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Could British politics be ready for a Brawn breakthrough?

By Mark Littlewood
May 25th, 2009 at 3:04 pm | 26 Comments | Posted in UK Politics






The sporting sensation of 2009 has been the astonishing performance of the new Brawn GP Formula One team.  Ross Brawn formed the outift from the ashes of the Honda franchise, and it only officially came into existence this March. Six weeks later, Brawn are running away with both the constructors and the drivers championship. Jenson Button started the season as a 300/1 rank outsider to finish as F1’s top driver, he is now a 1/3 nailed-on favourite, having taken the chequered flag in five of the first six races of the season.

Brawn GP have come from nowhere to shatter an establised duopoly.

The red half of this duopoly – Ferrari – have been especially dominant for the last decade, but now look like they may exit the sport all together. The other half – McLaren – have been immersed in career-ending scandals verging on farce (although seem to be able to dredge their own moats).

With psephological experts predicting more than half of incumbent MPs will be removed or defeated within the next twelve months, the parallels with the present political crisis are just too delicious to ignore.

Could a 300/1 outsider come from absolutely nowhere and sweep away a tired and jaded duopoly? At the moment, much concern is focused on the opportunities for the hard right. But isn’t the truth that the wider public are desperate for something – almost anything – that is markedly different from the current political order? This must represent a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for  a genuinely radical, liberal, reforming agenda. If the LibDems can’t or won’t seize this chance, somebody or something else surely will.

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