The Tories' favourite Lib Dem
October 4, 2010 10:40 AM   Subscribe

Good news for Nick Clegg, deputy Prime Minister of the UK and leader of the Liberal Democrats: he's more popular than the Tory Prime Minister, David Cameron. Perhaps not so good news for the Liberal Democrats' image: that's with Tory party activists. Meanwhile, Cameron has professed his love of Macs and iPads in an interview, undoubtedly causing Apple to become instantly uncool in much the way The Smiths and Paul Weller did a few years ago.
posted by acb (54 comments total) 2 users marked this as a favorite

 
undoubtedly causing Apple to become instantly uncool

Not even David Cameron has that kind of power. Maybe, maybe, if Sarah Palin had an iPad.
posted by Horace Rumpole at 10:47 AM on October 4, 2010 [1 favorite]


Rush Limbaugh uses Macs, supposedly. What that has to do with anything, I don't know.
posted by fungible at 10:50 AM on October 4, 2010


The iPad doesn't have much countercultural cool; the stereotypical iPad owner is part of a selfish elite.
posted by acb at 10:50 AM on October 4, 2010 [1 favorite]


Whatever, Obama uses a Zune.
posted by 2bucksplus at 10:51 AM on October 4, 2010 [2 favorites]


The iPad doesn't have much countercultural cool; the stereotypical iPad owner is part of a selfish elite.

In fact, yes. In self-perception, not remotely.
posted by kafziel at 10:51 AM on October 4, 2010


iPad blue?
posted by chavenet at 10:54 AM on October 4, 2010


My late father was quite right-wing; he had a very Hobbesian outlook, believed that religion is the source of all civilisation, was rather homophobic and in favour of the death penalty (this is in Australia, where capital punishment is not on any mainstream agenda). He was also a keen Mac user, having owned four Macs at least, and regarding Windows to be utter rubbish. Make of that what you will.
posted by acb at 10:55 AM on October 4, 2010


fungible: "Rush Limbaugh uses Macs, supposedly. What that has to do with anything, I don't know."

That just tells me that there's a liberal screaming to get out.
posted by KevinSkomsvold at 10:58 AM on October 4, 2010


His boots were very clean.
posted by Burhanistan at 10:59 AM on October 4, 2010



That just tells me that there's a liberal screaming to get out.


Of his basement? Sure.
posted by The Whelk at 11:00 AM on October 4, 2010 [7 favorites]


In fact, yes. In self-perception, not remotely.

In others' perception, even more so. The iPad looks like an expensive yuppie plaything, much like a luxury car or an expensive wristwatch.

Disclaimer: I own an iPad; my excuse is that I develop for the iOS platform. Having said that, it makes a very nice RSS reading platform.
posted by acb at 11:01 AM on October 4, 2010


> The iPad doesn't have much countercultural cool; the stereotypical iPad owner is part of a selfish elite:

"MyType said its data was "collected with reasonable rigour" but not without spin. "Any interpretation … is clearly subjective. MyType made an honest effort to tease out the main themes of the data – but feel free to come to your own conclusions."

In other words: THIS DATA IS FOR NOVELTY PURPOSES ONLY AND SHOULD NEVER BE USED IN SUPPORT OF AN ACTUAL CONCLUSION.
posted by The Card Cheat at 11:03 AM on October 4, 2010


It's not surprising. Clegg has always been on the classical liberal side of the libdems, not the social democratic wing like the last few leaders.
posted by atrazine at 11:09 AM on October 4, 2010


In other words: THIS DATA IS FOR NOVELTY PURPOSES ONLY AND SHOULD NEVER BE USED IN SUPPORT OF AN ACTUAL CONCLUSION.

Welcome to Metafilter, you must be new here. Please enjoy this complementary beverage while our site's highly experienced trolls perform a minuet for you.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 11:12 AM on October 4, 2010 [2 favorites]


I'd be able to join in the Mac-mocking with a more full-throated enthusiasm if I weren't just a little afraid of what sort of politician might be uncloseted as a fellow Linux user one of these days. I'm thinking LaRouchies.
posted by enn at 11:15 AM on October 4, 2010 [4 favorites]


It's not surprising. Clegg has always been on the classical liberal side of the libdems, not the social democratic wing like the last few leaders.

When the Liberal Democrats implode (as they must; the wave of cuts will undoubtedly suffice to make every left-leaning voter forget about the dark days of Blatcherism and "triangulation" and flock back to Labour, abandoning the Lib Dems, even if Labour don't move to the left), perhaps Clegg can join the "wet" wing of the Tories.
posted by acb at 11:17 AM on October 4, 2010


I'd be able to join in the Mac-mocking with a more full-throated enthusiasm if I weren't just a little afraid of what sort of politician might be uncloseted as a fellow Linux user one of these days. I'm thinking LaRouchies.

