May 2, 2008

International Conservatives Continue Winning Streak

Marc Comtois

While many pundits still expect the U.S. to make a leftward move in November, it's interesting to note that political ground continues to be gained by the right in some important Western European countries. The latest example being the local elections in Great Britain:

Winning the London mayoral contest is expected to cap an historic electoral win for the Conservatives with David Cameron’s party on course for more than 44 per cent of the national vote. Labour is now expected to finish with as little as 24 per cent, humiliatingly pushed into third place by the Liberal Democrats on 25 per cent.

Prime Minister Gordon Brown admitted it had been a "bad" and "disappointing" night for the Labour Party in the local elections...The size of the Conservative majority is comparable to Labour’s local election win under Tony Blair in 1995. sparking speculation that Mr Cameron could be swept into power with a sizeable majority if repeated in a general election.

This follows wins by the more conservative parties (hey, we're being relative here) in Germany, France and Italy (off the top of my head), though Spain is still leaning left.

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Spain is still cowed by the Madrid terrorist attacks-and don't discount the long standing unrelated terrorism by ETA for Basque independence.Spain has a huge Moslem population and was conquered by the Umayyids in medieval times,so there is some serious fear of Moslem extremism there.

Posted by: joe bernstein at May 2, 2008 9:50 PM

Labour may come in THIRD behind the Liberal Democrats?? Wow.

Rightly or wrongly, I wonder how many wistful thoughts of Tony Blair there will be in the coming weeks?

Posted by: Monique at May 2, 2008 10:52 PM

Why do you say that Spain has been cowed by the bombings in Madrid? I think that the Spaniards have moved away from U.S. style anti-terror fanaticism.

Their government is leftist. It does represent the will of its people, and it has chosen to keep U.S. foreign policy at arms length. Spaniards are Spaniards and pursue Spanish ends. They reject many of our cowboy attitudes, and they should. It ain't Puerto Rico. It's an independent country and I suggest that it does not give a fig for our ridiculous adventures in the middle east. You call it cowed and I call it sensible.

Posted by: OldTimeLefty at May 3, 2008 12:09 AM

I'm pleased that there has been a conservative resurgence in Europe, after a fairly long period of socialist rule in many of the countries there. Of course, I think a lot of it is because of their generally stagnant economies, and relatively high unemployment rates. However, there is also a greater awareness there among the population of the threat of radical Islam to their continued way of life. I'm especially buoyed by news of the results of London's mayoral race, and the overthrow of its uber-lefty mayor "Red Ken" Livingstone.


Do you ever have any original thoughts, or do you just get a thrill out of regurgitating old talking points?

Posted by: Will at May 3, 2008 1:51 AM

OTL-I don't think it's fanatical to respond to terrorism.If you think Afghanistan is a cowboy adventure then I don't think you're being realistic.Iraq was a mistake-I was against it from the beginning.I don't want to hear 9/11 conspiract theories-we were attacks,and it was the culmination of many other attacks and attempts.Spain can't buy security with appeasment.No one can.Radical Islam has been very straightforward about their plans.Just like the Nazis,Fascists,and Communists always were.When extremists say something,they are generally ready to walk the walk.(I don't include the campus student /faculty"revolutionaries").We have become used to politicians who are interested in saying what will get them elected,and whose main purpose in life is aggrandizment/personal enrichment.

Posted by: joe bernstein at May 3, 2008 6:24 AM

Like Italy and England, places like Denmark, Austria, Switzerland, Holland and France have spouted strong anti-immigrant (not just anti-illegal) political parties. They openly campaign against "becoming a crime and disease infested Third World sewer like the US is becoming".

Posted by: Mike at May 3, 2008 8:31 AM

If you present argument instead of invective we may be able to have a discussion. Otherwise, I'll leave the jumping and screaming to you.

Posted by: OldTimeLefty at May 3, 2008 10:49 AM


Here is an article from a Spanish based newspaper written shortly after the attacks in Madrid. This is how the Spanish saw the bombings and the reason they were perpetrated, not how the wanted the Spanish to see it. It's not how many on the right wanted the Spanish to see it. It is how the Spaniards saw it.

