Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.
Display:
DoDo:
Sigh.

The petty racism, misogyny, homophobia and the sundry other small prejudices incubated in communities under pressure should find themselves challenged by any unity project led by a left-leaning Party intending National Government. Labour should be smashing the walls that divide us, not reinforcing them.

Hear, hear.

People "under pressure" want to feel validated, not lectured. Which is probably why the BNP was famously seen as a threat to labour in certain areas.

Economics is politics by other means
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Tue Apr 26th, 2011 at 05:46:26 AM EST
[ Parent ]
No, no and no !!!

I know I've quoted this before and, even tho' it's about the USA and stuff that nobody over there gives a rats about anymore, but this, from The American President, is the absolute kernel of how you defend liberal values;-

For the last couple of months, Senator Rumson has suggested that being president of this country was, to a certain extent, about character, and although I have not been willing to engage in his attacks on me, I've been here three years and three days, and I can tell you without hesitation: Being President of this country is entirely about character. For the record: yes, I am a card-carrying member of the ACLU. But the more important question is why aren't you, Bob? Now, this is an organization whose sole purpose is to defend the Bill of Rights, so it naturally begs the question: Why would a senator, his party's most powerful spokesman and a candidate for President, choose to reject upholding the Constitution? If you can answer that question, folks, then you're smarter than I am, because I didn't understand it until a few hours ago. America isn't easy. America is advanced citizenship. You gotta want it bad, 'cause it's gonna put up a fight. It's gonna say "You want free speech? Let's see you acknowledge a man whose words make your blood boil, who's standing center stage and advocating at the top of his lungs that which you would spend a lifetime opposing at the top of yours. You want to claim this land as the land of the free? Then the symbol of your country can't just be a flag; the symbol also has to be one of its citizens exercising his right to burn that flag in protest. Show me that, defend that, celebrate that in your classrooms. Then, you can stand up and sing about the "land of the free". I've known Bob Rumson for years, and I've been operating under the assumption that the reason Bob devotes so much time and energy to shouting at the rain was that he simply didn't get it. Well, I was wrong. Bob's problem isn't that he doesn't get it. Bob's problem is that he can't sell it! We have serious problems to solve, and we need serious people to solve them. And whatever your particular problem is, I promise you, Bob Rumson is not the least bit interested in solving it. He is interested in two things and two things only: making you afraid of it and telling you who's to blame for it.

The trouble is, as one of the other characters says;-

People want leadership, Mr. President, and in the absence of genuine leadership, they'll listen to anyone who steps up to the microphone. They want leadership. They're so thirsty for it they'll crawl through the desert toward a mirage, and when they discover there's no water, they'll drink the sand.

Right now, the BNP have an open field. You're right, Labour leaders shouldn't talk down to people as if they're ignorant peasants who don't know any better, but equally they shouldn't offer any patronizing compromise on haggling about values. Of course, you don't tell racists they're wrong, but in the wider community you can demonstrate to those who might be influenced that they are wrong. By showing the value of the wider community. By defusing the idea that other people are allies and helpers to be welcomed rather than threats to be resisted.

I have long argued that the issue of immigration in the UK is more about housing than it is about jobs. Yes, there is something of a small truth in the perception that it is about jobs, but a left leaning party whose primary concern is to maximise constructive job opportunities amongst the majority shouldn't have that problem. It's when "leftish" parties abandon the State's power of "persuasion" and leave maximising employment to a market we know is rigged against such ideas that problems come.

keep to the Fen Causeway

by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Tue Apr 26th, 2011 at 06:20:48 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Helen:
By defusing the idea that other people are allies and helpers to be welcomed rather than threats to be resisted.
Nitpick: is defuse the right word for the meaning there? Should it be diffuse? You don't want to deactivate the idea that others are allies, you want to spread it.

Economics is politics by other means
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Tue Apr 26th, 2011 at 06:40:52 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Ah, the problem of writing a sentence and then re-writing it and moving on without reading the result.

I'd say that "promoting" or "extolling" are probably closest to what I meant

keep to the Fen Causeway

by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Tue Apr 26th, 2011 at 07:23:56 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Helen:
We have serious problems to solve, and we need serious people to solve them. And whatever your particular problem is, I promise you, Bob Rumson is not the least bit interested in solving it. He is interested in two things and two things only: making you afraid of it and telling you who's to blame for it.
The trouble is, as one of the other characters says
People want leadership, Mr. President, and in the absence of genuine leadership, they'll listen to anyone who steps up to the microphone. They want leadership. They're so thirsty for it they'll crawl through the desert toward a mirage, and when they discover there's no water, they'll drink the sand.
The thing is, making people scared and pointing out a scapegoat does appear as leadership to a lot of people.

Economics is politics by other means
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Tue Apr 26th, 2011 at 06:44:33 AM EST
[ Parent ]
As he says "They want leadership. They're so thirsty for it they'll crawl through the desert toward a mirage, and when they discover there's no water, they'll drink the sand."

keep to the Fen Causeway
by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Tue Apr 26th, 2011 at 07:24:39 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Helen:

The trouble is, as one of the other characters says;-

People want leadership, Mr. President, and in the absence of genuine leadership, they'll listen to anyone who steps up to the microphone. They want leadership. They're so thirsty for it they'll crawl through the desert toward a mirage, and when they discover there's no water, they'll drink the sand.

Right now, the BNP have an open field. You're right, Labour leaders shouldn't talk down to people as if they're ignorant peasants who don't know any better, but equally they shouldn't offer any patronizing compromise on haggling about values. Of course, you don't tell racists they're wrong, but in the wider community you can demonstrate to those who might be influenced that they are wrong. By showing the value of the wider community. By defusing the idea that other people are allies and helpers to be welcomed rather than threats to be resisted.

I have long argued that the issue of immigration in the UK is more about housing than it is about jobs. Yes, there is something of a small truth in the perception that it is about jobs, but a left leaning party whose primary concern is to maximise constructive job opportunities amongst the majority shouldn't have that problem. It's when "leftish" parties abandon the State's power of "persuasion" and leave maximising employment to a market we know is rigged against such ideas that problems come.

Exactly. If you throw away peoples basic needs like a place to live, worthy participation in society and the means to maintain social standing and raise a family, then you create a vacuum that will be filled by somebody blaming some appropriate group for the problems. The answer is not to join the blamers, it is to present a credible probelm to restore the basic needs and then propaganda, propaganda, propaganda (if media does not carry the message, buy the media).

It is not like there is a lack of things to do. I have visited Britain and most houses need some insulation. And what is the deal with single-glass windows - sponsoring russian gas industry for fun? Speaking of which: windpower, windpower, windpower. And a working railway system for all. And more personel in health care, education and care for senior citizens.

If this is not enough to get rid of involontary unemployment, there could always be a program to raise ponies. I hear they are popular.

Sweden's finest (and perhaps only) collaborative, leftist e-newspaper Synapze.se

by A swedish kind of death on Tue Apr 26th, 2011 at 07:32:59 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Amen to all that. I have no idea how I came to live in a country where all of that sensible stuff is considered unpossible

keep to the Fen Causeway
by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Tue Apr 26th, 2011 at 08:04:57 AM EST
[ Parent ]

Display:

Occasional Series