Tuesday, 14 April 2015
I vow to thee...
Ah, a politician’s promise. Labour’s new manifesto – already being systematically ‘meh’d by all and sundry contains that most sacred of pledges; by calling it a ‘vow’, they seek to conceal the fact that they will ALWAYS be the party of fiscal irresponsibility. In response George Osborne – if I heard this correctly – has said his new budgetary buggerings will contain many ‘exciting’ new proposals. I dunno ‘bout you, but the last thing I want my politicians or their policies to be is ‘exciting’. Exciting is marketing speak for the same old shit, dressed to deceive. Exciting is what you tell your kids a day out at a crowded picnic site will be. But excitement is not a feeling any normal person equates with political manifestos*.
It’s a naked plea to arouse the emotions of simpletons and PPC students and being neither I simply refuse to be thus aroused. Exiting is a more apt description of the likely effect – exiting the democratic process altogether as those dithering about whether to vote or not decide… not. After all, what is really going to change? The NHS fails to keep alive about the same number of people it does under any flavour of government. The welfare bill only ever goes upwards. Immigration is beyond our gift to control. And whatever party gets in there will never be a fair and open referendum on membership of the EU.
That only, really, leaves the economy and I want our approach to that prickly issue to be pragmatic and dull and workable. You simply cannot spend your way out of a slump and unless you are Greece there is no prospect of declaring personal bankruptcy and having creditors write off your debt. Nope, just as with personal finance you bought it, you pay for it and when the credit cards are maxed out you have no other option than what those on the left love to call ‘austerity’. Austerity? Ask your grandmother about it. (If you are a diehard Labour voter, ask your great, great grandmother)
The promised pink unicorn of peace
You can’t send what you haven’t got unless you borrow. And when you can no longer borrow it is just ludicrous – if not fraudulent – to carry on pretending that you can. You can’t promise a job that doesn’t exist. You can’t promise funding when you have no funds. So, no, I don’t want excitement, I don’t want fairy tales and like – I hope – a majority of right-thinking individuals I want to be left to sort out my own shit without having all the while to worry about what schemes the government has to get in my way. What can my country do for me? Stop telling me what it thinks I want to hear and just get on with the job. Fiscal policy? Carry on cutting.
(*Unless you are a Green Party supporter, in which case everything about their fantastic fictions, presumably drafted while under the influence of serious mind-altering substances, is bound to be a thrill. I imagine you can smell Green policies and hear their colour as you skip along the yellow brick road to lentil heaven.)