‘moron Again!

The newly re-elected British prime minister has just made an extraordinary statement. He has said “For too long, we have been a passively tolerant society, saying to our citizens ‘as long as you obey the law, we will leave you alone’,” !?

What is that meant to mean? That the government has the right to intervene in our lives when we have broken no laws? This from the party that eschews the “nanny” state. Do this bunch of over-privileged, socially isolated, socio and psycho paths really think that they have been given a mandate to tyrannise the whole of Britain?

He wants new laws to “crack down” on people holding minority extremist views! People who don’t conform to the great British consensus. I think you translate that to mean “anyone who doesn’t agree with Dodgy Dave and his mates”. Will you look after my family when they come for me?

Apart from the self serving, xenophobic, divisively, dividing subtext to this utter bollocks, I’m intrigued by who he thinks is going to enforce Dave’s law? He’s consistently cut funding to both the police and the armed forces, is he going to start a new private enforcement body to do his dirty work? Because as quiet as they are, he’s not popular with the official bodies who might be expected to do it.

What a sad, paranoid world Dave must live in. It’s such a shame, Britain used to be a haven for people who needed a safe place because their ideas were radical, or before their time. People have come here through the centuries to get away from persecution for their beliefs (mind you a lot of the early emigrants to America felt they were persecuted).

Britain has never been a perfect place, it never has been a beacon of hope (don’t let them kid you), it’s just a convenient little island which used to bully every other country it met. It’s politicians (and some of it’s population) still haven’t gotten over their delusions of grandeur. There are good things about this collection of countries, but expect frightened people to be trying to get away from the knee-jerk actions and paranoid rantings of the government the rest of us will probably have to put up with for the next 5 years.

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The Future…

How do you see the future? Is it more of the same dreadful, uncaring nonsense? Further and greater austerity, because we have to? Why do we have to? What are these cut backs supposed to achieve? What beliefs are they based on? None that I adhere to.

Before we assume that there is a real reason for the impoverishment of the already poor, we need to ask if the actions being undertaken by various governments will actually achieve what the politicians claim they will. And the answer is… NO, they don’t. The evidence already tells us that the espoused goals of our government are not being attained through their policies.

As that is the case, we then have to ask ourselves, why is that? Is it because the policies are ill thought out, that incompetence and stupidity stop them from being effective? Or, could it be that the current Conservative/Liberal Democrat alliance actually have a different agenda from the one they publicly assert? Are they aiming for something other than that which the media tell us?

These are frightening questions, ones that very few of us want to engage with. Either answer is horrifying to contemplate. We’re either being governed by an bunch of complete incompetents or, duplicitous bastards… It’s hard to know which is worse. I suspect the truth is that the answer is far more chaotic: there are some who are stupid; some who are liars; some who are well meaning; some who are principled; and, between them they continue to make bad decision after bad decision on our behalf.

You see, to me, the vast majority of politicians (and a large proportion of the general population) are missing the point. No longer should the government be there to govern us, it should be there to serve us. I believe that the wrong things are seen as important by people in government.

Can I ask, what is important to you? When you wake up in the morning what would you be devastated to be without? What makes you smile during the day? What gives your life meaning? I know for some people their answer will be their job, but I’m pretty sure they are in a small minority. For the majority, I think, the answer will be “other people” (I include the four legged friends in the category people).

When you, or a member of your close circle are ill, do you want to spend time weighing up which hospital is best? Or do you want to just go to the nearest one and be confident that the people working there will do the very best they can to heal you?

When your child is ready to start school do you want to spend time going around different schools, checking out prospectuses, even moving house, so that they get a good education? Or do you want them to go to the school down the road and be confident that the teachers will do the best they can to provide your child with knowledge and skills that will help them through life?

My future, the one I hope comes to fruition is one where your local school, your local hospital, your local everything, is the very best it can be. Where people come first and money gets back into it’s role of being a means of exchange. Where the jobs we do have a direct connection with feelings of self worth. Where creativity is as valuable as any other skill. Where being a caring, generous human being, makes you a role model.

Do you see where I’m coming from? I can’t pretend it will be an easy life, but I can hope it will be a future full of love and laughter, work and care, community and negotiation. Are we strong enough to make this future? I think so, if we join together and refuse to be distracted by the slight of hand merchants, who are still trying to sell us snake oil, our current government.

Austerity… Part 1

My parents were born in the 1920’s. They lived through the war. They understood real austerity, austerity because of practical circumstance. What we are living through is NOT austerity for any practical reason, but a form of desertification imposed by those who already have far, far more than they need.

Children are dying from malnutrition in Western Industrialised societies in a time of plenty. It is a time of plenty for those who have decent, well paid, long term employment. In that group I would include the mainstream media, upper echelons of corporations, and politicians.

People who have never been without have no understanding of what it is like to have the washing machine break down just before christmas, and then having to choose between the washing machine and christmas presents for family.

They have no understanding that visiting relatives for a few days has to stand in for a holiday because there is no way you could afford to pay for any kind of real holiday.

And it very easy to sit in judgement of those who have less than you do for the “bad” choices they make. It is very hard to understand why people buy things instead of healthy food; why the very poorest drink, smoke, dye their hair, take drugs. But the stereotype is not accurate, and there are reasons for those decisions.

When you are frightened and feel insecure what do you do? You get a blanket and some cushions and make a nest. When that is how your life is, all the time, you buy things, more things, things to try to make a nest that makes you feel secure. And because the food you eat is inadequate, you never quite grasp that it is your mind set that you need to change, because your brain chemistry makes it very difficult to think clearly.

When your reality is awful and you can see no hope of changing it, you feel the need to blot it out, at least for an hour or two. So you drink, you take drugs. You can’t really afford them, so that makes you feel worse, and, for some, the spiral begins.

The more desperate you feel the more you need to do something to lift yourself, the less it works, the more desperate you feel. And some just give in. Others finally hit a bottom that is so low they can start a new journey, to a different reality. A different way of looking at the world. Rejecting the pressures imposed by wider society to conform to the materialistic claptrap of the TV and papers… the very media people who have that decent income.

And so we live with this artificial austerity, knowing that some are not effected by it. And resentment grows. Do they not realise that they are creating a tinderbox? Or is that what they want, to give them an excuse in the eyes of their believers to “crackdown” on the very poorest and most vulnerable?

And what do you want? Do you want to live in this tinderbox? Do you want to be part of, and party to, this insanity? We cannot avoid being involved to a certain extent, we need food, we need clothes, but I think we need to look back to the realities that my parents knew, before the coming of the supermarkets (who have created some of the problem). It seems to me we need to think once again of both community and self-reliance. We need to be building an alternative, kinder, more local society, either to avoid the explosion, or to be there to support us when the explosion happens.

For help with that https://www.transitionnetwork.org/