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Non-political response to BBC British election coverage


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The US has that as well - they're referred to as "career employees" and do not rotate out during changes in administration. To be sure, they don't occupy the most senior policy making slots.
Indeed, there is no US civil service equivalent to the Permanent Secretaries. There are gobs more political appointments in the US. As noted, even political appointees occasionally stay over an extended period into the new administration. In other cases where political appointee level vacancies exist for an extended time, you may see career employees informally take over the leadership role (but certainly not the title).

 

OTOH, since you know exactly when the executive branch will be replaced in the US, transitions can have some planning. Continuity all the way to the top is not as important as it is in Italy Britain where you know that the government is going to fall at some indeterminate time before Xmas.

 

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Can we talk about how much of a disappointment Obama has been? Non-politically, of course.

In the same way as a video of seals having sex isn't pornography, discussion of the British elections isn't politics.

[Note to self: Don't borrow videos from Lex.]

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Can we talk about how much of a disappointment Obama has been? Non-politically, of course.

Several of us did post about Obama in a similar way -- discussing the social implications of his election rather than his politics.

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Guest Aaron T
The speed with which things suddenly move, for example. Cameron has just visited the Old Baked Bean and is now Prime Minister. No waiting three months for an inauguration.

 

I was pretty surprised to hear on the radio after lunch Prime Minister David Cameron. I hadn't even heard a coalition had been worked out and yet already Brown had tendered his resignation to her majesty and the queen had passed the baton to Cameron. fast!

 

You Brits even do your elections quickly. Just a couple months of campaigning. Oh I wish it was like that in the US. I hate the endless campaign cycle we have.

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The speed with which things suddenly move, for example. Cameron has just visited the Old Baked Bean and is now Prime Minister. No waiting three months for an inauguration.

 

I was pretty surprised to hear on the radio after lunch Prime Minister David Cameron. I hadn't even heard a coalition had been worked out and yet already Brown had tendered his resignation to her majesty and the queen had passed the baton to Cameron. fast!

 

You Brits even do your elections quickly. Just a couple months of campaigning. Oh I wish it was like that in the US. I hate the endless campaign cycle we have.

 

 

True, but...

 

there are about 400 members of the commons for 60mn UK residents. The US has 435 members of the house for 5x the population. would you really wish for a comparable 2,000 members of the house in the US?

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Guest Aaron T
The speed with which things suddenly move, for example. Cameron has just visited the Old Baked Bean and is now Prime Minister. No waiting three months for an inauguration.

 

I was pretty surprised to hear on the radio after lunch Prime Minister David Cameron. I hadn't even heard a coalition had been worked out and yet already Brown had tendered his resignation to her majesty and the queen had passed the baton to Cameron. fast!

 

You Brits even do your elections quickly. Just a couple months of campaigning. Oh I wish it was like that in the US. I hate the endless campaign cycle we have.

 

 

True, but...

 

there are about 400 members of the commons for 60mn UK residents. The US has 435 members of the house for 5x the population. would you really wish for a comparable 2,000 members of the house in the US?

 

I wasn't wishing for the whole British system, just shorter election cycles aka campaign periods.

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Would a referendum on electoral reform be binding?

 

If it isn't then it's rather beside the point. But I can't understand why the Tories would agree to something that would spell their own demise.

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Would a referendum on electoral reform be binding?

 

If it isn't then it's rather beside the point. But I can't understand why the Tories would agree to something that would spell their own demise.

 

Only because "no voting reform" was not an option, once they'd failed to achieve a working majority. The choice was between voting reform imposed by a Labour/Lib Dem coaltion or voting reform imposed via a process the Tories will essentially control and have opportunities to oppose, delay and derail. If the choice is between being shot today or tomorrow, a day's delay holds a world of promise.

 

The outcome of a referendum would not be legally binding, but it would be political suicide not to implement a clear-cut result. Of course, a muddy and confused or close result is a different matter.

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I'm not so sure that PR would be as damaging as some might think. A lot of people vote for the third party tactically to prevent one or other of the two other parties from getting in in their constituency, if their vote is still going to count towards their real party of preference then there will be no need to vote tactically.

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I'm not so sure that PR would be as damaging as some might think. A lot of people vote for the third party tactically to prevent one or other of the two other parties from getting in in their constituency, if their vote is still going to count towards their real party of preference then there will be no need to vote tactically.
Many studies have looked to test for the presence of "tactical voting" in and none have actually detected enough to have an impact on electoral results. Were the UK actually to change from its first past the post single member district (SMD) system the ultimate structure of its political party system would depend on the exact type of electoral system adopted.* If the UK were to adopt a pure PR system like Israel's, I would be willing to bet that there would never again be a one party majority government.**

 

 

 

 

 

 

*With the intervening variable of how far it continues to go in moving to a more decentralized/federal system which would further fragment the structure of political party competition.

** Unless of course the UK finally ditched the monarchy and adopted as head of state a President with real power. In which case there might be a chance for a single party majority in the legislature.

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