I'm sure the paranoid survivalist end of Libertarianism has a few people rolling their own Linux distros; you know, to keep the ZOG's mind control viruses out and so on.
posted by acb at 11:19 AM on October 4, 2010


I don't know how Brits feel about Morrissey saying things like "You can't help but feel that the Chinese are a subspecies."

But it can't be much worse than how I feel learning that Maureen Tucker of the Velvet Underground has joined the Tea Party.
posted by Joe Beese at 11:25 AM on October 4, 2010 [2 favorites]


Paul Weller unpopular in England? Did I hear that right?
posted by timsteil at 11:27 AM on October 4, 2010


I'd be able to join in the Mac-mocking with a more full-throated enthusiasm if I weren't just a little afraid of what sort of politician might be uncloseted as a fellow Linux user one of these days.

The Chinese government already developed a version of Linux so if you care about that kind of thing it's already tainted. But then, I own a Thinkpad and recommend Thinkpads at the office while hating the CCP with the passion of a thousand suns, so I'm already a big hypocrite. (Damnit IBM, why couldn't you have sold your PC division to somebody else? *sigh*)
posted by kmz at 11:28 AM on October 4, 2010


> Welcome to Metafilter, you must be new here. Please enjoy this complementary beverage while our site's highly experienced trolls perform a minuet for you.

These damn iThreads...I can never tell.
posted by The Card Cheat at 11:31 AM on October 4, 2010


But then, I own a Thinkpad and recommend Thinkpads at the office while hating the CCP with the passion of a thousand suns, so I'm already a big hypocrite.

And as far as CPUs go, it sucks to be boycotting Israel these days. (Intel design their CPUs there, and I think AMD might as well.)
posted by acb at 11:31 AM on October 4, 2010


And to whatever Chinese persons toiled under sweatshop conditions to manufacture my iPad, I really appreciate it. I owe you a solid.
posted by Joe Beese at 11:39 AM on October 4, 2010 [2 favorites]


I don't know how Brits feel about Morrissey saying things like "You can't help but feel that the Chinese are a subspecies."

Saddened; not terribly surprised (how he squares his belief that there are too many immigrants in England with his long-standing residency in LA, I don't know...hey Moz: that makes you an immigrant!)

But it can't be much worse than how I feel learning that Maureen Tucker of the Velvet Underground has joined the Tea Party.


Oh dear God, really?
posted by Infinite Jest at 11:46 AM on October 4, 2010


Apple's marketing department works very hard to sell the perception that owning a Mac makes you the kind of person you want other people to think you are.
posted by rocket88 at 11:58 AM on October 4, 2010 [1 favorite]


Anyone want to discuss the likely effects of Child Benefit reform, announced at the Tory party conference? What will it mean?

No? I heard Steve Jobs said it was "an incredible user experience", and Jonathan Ive popped up to say that it would "redefine the child aesthetic"*.

*May not have actually happened
posted by djgh at 12:08 PM on October 4, 2010 [1 favorite]


Ah, good ol' Nick Clegg.
posted by KokuRyu at 12:12 PM on October 4, 2010


Jonathan Ive popped up to say that it would "redefine the child aesthetic"

de Saint-Exupery, Mac users, and right-wingers agree: Perfection is achieved, not when there is nothing more to add, but when there is nothing left to take away.
posted by enn at 12:20 PM on October 4, 2010


The rage in that Guardian thread from the privileged who aren't even aware of the irony is highly entertaining. These people are in the top quartile of household income in the UK just by having one partner hitting the 40% tax bracket.

Yes, it's unfair that householders with two slightly lower income earners will still get the benefit, but that will go away when IDS' universal single benefit is introduced.

(Full disclosure: it's likely that our household will lose child benefit when these changes come in.)
posted by pharm at 12:21 PM on October 4, 2010


Paul Weller was never cool. When he did good music he was a mindless working-class Tory and when he stopped that nonsense he started doing shit music. Seriously. Weller. What? His music is about as relevant as his increasingly sad barnet, and that's been the case since well before The Jam split.
posted by Decani at 12:32 PM on October 4, 2010 [3 favorites]


The rage in that Guardian thread from the privileged who aren't even aware of the irony is highly entertaining.

