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Politics

What would Nick Clegg drive…

… Well there is an old joke. “Who knows? But The Apostles were all in One Accord. I guess that would be a push and you might have to place the reeking corpses of St Vincent of Rope and Beaker of Alexander in the boot (Honda make an Accord Estate?) so it could be done.

I am not saying I am delighted with the election because iDave is a parrot-faced wazzack but Hell’s Teeth! Look at the alternatives? That assorted collection of…

Well, Nat of the Greens was utterly incompetent and I am against Greenism anyway. Why they didn’t go with their sole MP Caroline Lucas is beyond me. Utterly.

The SNP are a matter of almost supernatural whatever to me. I am English. But I shall volunteer to be on the relief trucks. And fight the gingers off with a point’d stick as they clamour for the porridge.

Nige of Farrage – looks like a fifties bookie.

Er… Dunno…

Oh, Dread Milliband EdStone. Give me strength! Got a kicking in the Balls. Good.

So, not great but could have been worse.

The Socialist Revolt that America Forgot

Now this, on relatively recent American History.

You Brits aren’t the only ones who play the Election Game, y’know. Ours comes up in about 18 months, and at Salon some unrepentant underminer of liberty named Eric Lee has seen fit to write “A Lesson for Bernie Sanders” on the topic.

For those who are going, “Bernie Sanders — Who He?”: He is the avowedly Socialist Senator from Vermont who has decided to run for the Presidency next year.

So why should Zanzibarians, or even Americans for that matter, care about Bernie Sanders’ political ambitions? No particular reason, except that we all have a liberty interest in seeing that such ambitions die like a beached flounder, but with less fuss.

(Although Sanders has annoyed many by refusing to get with the gun-control program. In fact Slate throws its toys out of the pram over his non-compliance with the Democratic-Progressive required stance on the issue.

(Additionally, many find Sanders far more honest than Shrill, not terribly difficult of course.)

I wouldn’t lose any sleep over this one, but the history is interesting.

Mr. Lee’s “Lesson” describes Michael Harrington’s insinuation of socialism into the ideology and agenda of the Democratic Party, with its successful shoving of the Party leftward, and the result (as Mr. Lee believes, anyhow) of Mr. Harrington’s being persuaded not to run for the Presidency himself in 1980.

For a fuller account, see Dr. Ron Radosh’s book Divided They Fell.

The column commences:

The socialist revolt that America forgot: A history lesson for Bernie Sanders

Bernie Sanders is a singular figure in modern U.S. politics, the lone self-identified socialist to serve in Congress, at a time when mainstream American attitudes, if not actively violent towards socialism as they have been in the past, remain nonetheless fundamentally suspicious. As such, his plans to run against Hillary Clinton in the 2016 Democratic primaries represent something of an anomaly. What bears mentioning about Sanders’ run, however, is that it is not the first time a prominent socialist has considered a bid for the Democratic nomination. To understand the significance of Sanders’ candidacy, it’s worth flashing back to the summer of 1978, as liberal Democrats were growing increasingly disillusioned with Jimmy Carter’s presidency.

[SNIP]

Political Tribalism

Path through a dark wood

“Many people, especially ignorant people, want to punish you for speaking the truth, for being correct, for being you. Never apologize for being correct, or for being years ahead of your time. If you’re right and you know it, speak your mind. Speak your mind. Even if you are a minority of one, the truth is still the truth.”

― Mahatma Gandhi

The road to religious enlightenment, whether travelled by the biblical Saul of Tarsus or Siddhartha Gautama is often described as the blinding light of revelation, but by comparison, the path of objective truth is more akin to a lonesome rider carrying a lamp through a dark forest.

Any victories that we have are fleeting and our opponents are the deceitful, supported by the ignorant, so why do we continue? Surely those who fight an unwinnable war which never ends are fools?

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Time for “None of the Above”

None of the AboveGiven today’s general election in the UK, now seems as good a time as any to jump on a particular hobby horse of mine which is increasing democratic representation and allowing the disaffected amongst the electorate to show their contempt for politicians in a meaningful way, something they will resist to their dying breath.

The whole point of the “None of the Above” option is to provide an alternative to those who feel disconnected from the political parties and their local representatives.

In the event of the election being won for “None of the Above” the usual approach (in the few countries that allow it), is to either elect the highest place candidate (essentially ignoring the overwhelming vote), rerun the election with the same candidates or rerun the election with different candidates. Very few elections take full account of the electorate in the event of a “None of the Above” result in any meaningful sense.

