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#redwriter Blame The Rich

Everyone seems very determined in preaching the mantra of 'no, there's no hope: know your place'. And any attempt at looking for any alternative way is greeted with derision and contempt.
I'm 53. I am *not* naive. The next person who dismisses me with that line will be summarily blocked. If I have to respect you, then you play by the same rules and respect me. Sneering, gloating and bullying do not entitle you to a courteous response from me. Pointing and laughing when your own house is on fire may be cathartic, but it's not my duty to be polite when you shove it in my face.
Sneering at the underprivileged and labelling them stupid, racist, ignorant etc is not a solution. Calling everyone not in your little bubble 'them' is not a solution. I disagree profoundly with the working class and underclass leave voters but I do not blame them for what has happened. The narrative of fear, suspicion and jingoism has been fostered and promulgated by a particular subset of the global elite, who see personal advantage in creating and maintaining divisions between nations and cultures and who benefit by keeping the poor frightened, envious and empoverished. It has been created by a weak Tory leader who could not heal the deep divisions in his party. It has been created by ambitious and cynical upper class men who saw a chance to gain vast personal power.
Blame the plutocrats, and the media barons. Blame the Westminster cynics who repeatedly chose their own personal ambitions over what actually helps those they purported they serve. This includes the Blairites who are more interested in grabbing back leadership than in trying to address the crisis that grips the country right now. This includes the squabbling Tories. This includes UKIP, who have masqueraded as the champions of the people while admitting the rank and file of the old BNP and NF to their ranks and offering them up as plausible potential councillors and MPs without checking to see if they advocate apartheid or homophobia or virulent sexism.
Blame the rich. Every time you point fingers at the disprivileged who have voted Leave after decades of neglect and abuse from the establishment, you collude with that establishment. I wish to the bottom of my heart that more of the poorest had been able to believe in the EU and vote Remain. But I refuse to play the 'them and us' game. I refuse to follow the narrative preached by the greedy, biased, wealthy ruling classes who have brought the rest of us to our knees with their pandering to the free market over all, and their contempt for anyone who isn't just like them.


( 25 comments — Leave a comment )
Jun. 27th, 2016 12:56 pm (UTC)
Well said. Personally, I find the Little Londoners variety of tribalism as unsettling as that of the Little Englanders. Even if all racist idiots voted for Brexit, that doesn't make all Brexit voters racist idiots.

As for real racists: Nigel 'Man of the People' Farage is as privileged as they come. Hence his now infamous concession remarks, based on “what I know from some of my friends in the financial markets who have done some big polling”. A comment that also proves that you don't have to be poor to be an idiot, at least when it comes to maths.

And whilst on the subject of bad narratives, I'm also getting very irritated by the 'wicked, selfish old people' blah everywhere. Next time some sanctimonious 18-24 year old whines about how old people have "ruined my future", I'm going to ask them "did you vote?" Because two thirds of them didn't. Two thirds of millenials could have changed the outcome of the referendum, if they could have been arsed to register + take a short walk to polling station. If Grandma outvoted them, it was because she cared enough to exercise her arthritic legs and put her cross in the box.

Edited at 2016-06-27 12:58 pm (UTC)
Jun. 27th, 2016 06:34 pm (UTC)
Jun. 27th, 2016 03:19 pm (UTC)
I totally agree. Blaming the leave voters is not going to help us find a way through this mess. No one has listened to the opinions of people from depressed areas for decades and if they try to make their concerns felt, they are discussed as bigots. If they are ignorant, it's in the original meaning of the word, ie not knowing. They have been lied to for years by the tabloids and don't have the education and critical thinking skills to look for more reliable sources of information.

Like dorispossum, I am fed up of the young blaming the old. I was with three friends last Friday morning. Average age of the group was 84 (I was the youngest at 64) and we'd all voted to remain. If all the young people who were eligible to vote had actually done so and all voted remain, we probably wouldn't be in this mess now.
Jun. 27th, 2016 06:35 pm (UTC)
The tabloids are deeply, deeply implicated in this.
Jun. 27th, 2016 05:02 pm (UTC)
I am immensely distressed to see people in the north east (because that's where I live; the same seems to apply in Wales) explaining that they have voted for 'leave' although they work in industries which have invested in the region in order to get a foot in Europe, and who appear not to have noticed that the region receives European funding, or to believe that lost funding will be made up by a Tory Westminster which is busy skewing all the formulae to favour rich southern counties over poor north-eastern ones...

