I still recall the talk of the bastard coalition between the liberal democrats and the labour party, a coalition supported by the rump of both parties and by the late leaders of the liberal democrats. Indeed had labour bothered to prepare for coalition why may have had this bastard coalition even now.
History did not go this way. Instead, out of practical political need and in the interest of the country we so love. It was the Conservative party that prepared and sought to form a full coalition, something the electoral maths did not necessitate.
On the other hand the lib-dems, after some bear face lying and whoring themselves around to see if they could get there preferred partner (labour) to make any moves towards coalition they settled unhappily with the Conservative party. Now this was indeed facilitated by the two leaders being in true coalition and I still believe Mr Clegg to be honest in his coalition with us. His party on the other hand is a different story.
We now come to Simon Hughes deputy leader of the lib-dems aka either the voice of the left or in my view the liberal party in exiles leader. Now the lib-dems argue that they are a democratic party and all Mr Hughes is doing is voicing the views of a section of his party, similar to what David Davis or John Redwood is doing in the conservative party.
There is a slight difference, however, neither Mr Davis or Mr. Redwood hold official party positions, there power within the party is that of a popular backbencher. Mr Hughes is the deputy leader and has in my view become the exile party leader. The party leader in exile for all those liberal democrats unhappy with the coalition and its polices. Polices I will remind my liberal democrat reader there party agreed to and continues to support. As you can see there is already a separation in the party between the lib-dem ministers and the lib-dem party in exile lead by Mr. Hughes.
The lib dems have actual another part of the party in exile Olly Grender, she as the unofficial voice of the party / chief distiancer from the coalition. She spins the line that the lib-dems are the minority voice within the coalition and thus have limited influences (and that is normal in coalitions). This line is very clever. Unlike Mr Hughes she distances the party in exile from the coalition but without attacking it. It is also false; lib-dem influence in the coalition is massive compared to their seats.
Look at the new internationalist foreign policy or the focus on welfare reform (lead oddly by Ian Duncan smith) all the constitutional reform and pro liberty reforms and of course the trident and general military polices. Indeed in the depths of this coalition I fail to found any real Troy polices beyond the defect reduction, housing and the arts hardly key policy areas.
So here we have the twin anti coalition position held by the lib-dems we have the deputy lib-dem leader leading a defacto party in exile arguing that his exiled party should be free to vote as they wish (as if they’d not enter coalition at all) and we have the poor victim routine as embody by Olly Grender. Together they have effectively created a full party in power and influencing the coalition but free from actually facing the consequence of their action.