Saturday, July 31, 2010

Fear and Self Loathing on the Left

I know I shouldn't do it, as it just winds me up, but I've been foolish enough to try looking at what pass for political blogs again. Aside from the fact that the level of discourse on these things, (even the ones which are widely touted as being 'heavyweight'), is shockingly poor, (I've heard far more informed debate amongst 16-18 year olds in AS level politics classes I've taught), it is the level of negativity and apparent self-loathing on display in the left of centre ones which really gets to me. They are characterised by a constant criticism of everything Labour does - every stance it takes on government policy, every proposal it makes, every pronouncement by a leadership candidate, they're all attacked and dismissed as being wrong. It's as if they want Labour to fail. Indeed, I'd go as far as to say that their attitude probably contributed to Labour's recent defeat at the polls. But not satisfied with seeing the party lose the general election, they still want to trash it now we're in opposition. A lot of their animosity seems to be fuelled by a continuing hatred of Blair and 'New Labour'. God knows, I had enough problems with 'New Labour' and many of its policy choices, but the fact is that it still achieved a hell of a lot of positive social reform. Not to mention over a decade of economic stability and prosperity. But that, of course, is never going to be enough for the bloggers. Everything 'New Labour' is forever tainted by the decision to invade Iraq. We have to throw the baby out with the bath water.

I've no doubt that a large part of the problem with these blogs is that they aren't truly 'leftist', they try and also curry favour with 'liberals'. As I've argued before on this blog, it is these 'liberals' that are the problem. They are predominantly middle class and secretly loathe the lower classes they profess to want to help. Relief of the poor and the provision of welfare is merely a duty to them, not a moral imperative. They do it out of self-interest - they want to avoid social unrest which might upset their cosy middle class lives. That and the fact that it helps salve their Christian consciences. They might want to give succour to the workers, but they wouldn't want them to actually have their grubby hands on the levers of power. Basically, liberals are people who vaguely want reform, but are unwilling to commit to any kind of coherent ideology. Frankly, I don't know why they are even being tolerated at left of centre blogs. They've made their position clear. They're sustaining a Tory government in power, showing their contempt for the poor and disadvantaged. They should be told to fuck off to Conservative Home, or wherever it is the Tory twats hang out. But of course, they won't do that. On the one hand they want to keep a foot in both camps, just in case the coalition fails. On the other, it provides them with a continuing opportunity to undermine Labour even while it is in opposition, with their constant negativity. So, left of centre political bloggers, try ditching the 'liberals', weak-willed, hand-wringing group of C of E do-gooders that they are, and you might, just might, have a bit more credibility. Not to mention relevance.

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