Facebook hires Nick Clegg, British politician who annihilated his own party, as new global affairs chief

Originally published at: https://boingboing.net/2018/10/19/zuckerberg-hires-nick-clegg-b.html


Even though i’m an american, i’m guessing this is as bad as a violent crime ridden town hiring Leatherface from the Texas Chainsaw Massacre to be the new sheriff to clean things up?


Let’s hope he can do the same thing for Facebook as their Head of Global Affairs.

One would hope so, but more likely he’ll continue in his life mission of bumbling into situations where he helps destroy liberal democracy in the West.


Makes total sense to hire an ex vice PM for the upcoming Syndicate Wars and Franchise Wars.

ETA, @gracchus: I didn’t realize he was that influential. I mainly perceived him like this:


An American equivalent would be, say, General Motors hiring Jerry Lundegaard as its chief law enforcement liaison.

There’s a certain unplesant cunning to the idea, but when it all ends in disaster no-one can pretend they weren’t incredibly stupid hiring the guy.


It’s true that Clegg, by partnering with Cameron’s Conservatives did annihilate the electoral prospects of the Lib Dems (who, despite being nominally a ‘centre’ party were frequently to the left of Labour on many issues, at least among the membership). However, that said, the Coalition did help to moderate some of the more rabid instincts and desires of the Tories.

On a lighter note, pictures of Nick Clegg looking sad are (or were) a thing.


Right, Clegg’s biggest problem was his naivety about how much a bunch of bastards the Tories are.


For those of you who are not familiar with UK politics, here’s a little fact that illustrates exactly how damaging his leadership was:

Rob described the UK as having a “Three party system” in it’s Westminster parliament.

At the last two elections, his party came a distant fourth, barely ahead of the sectarian nutters of the DUP.


Well that may be true, but he was much more an ENABLER of right wing fuckwits on a mission to destroy the state and return to free-for-all market forces, and so his new job should suit him down the the ground, just fine. Enabling Cameron/Osborne and enabling Zuckerberg - same job description, basically.

Yes, and it is not the sort of naivety one can put down to innocence or simple ignorance. He ought to have known - everyone else did - it was almost wilfully ignorant.


I originally had a line in the post about them having the same number of MPs as a “deranged Irish cult” but then it struck me that the DUP, with its 9 MPs, is currently the most powerful party in Britain.


I’ve always felt that the the Lib Dems’ electoral performance post-coalition said more about British voters’ inability to understand what being in a coalition means and a lot more about the complete lack of reality among Lib Dem voters.

I suspect that was in large part because the Lib Dems had mostly taken over the role previously held by the Labour party of being the party you could ‘support’ without any fear that they’d actually get elected into government and have to do anything nasty to anyone, so if you’d been disappointed by one of the major parties you could safely switch to the Lib Dems.

When they got into power and found out that strangely enough, you can’t always get exactly what you want even if you are in government, let alone as the junior member of a coalition, the wheels fell off and the dummies flew out of the pram.

And I suspect that played a large part too by making the Tories a more directly palatable option for many and conversely showing others that even with dilution, the Tories are still bastards so you’d better vote Labour.

Who are now showing the rest of the UK how politics is played in Northern Ireland and, as @beschizza says, are giving a masterclass in political ju-jitsu.


You should have left it in. I can practically hear the reaction from the ultra-orange fleg waving yoons of the DUP at being called Irish.


Here’s me, just 90 mins from quitting time, looking forward to booze and Lebanese food, all happy, like, and you have to point out that the DUP are basically in charge. Fucks sake Beschizza…


10,703,754 people apparently didn’t…

Whilst I was surprised to hear this, I wasn’t exactly astonished once I thought back to his book “Politics: Between the Extremes”.
(Well, I listened to the audiobook version.)

In it, his biggest lament isn’t going in to the coalition, it’s that he didn’t set up a communications department of his own. As the junior party in the coalition, they didn’t get much say on the message - the conservatives absolutely controlled that. So for example, the Lib Dems fought tooth and nail for a tax reform that would benefit the poor and middle classes (removal of any tax padi on the first £10,000), and when it finally arrived the Conservatives claimed the credit despite having spent months trying to stop the policy in cabinet meetings.

So Nick is a man who is absolutely aware of the impact of good - and bad - communications. In that regard, he’s someone who might at least have some idea of the harm Facebook can do, and might therefore actually do a good job of bending Facebook to being a better corporate citizen rather than its current VC Tech Bro incarnation. It’s certainly interesting that they hired him - it seems to talk of some self awareness within Facebook about their problems.

Only time will tell, of course.


He’ll be shit at it, but well paid. Bit like being deputy PM.


I suspect a lot of them did, and liked it. Frankly he should never have agreed to a coalition. A minority Tory govt would never have been able to do many of the things they did do, so that would have been a far better moderation of the rabid Tories, and a minority govt might not have lasted. They should merely have agreed to lend their vote in the House on key issues as they arose, subject to negotiation. Once they were in coalition with a party most of their members loathed they were doomed. But the semblance of having some hands touching the hands actually controlling the tiller of power corrupted absolutely.

He is unhireable at best. So he’ll fit right into the fb culture.


Electorally, the Lib Dems were hammered in the 2015 election. Although they have been consistently recovering since then, in terms of vote share.

And their membership is at what’s practically an all-time high for the party. They’re also a pretty engaged membership too. (Disclaimer: I’m a member of the party.) This is more than we can say for the Conservatives, although Labour also have an expanded base and active membership.

The reason that the Conservatives are still in power is solely down to safe seats with first past the post voting. They’re a party on the decline in almost every metric, thankfully. The problem is that it’s a slow decline. :frowning_face: