Wednesday, 11 August 2010

Unintended consequences

The generation that spent their university years boycotting, campaigning against everyone, sitting in classrooms to ban particular lecturers and generally sowed the seeds of civic breakdown are now sitting in Whitehall and Westminster and wondering why no one respects them, their office or their ideas.

Democracy only really works when there is trust between the politicians, the voters and the bureaucrats who serve both. That trust has broken down. There are far to many laws there simply because some ex-Hippy felt a need to show he/she was 'doing something' about anything. Far too many actually conflict with the very rights the law makers calim to respect and far, far to many actually conflict with other existing laws - simply because the idiot who wrote it for the MP behind it simply didn't bother checking. Trust has evaporated, the media have, probably rightly, managed to tar everyone in an elected office as sleavy, overpaid and certainly with his/her snout in the trough. That image is certainly re-inforced by the fact that our Parliamentarians are now almost exclusively 'Professional Politcians' in the sense that they do nothing else for a living.

Most start out in Accountancy or Law, get elected to a Local Council, then to a County Council and finally to Parliament. If they go through the Labour route, its through being an activist for the National Union of Students, then a Union Official, Local Government and finally a safe Labour seat. Never done a days work in their lives is a term applicable to the majority of MPs. As for their Civil Service chums, well there isn't much to choose from. The Civil Service is now recognised as an entirely self serving and self preserving parasitic organisation. Cuts in budgets may bring about a reduction in services this organisation is supposed to provide, it won't actually bring any savings and it certainly doesn't see any reduction in the size of any Department. What it does invariably do is see a huge rise in Unemployment as contracts for the military and other 'service' departments are cut.

Those who launched the "Summer of Love" wanted more say in a range of matters they felt strongly about but lacked the experience and even the knowledge to do. They began a process which now, through the plethora of "charitable" organisations, such as Friends of the Earth, Greenpeace, Animal Rights and so on, have undermined the very fabric of our democracy. I doubt they intended this, but it is a fact. As I said at the outset, democracy depends on trust and respect. Both are now long gone from our society.

I doubt that our democracy can survive.

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