Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.
Display:
If the Swedish Democrats abstain in a vote, does 172 to 157 count as a majority, or is it still a plurality?

By laying out pros and cons we risk inducing people to join the debate, and losing control of a process that only we fully understand. - Alan Greenspan
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Tue Sep 21st, 2010 at 07:16:10 AM EST
[ Parent ]
When voting for the budget, it's enough. When it comes to other laws, I think it's enough. Some decades ago we had a minority government with only 39 mandates, and they got their laws through because of the soc dems voted neither yes nor no. If I recall correctly.

Anyway, I think the basic principle in the Swedish parliament is that you don't need the support of a majority of the votes, you just need to make sure you have more votes than your opponent.

Peak oil is not an energy crisis. It is a liquid fuel crisis.

by Starvid on Tue Sep 21st, 2010 at 09:02:48 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Then I don't see how it can be argued that an Alliance government would support itself on the Swedish Democrats...

By laying out pros and cons we risk inducing people to join the debate, and losing control of a process that only we fully understand. - Alan Greenspan
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Tue Sep 21st, 2010 at 09:11:05 AM EST
[ Parent ]
The centre-left can block any Alliance policy if they join with the Sweden Democrats. Hence, they can threaten to bring the government down over things like Afghanistan and the budget, or if a motion of no confidence is launched.

SD might extract a political price from the Alliance for the promise not to do any of these things. But all this requires that SD forms a united front with the left on these issues.

On the other hand, if SD in any way pull the government down, they're taking a huge risk. On one hand they might well get more mandates after a new election, as they would get access to media in an entirely new way (censorship and discrimination against them has been widespread during this election).

On the downside, they might be seen as the people who caused the crisis and be punished by the voters for this. They might even be voted out of parliament, which would be an absolute disaster, as parliament is their ticket to the media, and to huge sums of government money the will recieve as party entitlements.

So it's a game of chicken.

Peak oil is not an energy crisis. It is a liquid fuel crisis.

by Starvid on Tue Sep 21st, 2010 at 09:31:14 AM EST
[ Parent ]
is that they are hostages to the far right.

For example : they vote against the Alliance government's budget. Normal. That's what an opposition does. And if the SD vote against the budget too... ? (something the left have no control over). Then the left have united with the SD to bring the government down!


It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II

by eurogreen on Tue Sep 21st, 2010 at 10:15:28 AM EST
[ Parent ]
No. In that scenario, it's the SD who bring the government down. The opposition votes against the budget because there is a realistic chance of toppling the government by doing so: That's what opposition parties do. SD, on the other hand, have a choice in the matter, because they are only halfway in opposition.

- Jake

Friends come and go. Enemies accumulate.

by JakeS (JangoSierra 'at' gmail 'dot' com) on Tue Sep 21st, 2010 at 02:57:01 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Currently we don't know if they're in opposition or not. But if they won't get anything from the Alliance, which they're unlikely to get, at least initially, they'll be just as much in opposition as the Red-greens. Indeed, they might be considered to be more in opposition than the Red-greens, if the other parties band together to marginalize them completely in parliament.

Peak oil is not an energy crisis. It is a liquid fuel crisis.
by Starvid on Wed Sep 22nd, 2010 at 04:09:41 AM EST
[ Parent ]
They're a right-wing party. There's a right-wing government. Unless they actively help bring down that government, they are not in opposition. And any troubles the right-wing government gets out of it will be ascribed to their unwillingness to contain the inherently racist elements in their base (in the left-wing narrative), right-wing infighting (in the centrist narrative) or the Swedish Democrats [sic] being a spoiler party that creates a lame duck government (in the right-wing narrative, see the US Democrats' attitude towards Nader for Cliff's Notes).

You are essentially proposing that a cordon sanitaire narrative is going to be turned into a grand coalition narrative. The only people to really benefit from that would be the Swedish Democrats [sic]: It would be disastrous for the Left bloc - all the pain of being in a grand coalition without even the limited and temporary gains. And it would be an embarrassment for the right-wing bloc, since going from being in government to being in a grand coalition is something you do after you lose an election (see Germany for precedent). So that is no not going to be easy, though no doubt the racist party and their prostituted journalists will try their worst.

- Jake

Friends come and go. Enemies accumulate.

by JakeS (JangoSierra 'at' gmail 'dot' com) on Wed Sep 22nd, 2010 at 06:33:41 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Your argument rests on the Sweden Democrats being a right-wing party. They aren't. They're right-wing on values issues, and left-wing on economic issues. The blessing of being a populist...

Peak oil is not an energy crisis. It is a liquid fuel crisis.
by Starvid on Thu Sep 23rd, 2010 at 05:51:41 AM EST
[ Parent ]
We'll see.

Ugly parties like to promise ponies for everyone on the economic front. But when the wheel hits the rail and they actually have to cast votes, they tend to toe the right-wing line. Because they normally care more about not liking brown people than about economic policy, so the latter is where they sell out.

- Jake

Friends come and go. Enemies accumulate.

by JakeS (JangoSierra 'at' gmail 'dot' com) on Thu Sep 23rd, 2010 at 06:33:01 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Because they normally care more about not liking brown people than about economic policy, ...

Let's see. Promote a policy that creates wealth or a policy that screws the darkies? Yeah, choice two.

Beautiful.

They tried to assimilate me. They failed.

by THE Twank (yatta blah blah @ blah.com) on Thu Sep 23rd, 2010 at 06:38:02 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Indeed Hitler's party was called National Socialist German Workers' Party with the express intent to pull the working class away from the communists and social democrats, but most people won't dispute its classification on the right (not so crazy libertarians).

But, there is more to this than campaign vs. policies. This modern Western sense of what constitutes economic rigt and economic left is too narrow. Most right-wing governments around the world in the last two centuries were rather illiberal on the economy, and policies included, not without opposition from liberals of the day, semi-Keynesian state spending programmes (say, railways or city renewals) and state paternalism (say, the origins of the welfare state under Bismarck) which are now commonly attributed to the economic left.

*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.

by DoDo on Fri Sep 24th, 2010 at 02:55:46 AM EST
[ Parent ]

Display:

Occasional Series