Posts by Rich of Observationz

  • Speaker: A Disorderly Brexit, in reply to Russell Brown,

    FPP prevents any of it.

    Only three parties have ever been in government in the UK during the nearly 400 years since they stopped being an absolute monarchy: Tories/Conservatives, Whigs/Liberals and Labour. The Liberal => Labour transition occurred in the late 19th and early 20th century as working class man and women gradually gained the right to vote and thus led to the growth of the Labour party.

    The hurdle to be jumped for a new party to gain office 9or even opposition/influence) is huge, The SDPs best result was 23 MPs (on 25% of votes) and the LibDems was 54 MPs on 23% of the vote (due to a higher concentration of votes in winnable seats).

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 5203 posts Report Reply

  • Speaker: A Disorderly Brexit,

    In a sensible political system, the rump PLP (made up of Blairites, Brownites, careerists and those who don't really care if the government bombs foreigners and throws people out of jobs so long as they use the correct language around their chosen identity group) would accept the loss of Labour, found their own party and contest the next election.

    (Alternatively Momentum would morph into a Podemos/Syriza type party and contest the election).

    That is broadly what would happen in NZ if a party's parliamentary and grassroots support became irretrievably alienated (in the case of the Greens, it would self correct as the list gets reset each election by the membership).

    However, the UK's voter-chosen FPP system means that parties are forever, so that option will be vigorously resisted.

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 5203 posts Report Reply

  • Speaker: A Disorderly Brexit,

    (UK) Labour won in 1974 though. Not because they were particularly united (the Healey supporters were widely at odds with the Bennites) or because the mass of the UK population were particularly in love with them - they won because of a crisis.

    It was more of a material crisis than today (thus far) - the miners were on strike, the "coal dependent" electricity supply was cut off half the time and businesses were on a three day week. Labour won the election because they offered to fix this (by giving the miners the money).

    If UK Labour could manage to offer a fix for the EU situation (basically, concede acceptance of all EU rules without actual membership in return for market access) then, once businesses start closing in droves, they could win without much in the way of public love.

    (The challenge then would be to do what Wilson and Callaghan failed to do and capitalise on this with an Attlee-style program of radical and lasting change).

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 5203 posts Report Reply

  • Speaker: A Disorderly Brexit,

    I guess it depends on whether you think the members of a party should be allowed to decide the leadership and direction of that party, or whether you prefer the model (as in NZ National and the CCP) where control flows from the top down and the members are instructed on what to do and think by the centre.

    Brecht had a solution:

    the people
    Had forfeited the confidence of the government
    And could win it back only
    By redoubled efforts. Would it not be easier
    In that case for the government
    To dissolve the people
    And elect another?

    Die Lösung, 1953 https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Die_L%C3%B6sung

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 5203 posts Report Reply

  • Speaker: A Disorderly Brexit,

    On the main topic:
    Geoffrey Robertson (QC, incidentally) sez what I was thinking

    The UK government can't trigger Article 50 without first getting legislation to repeal the European Communities Act through Commons and Lords.

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 5203 posts Report Reply

  • Speaker: A Disorderly Brexit,

    Crimes of the Corbynites:
    - student activists being mildly nasty on Facebook

    Crimes of the Blairites
    - their leader organising to kidnap people and send them to Libya to be tortured

    Obviously, the Corbynites are way worse…

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 5203 posts Report Reply

  • Speaker: A Disorderly Brexit, in reply to Russell Brown,

    “Both vigorously deny the claims” – it’s not unheard of for organs like the Telegraph to just make shit up, you know. And there is an influential minority that conflate Zionism with Judaism and the Jewish race, allowing any criticism of Israel to be treated as anti-semetic.

    Corbyn won with three times the votes of the runner up, you know – it’s the MPs who are out of line. Do you think Labour should be run as a self-perpetuating entity (like the NZ National Party) where the MPs tell the members what to do?

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 5203 posts Report Reply

  • Speaker: A Disorderly Brexit,

    Basically, the UK establishment rely on Labour as their plan B. When the Tories become too toxic, a Blair-style figure can get in and put a new face on the same policies.

    Corbyn's destroyed this insurance policy and that's what they're terrified of - an actual left-wing government

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 5203 posts Report Reply

  • Speaker: The Government you Deserve, in reply to David Hood,

    The UK would analyse its census categories by occupation using the NRS system:
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/NRS_social_grade. This reflects one aspect of social class but not the caste-like system that pervades England - e.g. a working class FX trader would be in AB, while a posh gardener would be in C2D.

    NZ collects the same information, it just presents it differently http://www.stats.govt.nz/datavisualisation/treemap/occupation.html. You could extract the NRS information from summary/meshblock data and I'm sure people do, but not Stats I don't think...

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 5203 posts Report Reply

  • Speaker: The Government you Deserve,

    My experience of UK education is that while it was (at the time) functional, it was also a process designed to perpetuate social division and produce an ignorant and unthinking populace.

    My year was the first to enjoy comprehensive education, but at least in the south-east, state schools were mostly populated by the lower middle and working classes (joined by those in the middle classes who had parents too idealistic, cheap, or both to send their kids to private school). The middle classes attended a range of schools, ranging from famous public schools down to those whose main function was to keep the more retarded offspring of the gentry out of trouble until they became army officers (boys) or married an army officer (girls).

    Despite being nominally comprehensive, a sifting process operated at every stage - pupils were assessed and streamed by ability (and of course pre-selected by social class) at 14 (GCE or GCSE exams, now rebranded as separate papers), 16 (staying of for A levels) and then at university.

    The selective university system is the final filtering process in the UK. University courses are ranked by UCAS points, with Oxbridge at the top and places like Luton at the bottom. Unless you are either brilliant or well coached (e.g. went to public school) you won't get to fuck pigs at Oxbridge and will wind up somewhere down the list - and the list very accurately mirrors social class.

    So basically, everyone outside a tiny minority (who run the country and write the media) gets failed by the education system. Add to that they way the system rewards conformity (because docile kids allow a school to get good results in the various league tables) and prioritises cramming for exams, it's pretty unsurprising you've got a population of disgruntled failures.

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 5203 posts Report Reply

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