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The Cameron-Clegg Government: Coalition Politics in an Age of Austerity [Paperback]

Simon Lee , Dr Matt Beech
3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
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Book Description

5 April 2011
This book provides the first detailed analysis of the ideas and policies of the Cameron-Clegg government. It covers the period from the May 2010 General Election and its outcome, through the formation of the coalition, to publication of the coalition's Programme for Government, and its 20 October 2010 Spending Review. Drawing upon the contributions of a team of 16 academic experts, every area of domestic policy is evaluated, including policy developments and spending decisions affecting the economy; health; education; welfare and the 'Big Society'; environment and transport; home affairs; constitutional reform; and Scotland, Wales and Northen Ireland. The Cameron-Clegg Government also evaluates the coalition's agenda for defence policy, including the outcome of the Strategic Defence Review; foreign policy and international development; and policy towards the European Union. The book concludes with an analysis of the impact of the coalition upon each of the three major United Kingdom political parties.

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Product details

  • Paperback: 312 pages
  • Publisher: Palgrave Macmillan (5 April 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0230296440
  • ISBN-13: 978-0230296442
  • Product Dimensions: 21 x 14 x 2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 361,028 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

Product Description

Review

'a timely rain-check on the government's progress. The coalition may well have a lot longer to run but its first year has certainly been action packed and students of British politics will find much to chew over in this volume.'
- Steve Coulter, European Institute, London School of Economics and Political Science

'...a thoughtful comprehensive summary of the challenges Britain faces...not to be missed...." City A.M

'Simon Lee and Matt Beech's edited volume makes a significant and timely contribution to the debate surrounding the Conservative-Liberal Democrat government.' Judi Atkins, Parliamentary Brief

Highlighted as a 'best read for the summer break'. Total Politics

Book Description

The first and definitive analysis of the Conservative/Liberal Democrat coalition

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
2 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Useful survey of the Coalition's policies 7 Jun 2011
Format:Paperback
This is a very useful introduction to the coalition, edited by Simon Lee and Matt Beech of the University of Hull. It starts by covering the making of the coalition, then there are chapters on the economy, education, the NHS, welfare, the environment, home affairs, constitutional reform, devolution, national security, foreign policy, and the EU. The final section looks at the coalition's effects on the Tories, the LibDems and Labour.

The tuition fees rise breached both parties' manifestos. The proposed NHS `reform' was not in either manifesto, nor in the Coalition Agreement or their programme for government. Both the nationalisation of schools funding and the NHS `reforms' broke coalition promises to end the `era of top-down government' and to promote `decentralization'. The Localism Bill added 126 new powers for central government over local authorities.

The City has given 42.76 million to the Tory Party since Cameron became leader. Outside Parliament, only the City backs the destruction of our NHS. In September 2009, Clegg called for `savage cuts' to public services. The coalition aims to cut public spending by 46 per cent by 2015.

Most of the debt is in the form of government bonds that do not have to be repaid for 14 years. It was not `Labour's debt crisis', as the Conservative Party claimed, but, as George Osborne admitted, "private sector debt was the cause of the crisis."
Osborne said that we needed to move from `an economic model based on unsustainable private and public debt' to `a new model of economic growth that is rooted in more investment, more savings and higher exports'. But private and public debts are both rising.
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3 of 6 people found the following review helpful
By Mark Pack TOP 1000 REVIEWER
Format:Paperback
This book has, at first glance, a lot going for it. A line-up of significant academic names, a well-known and reputable publisher (Palgrave Macmillan) a subject matter that is rarely out of the news and (unlike for books about the 2010 general election) a field relatively clear of rival publications.

A second glance suggests one of its problems: although nominally about both the Conservatives and the Liberal Democrats, there are five contributors who are listed as having published books purely about the Conservative Party but none with one listed about the Liberal Democrats. In fact, of the eighteen contributors, only one lists publications about the Lib Dems (Emma Sanderson-Nash, who has written articles and biographical sketches on the party). Moreover, there are two Conservative Parliamentarians and no Liberal Democrats. For a book about coalition, it is very much coming at it from a Conservative (and also Labour) perspective.

As a result, if you read it closely there are many occasions where the limits of most of contributors' knowledge about the Liberal Democrats shows through, whether it's in the minor mistakes (no, Ming Campbell didn't lead the party into a general election), the lack of knowledge of the party's policy heritage (attitudes towards public services are frequently mentioned yet the Huhne Commission is not, for example) and the preference for trying to view the Liberal Democrats through the prism of other parties (and hence the curious decision to compare Nick Clegg's views on public services with those of Keith Joseph rather than, if you are going to pick a figure from the 1970s or 1980s, a previous party leader such as Jo Grimond).
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Amazon.com: 4.0 out of 5 stars  1 review
2 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Useful study of the Coalition government 7 Jun 2011
By William Podmore - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
This is a very useful introduction to the coalition, edited by Simon Lee and Matt Beech of the University of Hull. It starts by covering the making of the coalition, then there are chapters on the economy, education, the NHS, welfare, the environment, home affairs, constitutional reform, devolution, national security, foreign policy, and the EU. The final section looks at the coalition's effects on the Tories, the LibDems and Labour.

The tuition fees rise breached both parties' manifestos. The proposed NHS `reform' was not in either manifesto, nor in the Coalition Agreement or their programme for government. Both the nationalisation of schools funding and the NHS `reforms' broke coalition promises to end the `era of top-down government' and to promote `decentralization'. The Localism Bill added 126 new powers for central government over local authorities.

The City has given 42.76 million to the Tory Party since Cameron became leader. Outside Parliament, only the City backs the destruction of our NHS. In September 2009, Clegg called for `savage cuts' to public services. The coalition aims to cut public spending by 46 per cent by 2015.

Most of the debt is in the form of government bonds that do not have to be repaid for 14 years. It was not `Labour's debt crisis', as the Conservative Party claimed, but, as George Osborne admitted, "private sector debt was the cause of the crisis."
Osborne said that we needed to move from `an economic model based on unsustainable private and public debt' to `a new model of economic growth that is rooted in more investment, more savings and higher exports'. But private and public debts are both rising. As the Office for National Statistics' Public sector finances, April 2011 said, public sector net debt (excluding financial interventions) was 910.1 billion at the end of April, up from 889 billion in December 2010. When you include financial interventions, that is, the 1.342 trillion we paid to rescue the banks, the total public sector net debt was 2.252 trillion, up from 2.18 trillion at the end of April 2010.
And in the third quarter of 2010, manufacturing investment fell by 2.5 per cent. This is not so much an `absence' of a strategy to support manufacturing industry, as a strategy to destroy what is left of it.
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