Wednesday, 28 September 2011

Economic Liberals get massacred

A further word of caution for those deluded folk who want to creat a centre right, pro busisness, pro free market party like the FDP. The latest opinion poll illustrates the fate of such enterprises:

Latest Germany poll: CDU 31%, SPD 29%, Die Gr√ľnen 19%, Die Linke 7%, Piraten 7%, FDP 2% (Forsa). The Pirates massacre FDP and damage Linke.

It was said for years that the FDP was locked into a 2.5 party system by the electoral system used in Germany. Well funnily enough that has not stopped the rise of the Greens who occupy territory which in the UK is Liberal (as the last set of UK Polling shows the Lib Dems are by a country mile the most trusted party on Green issues of the main players). And so cut off from expension in a more Radical direction by the Greens the FDP are heading for extinction in the National Assembly. Time to work it out again


  1. Are you sure the FDP's recent poor performance isn't anything to do with it being a junior coalition partner in government? Our party has been having a bad run as well for this reason. Look at the last local and regional elections in May.
    And on the FDP's positioning, well Germany has a much more regulated economy than the UK; I don't think of myself as an Orange Booker but my instinct if I lived there would be to support a more free market and less regulation.

  2. I think that there is a perfectly good case to be made that the smaller party in a coalition does not necessarily get wiped out-indeed there are some for who it has proved a spring board.

    Nevertheless my point is that their positioning has cut them off from parts of the political spectrum that in the UK and Holland and Denmark Left Liberals have made their own.

    In passing I would say that some of the regulation in Germany would be good to see introduced here. The whole structure of co-determination-which is a good deal less radical than the policy adopted by the former Liberal Party-has been a significant factor in sustaining Germany through a difficult period of austerity. The need for top pay awards to go via supervisory Boards -including workers-is one that we could certainly learn from and are amongst the ideas Cable has been floating.

    If we were to take it one stage further and reclaim the policy of employee ownership then that could be a major benefit for not just our economic health but also our wider political well being!


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