I personally think the best way that the result of “None of the Above” winning an election is for the seat to remain empty until the next election. This would have the effect of allowing the rejected candidates to feel the fullest measure of voter contempt.

However, the politicians would never allow it – the bastards.

Hat tip to Rob Fisher over at Samizdata

Quote of the Day

Between the state, which is hugely generous with impossible promises, and the general public, which has conceived unattainable hopes, have come two classes of men, those with ambition and those with utopian dreams. Their role is clearly laid out by the situation. It is enough for these courtiers of popularity to shout into the people’s ears: “The authorities are misleading you; if we were in their place, we would shower you with benefits and relieve you of taxes.”

And the people believe this, and the people hope…

Frédéric Bastiat, The State, 1848.

Best Election Mash-up.

Sorry Abdul, but isn’t that the truth?

Don't Vote - None have the right to legislate except AllahFlyers have been put up in Cardiff urging Muslims not to vote as democracy “violates the right of Allah”.

The flyers stated: “Democracy is a system whereby man violates the right of Allah and decides what is permissible or impermissible for mankind, based solely on their whims and desires.

“This leads to a decayed and degraded society where crime and immorality become widespread and injustice becomes the norm.

“Islam is the only real, working solution for the UK. It is a comprehensive system of governance where the laws of Allah are implemented and justice is observed.”

Fly posters pasted in Cardiff urging Muslims not to vote

The problem for the liberal idiots and Muslim apologists is that what the flyer states is pretty much spot on. Welcome to the Caliphate and don’t forget that Sharia is the will of Allah and is strictly enforced.

It reminds me of the election cry in Egypt for the Muslim Brotherhood, “One Man, One Vote, One Time” – because as sure as they could make it, once voted in they would abolish any need for further votes in the future as they would be “ruled by the eternal word of Allah”.

SNP to Scots electorate – Wrong answer..vote again

Vote Krankie 2016

Nicola Sturgeon was booed in the first Scottish leaders’ debate when she refused to rule out a second independence referendum.

The First Minister said the general election was not about separation when she was challenged on Alex Salmond’s claim after Scotland voted No that it was a “once in a generation” event.

But the audience reacted with boos and groans when she refused to rule out including another vote on breaking up Britain in her party’s manifesto for the 2016 Holyrood election.

Sturgeon booed as she hints at second independence referendum

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Febrile Demonrats

This includes the Liberals (and goes back as my limited knowledge of political history does – Someone might have made a particularly good quip to Lord Palmerston but like whatever…)

Oh, God’s I’m also including the Alliance. Remember them?

But this is how I see it at the top…

Gladstone – A decent sort but a bit nuts round the edges. I have chewed that description over – 32 times. Especially the nuts.

He was OK

Lloyd-George – Randy Welsh git.

Nobody springs to mind…

Thorpe – Had a contract killing carried out on a dog.

Smith – I like my peados super-sized. Do they put something in the Rochdale water? I blame the CIA.

Steele – Whatever? Had an affair as well but nobody cared. Exactly.

Owen – The most arrogant and pompous tool of gittery since the fall of the Roman Empire. I once rolled a joint on his kitchen counter. That is true. My host – his house-keeper – a South African working on a pittance on a working holiday visa had invited me for the weekend whilst the Owens – as was their want – abandoned the gaff for their country place for the weekend and we all know what the mice do when the cats are away.

Ashdown – Became more popular after it turned out he’d been cheating on the missus because it meant he had some interest.

Ming – Anyone fancy a Werther’s Original? Thought not.

Hughes – Whilst getting his seat in Bermondsey in ’83 smeared his opponent (Peter Tatchell) with vaguely disguised homophobic rhetoric but himself turned out to be a life-long botter.

Oaten – Discovered the cure for anxiety over male-pattern baldness that has alluded the greatest minds since like whenever by deciding to have two rent boys defecate upon him. They have variously been reported as Polish or Ukrainian like it matters who shits on you. With science the devil is always in the detail. I ought to work in a Putin joke here but I can’t.

Huhne – The Jeremy Clarkson of windfarms. A chrome-plated bell-end on platinum roller-blades (or in his case a Ford Focus the badger-noodler he truly is) and a true servant of his own and every other cuntery.

Clegg – Saints preserve us from the cactus-arsonist of direville! A lying two-faced twat’s twat of the fuller monty. A twat for all seasons.

So that is the LDs.

I am a classical liberal. These people have sold me so far down the river that I am thinking deltas.

They are just such an unbelievable collection of cunts of every description.

