Our recent general election has left the UK in a surreal, almost nightmare situation and I have been reflecting on how we arrived at this state of affairs; how could things become so bizarre; what should be learnt and in particular who or what is to blame for this calamitous state of affairs? It is uncomfortable and worrying enough to hope that the responsibility can be identified. In short, where are we to point the fingers of suspicion and blame?
I should make it clear from the outset that I support no political party! Of course, like every other citizen, I have a duty and a right to chose a form of government according to the electoral rules for our particular version of ‘democracy’. I am, however, restricted to candidates representing a political party with too few independent hopefuls and I must make the best of the choice on offer because, as with others of my ilk, I would never neglect my civil duty and not vote.
Unfortunately political party policies are not about good government or the best interests of society at large although they would like us to think that they are and do their level best to so persuade us. In reality, Party ‘policies’ are intended to convince voters to hand them control of the organs of administration and empower an elite group in order that their preferred dogmatism or ideology can be imposed on us. Whether that be the imposition of discredited Marxist economics from the left or the wanton destruction of the welfare state at the expense of our most needy on the right, all political parties have a dark agenda not directly related either to our actual need or to what we voted for. They dissemble very effectively masking their thirst for power and control with sufficient, current, fashionable and popular policies to beguile voters into supporting them whilst hiding their real and long term ideological ambitions.
Theresa May has illustrated this most effectively by having been so obscenely flattered by opinion polls that she was tempted to slip in policies on charging for personal care and the re-introduction of fox hunting which in ordinary times, being so deeply unpopular, would have been hidden from public view until power had been secured. May’s overweening hubris saved our parents’ their homes and our foxes’ their hides and both of them their security and well-being by failing so spectacularly.
Similarly Corbyn needs to be out of the EU in order to implement his ruinous Marxist economic plans (because under EU rules many of them would be illegal) but has managed to win over voters who are pro-EU by hiding his real intentions a little more successfully than May. He has also proposed disastrous nationalisation plans and plans to give back power to trade unions which, had they not been overshadowed by the EU debate, would have not gone down well with the average voter. Immigration is labour’s only tool for wage control when the unions are your main paymasters. You will not find out how pro-immigration Labour is until after they are elected.
An interesting conclusion can be drawn from the progress of government and politics in the past. Since Robert Walpole became the first Prime Minister of Britain in 1721 we have had 296 years of government of which only 22 years were Labour (of which 12 were Blair/Brown years). The lot of the poor, the working man and professionals has improved considerably in this 296 years and it is therefore plainly obvious that whatever party has been in government they have played no significant role in this process over the long term. Indeed conditions for society seem to have benefited and improved, slowly maybe, in fits and starts perhaps, but always positively and continuously through the tribalism prevalent in the dark ages, feudal monarchies, despotism and all the various shades of democratic, representative government we have been subjected to. In reality our lives, freedoms and rights have been transformed by education, science, communications and above all perhaps the demise of religion and superstitious faith and not by any political ideology or another. There seems to be an underlying and unstoppable process of liberalisation, openness and improvement in society which operates over a long time frame and which political parties can influence in terms of speed but not in terms of direction.
So I do not sign up for the politics of envy, the politics of greed, the politics of the fence or the politics of hate. To admit membership of such a party is an act of intellectual self abasement and a diminution of one’s standing as a free man. As a result I think I look dispassionately (relatively) at the interaction between politicians and their constituents/public. Some who know me would disagree and I admit I am not without my passions in terms of what I think is right for society and good government but I never hold these in a political party context. I sign up for no politics but I do sign up for reason, republicanism, education and secularism
There has been plenty of recent opportunity to study this interaction between political party hopefuls and their constituents, having had, in the space of three years, two general elections and an EU referendum. The forces of the various forms of Social Media, Twitter and Facebook etc. have been deployed, the young have been enthused, passions have been roused, racism and nationalism has been whipped up. A rather tragic split has been revealed between European oriented, liberal minded, mobile professionals and a general population at large who are remote from both Europe and its benefits yet still feel the negative effects of the cultural upheaval caused by immigration. Parliament and its MPs has disgracefully refused to exercise its proper duty and make the EU decision for us on our behalf using its considerable expertise and under the guise of an opinion poll (i.e. the referendum) laid the blame for the result on the public who voted. What was only a non-binding opinion poll quite wrongly (but conveniently) acquired the status of a national plebiscite. Nearly a plebiscite anyway, 0nly 70% or so voted out of those allowed and with the two most affected constituencies, i.e. 16 year olds and ex-pats barred from voting.
We were had! We have all been right royally shafted by politicians on all sides who refuse to live up to their oath, dissemble regarding their true motives, display the most extreme levels of mendacity and, worse in many ways, force us, the governed, to both witness and participate in this unedifying jostle for power at any economic, moral or ethical cost and look at the catastrophic state we are now in!
