The Apollo Project
Liberal Ideas for the 21st Century
Tuesday, November 08, 2005
Rendezvous at Coolum Beach
by Steve Travis

In a week and a half I will be heading out of suburban Brisbane for a week's R&R in the Sunshine Coast resort of Coolum Beach. Whilst checking out the location of our appartemnt on the map, I noticed that the road that skirts the coast between Coolum Beach and Noosa is called David Low Way.

One of my favourite cartoons is the excellent Rendezvous, and I recalled that the cartoonist David Low had antipodean connections. Alas a google search showed that he was a New Zealander by birth, but it would be nice to think the road was named after the great man.

Rendezvous was, of course, about the cynical marriage of convenience that was the Nazi/Soviet pact. This month's Liberator uses the example of those other unlikely bedfellows, Merkel and Schroder, to suggest how the Liberal Democrats should deal with questions on how they would approach a Hung Parliament. In the second article on this page, titled An Easy Answer, it recommends that:

In the event of a hung parliament, there should be a Labour/Conservative grand coalition – since the differences between them are pretty trivial.

The Liberal Democrats, whose differences with both of them are massive, could only profit from becoming the official opposition to such a government.

Liberator offers this ‘German’ scenario to the party leadership as a way of shutting down this tedious speculation by repeating this idea whenever the subject is raised.

Far fetched, maybe? Not when you realise that Cameron is touting himself as the New Blair, and Davis is conspicuous by his absence in failing to attack the Government's latest illiberal terror initiatives.

Perhaps Liberator has a point after all.
posted by Apollo Project @ 11:24 am  
  • At 08 November, 2005 14:40, Anonymous Chris said…

    Not quite fair - Cameron is being touted as the new Blair, certainly, but I haven't heard him admit as much in public. His general election campaign (assuming he gets that far) will certainly revolve around insisting that he couldn't be more different from Blair. How does how some perceive his PR skills help in getting him to agree to a Grand Coalition?

  • At 08 November, 2005 15:33, Blogger James said…

    I think the point is that a Grand Coalition is more likely than the Lib Dems being foolish enough to enter an arrangement with either of the other two (for self-preservation reasons if nothing else).

  • At 10 November, 2005 14:38, Anonymous Chrisco said…

    However, a grand coalitiion would inevitably leave is in the unenviable position of being aligned with the awkward squad of the Labour on many, many issues, and being perceived as merely an extra-party adjunct to them.

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"What is Liberalism?: I should say it means the acknowledgment in practical life of the truth that men are best governed who govern themselves; that the general sense of mankind, if left alone, will make for righteousness; that artificial privileges and restraints upon freedom, so far as they are not required in the interests of the community, are hurtful; and that the laws, while, of course, they cannot equalise conditions, can at least avoid aggravating inequalities, and ought to have for their object the securing to every man the best chance he can have of a good and useful life." C-B.


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