Dr Fox joins the Cabinet!

Dr. Fox: ‘I’m the new Defence Secretary? That’s pretty poptabulous mate!’

Sorry, I messed up there. I meant Doctor Liam Fox, who, as Ian Bone explains, has a history of being expansive (as opposed to being economic) with the truth.

Dr. Liam Fox: ‘Nuke Iran? Poptabulous!’

The Neo-Con Party in British politics, which concentrates on getting onside senior political figures and chickenhawk newspaper journalists rather than standing in elections, has had quite a good General Election, getting several of its Big Cheeses, including Dr. Fox, Michael Gove, William Hague and Iain Duncan Smith (it’s been quite a result for failed Conservative leaders, hasn’t it?) into the Cabinet. Let us hope they do not drag us into any more useless and bloody wars. However, without the help of the US or the EU, any British military task force at the moment is  hardly capable of anything more than securing Sainsbury’s hyper-marche in Calais.

At  the moment British politics feels a bit interregnumish to me; another calm before the storm. We are still to have the ‘Emergency Budget’ Call Me Dave promised within 50 days of the General Election, which by my reckoning will be by June 25th at the latest. I am expecting the worst in terms of cuts and/or more of the public sector/taxpayer’s money being handed over to Big Business. The news that ‘Mad Frankie’ Field, the favourite Labour MP of the Conservative Party and Thatcherite Press,  is to be Call Me Dave’s ‘Poverty Czar’ hardly fills me with confidence that the poor and ‘hard-working families’ (possibly the most annoying cliche in British politics at the moment, with the possible exception of  ‘step/stepping up to the plate’–  we’re not Americans playing baseball…athough it does show how crassly Americanised so much of the British political class is these days) are not going to be thoroughly shafted. Anyone who says Margaret Thatcher ‘is certainly a hero‘ and thinks General Pinochet’s pensions policies were worth studying is a good outrider as any for implementing the  ‘Shock Doctrine’ here.

Mad Frankie’ Field: How on Earth is this man a Labour MP?

However, it would be churlish (or the witterings of a  ‘my Labour Party, right or wrong’ type) not to say the new Government has got it a lot more right on civil liberties than the outgoing Government. No wonder the likes of David Blunkett, John ‘Glasgow Debt Collector’ Reid and Jack ‘Demon Headmaster’ Straw did not want Labour to join a coalition with the Lib Dems. That is, most of their precious police-state lite policies, such as ID cards, would be scrapped.

So New Labour were hoisted on their ‘National Security’ petard in the end.

Where now? I am not going to join the Labour Party (unlike, it appears, a lot of disllusioned Lib Dems. I should also imagine quite a few anti-EU Cons at the moment are thinking of  leaving for UKIP, a party that may have deprived the Tories of a majority) so I can vote for leader this summer.  However, one thing I will say is I hope this time the Labour Left decide to go one way or the other. That is, if they do not get John McDonnell or someone similar elected as leader (or, if 2007 is anything to go by, do not even get anyone on the ballot paper), and get a Blairite/Brownite New Labour-type instead, they do not spend the next few years (or months) until the next General Election telling everyone how Labour’s new leader is betraying ‘socialism’ or ‘Labour’s traditions’ while staying inside the Party.

I do not want to spend every week from the day the next leader is elected until, perhaps, May 2015, reading on the Net or in the pages of Tribune or Red Pepper about what policies Labour should be pursuing and where it is going wrong. Then I do not want to be told from the day the next General Election is called until polling day that I should vote Labour when I have been told  for maybe four and a half years why Labour’s policies are so bad!  I had enough of this back in the late 1980s and early 1990s and I do not want to hear the same old story again.

If you are now on the Labour Left and find later this year that you do not like the new Labour leader and his or her policies, why not do the decent thing? Just leave the Labour Party and pursue politics that you believe in, whether it is on your own, in tandem with the Greens, or with the Left outside the Labour Party (although they did not come out the Election in good shape at all).  Have some faith in your ideas and have some faith in the general public. If you are so sure that the public is on your side, give them a chance to support you, instead of  staying inside a Party that will betray you and the public!

Here endeth the lesson for the moment. I’ll end for now with just a couple of links about matters outside the UK you may find of interest.

First,  there is the extent to which Obama’s Administration is like a Goldman Sachs Old Boys  (and Girls) Reunion.

Second, it appears that despite the ‘Drill, Baby, Drill’ experience in the Gulf of Mexico, British Columbia’s (or should that be British Petroleum’s?) Liberals want offshore oil drilling off the coast of BC. (H/T: Fitz!) Anyone there for ‘Burn, Baby, Burn’?  Mind you, it is good to know that, despite the spill, Americans think BP is more trustworthy than Goldman Sachs! Talk about damning with faint praise…

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One CommentLeave a comment

  1. He is not, he only gets the pay cheque


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