Aberdeen who refused to join the GTC and got fired as a result. He was, however, something of an eccentric in many of his attitudes.

    Imagine if you will, a situation where the California Bar was just being introduced. Instead of members of the Bar being employed, any jurisdiction could employ someone off the street at a much lower rate of pay and undercut members of the Bar. Would you anticipate much support for those individuals from their qualified colleagues, who had been fighting for professional recognition?

    It’s a long time ago, but I don’t think that any of the teacher unions in Scotland actually accepted unqualified teachers as members.

    There are really no equivalent examples in the USA for the governance of domestic policies in Scotland. The best that I can suggest is that from 1707 to 1884, Scotland was a set of self-governing communities, bound together by a common set of traditional laws that were occasionally altered by a disinterested far-off Parliament which was the only vehicle for legislative change, and then only in response to strong representation from the governing class.

    From 1884 to 1999, we might be seen as the equivalent of a US Territory (though with legal institutions dating back to medievall times!) that had a Governor appointed by Washington. Only since 1999, has Scotland regained some of the legislative powers that US States have, Even that analogy is poor, however.

    You might look for some logic ion the constitutional arrangements within the UK – \but you would fail in such endeavour!

  44. @ Old Nat

    “Happy St Andrew’s Day!”

    What is this day? And do you do anything special to celebrate or mark the occassion?

    That reminds me, did you know there’s a street named after St. Andrew in Los Angeles (St. Andrews Place)?

    “Oh no, there isn’t! No dispute at all. Some people (usually outwith Scotland) sometimes aver that we have a state church – alas they simply demonstrate their total ignorance of both Presbyterian doctrine and the law of Scotland

    Apart from that, they can be very nice people. :)”

    Lol. Reminds me of a handful of Republicans I’ve met over the years.

    You don’t have a state church. But if some people think that, the law should be clear as to which churches are exempted and which aren’t (to avoid litigation and controversies….even if they seem unlikely to come up). I find the whole debate about the role of churches in same-sex marriage to miss the mark. That’s because there isn’t a battle between religion and LGBT people (it’s a myth created by radical right wingers and believed by (I’m sorry to say it) diluded liberals). Instead there are a lot of diverging religious viewpoints. The first legal same-sex marriage ceremonies in the District of Columbia were held in a church. In fact the law was signed by the mayor in a church. There are Episcopalian (Church of England descendants) and Presbyterian bishops who march in Pride Parades.

    I went to a Presbyterian nursery school. My dad’s best friend is a part time Presbyterian minister (he’s a doctor in his other life). So I generally like the Presbyterians. Don’t laugh but I didn’t know that the religion originated in Scotland until a few years ago.

  45. SoCalLiberal

    Presbyterianism actually originated in Geneva, through the thinking of Jean Cauvin – a French Protestant whose name is normally Anglicised to John Calvin – hence “Calvinism” though I imagine that most American Presbytrian churches do have Scottish roots.

    As I understand the proposals for same sex marriage (and we have discussd the Scottish system of consultations prior to legislation before), it is that marriage between same sex partners should be legal in Scotland, if conducted by a person already entitled to do so for current marriages.

    Civil marriages (conducted by a registrar) would be automatic – as employees of the Scottish state, they would not have any new conscience clause – as they didn’t previously. Religious same-sex marriages would also be legal,but, as at present, the state would not force a minister or priest to conduct a marriage that they thought unacceptable.

    England may well be different since they frollow a Lutheran tradition (though they often like to present themselves as different from other countries with a Protestant State Religion). No doubt, they will eventually drag themselves into \somrthing resembling the 21st century – though the continuing ban on the monarch being a Catholic (although the proposal is that they can marry one) still suggests that England happily resides in the 17th century on some matters.

  46. @ Old Nat

    “There wasn’t really any uproar. There was a famous case of a qualified teacher in Aberdeen who refused to join the GTC and got fired as a result. He was, however, something of an eccentric in many of his attitudes.

    Imagine if you will, a situation where the California Bar was just being introduced. Instead of members of the Bar being employed, any jurisdiction could employ someone off the street at a much lower rate of pay and undercut members of the Bar. Would you anticipate much support for those individuals from their qualified colleagues, who had been fighting for professional recognition?”

    That teacher sounds eccentric.

    Well, I would think of it more like this. When my dad took the California Bar Exam in 1976, it wasn’t nearly as long and didn’t include the Performance Tests like in 2011. I would think the analogy would be taking away my dad’s ability to practice law and making him take the Bar over again. I’m not sure when State Bar Associations were originally formed. I was reading Earl Warren’s memoirs where he talked about the very easy California Bar Exam he had when he took it in the early 20th century. Apparently it was an oral exam consisting of two questions. If you missed the first one, you were then asked whether you could explain the Rule Against Perpetuities or the Cy Pres Doctrine, if you answered “No,” the response would be “That’s correct, you can’t. Congratulations, you have passed the Bar Exam.” Though I can’t tell if that was the actual test or if he was just joking.

