uziq
Member
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The Labour leadership and many of its allies in the commentariat have become prisoners of two dogmas. The first is ‘the longest suicide note in history’, which now has two elections to anchor it: 1983 and 2019. It holds that radical economic policy makes the party unelectable and Labour can only return from the wilderness by accepting the Tories’ narrative and offering competent managerial administration.

The second is ‘traditional working-class concerns’, which has sympathisers across the party. It holds that working-class voters outside big cities are innately hostile to immigration and social progress, and that only by ‘listening’ to prejudice (and backing a hard Brexit) can Labour be an authentically working-class party. Both positions require that party members – who are overwhelmingly left-wing and socially progressive – be prevented from driving policy.

Both these dogmas are counterproductive. The current economic crisis presents an opportunity to reassert some basic aspects of social democracy after decades of retreat. A £15 minimum wage has overwhelming public support, as do price controls on food and other necessities. Common ownership of energy commands five-to-one support among the UK population, with other polls suggesting that three-quarters back free energy allowances. Conservative supporters, never mind the rest of the electorate, support rail nationalisation by more than two to one. And yet Labour remains committed to a piecemeal offering, promising to shave money off energy bills by abolishing VAT on them. The leadership’s dogmatic refusal to offer a more radical alternative, and its commitment to the private ownership of basic services, claims to be about winning elections – but it is objectively unpopular.

As well as getting poorer and more unequal, Britain is becoming more isolated and authoritarian. Labour could oppose such policies as sending asylum seekers to Rwanda for ‘processing’, or the Police, Crime, Sentencing and Courts Act, in clear moral terms. Instead it has stuck to a cautious script, emphasising that it, too, will be tough on borders and disruptive protesters. Keir Starmer used his 2021 conference speech to brand Labour as the ‘party of law and order’.

The stated rationale for this approach is a need to ‘reconnect’ with working-class voters lost in 2019. But working-class voters – in Barnsley and Workington as well as in Islington and Lambeth – are not homogeneous. Labour’s historic claim to be the party of workers is premised on a politics of solidarity and a practice of contesting ideas in workplaces and communities. The current approach of most politicians towards the ‘Red Wall’, on the other hand, is based on a crass identitarian definition of the working class as ageing white men with regional accents.

Relying on focus groups and soundbites communicated from on high excludes working-class people from the actual business of politics, which is left to the professionals. They are turned from complex political agents into passive consumers, as politicians race each other to the bottom on border-building and authoritarianism. To follow through on this strategy, the Labour leadership must shut down party democracy – conference has repeatedly voted for progressive immigration policies – and disregard the views both of its members and of affiliated unions. In doing so, it loses one of the only mechanisms available to it for actually connecting with working-class people.

Starmer promised to continue Jeremy Corbyn’s domestic policy, but has ended up to the right of Ed Miliband. Labour claims to want to win elections, but is addicted to unpopular centrist economic policies. It claims to want to reconnect with working-class voters, but in practice excludes them. Starmer’s approach claims to be about rational, sensible politics, but is in fact governed by ingrained dogmas. Perhaps Labour will win the next general election, but if so it will be in spite of a leadership that promises one thing then does the opposite.
https://www.lrb.co.uk/blog/2022/august/ … -dogmatism

Last edited by uziq (2022-08-08 04:11:59)

Dilbert_X
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Yeah but if you were in a pub with that Starmer feller I bet he'd order a glass of Riesling.

That Boris Johnson, he could knock back a pint, he's an OK bloke.
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uziq
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it's amusing to me that you're presenting my arguments for nationalisation and state ownership/subsidy, which are working fine in many other european states, as 'barmy' and deepy idiosyncratic, whereas there is "five-to-one support" for it amongst the british electorate. even conservatives support the idea of nationalizing the railways again after decades of runaway profits and now some of the most expensive public transport anywhere in western europe. it's cheaper to literally drive from london to manchester in your own car, or to hire an uber, than it is to get a train. brilliant.

https://image.gbnews.uk/278572.jpg?imageId=278572&width=480&height=303

meanwhile you tell me that the 50.1% majority managed in brexit is some inviolable expression of the 'people's will' and i can't possibly cavil or criticise. so what the fuck is the overwhelming public support for nationalisation of utilities, you numpty?

