Thursday, 30 January 2014
Right or Wrong?
We’ve been here before – the old left-wing/right-wing conundrum. The origins of the terminology go back to the French Revolution apparently, but whatever they originally meant the shorthand is now generally perceived to mean this:
Caring, sharing, ‘progressive’, happy people of light and love and happiness bringing you a better world and yes it might cost a bit but you can’t put a price on equality, can you?
Vicious, cruel, privileged establishment bully boys, craving only power and control over the poor people they see as nothing more than labour and war fodder.
Put that way it all seems so easy, but surely everybody knows it’s far more complicated than that? How about the work ethic of the right mixed with the morals of the left? We’re all intelligent enough to be able to find a combination that works, aren’t we? And why does it matter what labels politicians want to put on things anyway?
It matters because that simple divide is what Labour is relying on in the absence of any credible, costed policies or frankly, the first hint of the beginnings of the genesis of a single, solitary economic clue. The seesaw of the next election will teeter-totter between a simple choice of left or right. And lest you naïvely believe the electorate to be cleverer, or somehow more sophisticated than they have proved themselves over and over again to actually be, consider that even in the height of our resurgence as a modern, functioning nation, it wasn’t on policy that the Conservatives lost; that nice Mr Blair just smiled and said, "Be excellent to each other and party on, dudes!". And we all know how that ended.
So forget about the incisive commentary of experienced political thinkers like Douglas Carswell or Dan Hodges. The average voter doesn’t read analysis, doesn’t watch The Daily Politics or Newsnight; the average ‘customer’ will cast his vote depending on how he is told to feel, not on what he thinks. Which is why Labour’s frankly disgraceful attempt to once again fall back on blaming “Fatchaa!” will resonate with left-wing voters, even those who weren’t even born when she left power.
To my way of thinking, the simpler it is to tell a story, the greater its veracity and I’ve always marvelled at the left’s propensity to construct complex narratives based on deep and interwoven historical conspiracies and pseudo-intellectual fictions of human nature, instead of just telling it straight. Maybe the right are just far too busy working to have the appetite for the bullshit.
To help I hereby present my handy, cut-out-and-keep guide to the two main sides in this battle for the hearts and minds (votes) of the British people.
Left: It’s all about fairness. How can it be right that some people earn so much more than others and can buy nicer things? And then 'they' want to pass those things onto their own families. We will pursue ways to prevent that happening by taking from the rich and not so rich to give to the poor and not so poor. That’s fair.
Right: The harder and smarter you work, the more you get.
Left: Everybody is different, but everybody is also equal. But don’t worry because we have drawn up a comprehensive scale of privilege depending on your race, colour, creeds, proclivities and gender self-identification and by plotting your position on this crystal-clear chart we can find your intersectionality quotient and compensate you appropriately for your birth-bestowed life chances, thus achieving equal outcomes, going forward...
Right: Everybody is different. Get used to it.
Left: No child must be left behind, so to be certain we do not inadvertently advance those born with inherent academic abilities, from households that care about such things, we must make sure that everybody is educated at a pace that suits the slowest and divert the bulk of resources to those least able to benefit from them. This way, all school leavers will finish their time in education at the same level.
Right: Stream them, keep order and stop spending so much money on the thick kids.
Left: We must define Human Rights. To that end we will devote billions of pounds of resources to fund hundreds of studies, recruit thousands of lawyers and create from scratch an entire industry devoted to arguing over this fundamental concept. In the process we will invert the usual criminal/victim relationship and create daily headlines of outrage as we remind the public of the good work we are doing on their behalf.
Right: Play nice, or else.
Left: Democracy is too difficult and too subtle to be left to the proletariat who, after all, don’t really know as we do, what is right for them. To ensure correct voting outcomes we will pursue an aggressive policy of border adjustments and import as many new voters as possible, whether or not they can directly benefit our economy. The right, after all, must have their evil noses rubbed in diversity. This will, of course, cost billions and people will feel disenfranchised but we think it’s a small cost to create the appearance of effective suffrage.
Right: Quite correct. Democracy is too difficult to be left to the people. But at least we’ll try and let you keep most of what you earn.
The political contortions the left seem to thrive on all seem so bloody exhausting. One minute we’re all equal, the next some are more equal than others and despite the daily evidence of your own ears and eyes, you have to keep telling your mind that success is failure and failure is achievement and up is down and the next minute you’re apologising to the world for something you didn’t do. We, the sheeple, are always going to lose, so as a simple soul, I’d far rather be beaten with a stick I can actually see.