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Author Topic: The Political Thread  (Read 1662840 times)

JayzusB.Christ

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Re: The Political Thread
« Reply #18480 on: 13 May, 2021, 08:21:06 AM »
Feck, that Liz Cheney stuff is a bit scary. What may be the most powerful political party in the world in 2025, reduced to one policy: believing a liar.

Oh, and stopping the wrong people voting for the wrong party.
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IndigoPrime

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Re: The Political Thread
« Reply #18481 on: 13 May, 2021, 08:39:24 AM »
Lots of people online there (with the GOP) and here (with the Tories) still running with the line of thought that this is the last dying twitch of the right. The US also has people saying they think the GOP will split, much like people were saying with the Tories a few years back.

Given recent history, that people think either of these things is the case is baffling. Moreover, there’s been so much reliance on assumed demographic shifts. Yet, lo and behold, the young are turning out for the GOP in various spots in the US and the Tories have somehow transformed themselves into the party of the working classes, despite shitting all over the working classes at every available opportunity.

Both countries have one thing in common: the slimmest of windows to set things right. Sure, the Dems now control three branches of government, but bar a small miracle that won’t be the case for long. In the UK, the Tories are stitching things up for the future, so they can win on fewer votes (and/or stop lots of people from voting) and free their decisions from judicial oversight. We might get one more general election before an inevitable descent into something much closer to a North Atlantic Hungary. That means other parties have to work together.

Current state of play:

Labour: two rats in a sack, endlessly fighting. Ex-leader says Labour must widen its approach, yet—as ever—falls short of suggesting actual cooperation with other parties (despite working with the Libs getting him elected in 1997)

Libs: absent from the discussion, with a leader either anonymous or intent on asking people what the Libs should stand for, in order for people to vote for them again.

Greens: buoyed by local election success, and now of the opinion they should fight hard in a GE, despite being able to win at most one seat.

I’ve no idea what Plaid’s doing. That party was the grown-up in ‘England and Wales’ last time. I guess we’ve a couple of years to go yet before the ‘SHOCK’ GE of 2023 (before all Sunak’s shit really kicks in, and before the COVID report will be published). Here’s hoping smarter heads prevail by then.

CalHab

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Re: The Political Thread
« Reply #18482 on: 13 May, 2021, 09:10:49 AM »
Back in the 90s I remember reading about the "End of History", as various academics and analysts believed that the post-cold-war centrist liberal consensus would continue indefinitely and lead to the end of conflict. There was no longer any major ideological battles to be fought.

The one thing that is certain about the future is that our ideas are wildly wrong.

IndigoPrime

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Re: The Political Thread
« Reply #18483 on: 13 May, 2021, 10:17:22 AM »
The biggest fuck-up for progressives has been complacency—that assumption it would all be one-way traffic. We didn’t account for how regressives and authoritarians would cling on to power. We didn’t account for how people would detach themselves so much from the political process, to the point voters would back the very people who are harming them.

The second biggest fuck-up for progressives in the UK has been fighting each other. If instead of attempting the foolhardy proposition of plotting each party on a political compass (economics for horizontal axis; auth/lib on vertical), you drew a shape that encompassed the party’s internal coalition, the sheer overlap between Lab/Lib/Green/SNP/Plaid would be obvious. Sure, there are differences and outliers, but there is a shit-ton of policy they could and would agree on.

Instead, people focus on the differences. You have Greens who’ll never share power with any party that’s pro-nuclear (vs. getting into government and pushing a heavily renewable agenda while recognising existing power structures must remain in place until then). You have Labour voters who scoff at the thought of working with Lib Dems, ignoring the parties’ histories of working together for the common good. You have Lib Dems who scoff at working with anyone, still delusional about the prospect of power. And that’s all before you get to the nats, with their own problems.

I despair. The numbers are there to beat the Tories. They always have been. There hasn’t been a single general election in my voting lifetime where the Tories—or those who agree with their views—had a majority. But here we are—and here we’ll stay, unless people’s mindsets radically change.

CalHab

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Re: The Political Thread
« Reply #18484 on: 13 May, 2021, 11:24:32 AM »
And that’s all before you get to the nats, with their own problems.

I don't know about Plaid Cymru, but the SNP minority government has had a support agreement with the Scottish Greens. It's the Lib Dems and Labour that threw their hands up in horror at working with the SNP. This resulted in the ridiculous and depressing sight of Scottish Labour voting to oppose SNP bills, even when the same policy was on the UK Labour manifesto.

I genuinely think many in the Labour party are completely detached from the reality of their situation.

IndigoPrime

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Re: The Political Thread
« Reply #18485 on: 13 May, 2021, 11:28:28 AM »
That’s very Labour. It hates working with others. The number of times Labour sat on its hands because it refused to vote in favour of perfectly reasonable SNP/Lib+Green policy in Westminster beggars belief. In Scotland, the Libs are bloody awful too, flipping much of their principles because the SNP wants independence from the UK. Never mind that there is a reasonable middle ground to be fought for, given the party’s long-standing demands for regional authority, decentralisation, devolution, electoral reform and representative government.