"Whether or not it is confirmed that the perpetrators were Islamic extremists, many believe the tragedy would not have occurred if the Spanish government had not gotten involved in U.S. President George W. Bush's 'war on terrorism'.
Although voters punished the PP's (The Popular Party) candidate for prime minister, Mariano Rajoy, the main blow went to Aznar, who will be remembered for his unconditional support for Bush in the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq despite the mass protests held throughout Spain prior to and during the war.
Ten members of Spain's security forces and two Spanish journalists have been killed in Iraq. A survey carried out by the Centre for Sociological Research (CIS) in February 2003 -- just before the March invasion of Iraq -- found that 83 percent of respondents were opposed to the war on Iraq.
Spain's prime minister-elect, Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero -- the candidate of the Spanish Socialist Workers Party (PSOE) -- confirmed his intention to pull Spanish troops out of Iraq. 'The war in Iraq was a disaster, the occupation of Iraq is a disaster,' he said."

Full Article

Like it or not, Spain is another country with completely different views on what makes the world go 'round. Viva las diferencias.

Posted by: OldTimeLefty at May 3, 2008 11:14 AM

OTL, Spain showed Al QUeda that it can get exactly what it wants from weak-willed leftist governments. As you posted, Spain's entire election was altered by their subway bombings. The leftists blamed Spain's involvement in Iraq for the bombings, and the people voted out of fear.

Now AQ knows that at least in Europe, political gains are only an explosion away. Is it any wonder that in 2004, bin Laden endorsed Kerry?

Posted by: EMT at May 3, 2008 3:24 PM

Ah, conservative values return to Europe. A media oligarchist in Italy and a modelizer in France.

Posted by: rhody at May 3, 2008 5:01 PM

"European Conservatives"
They would be called "leftist kooks" if they were in the the USA


Posted by: Anthony at May 3, 2008 5:51 PM

I don't know where you get your information from but it is misleading at best.

Posted by: Mike at May 3, 2008 7:03 PM

You say the Spanish voted "out of fear". I say that they voted to reject ties to Bush and his idiotic war in Iraq.

Fear is expressed by those who support the war when they use the phrase, "We're fighting them there, so that we won't have to fight them here", a statement of pure paranoia. Fear is what the Republicans have been selling since 9/11.

Posted by: OldTimeLefty at May 4, 2008 1:11 AM

You're full of it, of course, but why they voted doesn't matter. The end result was they rewarded Al Queda for the murder of their countrymen.

Apparently you approve.

Posted by: EMT at May 4, 2008 9:57 AM

You jumped to a conclusion without presenting an argument. You state that, "The end result was they rewarded Al Queda", but you present no argument to backup the statement. What you freely state, I just as freely deny. Please present a civil discourse or relegate yourself quietly to the background.

Posted by: OldTimeLefty at May 4, 2008 10:23 AM

The conservatives were winning until the bombing. Suddenly the liberals/communists were in control of government. I can't make it much clearer than that.

Unless you just don't want to get it, which is pretty likely.

Posted by: EMT at May 6, 2008 11:19 PM

Spain did not reward Al Qaeda. Spain rejected the ties between Aznar's conservatives and the United States.

You said, "Suddenly the liberals/communists were in control of government". It wasn't suddenly. It was the clearly expressed will in a fairly held election of the great majority of the Spanish people. It was not some sudden coup d'etat. The Liberals and the Communists and the Socialists joined ranks, voted the Conservative Party out and Spain pulled her troops from Iraq. This was the will of the Spanish people. It may not be what you wanted to happen, but it did. You can interpret the Spanish election any way you'd like, but the overwhelming majority of the Spanish people said, "Enough of this nonsense in Iraq."

Posted by: OldTimeLefty at May 7, 2008 12:05 AM

Does this mean conservative males looking to make time with the ladies will be hitting the Freedom Fly instead of the Spanish Fly?

Posted by: rhody at May 7, 2008 11:39 AM

We can either stand against the Anti Western Terrorist together or can wait till the United State s Unillaterally does it. If you think the American response was extreme you have seen nothing. IF the
Terrorist deliver a suit case nuke to the US the only place you find the faith of Mohammad will be in history books....

Posted by: Miguel Torres at June 19, 2008 2:32 PM
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