Last edited by uziq (2022-08-08 04:45:25)

Dilbert_X
The X stands for
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These things are all fine in a functioning economy which can afford them.

Otherwise this kind of pie in the sky populism is usually the last-gasp of a south-american country just before it runs away to 6000% inflation and votes in a man in a Nutcracker soldier outfit.

In a country which has no money or income the people can't just vote themselves more money and more income - and better services.
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Dilbert_X
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Apart from that I've said umpteen times that setting the bar for Brexit at 50% was really fucking stupid and Cameron has a lot to answer for - maybe he was a brexiteer all along and thats how he delivered it.

But thats what happened and thats what the peons voted for - now you're the one saying populist demands must be acceded to.
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uziq
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a functioning economy that can afford them?

we just paid the private transport companies £600 mill last year in covid bailouts – they then proceeded to post record profits, fire and rehire most of their staff on much poorer deals, and pay out the usual dividends to their shareholders.

so you tell me: what's a functioning economy? bailing out private entities and ensuring the investments of their shareholders? that's economic sanity to you? lmao.

'a south-american country just before it runs into 6000% inflation'. yes, because the pound, like the dollar, infamously performs like the currency of a latin american banana republic. our economy is just like a small south american, corrupt state.

we just spent £20 billion quid to be perpetually at war in the middle-east for the last two generations. but we can't afford to *checks notes* take control of our water bills and train ticket pricing? when we built the railways and energy infrastructure using taxpayer money in the first place?

miss me with this utterly tendentious bullshit. risible arguments. made 10x more funny by the fact that you're an investor in a private energy company. lmfao.
Dilbert_X
The X stands for
+1,786|5537|eXtreme to the maX

uziq wrote:

our economy is just like a small south american, corrupt state.
Well the govt is.
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uziq
Member
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Dilbert_X wrote:

Apart from that I've said umpteen times that setting the bar for Brexit at 50% was really fucking stupid and Cameron has a lot to answer for - maybe he was a brexiteer all along and thats how he delivered it.

But thats what happened and thats what the peons voted for - now you're the one saying populist demands must be acceded to.
there's nothing 'populist' about the concept of nationalisation, considering it has cross-party support from the left wing and the right wing alike, who operate by very different understandings of the market and state and their inter-relationship. what is popular is not necessary populist.

it's amazing how much you cheered on brexit as the 'triumph of the little man', precisely because it adverted to all the worst aspects of - yes- populism, despite it also being an immense, once-in-a-century self-wounding by economic standards.

so it's okay to make economically risky moves and engage in pie-in-the-sky thinking when it involves returning to 'whites only' sunlit uplands, etc?

similarly you talk about the impossibility of these major shake-ups, when we have precisely bailed out and made the money machine go brrr on half a dozen occasion since the 2008 financial crash. socialism and redistribution already DOES occur – only for the very rich and the corporations. if you're part of the very richest, you can probably bet on the state coming in to bail you out when your high-risk, high-profit activities go poorly. but the idea of similarly spending that 'bail-out' dollar on nationalising the same industries and services ... beyond the pale!

Last edited by uziq (2022-08-08 05:09:09)

Dilbert_X
The X stands for
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Britain's GDP per capita is below New Zealand, think about that.

I never 'cheered on Brexit', I just thought it funny that you were so thoroughly blindsided, it was an example of your thinking being out of touch with most people - you're level pegging with Sunak there - and being surprised that such an anti-intellectual as Farage could achieve a huge win - for himself.

Pretty sure I predicted it would be an economic disaster.

