20 Oct 2010

Politics has left me disillusioned, suddenly.

A few months ago I had a small disagreement with someone whose blog I really like and respect (http://jjbeazley.blogspot.com/ ) about voting. I was decrying people who don't vote, and I think (as far as I can remember - it was a while ago) he told me to wait until I was older and I might feel differently. He said that he doesn't vote because he felt there wasn't anyone worth voting for. Well, I think I understand a bit of where he was coming from. I am losing my faith in politics and it scares me. What if I get to 18 - only 10 months away - and I don't want to vote for anyone because each political party is as downright awful as the next.

I can't, I can't, I can't bring myself to imagine voting Labour. I may agree with some things they say but others are so contradictory to my views that I know I would not be able to vote for them with my conscience in tact. I don't and I don't think I'll ever support Trade Unions, for example, and so to vote for a party with such a link to them feels against my better principles. And it was partly them who put the country into the dire economic straights it is in now, and has meant the present government have to make such awful cuts now.

I have always thought I'd vote Conservative, but suddenly I feel let down by them. I don't give a fuck what David Cameron might say - he's squeezing the middle in all the places where it will hurt me and my family most. I feel betrayed by the decisions they are inevitably going to make about University - they are short sighted and mad. I don't like that they are investing more money into science and maths and are bringing the arts and humanities to their knees. As Benedict Cumberbatch said at the rally/conference thing to save the Arts Council - the NHS saves lives but it's the arts that enrich them. The government actually put more money into the arts during the war because they understood the importance of culture in dark times. And I think the Academy scheme is fucking ridiculous - my awful Grammar school is going to be the first in my county. All they will do is marginalise the humanities and continue with the elitism among science students. A little part of me wonders, too, whether private school boys who have grown up in a privileged little bubble can really understand the problems facing me?

And, Jesus. Don't even get me started on the Lib Dem's. Principles? Standards? Shame? Do they have any? I think it's clear what the answer to that is.

I'm sorry. This is not coherent and I've sworn too much. And I'm sorry if I misquoted you, JJ Beazley.

13 Oct 2010

My Faith in Humanity is Bruised but Never Broken.

All this news coverage about the miners rescue is one of those times when I feel extraordinarily proud to be part of humanity. This is the human race at it's very best - it's their survival instinct and their capacity for coping with terrible conditions. It's their perseverance and the way they won't give up without a fight. It's their technological advances and their compassion.

It's just bloody nice to feel proud of ourselves for once.

4 Oct 2010

Freedom Fighting.

In 1912 The Suffragettes broke every single window down the length of Oxford Street and Regent Street. Every single one.

That is passion. That is the depth of commitment and that is the courage these women had.

I told someone this today and they said "that's like terrorism. Didn't they used to put acid in post boxes and stuff too?"
My response was yes they did. "But I wouldn't call it terrorism." I said. "I think they were freedom fighters."
The person snorted. "You wouldn't call the people that crashed the planes on 9/11 freedom fighters, would you?"

Fair point, I thought. "No. I wouldn't. But I don't think the people who flew into the twin towers were in the same position as the Suffragettes. The difference is is that the Suffragettes were actually fighting for their freedom, they were actually being persecuted by a social injustice and they were actually being denied a basic human right."

And do you know what? I'll stand on my soap box and stick up for a 'terrorist' who has been pushed so far into a corner the only thing that they can do is fight for basic human rights any day.