Well, you know all this. And you're right that it's too easy just to say 'these people are idiots'. I do blame my local council leader who announces on the morning after the vote that we will lose however many millions in European grants, but hadn't thought it worth mentioning before it was too late. And I blame the press, local and regional as well as national, who were so busy being 'balanced' that they weren't putting forward this sort of information....

But I admit it still rankles.
Jun. 27th, 2016 09:54 pm (UTC)
I am SO ANGRY that UK politicians basically fucked over their own country, the EU and the world (in that order) for petty power struggles. I feel sorry for the voters.
Jun. 28th, 2016 08:47 am (UTC)
Yes, me too. They are evil, the lot of them. I'm so sorry.
Jun. 28th, 2016 10:06 pm (UTC)
It's not your fault.
Jun. 28th, 2016 12:23 am (UTC)
The one comparison to US politics I'll make here is that we're looking at the consequence of a party feeding people's worst habits and beliefs to gain power rather than effectively addressing their real concerns in any constructive way, and then having if bite them when push comes to shove.

I'm so sorry you all are having to wade through this; even if things go as well as they can, it's still a fucking mess.
Jun. 28th, 2016 08:47 am (UTC)
Thank you. And yes: the global elite are strip-mining the world and letting the rest of us burn.
Jun. 29th, 2016 07:35 pm (UTC)
Yes! Bravo! This is a wonderful post. Thank you.

(May leave longer, more thoughtful expression of mostly-agreement later)

(plus, I am not there, but totally support Corbyn & hope the Blairites all go down in flames; I dislike them as much as I dislike the Tories)

(if do not want non-Brits chiming in on this, that is totally cool and I apologize & will shut up)

(in case I never get around to "having enough time to say something worthwhile", Ian Welsh & Naked Capitalism probably have the closest takes to my own on the subject that I've seen, along with, now, yourself)

Anyway, yay, go you!

(Nutshell me: I prolly woulda voted leave, based on what I can tell from here, because I hate the EU ruling class THAT MUCH, i.e. as much as I hate the same people in the US, and view this as a chance, at least, for Corbyn & his crew to take over and actually start moving things in a positive direction; would be willing to risk the Tories making things even worse for that chance; from where I stand, maintaining the status quo is a 100% certainty of doom, and I'm willing to risk going off the cliff faster and less comfortably in order to make a grab for the wheel and hopefully not go off the cliff at all, and if anyone doesn't like that the hell with them--I view the status quo leftists as being just as much my enemy as the right)
Jun. 29th, 2016 11:19 pm (UTC)
I assume, given your sentiments, that you're one of the Americans who would rather see Donald Trump in charge, than vote for Hillary Clinton? Personally, I'd prefer not to be dragged over any cliff to satisfy somebody else's doctrinal enthusiasms.
Jun. 29th, 2016 11:52 pm (UTC)
Since this isn't my journal I'm somewhat hesitant to go on the rant I'd like to, but, 1st, I have not intention ofvoting for Trump or Clinton. 2d, for all the lesser evil HRC types, I don't see her as the lesser evil (this does not mean I'm voting for him or want him to win, so please save your breath on that one). She pretty obviously supports the TPP despite her current semi-disclaimers (I have nothing but insults to say to anyone who actually believes her temporary "it might need a couple of fixes" stance to indicate actual opposition, given both her personal) whereas opposition to this is one of the very, very few things Trump has NOT given conflicting statements on, afaik. I view this and its sibling treaties as being disasters on a scale with the Iraq invasion. Speaking of which, did you watch any of the US democratic debates? HRC sounds absolutely desperate to invade someone to prove how tough she is, and at the very least wants a public pissing contest w/Russia (hopefully this is all to keep idiots distracted from her helping dismantle the economy for 90% of us, and not because she actually wants to engage in brinksmanship with them, but I'm not sure). Idiot democratic tribalists like to paint Trump as the warmonger but she's the one who's actually been involved in plenty of past warmongering, and based on her SoS tenure has learned nothing from her "mistake" supporting the Iraq invasion (based on her SoS tenure, I'm unsure if she really believes this was a mistake). HRC has already done or advocated for most of the foreign policy stuff people are afraid of Trump doing.

