Friday, 26 November 2010

I agree with Nick

I am quite saddened by the naivety of those who are complaining that the Liberal Democrats are backing tuition fee rises. Before I disappear under a pile of brickbats, let me explain that statement, and first throw in a couple of provisos:
  • I do not agree with the increase in tuition fees. There are plenty of other ways to raise this money that would be better for the country.
  • I think the Liberal Democrats were stupid to sign those pledges saying that if there was a LibDem government they would not increase tuition fees.
BUT there is not a LibDem government. A coalition is in government, and the Liberal Democrats are the junior partners of that coalition. Anyone with an iota of brain should be able to understand that this means that the majority of policies will not be Liberal Democrat policies. Nevertheless, the coalition does mean that more LibDem policies will be enacted than if the coalition hadn't been formed, and I believe the coalition is a good thing for the country, which could really benefit from Conservative drive softened by LibDem social responsibility.

To get all snotty about the LibDems because of the tuition fee rises is a reflection perhaps of people who have never been in a serious relationship. Give and take means you don't always get your own way - get over it.

Am I telling students not to protest? Not at all. As I said at the start, I'm against the tuition fee rises, and I think peaceful protests are a good thing. But don't make out that the LibDems are some sort of backstabbing monsters. They are just doing what good partners do.

So, yes, like those almost forgotten prime ministerial candidates, I agree with Nick. And not just because he's a Clegg. No, really.

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