Moscow on the Orinoco

Venezuela Oil Takeover

As countries around the world have demonstrated, those with little in terms of mineral resources, like postwar Japan until the stagnation, can operate vibrant economies, but equally, those with significant mineral resources can be destroyed by bad economic policies. This seems to be the fate of most of South America except Chile and to a lesser extent Brazil.

The government of Venezuela may be blaming “The American capitalists and their Saudi running dogs” for the fall in the oil price, but even at the peak of the oil price they were spending the economic bounty of their oil as if there was no tomorrow – well, it looks like tomorrow has arrived.

Now the average Venezuelan can’t even afford to screw in safety, regardless of the thoughts of Pope Francis on the matter.

In Venezuela, a 36-pack of Trojan condoms now costs $755 at the official exchange rate. That’s the price being asked on the MercadoLibre website, where Venezuelans go to buy goods in short supply.

A 36-pack of condoms in Venezuela now costs $755 at official rates

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Vote Labour, Get Miliband

Wallace and MillibandOne of the perceived oddities of the Parliamentary system is that the PM is not directly elected by the people, but rather by the internal mechanisms of the party with the majority in parliament or in the case of a minority government, that party which believes it can bring together sufficient votes from other parties to remain in power.

Thus in the UK we have the Labour Party attempting to seize power from the Conservatives in the upcoming 2015 election, whilst simultaneously hiding their leader, who has become the party’s greatest electoral liability – thank god.

This peculiar aspect of party leader as electoral liability is not new to Britain although it does seem to be more a feature of Labour than the Conservatives (though lets not forget former Tory Leader Iain Duncan Smith)

If Ed Miliband had not shafted his brother David in the 2010 Labour leadership election by playing the union card, then I suspect that a Labour victory wouldn’t be quite so doubtful, but then again a David Miliband government would probably have been very different from an Ed Miliband one.

The point is exacerbated when in an apparent attempt to limit the Conservatives use of Ed Miliband as an electoral liability in their own propaganda election literature, they have offered to not attack David Cameron directly if the Conservatives will lay off Ed Miliband.

Vote Labour - Get Miliband

Labour has promised not to use any pictures of the Prime Minister in election posters– in a bid to stop the campaign turning into a presidential-style run off between David Cameron and Ed Miliband.

The party said it would not use negative personal attacks on Mr Cameron – and would focus on policies instead of personalities.

It comes as the Tories attempt to use the ‘nightmare’ scenario of Mr Miliband becoming Prime Minister to scare voters off electing Labour.

Labour promises no attack posters on Cameron in bid to stop election turning into presidential-style run off for Number 10 *

The chances of Dave Cameron giving away such electoral capital given the wafer-thin chances of him retaining power are slim to none. As the old saying goes “If you’re taking flak, you’re over the target”.

* – From the Daily Mail so the usual caveats apply

A couple of the questions for the post Christmas period: Ancient Greek learning and English freedom – religious and political.

The Republic of Venice, like some other Italian States, was in contact with the Greek (Byzantine) Empire to the east, where Ancient Greek learning was preserved, from the most early days – contact was never lost in the Dark Ages. And the other states of Europe were in close contact with the Republic of Venice and the other Italian states. Yet the education system teaches that Greek learning came only from Islamic Spain. Is this theory really true?

Did, for example, thinkers in the British Isles such as the Irish thinkers from the 5th (indeed reaching back to Patrick and Pelagius [yes Pelagius, that free will scholar of Greek and possibly Hebrew, - of course I would drag him into it] of Roman Britain) century to the 9th century (before old Ireland was destroyed by the Vikings), or the English thinkers of the 12th century and so on (not just Roger Bacon there were other great Greek scholars and scientific thinkers also), really get their knowledge of Greek from Islamic Spain? Of course both the Greek Orthodox Church and the old Irish Celtic Church are not known for the delight in the predestination of Augustine – even if philosopher theologians do strange twisted gymnastics to try and reconcile predestination and moral responsibility (the reality of choice – of the existence of the human agent). Just as Judaism has always rejected predestination (unlike mainstream Islam) and stood for individual moral responsibility – the reality of choice, of the human person.

Also…..