Entertaining for you, perhaps; evidence, most likely, that:

Critics warn reforms for those above 40% income tax rate could trigger collapse in middle-class support for welfare state

...the strategy is working nicely for the Tories. Give it another term or so in power and you'll be whining about the same people voting to demoolish the remnants since it offers nothing to them.
posted by rodgerd at 12:32 PM on October 4, 2010


Rush Limbaugh uses Macs, supposedly. What that has to do with anything, I don't know.
He doesn't just "supposedly" use them, he's an active mac zealot who talks about how great they are on his radio show, how much windows sucks, etc. At least he did back in the '90s, and probably still does today, I would imagine.
posted by delmoi at 12:39 PM on October 4, 2010


Meanwhile, Cameron has professed his love of Macs and iPads in an interview, undoubtedly causing Apple to become instantly uncool in much the way The Smiths and Paul Weller did a few years ago.

iPads are cool. That's why so many people are buying them. Cameron, someone distinctly uncool to start with, is trying to get some cool to rub off on him, by way of the purchase of said item, which is missing the point why the iPad is cool, or why a select few iPad owners are chosen to be cool.

Apple and the iPad will survive Cameronmefigate. To quote the apropos Heathers, "I love my dead gay son!"
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 12:41 PM on October 4, 2010


rogerd, the Guardian has been running round like Chicken Little screaming that the sky was falling ever since the coalition government was formed. This is not going to be the end of the middle classes' support for the welfare state.
posted by pharm at 12:46 PM on October 4, 2010


I dunno, pharm, it worked here. Sometimes the sky is actually falling.
posted by enn at 12:49 PM on October 4, 2010


This is not going to be the end of the middle classes' support for the welfare state.

Will there still be a welfare state to speak of, though? Now that there's no Soviet Union funding and training Communist agitators, and little threat of a working-class revolution over working conditions and injustice, there's no need to placate the proles with benefits, so sooner or later, the people who really matter (business owners and politicians) will get together and decide that, guess what, we can no longer afford the welfare state draining profits. And then they'll decide that things such as maximum working hours, paid annual leave, and so on are no longer affordable (after all, in the brave new globalised world, we're competing against not only America, with its great working poor, but China). It'll be like Blair's policy of triangulation ("yes, I'm moving to the right, but what are you going to do about it?") only applying to society at large.
posted by acb at 12:57 PM on October 4, 2010


This is not going to be the end of the middle classes' support for the welfare state.

Sounds like Mr. Osborne may have a difference of opinion with you on that judging from his speech in Birmingham today.
posted by blucevalo at 2:07 PM on October 4, 2010


I don't know how Brits feel about Morrissey saying things like "You can't help but feel that the Chinese are a subspecies."

Saddened; not terribly surprised (how he squares his belief that there are too many immigrants in England with his long-standing residency in LA, I don't know...hey Moz: that makes you an immigrant!)


The traditional residence of the red-faced British bigot enraged about immigration is somewhere sunny overseas.

/posted from Seattle, where at least it rains.
posted by Artw at 2:17 PM on October 4, 2010 [2 favorites]


For what it's worth, many of the most vocal tea partiers that I know personally are also very vocal Apple people. Most of them are Unix software engineers and thus want to use Unix at home but think that Linux == Communism so they end up with MacOS.
posted by octothorpe at 2:32 PM on October 4, 2010


The traditional residence of the red-faced British bigot enraged about immigration is somewhere sunny overseas.

Obligatory.
posted by Skeptic at 2:41 PM on October 4, 2010


My worry about the end of universal Child Benefit is that it will hurt a particular desperate segment of society: women who don't get any money from their men.

It's paid to the main childcarer, which is always almost the mother. It's universal, so it's paid no matter what the father earns. And the father is often the (main) breadwinner.

If the marriage breaks down, or the father doesn't give the mother any money, then the "household" may still have a big income - but the father has it all. No help for the wife and kids.

It's not a lot in absolute terms, but it can be enormously important for this not uncommon scenario. But it's very very expensive because it's universal.

Sometimes I'm glad I'm not a politician. Hard choices.
posted by alasdair at 2:56 PM on October 4, 2010 [1 favorite]


alasdair: As I understand it, women will *still* be able to claim child benefit.

If their partner earns over the 40% tax threshold, they'll be legally required to report this & take the hit on their annual tax return.

blucevalo: "Sounds like Mr. Osborne may have a difference of opinion with you on that judging from his speech in Birmingham today."