And last but not least, you seem to have grossly misread my comment. I specifically said I'm all for avoiding the cliff dive to hell and extinguishment. I'm not dragging you over any cliff. Neither is anyone voting for Stein. Hillary is one of the people dragging you over a cliff and straight to hell, so is the vast majority of the Democratic party leadership, and if you don't see that, we literally have nothing to say to each other. Everyone in the mainstream leadership of both sides has been doing that for long time now, while trying to keep the masses at each other's throats over social issues while the already wealthy enrich themselves further at our expense.

Yes, the Republican rhetoric is delusional and quite often verging on flat-out insane, and they lie to their base for votes while acting, basically, as bloodsuckers for rich business interests.

But the Democrats, while having much better rhetoric, when in power, also lie to their base for votes while acting as bloodsuckers for rich business interests.

Which is worse? "Global warming doesn't exist, some people who aren't you are lazy scumbags, vote for me and your life will be better!" then destroying the planet and impoverishing its citizens, or "We must fight global warming & save the planet, and all join together in harmony!" and then destroying the planet and impoverishing its citizens?
Jun. 30th, 2016 12:38 am (UTC)
I'll take that for a 'yes' then.

Edited at 2016-06-30 06:26 am (UTC)
Jun. 30th, 2016 11:45 pm (UTC)
I realize you're just being snarky here, but to answer, no. I reject the choice outright. It's like asking if you want to be shot in the head with a hollow point out of a rifle or a shotgun.

Here's what I see when I look at that choice:

Trump: global warming denier (at least most of the time in public, whatever his private thoughts), raised his kids to be trophy hunters, made truly horrific comments about immigrants & women &abortion to get traction in republican primary--he almost 100% certainly didn't mean a word of it, but the irresponsibility and lack of empathy here is beyond words; generally seemed like a genuinely horrible person since first appearing on the public stage in the 80's. Yes, his actual beliefs on most issues are to the left of most of the GOP and some (maybe most) of the DNC and he's (probably) better than HRC on trade & (almost certainly) will be much less of a warmonger, but he's still godawful and can't be trusted on much of anything. I'm not even convinced he ever wanted the job; will see whether he sticks with what works or self destructs on purpose as this plays out.

HRC: As SoS, helped enable right wing coup of democractically elected gov't in Honduras and was in charge of US support of right wing death squads that have since murdered 100's of enivronmental and human rights activists there; prime advocate in Obama administration for invasion of Libya & still defends said invasion despite it being a smaller scale not quite as awful version of Iraq disaster, doesn't seem to have learned a damn thing from her supposed "mistake" in enabling Iraq disaster, seems to be a fan of Victoria Nuland, helped promote fracking around the world as SoS, refuses to advocate a ban on it now, loves Henry Kissinger (see again: right wing death squads, coup of democratic government, etc. yes, gotta love the guy who helped install Pinochet), repeatedly supported the TPP and called it "the Gold Standard" of trade agreements (there's an Atlantic version of this, TTIP or whatever, I'm really hoping y'all scuttle it), which basically abrogates national sovereignty to multinational corporations and makes strong environmental and labor regulations nearly impossible unless you ditch the treaty, etc. Yes, she's the only American politician to repeatedly champion the Kurds in her rhetoric, for whatever that's worth, and she's always been pro-choice and she'd prolly be a slight improvement over what we have now on environmental issues (that is not as much of a compliment as it may sound like), but she's still a godawful person who's proven over and over she's willing to get lots of innocents butchered and see the whole world go to hell for career advancement and profits.