In almost every case the Reformation of the 16th century led to a Church that was committed to Predestination and was a department of State – after all Predestination was the central doctrine of Martin Luther and John Calvin (they both HATED freedom and reason), and Luther taught that the State should control the State and Calvin taught that the Church should control the State – the autonomy of Church and State was utterly alien to both these thinkers. In England it led, by the 18th century, to a Church that was far MORE in favour of moral responsibility, free will, (hostile to Predestination and so on) than the Roman Catholic Church was, and to a Church that was largely part of the landed interest (backed by local patrons and so on as well as being a, largely, independent landowner itself) rather than being a department of state – an “Established Church” rather than a “State Church”. A Church that was theologically and socially radically different from the rest of Protestant Europe. Why?

Even in the 16th century someone like Richard Hooker (the three legged stool – scripture, tradition, and REASON) seems distinctly English – distinctly “Anglican” (a possible misuse of language – but I hope you get my point), by the 17th century philosopher theologians such as Henry Moore and Ralph Cudworth, perhaps the greatest Greek and Hebrew scholar of his age, are quite acceptable in England, but would have seemed radially alien in the Protestant nations of Europe (and in the centralised Counter Reformation Catholic world) – with the possible exception of the minority tradition in Holland, the Arminian tradition (and remember it was the MINORITY tradition in Holland).

Why was England so weird in its Church development? Unlike both Catholic Europe and Protestant Europe.

I have asked these questions before – but just received utterly irrelevant answers such as “Ralph Cudworth believed in witchcraft”, yes he did (so did the great Common Law thinkers Hales and Selden), but why did the Church in England (both Anglican such as Granville Sharpe and William Wilberforce and Dissenting such as Richard Price [but also his Anglican political opponent Edmund Burke] – or a bit of both such as John Wesley) contain so many people, such as Cudworth and Moore and….., who believed in religious toleration and moral responsibility, free will – hostile to predestination. Why did the English Church turn out, in the main, so differently from the rest of Europe?

So was there no movement of Greek learning from the Byzantine Empire directly to the states of Italy? Was it all via Islamic Spain? Even though Venice was technically part of the Eastern Empire itself? The “Islamic Spain is what matters” idea seems like a unlikely theory. But I am willing to be corrected.

And why did the Church in England, certainly by the 18th century, turn out so different from both Protestant and Catholic Europe? I suspect that the answer to this question is the key to the different POLITICAL development of this land in the late 17th century and the 18th century, compared to the rest of Europe.

Hillary Clinton – Let Appeasement be our Credo

Hillary Clinton - Key to Peace is Empathizing with our Enemies

Mrs. Clinton spoke at Georgetown University about what she called “smart power,” which entails “using every possible tool and partner to advance peace and security, leaving no one on the sidelines, showing respect, even for one’s enemies, trying to understand and insofar as psychologically possible, empathize with their perspective and point of view, helping to define the problems, determine the solutions.”

But former Lt. Col. Oliver North dismissed the comments as “irrational.”

“I can’t think of a presidential candidate who would have said those kinds of things,” he told Fox News. “If you’re going to run for president of the United States, you cannot talk that way about the people who intend to kill us. Who are dying to kill us. … This is capitulation.”

Hillary Clinton hammered for insisting U.S. should ‘empathize’ with enemies

I am not actually surprised by her stance. Don’t get me wrong, she is a shrewd and intelligent woman, but one who often fails to see “the big picture” in policy making (that was always Bill’s strong point) and who has been caught out exaggerating her own successes as well as trying to hide her obvious failures (she’s sorry that she “misspoke” about Bosnia  and about “only governments create jobs” during the mid-terms).

So where does the latest comment on how she would deal with her enemies by “empathising” with them leave her? Given that the current enemy of freedom and democracy seems to be radical Islam and ISIS, I struggle to find any empathy for people who believe that I should be murdered because of my sexual preference or that beheading people who are of a different religion, a different sect or even simply not as radical a Muslim as they like is acceptable.

These are not matters of empathy or compromise, this is not the basis for US/Soviet-style détente. ISIS and other forms of radical Islam are the absolute antithesis of everything that Hillary Clinton claims to represent, be it freedom and equality for women or respect for the rights of the individual. These are matters of principle and I would argue that this is why Hillary has failed in the past and will continue to do so.

RAB of this place has described Hillary as “the once and future Queen“, but I strongly suspect that any chance she had of gaining the Whitehouse slipped away in 2008, indeed when you look at Hillary’s actual performance, going back to the HillaryCare plan of the 1990′s, it is clear that too often she compromises when she should have stuck to principles.

I understand very well that the nature of Washington, given the delicate balance between Republicans and Democrats, is that all achievements tend to be matters of compromise, but what works for a legislature of Washington insiders looks from the outside like corrupt, pork-barrel politics.

