Tuesday 17 December 2019

Election (3) - Towards a Strategy

Pace, CU, I'll get back to the economy next - promise!

Just to finish off:  so, when it comes to neutralising Momentum (to be understood as meaning the whole bedsit-woke leftist 'officer-class'), I don't at all recommend trusting to a lazy strategy of expecting them to drift away; nor to the more honourable approach of fixing all the real grievances.

And yet the task is vital.  May's appalling failure was not to finish them off in 2017, which I believe she could have - it was their 'close-run thing' in that GE which gave them the morale they carried into the 2019 rematch.  If they can get past their current demoralisation - and a major dust-up over the Labour leadership is just the thing to keep them together over the next three months - there's every likelihood they will find an intelligent way of maintaining their infrastructure, and a basic level of activity, over the lean years to come.

In addition to fixing the real grievances (of course!), some of the other things that need doing seem already to be on Boris' (/ Cummings') list, tucked away at the back of the Manifesto, the famous page 48 - FTPA, boundaries (can it really be true, at bloody last!?), voter ID & postal voting etc etc, Leveson; and some constitutional measures besides.  Our friend Raedwald has advocated an overhaul of the Electoral Commission, which needs to find its place on the list: and there are some pertinent criticisms of the EHRC, too.

And of course the various media require attention.  Frankly, as a blogger, I'm not sure how social media are to be handled.  Freedom is a wonderful thing, and much under threat from the woke tendency.  But abuse of freedom is sickening.

The TV is easier to prescribe for.  Notwithstanding that the Left howls at the BBC too, in my mind there is no doubt whatever that things cannot be allowed to rest.  There are commentators like Andrew Marr who, I swear, don't even realise how shockingly biased they are.  His performance, and that of Emily Maitlis, on the morning of 13th December, were just astonishing [.... fill in your own bĂȘtes noires here] - almost as though they were deliberately goading the new government into attacking them.  [BTW, I don't hear anyone even bothering to defend Channel 4, whose nightly bias is blatant (and their manners appalling) - worse than the Graun, I'd say; and the Graun doesn't even need to be balanced.]

Having mentioned several measures we might fairly view as corrective (punitive is a harsh word), we might also mention the universities and other institutions further down the 'academic' scale.  Just as online freedom is precious, so too is academic freedom.  But it's under assault from the woke-left, in no uncertain terms - mostly, of course, from within.  (Worse in the USA than here, so far, but there's no room for complacency.)   Too big a subject to handle briefly (still more so the schools) but I trust there is room for it on Cummings' 5-year plan. 

Which brings me to my final hot-review election thoughts.  Longtime readers will often have found me lauding the British government's actions after the Boer War.  Where many might have expected a vengeful turn of events, the wise counsels of the day were for magnanimity towards the defeated Boer - a very large amount of money for rebuilding their shattered land.  The result repaid the gesture many times over - the magnificent contribution they made to WW1 and WW2, fighting superbly against the side which for many of them might have been a more natural attachment. 

So: over and above 'fixing the grievances' (which is itself a tall order, let's face it) I'd be looking for purposeful ways to persuade all but the most rabid, ideologically-driven marxists amongst the bedsit brigade that there are other, better ways to improve the lot of mankind than fomenting hatred and revolution.  The means of doing this will necessarily be indirect, because we don't go in for political re-education camps in this country.  But it's there to be tried.  We can't take any pleasure in a whole generation of 'officer-class' material festering in the juices of resentment.  I'd like to think Cummings is the man** for this, as well.


** Footnote:  I was pretty appalled by Gove's triumphalist warm-up speech (before Boris came on and justly demanded breakfast).  What a ghastly little git he is.


Anonymous said...

re the BBC: Michal Hussein, Evan Davis and Justin Webb are also rampant lefties I would say along with Nick Robinson and Laura Keunsberg but they just hide it better. We don't know about all the editors etc behind the scenes but they must be just as bad. The Civil Service and HoL are also hotbeds of Blairism. The whole establishment has been infiltrated and indoctrinated since TB was elected in 1997.

andrew said...

Too many people trying to be clever.
Expected that from the other side.

- cheap(er) houses
- proper permie jobs that provide a sense of self worth
If society largely works for you, you do not usually want to upend it.

The clever people can carry on arguing over venezuela on thames vs singapore on thames and projecting bile at each other (guido / guardian). Excuse me whilst I pop the corn.

John in Cheshire said...

One thought occurs to me; perhaps some of the newer universities should be turned into exclusively technical universities. No arts courses or business management courses, lawyer courses or accountant courses. Just chemical mechanical, electrical, civil engineering courses along with computer sciences,IT, instrumentation and automation etc. And biological and medical sciences.