Last edited by Dilbert_X (2022-08-08 05:15:15)

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Dilbert_X
The X stands for
+1,786|5537|eXtreme to the maX

Dilbert_X wrote:

uziq wrote:

people are not so entirely stupid that they can’t cast a vote based on some semblance of reason, or be appealed to using reasonable arguments.
https://ichef.bbci.co.uk/news/660/cpsprodpb/0E22/production/_90081630_leaveresult.jpg
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uziq
Member
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once again, the idea i'm 'out of touch' is pretty funny, considering that most of my elderly relatives voted for brexit. i think i'm in closer touch with the generational gaps and divides in british politics than you are, who seems to think the 'zeitgeist' you're connected to via the mains is still Blairite britain, evidently. you're still outraged about alastair campbell and dr david kelly, for fuck's sake.

what does GDP per capita have to do with the ability of the british state to nationalize its utilities?

france's GDP per capita is below the UK's - and they just responded to the cost-of-living crisis by buying out the remainder of the private stake in their national energy company. derp derp.

you should take a few more statistics lessons from newbie.
Dilbert_X
The X stands for
+1,786|5537|eXtreme to the maX

Dilbert_X wrote:

You're entirely missing the point, whether or not the referendum was legally binding the public voted leave, whether or not you think that means the electorate put populism ahead of reasoned argument, or whether it means they truly believed Brexit is in best interests of the country as a whole is up to you.

The public voted for Brexit, no deal or not.
The electorate has given that message three times now, there are no options to 'reassess', not without another referendum or an election.
If the public is dumb enough to vote for something they don't understand then bad luck. Its like turkeys voting for Christmas, then complaining "Wait, what, Christmas means we get our heads cut off and breadcrumbs shoved up our backsides? How were we supposed to know? The politicians should reassess this for us and not give us what we asked for".

Apart from that you're wrong on every point you've made so far, your wishful thinking and reality seem to be disconnected - but of course everyone who holds a different view is 'as stupid as possible' and 'bringing nothing remotely interesting to the discussion'.
You're exactly the same as the Tory elite, just not part of it.
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uziq
Member
+476|2883

Dilbert_X wrote:

Dilbert_X wrote:

uziq wrote:

people are not so entirely stupid that they can’t cast a vote based on some semblance of reason, or be appealed to using reasonable arguments.
https://ichef.bbci.co.uk/news/660/cpsprodpb/0E22/production/_90081630_leaveresult.jpg
yes and a rump of the leavers have since rescinded or u-turned on their views and rightfully see it as a disaster. they can see reason when the consequences stare them in the face.

if you're accusing me, a literature student who spent literal terms studying media theory, communications and the role of institutions in culture, that i was oblivious to the fact that people can be hoodwinked by tabloids and spin ... i think you need a new line of prosecution there mate. i don't think anyone who can analyse rhetoric or understand propaganda is 'blindsided' by the idea that a bunch of semi-literate white van driving gammons could be persuaded to vote for the abattoir.

Last edited by uziq (2022-08-08 05:24:12)

uziq
Member
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perhaps you can present me with an argument about why we can't nationalise our utilities or transport network by appealing to your favourite data about land mass or population/km2.

it was an example of your thinking being out of touch with most people
ah, yes, "most" people. i was "blindsided" by a huge discrepancy. by that vote that went 51/49.

"most" people = 17.4 million leavers. in a population of (then) 66.5 million.

so "most" people = 26% of the populace?

most
/məʊst/

determiner
determiner: most
pronoun: most
greatest in amount, quantity, or degree.
you're not great at this statistics thing, are you?

Last edited by uziq (2022-08-08 05:37:27)

Dilbert_X
The X stands for
+1,786|5537|eXtreme to the maX

uziq wrote:

we just spent £20 billion quid to be perpetually at war in the middle-east for the last two generations.
Delivered by  the last Labour govt.

GBP1000 per household would be 200 billion, ten times the cost of Blair lining up his next gig.
You want to hand that out so it can go pffft up people's chimneys?

I'm sorry the people voted wrong, perhaps instead of partying you should have tried campaigning?
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uziq
Member
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where are you pulling these figures from? do you expect people to seriously engage with entirely made-up numbers? this is an even lower bar than rejecting the crud you find on google images in a 15 second ctrl+t search.

Last edited by uziq (2022-08-08 06:20:50)

Dilbert_X
The X stands for
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Oh yeah, its 20 billion, still a lot of money.

