|Photo by Amanda Reynolds, Ministry of Defence|
a psychological phenomenon that occurs within a group of people, in which the desire for harmony or conformity in the group results in an irrational or dysfunctional decision-making outcome. Group members try to minimize conflict and reach a consensus decision without critical evaluation of alternative viewpoints, by actively suppressing dissenting viewpoints, and by isolating themselves from outside influences.After the Liberal Democrats were turned to chutney at the May 2015 general election, a number of people who had left the party in the days after the Coaliton was formed asked we had not seen the inevitable coming.
The answer, I suspect, is groupthink.
That is certainly the conclusion Nick Harvey comes to in an article in the new issue of Liberator:
Somehow, though stuck at 8% in national polls, we clung to the idea that incumbency would save MPs (even though it hadn’t saved excellent councillors and MEPs).
Our biggest mistake in responding to that finding was to offer up a diet of backward-looking selfcongratulation on what we had achieved in coalition. There were indeed many Lib Dem achievements in office of which we should be proud, and no one else would blow the trumpet for them. But many were in the earlier years so no longer news, and all were by definition done with Tory consent so they had shared credit in some cases.
Above all, voters simply aren’t motivated by gratitude, as Paddy regularly acknowledged. Yet on and on we warbled like a cracked record.You can subscribe to Liberator via the magazine's website.