Friday, 10 April 2015

In the magical land of Oz

Here's a bit of optimism from a Lib Dem blogger (tautology alert: you probably have to be an optimist to be a Lib Dem these days):
Every 40 years, with some accuracy, there is a major shift in economic thinking in practice in the UK.  The next one is due in 2020 or thereabouts.  The outlines are already clear: it will sweep away the brittle, basically destructive power of finance.  It will reshape the economic landscape so that ordinary life can be affordable again, and can stay so.  It will end the growing chasm between the tiny elite and everyone else.

The big question is how.  It won't happen until all sides agree broadly about how it can be achieved, and I have some ideas myself, and then - when the crisis hits - the political parties are able to shift relatively seamlessly to the new dispensation.  History suggests these shifts happen, in the end, quite fast (1979/80, 1940, 1908/09, 1868, 1831 and so on, and so on).

One political party needs to hammer out the basic outlines of the post-Thatcher/Reagan economics in practice.  It is the historic destiny of the Lib Dems, it seems to me, that they should play this role. 
I've no problem with the destination - it sounds like a wonderful place and I want to believe. It's just that imagining Nick Clegg as the brave little girl in ruby slippers who's going to lead us all along the yellow brick road to this magical land requires more suspension of disbelief than I can muster right now.