Thursday, July 23, 2015

Why I Would Rather The Labour Party Were In Opposition Forever Than The Tories Were In Government Forever With No Opposition


I am Socialist. 

In fact, I am probably your worst nightmare. I am a Christian Socialist. 

(I can answer the one about men's bottoms better than Tim Farron, but I am not going to.) 

I am not a Marxist or Communist. I think that everyone, including me, should pay slightly more taxes; and that the money be spend on schools, hospitals, libraries and parks which everyone, including me, can use.

I am also, incidentally, a liberal, in the sense that I think that everybody should be allowed to do whatever they like so long as it isn't interfering with anybody else. ("I find it squicky" does not count as interfering.)

My ideal arrangement would be a consensus around the political center-left:
  • Health care free at the point of need
  • Public service broadcasting
  • State schools that are sufficiently good, that no-one needs to pay for private education
  • A job for every one who wants one 
  • Everyone with a job able to afford a mortgage (or rent on a decent home); to feed and clothe their family; and have a bit left over for beer
  • Everyone without a job paid an allowance so they can buy food and pay rent and have a bit left over for beer
  • No-one made to feel like an outsider or in danger because of their headwear or the word they use for "god" or who they fall in love with (this includes headwear, deities, and sexual practices I persohnally find squicky) 
  • A country where we don't execute school children; spank murderers; or torture people who look a bit like people who think might be terrorists. 
  • The rich permitted to continue tearing small woodland animals to pieces in the privacy of their own homes if they really want. 
However, as I understand it, a center-left government is not currently one of the options on the table.

The options on the table appear to be

1: A far right government that wants to abolish the BBC, abolish the welfare state, abolish the NHS and bring back the Workhouse, with an center left opposition that criticizes them, attacks them, campaigns against them, picks holes in their laws at committee stage, supports protesters and strikers and generally makes life as hard as possible for the government. 

2: A far right government that wants to abolish the BBC, abolish the welfare state, abolish the NHS and bring back the Workhouse and an opposition which positively encourages them, in the hope that, in 2025, the opposition can form a government which believes in abolishing the BBC and bringing back the workhouse.

So I choose option 1. Obviously, option 3 (a center left government with a center right opposition) would be the best option. But it isn't on offer.

They won't call them workhouses. But silly teenagers are going to carry on having sex whatever Geroge Osbourne says. Particularly when the newspapers won't ever allow realistic advise about sex, contraception and abortion to be given to school children. Dacre and Murdoch and Desmond are prudes, like all pornographers. So instead of "silly ladies with five kids from three different men being supported by the public purse" we are going to have "silly ladies with five kids from three different men who can't possibly support those kids." So either we go back to Cathy Come Home, kick her onto the streets, and send the kid catcher round to forcibly put her kids in a state orphanages (which is more expensive than Welfare) or we send poor people who simply won't stop breeding to some sort of state-run institution, probably on the model of detention centers for immigrants, where they can be taken care of away from the public gaze. And those detention centers will be made as nasty as possible, so as not to appear to reward people who have "done the wrong thing" and chosen to be poor. And the Daily Mail will say that these places are like holiday camps, and that honest people's tax dollars shouldn't be spent on water and air for women who've had sex too young when they can't afford it, and if they would rather die they had better do so so quickly and reduce the surplus populations. And Labour will say that that's what they're hearing on the doorsteps and it would be self-indulgent to disagree.
As a very wise man once said: the poor drink and dance and screw because there's nothing else to do.

Politics isn't a destination, it's a trajectory. 

At one time, we had the Tories saying "Move slowly to the right" and Labour saying "Move slowly to the left". 

Then it became the Tories saying "Move quickly to the right" and Labour saying "Move slowly to the right." 

The new policy is Tories saying "Move quickly to the right" and Labour saying "We certainly aren't going to stop you."

Perhaps one day, David Cameron will say "We have now moved as far to the right as we need to, and can stop?" On that day, will his party say "Hooray! We have moved as far to the right as we need to, and can stop." Or will they denounce him as a communist? 

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