Tag Archives: gareth smyth

Predicting the future: we didn’t turn Japanese

Shortly after the Conservative Party won its fourth general election in a row in 1992, a symposium met to consider the question of whether Britain – formerly a country with regularly rotating government between the two main parties – was turning into a political version of Japan, where the same party had been in power for nearly forty years.

Even between the event occurring and the publication of a book based on it, Turning Japanese? Britain with a Permanent Party of Government (eds. Helen Margretts and Gareth Smyth), political events in both countries had taken a dramatic turn. In Japan the LDP lost power, starting a period of much greater political fluidity with even subsequent LDP Prime Ministers struggling to restore their party’s previous dominance. Meanwhile in Britain the collapse of the Conservative Party’s economic policies following Britain’s enforced exit from the European Exchange Rate Mechanism (ERM) quickly made the government appear very vulnerable, even if debates in Labour continued on whether, as John Smith preferred, one more heave was all that was needed or whether, as Tony Blair insisted on after John Smith’s death, a more radical reshaping of the party was required to win the next election.

Posted in Books and Op-eds | Also tagged , , , , , , , , and | 5 Comments
Advert



Recent Comments

  • Peter Martin
    The description for this debate sums up both sides of the argument very well. Either we are of the opinion that " To be anti-Zionist isn’t to be anti-Semitic ...
  • Michael BG
    Jenny Barnes, If there is spare capacity in the economy then giving people more spending power should lead to economic growth rather than inflation. However,...
  • Katharine Pindar
    I am glad that Ed Davey is saying that energy bills for householders must not rise again in April. But he and our other Parliamentarians and spokespeople will h...
  • Andrew Melmoth
    The thesis that anti-semitism is taken less seriously than other forms of racism isn't best made by someone who has suffered no ill consequences in their career...
  • David Garlick
    Can't do less than praise this,but. These people will still be able to get funding and they will still have time to work up their excuses for not meeting their...