Anyway, I think someone needs to work out where Britain is going to find some cash, I imagine Russian oil money has dried up now.
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uziq
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the UK is one of the least dependent EU countries on russian oil or its proceeds.

it's funny how quickly you raise and abandon statistics in search of an argument. 'UK has lower GDP/capita than the NZ!'

what if i told you that many small nations with lower GNPs than the UK managed state-owned services? wowsers.

having price-gouged tickets and runaway profits, above the rate of infation, every year, is not good economic sense. a public energy or transport network is an asset that promotes economic activity and the civic life of the country. unlike, say, spaffing £20 billion on filling up the middle-east with children's graves and depleted uranium, the return on which was zero.

let's face it, your problem is with trains or energy being run equitably for the commonweal - and not your shareholder dividend.

Last edited by uziq (2022-08-08 06:29:42)

Dilbert_X
The X stands for
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Pretty sure Russian oligarchs pumped billions and billions into Britain.

Britain voted for all of this, the red wall turned blue, what can you do.
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uziq
Member
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russian oligarchs laundered their money through UK financial services. don't know if you checked, but the City isn't exactly well-gilded by its habit of dutifully paying its taxes and contributing to the exchequer. most of the same financial services companies that helped to launder russian oligarch's wealth also routinely advise FTSE companies on how to avoid paying tax.

lol but, yes, the UK economy is fatally reliant on russian money because a few billionaires bought a football team here and there.

your arguments really are beneath comment.

"britain can't find the money to re-nationalise the railways because you just sanctioned a few russian oligarchs".

Last edited by uziq (2022-08-08 07:23:53)

uziq
Member
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Dilbert_X wrote:

I understand migrants though.
https://twitter.com/bestforbritain/stat … kj8QmQy3IQ

i don’t think you do understand certain salient facts about the UK’s current policies.

Last edited by uziq (2022-08-08 16:35:20)

Dilbert_X
The X stands for
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I will reply to your post when Australia has completed its three days of national mourning.

For now you'll have to be satisfied with a link

Holders of the visas were able to apply for permanent residency in the UK, along with their families. How quickly they could apply depended on the size of their investment:

Two years with £10m
Three years with £5m
Five years with £2m
The Home Office issued 2,581 investor visas to Russian citizens, since the scheme was introduced in 2008.
https://www.bbc.com/news/60348046
Lets average it and say thats GBP13B right there.
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uziq
Member
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£13bn? we just gave at least the same amount in subsidies to the fucking energy companies who are price gouging and ripping us off.
https://www.independent.co.uk/climate-c … 64222.html

lmao. you really are dense.

wholesale price of gas is down 40% from the march peak this year. and yet gas+energy bills are now forecasted to reach £4,000p/a. an energy cap rise has been announced about 4x now. but, sure, there's certainly no other way to tackle this but by trusting the wisdom of the private companies.

remember when people were told in the 1980s that selling off the energy and transport infrastructure would make things more competitive, more efficient, and cheaper for the end-consumer? . turns out that does work ... for the end-consumers and transport users in europe, whose state systems bought up vast amounts of the UKs infrastructure.

but let's talk about russian oligarchs and their £13bn golden visas (which were cancelled a while ago in any case). £13bn is pocket change. the exchequer just printed about £30bn to give away to tory mates and fraudulent PPE providers.

you trying to draw in russian sanctions as some bizarro justification for not being able to take charge of the cost of our energy bills and train tickets is laughable on about 6 different levels.

Last edited by uziq (2022-08-09 04:29:32)

Dilbert_X
The X stands for
+1,786|5537|eXtreme to the maX
So anyway, who is actually running Britain at the mo?
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uziq
Member
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nobody is running britain. and it seems boris is purposefully making the situation as bad as possible so that his inheritor will take the fall-out.

literally allowing pensioners to freeze to death this winter, or for young children to go hungry and miss meals – to own his own political party.

meanwhile there's a new mass movement that has made a couple hundred thousand signatories in a day, based around general strikes, unionism, and refusal to pay bills. picking up momentum quicker than the corbyn labour organisation of the same name. but you know all about the zeitgeist in the UK and seem to think the 'red wall' is a bunch of unreconstructed white racists, so i shan't inform you any more about these developments. i'm sure you've got your finger on the pulse. 'unions are bad, actually'.



last two byelections were big losses for the conservatives. the blue north could entirely have been epiphenomenal, attached to one empty slogan that never delivered – "to get brexit done" – and soon might quickly become the mottled yellow-red-green north, imo.

Last edited by uziq (2022-08-09 04:34:31)

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