    “It’s a long time ago, but I don’t think that any of the teacher unions in Scotland actually accepted unqualified teachers as members.”

    “There are really no equivalent examples in the USA for the governance of domestic policies in Scotland. The best that I can suggest is that from 1707 to 1884, Scotland was a set of self-governing communities, bound together by a common set of traditional laws that were occasionally altered by a disinterested far-off Parliament which was the only vehicle for legislative change, and then only in response to strong representation from the governing class.”

    There is an example actually, the District of Columbia. There was once local elected governance for the District but that was abolished in 1882 (or 1888). For nearly a century, the District (with a population larger than some states) was completely governed by an unelected 3 or 5 member board appointed by Congress. District residents (who still don’t have voting Congressional representation) could not vote on ANY of the matters or laws that affected them or vote for or against the people who governed them. It was basically a benevolent dictatorship.

    The Home Rule Act of 1974 changed this by creating an elected local government (which really is more like a state government than a typical municipal government). But as I’ve mentioned before in excrusciating detail, Congress can still meddle around in the District’s affairs.

    But like Scotland, different laws and different regulatory systems to govern the people but not directly enacted by the people. The only difference is that Scots could still elect MPs.

    “From 1884 to 1999, we might be seen as the equivalent of a US Territory (though with legal institutions dating back to medievall times!) that had a Governor appointed by Washington. Only since 1999, has Scotland regained some of the legislative powers that US States have, Even that analogy is poor, however.”

    You might look for some logic ion the constitutional arrangements within the UK – \but you would fail in such endeavour!

  47. SCOT NAT.
    The thoughts combining David Lawes, heavy petting and ministerial cars are too much this cold November strike morning.

    As to religion you may know the story about the man who hopes to be saved from falling over the cliff. The man who can save him asks if he is catholic or protestant.
    ‘Protestant’ he says.
    Anglican or Reformed?’ ‘Reformed’ he says.

    Presbyterian or Congregationalist? ‘Presbyterian’ he says.

    ‘Presbyterian Reformed’ or Presbyterian new prayer book?

    ‘Presbyterian Reformed’ says the desperate man.

    ‘FALL INTO THE SEA OVER THE CLIFF THEN, heretic’ says the potential rescuer.
    LOL

    (Its the same in the catholic church: Latin Mass against silly Folk Mass followers: The difference between a liturgist and a terrorist? You can negotiate with a terrorist)

  48. SoCalLiberal

    I forgot to explain St Andrew’s Day.

    St Andrew is the patron saint of Scotland (as well as of various other places).

    You will know of St Patrick’s Day in Ireland – it’s much the same.

    Given our climate, the Scopttish Government and tourist industry have cleverly collaborated in creating our Winter Festival – from Halloween, St Andrew’s Day, Hogmanay, to Burns Night – to create a vibrant tourist draw across the winter months.

  49. Ack! Sorry Old Nat. I accidentally hit the submit comment button.

    To respond to your last comments:

    ““From 1884 to 1999, we might be seen as the equivalent of a US Territory (though with legal institutions dating back to medievall times!) that had a Governor appointed by Washington. Only since 1999, has Scotland regained some of the legislative powers that US States have, Even that analogy is poor, however.”

    You might look for some logic ion the constitutional arrangements within the UK – \but you would fail in such endeavour!”

    The territories are not good examples. Generally, territories are recognized as semi-sovereign and treated like states. And they have their own elected governments. My American mind wonders why Scots were never given the opportunity to directly elect the Secretary of State for Scotland, since this position used to weild a great deal of power.

    I won’t pass any judgment as to the logic of constitutional arrangements in the UK. What I find interesting though is that the British media gives the impression that the separate Scottish agencies and different Scottish laws are a recent thing, a product of devolution. But really, all Devolution did was give power directly to the people of Scotland to enact their own laws and govern their own regulatory institutions through a representative legislative body.

    The 1974 Home Rule Act didn’t suddenly crate all these new government agencies and new laws in D.C. (well aside from the charter) but merely allowed citizens to directly elect the people who governed them.

  50. @ Old Nat

    Here’s my idea for solving the West Lothian question and I’m curious to get your thoughts (as well as those of others).

    Introduce a “People’s Veto” for the English. Scottish and Welsh MPs could still vote on laws (as well as write them, work on them, sponsor them) that were on English only laws. However, if a law pertaining to an English only issue was passed where Scottish and Welsh MPs were required to vote in favor in order to secure passage (i.e., a majority of English MPs voted against), allow the law to go to the ballot for England. You’d have to require a certain number of signatures (like 25% of all English voters in the last election). Now a “No” vote wouldn’t cause a government to fail. It would simply repeal the law. You’d have certain dates for these potential elections each year (like around the same time as council elections) though they would only occur in the above mentioned scenarios (an English only law being passed with non English support and the requisite number of signatures being collected).

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