The Rambles of Neil Monnery feels like it should change it’s tag-line from ‘Another pointless voice in the vast ocean that is the interwebs’ to ‘All Nick Clegg. All the time’ as the past what 18 hours or so has seen quite a dramatic shift in Nick Clegg’s attitude to both governing but also towards his own party.
His apology was unsurprisingly autotuned and ThePoke website cheekily asked if they could release it as a charity single and lo and behold the Lib Dems and Clegg himself have agreed as long as the money raised goes to Sheffield’s Children’s Hospital. Yeah who saw that coming?
Now whether you like Clegg or not – he’s allowing himself to be ridiculed to make money for his local children’s hospital and that is something everybody would respect. I know Nick Clegg has become the most divisive figure in mainstream UK politics since Margaret Thatcher – and that isn’t a good thing for the Deputy Prime Minister – but at least he is willing to poke fun at himself. Isn’t that why everyone loves Boris Johnson?
Now Clegg is no Boris – not by a long shot – but Clegg has decided to draw a line in the sand. This is his last stand and it’ll either pay off handsomely or he’ll have allowed his successor whoever it is to start without the biggest monkey on his back. I was just tweeted to tell me that money is piling on Clegg to not lead the Lib Dems into the next General Election which surprises me somewhat.
The next few days in Brighton will certainly now be far more interesting than we all expected. Looking around my politicosphere (that isn’t a word but it really should be) the general consensus was that people were fed up. They are fed up of being in coalition but more than that they were fed up of defending the accusation that we are a bunch of liars who cannot be trusted. That allegation is of course still there but a very public apology from the top means defending it becomes easier on the doorstep.
The big question is will this translate to more positivity within the party. If people once more feel that we aren’t heading to election oblivion then maybe they’ll be wiling to put in that extra ounce of effort and go that extra mile to do more leaflets, more surveys, more doorstepping. Lib Dems all over the country work hard and care but like all humans if they think they can’t win then they’ll find it harder to play the game as it were.
I respect Clegg for finally apologising and his decision to allow the autotune remix to be released as a charity single is a very brave but correct one. If people laughing at or with him makes money for his local children’s hospital then who cares. If it sells well then it can make some serious money and make kids stays at hospital that little less awful and that is something I think we should all applaud and respect.
Next up get Clegg in the stocks or maybe gunge him? Sit him in a bath of beans whilst students pour tomato sauce over him? The possibilities are endless but I suspect this will be it…fr now.
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