In case there was anyone left in the country who still believed (or half believed) that the government had any intention what-so-ever of controlling its wild spending, it was today announced that the new “high speed” railway line between London and Birmingham is to be built. The railway trains will not actually stop anywhere in between (they would not be “high speed” if they did that), they will supposedly (many years from now) rush people up to Birmingham a few minutes faster than they can already get there by rail.
Of course, should this railway line ever be finished (which is absurdly unlikely) by the time it is supposed to come into operation businessmen will be using teleconferencing technology (in fact THEY ALREADY ARE) so there will be no need to go from Birmingham to London for business meetings anyway. People in Birmingham (or anywhere else) will be able to see (as well as talk to) people in London – indeed the images will be most likely three dimensional soon (for people who want that), so going by train for a business meeting in London will be utterly pointless.
The project is supposed to cost 32 billion Pounds (of course it will really cost many times that), so business groups are outraged? OF COURSE NOT – in a better universe they would be, but in this universe “business” (at least the “business leaders” who get invited on to radio and television shows) are just subsidy junkies – partly because they hope to get construction contracts (on this never ending and financial black hole project), but also because they have been taught (back in their university days – but also whenever they open the “financial press” now) that govenrment building schemes are “good for the economy”. Yes dig a lot of big holes and fill them in again – it will be a “stimulus” and “create work”.
I watched one of these degenerate “business leaders” on the BBC a couple of hours ago. “We [he was incapable of using the word "I" in the entire interview - it was like listening to "the Borg", or an older verison of one of the "Occupy Collectives"] want these projects” it (sorry he) said.
“We want these projects that will not increase the national debt” – first time I heard him I thought it was a verbal slip and he meant “will increase the national debt”, but no – in his mind government building schemes (not just for useless new railway lines that will never be finished – but also for new roads and ports and…. well ANYTHING) do not add to the national debt, no matter how expensive they are.
You see it is because government building projects “stimulate the economy” (the multiplyer effect and so on) and create prospertity – and thus pay for themselves.
One can see this sort of thinking in the “roads to nowhere” in Ireland built in the 1840s. The government of the day (which the history books will tell you practiced “laissez-faire”) as well as sending the (recently established) Royal Irish Police (armed and on horseback) to raid everywhere for Poor Law taxes (the Poor Law haveing also been only recently established in Ireland) , also spent large sums of money on building projects – all over the place (on top of the big DEBT the authorities in Ireland had for previous government building projects and other such). Oh, and let us not forget the “compassionate” policy of setting up state schools in Ireland in the 19th century (long before they were set up in England and Wales) – very “laissez-faire” no costs at all.
The results of this (armed men enforced) “social safety net” and widespread “infrastructure projects”? Oh the Irish died like flies.
When the potato crop failed (even worse than it had failed many times before – the blight was indeed special) you could no go and work in some other enterprise – partly because few existed, because of CENTURIES of interventionist attacks on the Irish economy, but also because those mixed farms and other such that did exist were being driven into the ground by the new property tax for the Poor Law, and if you did not pay armed men from the newly established police force would ride up and take your goods (there is no bailiff power in Ireland, so if you did not pay taxes it is armed police who turned up at your door).
Nor could landowners ignore peasant plot people whose potato crop had failed – because the new law made those landowners responsible for the new property tax (for the new Poor Law) ON THOSE PLOTS, so if you left the people there (to try and grow enough food, somehow, to keep body and soul together) you would be taxed into bankruptcy. Not pay? I refer you to the armed men on horseback that I refer to above.
Still this is all “laissez faire”, just as the present government is “slashing government spending” (by spending and borrowing MORE money than the last Labour government – on such useful things as IMF Euro bailouts and on), and the new insane rail scheme “will not add to the national debt”.
Ask “business” – they will explain it all to you.
P.S. On a totally unrelated point if I had a vote New Hampshire today I would vote for Jon Huntsman – partly because he has no chance whatever (and it would amuse me to “waste my vote” in this way), but partly because he understands how to deal with the media and “social issues”.
There is not a tissue paper of difference, on the actual “social issues”, between Jon Huntsman and Rick Santorum (unlike Romney, Huntsman has ALWAYS been pro Second Amendment, anti abortion, anti “gay marriage” and so on) yet he NEVER makes a speech about “social issues” (nothing for the media to get their teeth into) – so no crowds of “Occupy” Marxists chanting about how they are going to rape and kill his family (Ron Paul supporters I am NOT suggesting that you chanted anything like that at the Santorum family – but what the fucking hell were you doing standing right next to the Occupy Marxists screaming abuse at the family, please explain).
Nick is correct, the “social issues” are NOT what this election is about (it is about trying to prevent the total financial collapse of the United States over the next couple of years). Jon Huntsman has produced decent tax plans (light years better than Romney’s) and keeps his mouth SHUT over the “social issues”. “But Paul, Huntsman has not committed himself to the total repeal of Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security like Ron has” – perhaps because he actually wants to win against Obama (as oppose to LOSE EVERY STATE IN NOVEMBER), “Ryan Plan” style reform is the best we can hope for, and Huntsman supported that.
As I say, Huntsman has not got a snowball’s chance in Hell – but he has said the right things (and avoided talking about stuff that IS NOT RELEVANT) so he deserves a vote today.