Rebuild our capabilities to invent and make stuff.

And make sure the commies are kept out.

david morris said...

Thanks for these 3 posts. Very interesting (as usual !)

In regard to the future for Labour, Mr Chivers seems to believe the Alt-Left can do nothing else but double down..


Elby the Beserk said...

You missed one major thing, Nick, the elephant in the room, being the takeover of our education system by the Left and cultural Marxists. Quite how we deal with that I don't know - but for a start that 80% of teachers are of the Left is bad enough, but that they seem to be allowed to preach in class is an outrage.

As for the Unis - at least, the Humanities, well, hell. Defund them? Just close them? I cannot see how they contribute to the country whatsoever, and we fund the buggers. My way? Labour camps and re-programming. Go full Uncle Joe on them.

Matt said...

Other than having time on their hands to post on social media, I'm not sure how good this Leftist officer class is and whether we need to be worried about them.
For a start, they have time because they don't have an actual job. That's because they have a degree in trans grievance studies which won't get them a job as anything other than a barista.
If they had the brains to be a tactical genius, they wouldn't have a crap humanities degree in the first place.

Anonymous said...

"- proper permie jobs that provide a sense of self worth"

I think there should be strong encouragement for the self-employed, including the owners of little firms with half-a-dozen employees. There are too many people in Britain who are employed by the government or by big organisations.

Don Cox

E-K said...

The loony left are the best thing for the Tories. They've just won them a majority again. The more visible the better.

Momentum types have always been with us. The problem is with their sympathisers in high office and institutions.

If anything the 'borrowed' Labour voters are a more immediate problem to real Conservatives - it gives Boris the right to say "Ah. Sorry. Can't do that for you. Sorry, old chum - to the back of the queue. I now have the 'Labour wing' of our party to repay."

Note. Boris never thanked working class Brexit Party supporters for lending him their votes.

Raedwald said...

I've just seen those socio-economic voting breakdowns; the Conservatives stormed the C2DEs whilst Labour was much stronger with the ABC1s - in response to which Harry Phibbs asks 'What can the Conservatives do to reach out and reconnect with rich people?'

It really is the world turned upside down. The Conservative party is now the party of the anti-globalists, whilst Labour has become the home of the supranationalist elites .. you'd need a heart of stone not to chuckle

CityUnslicker said...

Much sense here Nick, nut much as I want to not talk about Brexit there is a bad path down which the Tories could go which leads to a no deal or poor FTA and a stagnant economy which will allow grievance to fester further.

For all Cummings genius, I think he has a blind spot here as may Boris. I hope not though as it would be sad.

The rest of your list needs action, but also action from people like us making the case for capitalism. With marxism defeated again perhaps some space will open up and people drift away from the fully automated luxury communism types!

hovis said...

All those areas for reform it like the had a Common Purpose, no?

dearieme said...

Gove may well be a git; trouble is, he's quite clever - and so few MPs are.

By the way I've just watched a Lisa Nandy speech on Guido. She made much of how unfamiliar the Commons had been to her as a newbie, a den of Privilege.

Aye, but her grandfather was a Peer and her mother had been (if memory serves) a parliamentary librarian. Make of that what you will.

Anonymous said...

Student loans seem to be a key issue in driving graduates into passionately supporting the hard left.

Theoretically having graduates pay for their education is fair. Realistically it powerfully nudges graduates into a habit of voting left.

Anonymous said...

I wish they could dump some of this Green crap. Debden out this morning (granted, not a exec job) saying eliminate petrol cars by 2030 which is 10 years earlier than Gove also requested when at Environment. It's just bloody ridiculous. I accidentally watched that Ch4 News debate on Climate Change and all they did was posture on who could set the tightest targets. I know it will piss off the snowflakes but we really need to start taking a more pragmatic stance on climate change - harm minimisation, better flood defences, better planning regs, etc rather than investing in crap and expensive technology and fleecing the consumer. And Gove can just piss off.

There's a picture of yesterday's cabinet meeting and you can just tell he thinks he's got a crack at the top job - odious individual.


Raedwald said...

Interesting that making graduates pay towards their education - an ideological Labour move - has become attributed to Tory 'austerity'.

I remember Rima Horton - then a North Kensington Labour councillor and my economics MA tutor - being passionate about the unfairness of the 'graduate premium'. That is, at NPV, the lifetime earnings premium of graduates over non-graduates was then about £250k. Charging graduates something like £50k at NPV for their degrees was really therefore just social justice.

Of course I expect the graduate preium had eroded somewhat and perhaps the coat / benefit calcs need to be re-done (including the externalities) but it's hard to knock the logic.

Nick Drew said...

OK, here we go: (last outing before we get back to money ...)