Any relevant quotes? When/If the Tories start seriously talking about means testing the NHS, then I might agree that the middle classes will abandon the welfare state in the UK...
posted by pharm at 3:01 PM on October 4, 2010


I'm just wondering what the additional administrative overhead is going to be.
posted by Artw at 3:10 PM on October 4, 2010


For what it's worth, many of the most vocal tea partiers that I know personally are also very vocal Apple people. Most of them are Unix software engineers and thus want to use Unix at home but think that Linux == Communism so they end up with MacOS.

I thought Windows would have better culture-war credentials, given the rarefied, effete image of the stereotypical Mac user, and the likelihood that they might harbour un-American ideas like atheism or a fondness for socialised healthcare or public transport. Windows, in contrast, is something that the pillars of small town life—staunchly Calvinist union-busting small businessmen, hockey moms, decent megachurch-goin', talk-radio-listenin' folks not given to un-American big-city librul ways—could use. It's unsophisticated, but it does the job and runs on any PC you can buy at Wal-Mart, and it doesn't have any components with French names like Bonjour. Besides, Windows fonts like Comic Sans and Arial carry the right sort of homely, populist message, whereas OSX comes with politically suspect fonts like Gill Sans (used by the BBC, that source of socialist propaganda) and Hoefler Text (from the same foundry that designed Gotham, the Obama font), not to mention the sort of uncluttered graphic design that usually indicates suspiciously unreactionary political views.

My second guess would have been Linux, because it could appeal to the sort of prickly libertarian mindset that might be drawn to parts of the Tea Party. (It could also appeal to liberals and socialists, but it's a broad church.) But OSX seems a bit too coastal to be a proper Tea Party OS.
posted by acb at 4:27 PM on October 4, 2010


David Maceron.
posted by davemee at 4:31 PM on October 4, 2010


On the other hand, Microsoft's equal opportunities policies and support for same sex partnerships and sex reassignment surgery under it's benefits program makes it like some kind of evil socialist gaytopia.
posted by Artw at 4:32 PM on October 4, 2010


On the other hand, Microsoft's equal opportunities policies and support for same sex partnerships and sex reassignment surgery under it's benefits program makes it like some kind of evil socialist gaytopia.

And Apple doesn't do this?
posted by acb at 4:38 PM on October 4, 2010


I have no idea. Ask the expert.
posted by Artw at 4:40 PM on October 4, 2010


Those who saw my jeremiads during the election threads will know I hated Nick Clegg before it was trendy.
The child benefit cut is of course the thin end of the wedge - child benefit has been widely praised because of its universality, which made it more efficient and successful at targeting help to children (PDF); now the Tory/Tory-lite scum have brought in means testing watch the income threshold get progressively lowered in years to come.
posted by Abiezer at 5:51 PM on October 4, 2010


Microsoft also pushes for gay rights legistation in it's home state of Washington, which draws some fire from conservatives.

Meanwhile Apple, um... oh dear.
posted by Artw at 7:25 PM on October 4, 2010


On the other hand, Microsoft's equal opportunities policies and support for same sex partnerships and sex reassignment surgery under it's benefits program makes it like some kind of evil socialist gaytopia.

It sucks that Lady Gaga's tweets got censored by Apple. On the other hand, Microsoft's lawyers worked hand-in-hand with Russian goons until they got outed to the press.

Compared with journalists and other dissenters getting raped and shot in the back of the head in Russia for speaking out against Putin and his thugs, the situation is not great, but it could admittedly be a lot worse.

I hope that pressure from the public and/or greater scrutiny from the press gets Apple to rethink its censorship policies, in the same way that Microsoft made significant changes when a spotlight was shone on their practices overseas.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 8:43 PM on October 4, 2010


"Tory-lite" was also an accurate way of describing New Labour, who were basically Thatcherism plus spin.

Interestingly, both the out-of-power Lib Dems and, now, Ed Milliband's out-of-power Labour were the leftmost mainstream party. I wonder whether Labour's new-found leftist convictions will survive any chance of exercising power.
posted by acb at 12:04 AM on October 5, 2010


The traditional residence of the red-faced British bigot enraged about immigration is somewhere sunny overseas.

Oh I know; I just expect someone with the intelligence of Morrissey to show a little more awareness of the contradiction in his position. I am now going to pretend that he was killed by a double-decker bus in 1987, back when he still made great music, and when he wasn't making any overtly racist statements (If I try hard I can spin 'I hate Diana Ross' and 'reggae is vile' as musical statements, rather than racist ones).
posted by Infinite Jest at 7:05 AM on October 5, 2010


Heaven knows he's miserable now.

(sorry)
posted by Artw at 7:38 AM on October 5, 2010


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