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Tuesday, May 24, 2005

Balance of Power

I'm still chuckling. What usually happens in democracies elsewhere, those who employ proportional representation to fill parliamentary seats, is that the majority party very rarely finds itself with an absolute majority - where it has more seats than all other parties combined - and is therefore bound to forge alliances and coalitions with some of its political enemies.

This quite often results in tremendous powers being vested in tiny, fearsome, wingnut parties: they have just enough seats to keep a government in power, or contrariwise, to kill it if some fundamental demands are not met.

I'm chuckling today because, for once, the opposite appears to be happening: in a congress filled almost to the brim with two opposing sets of extremists, one side having a very small notional majority over the other, the balance of power now sits in the lap of fourteen moderates.

Anyone who is able to piss-off Powerline and Atrios in one fell swoop gets my vote...


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