CalHab

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Re: The Political Thread
« Reply #18486 on: 13 May, 2021, 11:41:17 AM »
You're not wrong.

I was looking at the Scottish results last week and I think that both the SNP and Conservatives are at the absolute peak of what they can expect in terms of votes or representation. The party that has the biggest opportunity to grow is Labour. To me, that comes from embracing devolution (which Labour introduced FFS) and supporting the growth in powers of the Scottish Parliament, even if that means backing the SNP on bills. I genuinely think that would be a good offering to many Scots and would get them having a realistic chance of being next government in Holyrood.

The elephant in the room is that the UK Labour party has no prospect of holding the government in Westminster to account or forcing their hand.

I don't see much of a future for the Lib Dems in Scotland. Once the older generation in their island and border heartlands goes, they'll have no base, no policies and no prospects.

IndigoPrime

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Re: The Political Thread
« Reply #18487 on: 13 May, 2021, 11:50:22 AM »
I’ve not read recent manifestos, but it always struck me that there was too much overlap between SNP and LD. Take out indy and you’d often be hard-pressed to separate them. So that leaves little to no space for the party, even under PR. In a sense, it’s a pity, given the party’s history (not least Charles Kennedy), but things move on. Really, the Libs should look to shore up being the party of liberalism in England, working with other progressive parties to create a Westminster majority. But that will require Labour to get on board, rather than arrogantly demanding all Libs (and Greens and Plaid) vote Labour.

Tjm86

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Re: The Political Thread
« Reply #18488 on: 13 May, 2021, 12:41:52 PM »
I don't know about Plaid Cymru, but the SNP minority government has had a support agreement with the Scottish Greens.

The nature of the Senedd has often forced Labour to work in collaboration with other parties for some time.  They have had a coalition with Plaid in the past and for the last few years the sole LD member was Education Minister (Kirsty Williams). 

At the moment they've got exactly half the seats so they have to work collaboratively.  How well they do will remain to be seen.  The pandemic has been good for them (I know, sorry ...) because it has allowed them to exercise devolved powers and Westminster has been forced into funding measures. 

As we come out, the focus will shift towards issues over which there is less scope for independent action but also more constraints.  The track record of the Senedd on the economy has been pretty ropey over the years.  Possibly Labour will once again look to where they have common ground with Plaid and the liberals as they go.

Funt Solo

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Re: The Political Thread
« Reply #18489 on: 13 May, 2021, 03:51:54 PM »
Feck, that Liz Cheney stuff is a bit scary. What may be the most powerful political party in the world in 2025, reduced to one policy: believing a liar.

Oh, and stopping the wrong people voting for the wrong party.

Just when you thought the US election was over months ago ... Arizona recount: Why Republicans are still tallying votes. It it goes nowhere, they look like desperate fools. On the other hand, this is part of the new fascist agenda for the Republicans in the US. In general (and officially, at the highest levels of the party), they now have a mindset that embraces the Big Lie (that Trump really won).
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Proudhuff

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Re: The Political Thread
« Reply #18490 on: 13 May, 2021, 05:04:09 PM »
Back in the 90s I remember reading about the "End of History", as various academics and analysts believed that the post-cold-war centrist liberal consensus would continue indefinitely and lead to the end of conflict. There was no longer any major ideological battles to be fought.

The one thing that is certain about the future is that our ideas are wildly wrong.

I remember LOL the first time I heard that theory, the arrogance of it was astounding.
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Professor Bear

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Re: The Political Thread
« Reply #18491 on: 13 May, 2021, 06:00:45 PM »
I recall the follow-up to the End Of History theory was that the future would see resource wars, with countries having to realign their military strategies to deal not with nations, but with terrorist threats caused by said resource wars.  It's interesting to note that even back then, they knew that the end result of neoliberal consensus would be that capitalism would run rampant and destroy nations.

The Legendary Shark

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Re: The Political Thread
« Reply #18492 on: 13 May, 2021, 06:12:57 PM »

Not capitalism; corporatism.

Remember, also, how Mussolini defined fascism.

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Dive a little deeper - all is not as it seems. "Cyber pandemic" on the way. Devices to be "quarantined" (disconnected).

Funt Solo

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Re: The Political Thread
« Reply #18493 on: 13 May, 2021, 06:14:31 PM »
One of the things I find most disturbing at the moment is that there are so many supply-chains that link fairly clearly into the current ongoing genocide of the Uighurs in China. Like, if you buy jeans at all, then the cotton that is in those jeans was probably picked via indentured labour (you know, slavery) in right now, modern-day, happening as I type China.

But don't worry - all the companies that make jeans, and all the consumers of jeans are ... oh. No. Nothing. Nothing to see here. Move along. Move along.
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Professor Bear

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Re: The Political Thread
« Reply #18494 on: 13 May, 2021, 09:32:11 PM »
Not capitalism; corporatism.

Name one place where capitalism has ever worked.