Both Clintons seem to have been on very friendly terms w/Trump prior to the election as well, as well as w/the Bush family. Trump lent his name to a for-profit university scam. HRC got a for-profit university invited to a national eduction forum, after which Bill was put on the board of THAT scam and got 8 million a year for doing nothing except for her access. Clinton foundation, Trump biz practices ...

None of the above.

Edited at 2016-06-30 11:50 pm (UTC)
Jul. 1st, 2016 07:37 am (UTC)
I guess you're not a huge fan of Obama either?
Jul. 6th, 2016 06:30 pm (UTC)
No. Not in the slightest.
Jul. 1st, 2016 07:52 am (UTC)
My issue (and I think the Thread's issue) is the toxicity of political discourse. America has already split into mutually uncomprehending tribes who believe everybogy who isn't their political clone is a fool or a scoundrel. And they would rather eat their own toenails than negotiate with the evil Other they've made in their heads.
The tribes are basically refusing to do 'politics' at all. Because politics IS the hard dance of negotiating a way for difference to live together. The tribalists prefer war, with clear heroes & villains. In this atmosphere, the favoured phrase is 'I hate'.

One of the biggest disasters of Brexit - aside from turning away from solidarity with our neighbours - is that it has imported the toxic tribalism of US discourse into our politics. We don't need a tea party here.
Jul. 6th, 2016 06:27 pm (UTC)
Almost didn't reply to this since didn't see it till a few days after you posted, but did want to say totally agree with you on the existence of toxic tribalism and most people on both the left and right being totally devoid of critical thinking whenever someone invokes "go Team!" or "support us bcoz other side sux or you suck too!"

I would differ that, at least seen from afar, British politics no longer seem a whole lot saner (or any saner) than American politics*. The rot didn't just spread now, you were already afflicted. (again, seen from afar, and not paying as much attention to be sure that this isn't just the bits and pieces I saw from here). Would also differ that the existence of tribes refusing to critically think whenever anyone invokes certain buzzwords doesn't mean that the leadership of either or both tribes isn't actually evil. (or, I would say, more specificially, the leadership of the big corporations who have basically bought and paid for the media and political leadership of nearly all the tribes are actively evil, in the sense that, imo, anyone is actively evil and genuinely monstrous if they are more concerned with short term profits and adding more money you don't need to your bank account and improving your position in cocktail party pecking order than with, say, whether people are starving or being killed or whether species are going extinct or whether the entire biosphere might go extinct.

Sure, if you have to play politics with these people do so, but don't ever, ever kid yourself they are your friends or give a shit whether you live or die. We have over three decades of them proving they don't.

I think our difference is that you think the neoliberal types actually care about things like the death of millions or entire species on a level comparable to how they care about their personal status. I see not the slightest whisker of evidence for this, and giant mountains of evidence otherwise. To somewhat paraphrase a line of yours, continuing to try to politely play politics with "scoundrels" (a more polite word than they deserve) whose word is worth less than used toilet paper and who would kill you in a heartbeat (or, rather, hire someone else to kill you in a way that would allow them to wave their hands and placate their followers with "what? I had nothing to do with this!") is very, very foolish.

