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Friday, 7 May 2010

Can't Get No Satisfaction

The British election of 2010 has been, from a progressive point of view, an almost abysmal failure - a disappointment so staggeringly at odds with the Obama-like energy of the debates and campaigning - and it raises a question - is Britain too broken, too destabilised or demoralised, civically - to even be able to mount a rebellion or radical break with its outmoded electoral system and corrupt parliamentary structure? It seems so.

In the end, the Clegg revolution was only televised, but never materialised - actually losing seats and barely raising above their normal low-20s limit of support. What happened to change, to a new way, to bolting past the two old parties? The voters bottled this one. In the end, they seemed to panic, from London, Dundee, Carlyle, to Humberside - everywhere.

No pattern has emerged, but drift and lack of consensus. And, though the Lib Dems should have supported the larger progressive majority, and shored up Labour, it appears they will let Cameron form some sort of rump of a government. Britain is in for a sort of awkward moment. It feels limited, it feels like a short-changed moment, instead of change. The nation couldn't awaken. Instead, drowning voices, scuttling feet, and polling stations that turned people away. Really, a damn shame.
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