Andrew - "simple: cheap(er) houses, proper permie jobs": we understand why that would have the desired effect - but in 4-5 years?

Elby "Uncle Joe" Berserker - well I did touch briefly on the enormous topic of schools. And *ahem* on labour camps ...

Matt - sorry, but you seriously underestimate them (i.e., the officer-class cadre within Momentum; though for sure there are some deadbeats within its other-ranks). And - nothing wrong per se with a proper arts degree, thank you very much! (a great deal wrong with trans studies, as you say)

Don - our friend Mr R is always very strong, & very good, on the Little Platoons

Kev - that's a subtle concern. We do indeed depend on Boris being adroit with the Keynsian splurge

Loony-left, when visibly foaming at the mouth, is a boon OK. Trouble is, some of these Momentum types are v. calm, pleasant & persuasive. Tough to garner votes, one front-door at a time: but I'm very sure the more accomplished of them were achieving just that. They've probably twigged Lynton Crosby's diktat by now (you can't fatten the hog on market day) and they prob. plan a 5-year campaign, coming to a doorstep near you - serious proselytisers, these chaps

Mr R - there are indeed several paradoxes / ironies in all this Political Realignment stuff: but not all of them are laughing matters. Paul Mason is pretty good on the analysis (though bonkers on the prescription)

The graduate premium was probably real enough when only 10% had degrees. Now it's nearer 50%, it's fairly much evaporated

dearieme - yes, though she's actually quite good, Nandy overcooked that one a tad - playing to the gallery, presumably. I was pretty overwhelmed at University myself (for about half a week).

Dick - Gove was nicely summed up in the cartoon here, I always thought. As to the Greenery, well, as you may know, I think the pragmatism is coming in bucketloads now: a big relief & long overdue. (BTW, don't be too surprised if the EV thing gathers serious momentum very quickly. A lot of very smart people - I don't mean Musk - are locked into this, and the practical problems, though great, are all tractable. The great thing is: people will actually like EVs, when recharging is made suitably easy)

CU - back to Capitalism now!

dearieme said...

I'm all for free markets and capitalism. But not monopoly capitalism, not crony capitalism.

Anonymous said...

Demography is destiny. Those Labour strongholds turned blue are all "hideously white" as Greg Dyke would put it (he's now York Uni chancellor, no bias in education or BBC, no siree).

Anonymous said...

ND - re housing - immigration moratorium for 5 years would help. And we need ID cards desperately. Chances of either from Boris, big fat zero.

He understands optics pretty well, or Dom does. "No Tories to Davos" MPs have been told.

GridBot said...

anon 2:04

Please explain why you think ID cards are needed? What benefit does this offer over and above a driving license or passport?

Vote Leave said...

Many of the comments appear to come from a different age - Boer War, FFS!!

It wouldn't be out of place on a Transatlantic steamer around 1912. Self congratulatory while the ship heads for an iceberg.

Enjoy the trip - and the swim.

Bill Quango said...

I’m just glad we won.
It was a close run thing. The margin between heroic victory and humiliating hung parliament, just 1%.

The Boer war reference seems to be upsetting someone. So let’s take it up a few years. 1917. The Corbynite Revolution.
The ‘White’ Russians almost annihilated the reds. The whites were assaulting Moscow, They had had victory upon victory. Yet, as happened in the Chinese civil war, the reds, having been forced back into just a toe hold position, bounced back.
And smote their enemies so forcibly, and speedily and ruthlessly, that they never recovered.
The Whites in Russia and the Nationalists in China were forced into exile.

Some historians say it was the power of their belief in victory, and their propaganda that was the difference between the winners and losers.

Raedwald said...

There's a mass of English unitaries and metropolitans up for election in May next year, and Scottish Parliament elections in 2021. The results of both will be critical. I suspect the bluequake won't penetrate at local level in England, but that the SNP will take a hammering in Scotland.

I take Nick's point about magnanimity in victory. I suspect a devolution of power from Whitehall to town hall, a reversal of Thatcherism, could build that trust at a local level. Incidentally, Mrs T's ruthless centralisation of power also cost the party 1m members between 1989 - 1997. Yes, a million. Many were local councillors and members of Conservative CAs whose powers and responsibilities were so radically reduced and who jacked it in as a consequence.

Wales and Scotland are both proving the adage of enough rope; I think this will work in England, too. If we want local government coloured blue, we need to devolve power and control.

CU - apols for extending this thread, but I think this is a crucial aspect of capitalism - giving people financial responsibility.

Matt said...

I trust my local councillors (politicians) as little as the ones in Westminster. In fact maybe less judging by the barmy things they do.

Elby the Beserk said...

