Moving on

I managed to not blog for five days, even though I wasn’t particularly busy. Not a good sign; will get arse into gear more often. Anyway, Curious Hamster wonders: what’s so bad about wanting to vote Conservative now? And you know what, I couldn’t think of much, apart from the possibility that a Conservative government would be no better at keeping its promises – Cameron may talk the democratic and anti-authoritarian talk, but will he walk the walk?

So I don’t totally trust the Tories. But I don’t trust New Labour either, and in this case I feel it’s better the devil you don’t know than the devil you do, as the devil you do know is roundly fucking everything up in sight. It’s not even as if voting Tory would be much more of an affront to my socialist values than voting Labour with the continual privatisation of the NHS and education system, the widening gap between rich and poor, etc., etc. Labour have had nearly nine years in charge now, and all they can mount as a defence is the minimum wage and some incoherent mumblings about meritocracy – not enough, quite frankly.

Back on the civil liberties front, an interesting project is starting to appear, primarily at Not Little England (see #1, #2 and #3) and Talk Politics (see #1 and #2). The aim? To bring a broad-based coalition from all political wings to promote a written constitution, electoral reform, a more democratic body politic, with all the trimmings. LibertyCentral.org.uk has already been registered and though there’s nothing there yet all the little webby wheels are turning. The project is commendable, interesting, maybe a little over-ambitious (though a certain part of me likes the idea of a constitution authored via wiki) and one I hope to play a small part in. The campaign will certainly have to appreciate and agree on the limits of web-based campaigning, and start thinking from the very beginning what the next steps beyond the online world will have to be. Above all, it cannot fizzle out like so many other web-based campaigns: it needs to walk before it can run, and it’s been too long in coming together, so a little consideration would be no bad thing.

4 thoughts on “Moving on

  1. Post #4 as well. You’re right, it’s a hard jump to make, but I just can’t see Cameron as being worse, and he says he’s for the better.

    If we can tie him to his promises, we may be on to something.

  2. So I don?t totally trust the Tories. But I don?t trust New Labour either

    I don’t trust any political party, not even the Greens (who I generally vote for these days). I think there’s no political cause more important than a fundamental shift in wealth, power and effective liberty from capital to labour, and any political party which could be uncomplicatedly identified with even a diluted version of that cause would get my vote without a second thought. But there is no such party (in England), barring a couple of Leninist fragments and the deeply creepy Respect project; Labour hasn’t been that party for at least a decade. So I’m back with choosing a least-worst option out of several parties I don’t identify with and don’t entirely trust – and I can’t think of many scenarios in which I’d end up choosing New Labour. (A three-way Labour/Veritas/BNP marginal, perhaps…)

  3. If we can agree that a) the only apparent major policy gap between Labour and Tory is a heavier Tory focus on civil liberties, and b) Labour/New Labour deserve to pay the price for the things they’ve done in office, there’s no apparent reason not to vote Tory, albeit very, very reluctantly.

    It’s probably time to accept that we more or less lost the battle over ownership of public services (for the foreseeable future, that is), and that civil liberties is the next big battleground. Having said that, I’ve got serious doubts about LibertyCentral.

  4. I’m going to keep voting Lib Dem while Labour remain in a nice, safe third place in my seat, but I do admit it’s a dilemma.

    On the one hand, they’re the bloody Tories, and the idea of voting for them still makes me terribly uneasy. On the other, my local sitting member has voted the way I’d want them to on just about every major issue (with the exception of Foxhunting, and as this is a rural constituency I can’t say I blame her for doing what the majority have asked for).

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