Dispatch from the Razor's Edge, the Blog of Michael Stephen Fuchs
The Revolution in British Politics
We Are Now Governed By Grown-ups

I'm very pleased to say, and feel obliged to say (after my spew of vitriol about Brown), a few quick, heart-felt, gushing things about the new PM, Deputy PM – and 'our Liberal Conservative government' (to borrow Cameron's phrase).

Much has already been said about how much had to go right (or wrong, depending on your perspective) for this to occur. But it really does feel like a miraculous event. For me, after all the acrimony of the Bush years, and now Obama vs. The Tea Partiers, and particularly the divisive figure of Brown, it was just so wonderful to see the two new leaders cheerfully standing up there acting like proper adults. Here they are (stick around for the hilarious – and now famous – question about Cameron's "favourite joke"):

Because I'm still a guest here, and my opinions are still slightly suspect, here are two fantastic articles that capture the spirit of the moment – and if you're American, put you pretty well in the picture.

It was like witnessing a coup. Millions of viewers will have shared my impression almost of watching two men staging a putsch against their own parties, against the entire British political system, and against the ingrained assumptions of more than a century of parliamentary government. “Think again,” said the moment.

It borders on the supernatural. No imaginable electoral outcome could have more intelligently designed for the shape and tone of the government these two men already wanted to lead; no outcome could more securely have protected them from enemies within their own ranks.

As they spoke there was, for me, a palpable lifting of the ghastliness of the past few years. Maybe Mr Cameron was right: it doesn't have to be this way.

Mr Clegg and Mr Cameron make a startlingly lovely couple… Both are 43, tallish and, as Martin Amis writes of a certain kind of well-bred Englishman, “pointlessly handsome”.

More important than that overlap, perhaps, both are well-adjusted human beings. You search in vain on both men’s shoulders for the chips that typically burden and motivate politicians.

Mr Clegg has made the Lib Dems more liberal, or at least more realistic, in economic matters. Mr Cameron has striven, if with frequent blips, to make the Tories more socially liberal.

Both give the strong impression of not being in politics merely to survive or slither to the top. Rather, both have always seemed determined to do something big – buoyed by the innate confidence that they can, and also by a sense that they can always bugger off and do something else if they fail.

And they have done something big.

President Obama seemed to have a similar sense of scale of this change: in his reaction to the results, he conspicuously used the "special relationship" phrase, which his administration had previously deprecated.

And a final thought of my own – overwrought and over-optimistic, probably, as usual: Could this signal a resurgence, so late in the day, of classical liberalism?


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about
close photo of Michael Stephen Fuchs

Fuchs is the author of the novels The Manuscript and Pandora's Sisters, both published worldwide by Macmillan in hardback, paperback and all e-book formats (and in translation); the D-Boys series of high-tech, high-concept, spec-ops military adventure novels – D-Boys, Counter-Assault, and Close Quarters Battle (coming in 2016); and is co-author, with Glynn James, of the bestselling Arisen series of special-operations military ZA novels. The second nicest thing anyone has ever said about his work was: "Fuchs seems to operate on the narrative principle of 'when in doubt put in a firefight'." (Kirkus Reviews, more here.)

Fuchs was born in New York; schooled in Virginia (UVa); and later emigrated to the San Francisco Bay Area, where he lived through the dot-com boom. Subsequently he decamped for an extended period of tramping before finally rocking up in London, where he now makes his home. He does a lot of travel blogging, most recently of some very  long  walks around the British Isles. He's been writing and developing for the web since 1994 and shows no particularly hopeful signs of stopping.

You can reach him on .

THE MANUSCRIPT by Michael Stephen Fuchs
PANDORA'S SISTERS by Michael Stephen Fuchs
DON'T SHOOT ME IN THE ASS, AND OTHER STORIES by Michael Stephen Fuchs
D-BOYS by Michael Stephen Fuchs
COUNTER-ASSAULT by Michael Stephen Fuchs
ARISEN, Book One - Fortress Britain, by Glynn James & Michael Stephen Fuchs
ARISEN, Book Two - Mogadishu of the Dead, by Glynn James & Michael Stephen Fuchs
ARISEN : Genesis, by Michael Stephen Fuchs
ARISEN Book Three - Three Parts Dead, by Glynn James & Michael Stephen Fuchs
ARISEN Book Four - Maximum Violence, by Glynn James & Michael Stephen Fuchs
ARISEN Book Five - EXODUS, by Glynn James & Michael Stephen Fuchs
ARISEN Book Six - The Horizon, by Glynn James & Michael Stephen Fuchs

ARISEN, Book Seven - Death of Empires, by Glynn James & Michael Stephen Fuchs
ARISEN, Book Eight - Empire of the Dead by Glynn James & Michael Stephen Fuchs
ARISEN : NEMESIS by Michael Stephen Fuchs
ARISEN, Book Nine - Cataclysm by Michael Stephen Fuchs
ARISEN, Book Ten - The Flood by Michael Stephen Fuchs
ARISEN, Book Eleven - Deathmatch by Michael Stephen Fuchs
ARISEN, Book Twelve - Carnage by Michael Stephen Fuchs
ARISEN, Book Thirteen - The Siege by Michael Stephen Fuchs
ARISEN, Book Fourteen - Endgame by Michael Stephen Fuchs
ARISEN : Fickisms
ARISEN : Odyssey
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