Hillary may be still be in the lead for the Democratic nomination in 2016, but I doubt she will win the Whitehouse, because she is simply too old, tainted, compromised and out-of-touch – even her latest PR campaign is just appalling in its schmaltzy and patronising attempt to get those who aren’t followers of her agenda to back her, namely the vast swathes of middle America.

Oscar Wilde Syndrome.

I trained as a Lawyer and my advice to anyone who is thinking of suing any person or organisation for Libel, even if you have been libeled, but especially if you haven’t, is don’t. Take it on the chin, ignore it and move on with your life. Under British Law it is much to much of a gamble either way, as the outcome of this court case today shows.

I have no idea whether Mitchell called the PC a fuckin pleb or not, and could care less. It is not a criminal offence after all. By all accounts Mitchell is a nasty piece of work who is ideally suited to the job of Chief Whip where being a bully is an absolute plus. He was nicknamed “Thrasher” Mitchell when he was a Prefect at Rugby Public school (yes the same one as the fictional Flashman… you just can’t make it up can you?). But there are some very disquieting aspects to the whole “Plebgate” affair.

First; there is the fact that one Police Officer has been jailed for obstructing the course of justice (presumably the one who pretended to be a member of the public who was just passing by and was “shocked” by Mitchell’s language, and just happened to email the Cabinet office using almost word for word what PC Rowland says Mitchell ranted at him, when he wasn’t there at all). Second; that three other Protection Officers have been sacked. And third; that another five are on gardening leave and under investigation, yet the Honourable Justice Mittings finds that there is obviously no conspiracy against Mitchell. Oh fuckin really??

On the balance of probabilities (not beyond reasonable doubt) which is how this case was decided, the good Judge found that…

‘I am satisfied at least on the balance of probabilities that Mr Mitchell did speak the words alleged or something so close to them as to amount to the same including the politically toxic word pleb’.
And the Judge then goes on to virtually insult the PC again…

Pc Rowland was ‘not the sort of man who would have had the wit, imagination or inclination to invent on the spur of the moment an account of what a senior politician had said to him in temper’

So which do you prefer then PC Rowland, being called a fuckin Pleb, or thick and unimaginative by a High Court Judge?

And the High Court Judge in question, has a bit of form for being an anti establishment dripping wet Liberal.

Oscar Wilde was a bloody fool to sue for Libel, it destroyed him, and the same has happened to Andrew Mitchell. The court costs are going to be eye-watering. And all he had to say in the first place was… Yes I called him a fuckin Pleb, because he is a fuckin Pleb! What of it?

Nasty politics

We’ve see some pretty nasty and hypocritical politics this week from the Labour Party, this time in the form of Tristram Hunt. You rather get the sense that Tristram doesn’t like private schools which is a bit surprising really.
Tristram is the son of Julian, Baron Hunt of Chesterton who was the Labour leader of Cambridge City Council in the early 1970’s. Now despite this, Julian seems to have decided to send Tristram to University College School in leafy Hampstead. UCS as its known is in the Eton Group of schools which includes Eton, Westminster, and Marlborough. You get the point; it’s one of the elite of UK independent schools.
Obviously having enjoyed such privilege, the clear thing to do would be to write a biography of, er, Friedrich Engels. Anyway, the various goings on self-hating champagne socialists who enjoy easy lives in broadcasting aren’t terribly interesting.
However, what made me sit-up was the proposal that independent schools must “earn their way” This was rather baffling because I thought they already did. Now it’s true they enjoy charitable status which means the fees are a bit lower than they would otherwise be. This puts some of the schools in the range of ordinary people as well as Barons. Perhaps not the near six grand a term UCS want for their senior school, but some of the schools are do-able.
So what do independent schools actually do? Well they educate about 7% of UK kids. That alone you might think would justify the charity status. The UK state system would simply be overwhelmed if all of these kids entered state schools. This won’t happen. The proposal won’t finish off UCS or other elite schools, but it might hit the more marginal ones who charge lower fees. So parents poorer than Tristram’s dad would lose this option and be forced back into the state system.
They educate the children far better than the state manages, thereby raising general educational standards. Another benefit you might imagine. They educate children from abroad which is in a sense, a type of export (as it brings in foreign currency) so this helps the balance of payments, another benefit. Private school kids despite being 7% of the population accounted for 50% of gold medals at London 2012 and that was apparently a big deal to government types for some reason.
For me anyway, most important of all, they offer an escape route for people who see the state system and think “not in this fucking lifetime” And that’s what they really don’t like. The independent sector puts parents in control, not politicians.

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