Nick - Education (indcotrination) - granted, yes you did refer to it. However I am not sure that folks are aware just how this bad is; the scale of the indoctrination is such that Rudi Dutschke;s "Long march through the institutions" has been fully effected. Hence the fact that somebody as patently useless as Cressida Dick, who should have been sacked over the slaughter of the Brazilian lad, is instead in charge of the Met, despite being manifestly incompetent.

All our institutions are infested with parasites, to the extent that we now have the likes of NGOS such as Stonewall, Mermaids, Extinction Webellion, Greenpeace, you name it - none of the accountable, none mandated in any sense of the word (for example, we have many gay friends and acquaintances - none of the say Stonewall speaks for them, however the government has decided that they do)

Hence the need for a Stalinist purge. Root and branch. Else we'll never get rid of these bastards!

hovis said...

@Elby re: march through the instituions - hence my reference to Common Purpose earlier. They are almost like a Leftist Masonic structure for their "graduates".

E-K said...

Nick - Thanks for the fulsome response. I think door-step campaigning is pretty limited in scope. It's inefficient.

What people respond to is a politician/newspaper/blogger who best articulates their own feelings and misgivings and that needs a major broadcast, not a visit.

It's darn hard if not impossible to change a person's mind therefore the Momentumists must surely have what the door stepee wants in the first place if they are to be effective.

What the people want is just common sense. The vast majority don't want to be told that a man can be a woman if he wants, for example. The vast majority just think he can't be a woman, whatever they are forced to say through fear of sacking or hurting someone's feelings or both .

It is very simple. On the basis of *uncontrolled* immigration (another example, the Brexit causing issue) if an area has a shortage of housing and services it is stating the obvious to say that importing a lot of poor people into and area to compete for those things is making life harder - and if politicians who defend those polices state that the EU is behind it or even if those politicians just like the EU then it is the EU and those politicians which have to go.

I have never ever met a Brexit Party candidate nor campaigner, only one Tory candidate in the street. None have visited my house. I have had two LibDems and one Labour candidate visit me though.

They were bright and articulate but had no influence.

What I have responded to, however, is someone who sounds similar to my inner voice, and they've often been in the minority on debate panels and I've only ever seen or read them on TV and in newspapers. It is a complete reversal of reality to claim that The Daily Mail or *populists* shape the way people think. They don't. They sell only because they reinforce existing ideas and argue them well.

I'd wager that a Momentum visitor on the door would be as welcome as a Jehovah's Witness. The BBC (our biggest broadcaster) is packed to the gunnels with people of sympathetic mindset.

I'm far more concerned with the fact that cultural Marxism is so entrenched in our establishment and institutions - as they are in the US too.

The revolution has already passed. The Momentumists are only the usual young, passing through, in love with the motion of revolution itself rather than its destination and about to be recruited into the existing establishment. You'll see them in really serious and powerful jobs next.

E-K said...

The only reason for an ID card is to change the relationship between the state and the citizen.

It makes the innocent citizen accountable to the state. The reverse should be true. Marxists will always tell you it's for your own good.

The only people who should ever have to produce ID on order are the state's agents to the the citizen.

"If it saves one life"

Those advocating ID cards have done their darndest to see real terrorists and criminals walk free.

E-K said...

"Student loans seem to be a key issue in driving graduates into passionately supporting the hard left." Anon 8.01

I'd say simply being an arts student drives then hard left.

andrew said...

(IMNSHO) House price expectations are like inflationary expectations.
After a long period of ~0%, we are all shocked when freddos go up in price.

After a long run where house prices have risen, the expectation is that they will rise. If you manage to change expectations the expectation itself will (to some extent) drive the market.

Something like announcing a swathe of new garden cities in the north.

Anonymous said...

One thing, it looks as if Brexit is now going to be for the the Guardianista class what Europe was for the Tories - only with the Tories it was a running sore, with Labour it's going to be a festering open wound with gangrenous potential. Here's Larry Elliott, Guardian economics editor, arguing that Brexit is going to happen and Labour need to look at what upsides there might be (i.e. for McDonnell-type, or maybe mercantilist ideas that EU law would have stopped).

“Labour must not just accept Brexit but embrace it”


Top comment "It’ll be a cold day in hell before I accept that advice, Larry"

This could keep them out for 10 years ...

Anonymous said...

PS - Gove is clever, but a complete and utter political idiot. The tone should have been conciliatory, hopeful, reaching out, respectful - if only to contrast with the foam and bile of the temporarily defeated.

Man's a fool. I remember years back he praised an Islamist campaign to clear street girls from a (formerly West Indian, become Muslim) area of Brum as a great example of "community action" when it was more like violent vigilantism that would have been condemned if done by whites.

I realised then that he didn't have a clue.