We have the party who lost (having only a few more seats than Brown did in 2010 when he lost) behaving like winners who now claim to have all the right policies that the public love when actually they gained support simply by being the nearest thing to a pro-EU party. We have the party who won, gaining the largest share of the vote by a long way, behaving like a party that lost and is foundering. Both parties are seriously split along EU lines to the point of breaking.
Student tuition fees will not be scrapped; the rich will not be over taxed; grammar schools will not happen; the value of pensions will not be eroded; care funding will not change; foxes are quietly going about their business without harassment and cruelty.
On the other hand student numbers from less advantaged backgrounds will continue to increase as they have done since fees were introduced; the rich will continue to create jobs and spend their wealth; those who can afford it will continue their under-the-radar school selection process by using their wealth to buy homes in the areas of good schools; pensioners will continue to be the demographic with the highest average incomes; home care will continue to worsen due to lack of funding so that kids can inherit their parents homes.
The extent of political anomaly is endless and serves only to reinforce a view that politics in general has nothing to do with good government and what is best for us in society, but everything to do with power grabbing by elite groupings whose interests rarely align with our own.
Luckily, since cruelty to animals is abhorred by everyone on all sides except for a few degenerate, classically educated (and therefore ignorant) Hurray Henrys who love to dress up in boots and tight trousers, shout tally-ho, get pissed and stamp about the countryside, our foxes remain content.
Is it really any surprise that people say they have had enough of politicians and politics and that our political institutions have lost so much public respect? Of course not.
In my view split parties and minority government was the best result we could have hoped for from the last election. It is now reasonable (for as long as it lasts) for us to hope that our elected representatives will return to doing the job we elected them to do and act, on the whole, in our best interests and not in the tightly bound, vested interests of their discredited ideologies or for the narrow ideological interests of their elites. Compromise will be required to survive, communicating with each other, negotiating for the general good, finding common ground, concentrating on what society wants not what they think society should want.
Will this continue? I am not at all optimistic about the possibility of that. I take note of the so-called Outrage Industry on social media and how quite decent, educated members of society can be swept up in innuendo, half truths, propaganda masked as fact, ad hominem attacks, lying through the juxtaposition of unconnected ideas, name calling and other childish behaviours whilst they climb up the slippery slope of their own dribble and indignation trying to be the loudest bigot on the moral high ground. It is very unedifying to say the least.
I believe this behaviour is symptomatic of the main disease and that the finger points right back at us. Society gets the politicians and the government it deserves because we are the people we are. Too many of us are mendacious, deluded, bigots and hypocrites attracted only to ideas, data and information which support our chosen perspective on life, our individual paradigm or shibboleth whether or not those ideas are rational, sensible or right. We are quick to condemn and just as quick to support when an idea expressed accords with our preconceived views and that unsavoury nature in us can and is very quickly exploited by those who know how to i.e. politicians and their armies of similarly bigoted followers.
Why for example would anyone vote for economically illiterate socialist policies that have failed every time they have been tried with spectacular human suffering? Why? I have no idea, but they would. Remarkably well appointed brains will ignore Venezuela on their TV news and vote for some of that for their own society! Why would anyone who can remember the 1970s in the UK want to give unions more power? Why would anyone want to nationalise the transport and utility industries after the experience we had with them before? Why would we not want better standards of care for our elderly and vulnerable and better health provisions? Why would we want to take on more national debt, increase inflation and interest rates, destroy jobs and pay higher amounts of interest to international banks? Why? Especially if that would lessen funds available for social and health care rather than increasing it. It is all beyond me. Why would we shut off our borders to the staff who run our health services? Why would we ban zero-hours employment contracts and put seasonal companies out of business and their workers out of employment? Why would we allow a party leader who was elected by a few hundreds of thousands of left-wing agitators get away with the claim that that is greater ‘democracy’ rather than greater dictatorship and allow him then to represent the views of billions? Why would we elect politicians that buy their own health care and children’s education privately to manage the our national education and health services that they have never and would never use. Why would anyone call a university educated politician ‘stupid’ for simply not having the politics he favoured.
Pointless then to rail against politicians, political parties and government who simply mirror the society that elected them. Society must change, individuals must start thinking for themselves and work a little harder for the good of their fellows by putting some unprejudiced effort into their reasoning. Envy, racism, nationalism and hatred must be seen for the social cancers they are and human rights and freedoms must be put first ahead of religious rights and freedoms. Humanity as a whole must be prioritised and if there is to be an ideology, since we need an agreed plan and direction for government, it must be an ideology generated BY society not FOR society in political enclaves.
Neither hard left, protesting, envious socialists, especially the pseudo-intellectual, bourgeois-with-a-conscience type from the London suburbs, nor wealthy, privileged, aristocrats are decent individuals or good citizens, they are doing society and humanity at large a great harm. So above all our education system must be maintained rigidly free of politics and religion and should first and foremost emphasise citizenship, social attitudes and human rights above all other subjects and from as early an age as possible.
The finger points at us. We and our various bigotries are to blame. We need to start making future citizens who are better than us, good, decent reasonable and thinking people with far better values than those which got us into this mess.