*This does not mean I don't think the British & European social welfare states weren't a lot better than ours. And still are, but your dear leaders seem busy dismantling and destroying, while using tribalism & identity politics to keep people at each other's throats so no one blames their "side" for things getting suckier for EVERYBODY except the most well off, same as our dear leaders did in screwing up what used to be a nice place to live over here. On the positive side, the EU does seem to get the whole need to stop global warming in the interest of preserving at least some of the current life on earth, as opposed to merely paying lip service, and they do seem get the importance of biodiversity, at least on an intellectual level, so y'all way ahead of us on that score.
Jun. 30th, 2016 11:14 am (UTC)
Thank you!
I am a Corbynite and always have been -- he belongs to the left wing of the party which has always been my position, and I share your view on the Blairites. I'm rather horrifed by how they are using a national crisis to further their own agenda, rather than pulling together for the good of the country. It goes to show how much they despise ordinary people.
Most of the leave voters I know are people of good faith whose views and concerns I respect and know to be real. We have a huge divide in Britain between haves and have-nots and no government since the 1970s has seemed to care about this.
Jun. 30th, 2016 03:35 pm (UTC)
I clicked to reply 'and I like you too', but can't find comment now? (LJ is weird sometimes.) Anyway, no worries - I do not assume somebody's a bad person just because they're not my political clone. I'm cool with it. :)
Jun. 30th, 2016 03:51 pm (UTC)
I have a very different take on this, unsurprisingly. As you know, I'm not a Jeremy Corbyn fan, though I definitely count myself as a socialist. But I'm also a liberal, and I don't like the lack of liberalism in Corbyn's core supporters: I tend to judge people by their behaviour not their ideology, and the mobbing/death threats/misogyny etc directed at MPs who don't follow the Momentum line (eg during Syria vote) has been pretty ugly. I just don't trust people who think it's ok to behave that way. Apologies for yet another book quote (occupational hazard!) but " “We should care for each other more than we care for ideas, or else we will end up killing each other.” etc.

And I don't buy the 'Blairite' v 'Corbynite' narrative. Because (a) though all the MPs (and others) being labelled as 'Blairites' may want Corbyn to go, not all those who want Corbyn to go (80% of Labour MPs?!) align with that group. Many are socialists who don't want their cause rendered toxic by an intolerant and doctrinal clique, or die with a whimper because their case can't be made persuasively by a nice man who's been promoted beyond his abilities. And (b) I disagree with the war metaphor. Politics isn't a football match with opposing sides, it's a complicated and demanding dance. Its participants are human beings with many shades of opinion and experience; and at the end of often exhausting negotiations around multiple and often competing interests , comes as fair a settlement as can be achieved at that moment. And then you dance again: it never stops. So I don't want to tag people with labels, even if I want to argue with the way they view the world. (That sounds too pi - of course I DO do this in my head, all the time, but I try to resist!)

You may disagree, that's ok. :)

Edited at 2016-06-30 04:17 pm (UTC)
Jun. 30th, 2016 04:30 pm (UTC)
I think Chilcot has a lot to do with it. There are people in the PLP who are worried about what may come out. And I think Benn has shown a very cynical side indeed by doing what he has at this point. If Labour had stood together, it would have sent a very clear message to the Remain camp that we are not being handed over to the bigots. But he put party politics first. I think it's very telling that no-one so far has offered to stand as leader, because they realise how toxic this now is.
They are part of our parliament. They're supposed to put the country first.
Jun. 30th, 2016 05:31 pm (UTC)
I'm sure that all sides believe they ARE putting the country first, whilst being equally convinced that the others are playing at party politics. Corbyn himself was a rebel - and would have had no truck with the 'stand together' argument when it was used by leaders he didn't approve of.

I don't think it's been possible for Labour to stand together for a long time - we're basically watching an ugly custody battle. LP members with strong loyalties to a specific cadre are filled with passionate intensity about the unfitness of the other parent.

Personally, I think the party 'belongs' to the millions of people with various attitudes and values, who nonetheless find enough common ground to place their cross in a box for a Labour MP. Sadly, they don't get a voice on who leads the party - but they do get to choose who runs the country. I hope both MPs and party members will listen to them.

Better to get the mess over and done with, I think. For the next couple of months, at least the Tories will be too busy with their own post-Brexit meltdown to point and laugh at Labour's woes. (Eg today's developments - black humour essential!)

After decision is made, if compromise with Evil Party is too horrible to stomach, the aggrieved members can leave and create their own party, and put their case to voters. Who can decide which is more attractive. If offered a choice as crude as Blairites v Corbynites, I think voters will rightly declare a plague on both their houses. I know I will.

I just hope we don't have to re-run EVERY battle of the 1980s. I didn't enjoy it the first time.

Edited at 2016-06-30 05:34 pm (UTC)
Jun. 30th, 2016 11:00 pm (UTC)
You are welcome. Thanks for not telling the non-Brit (i.e. me) to go away and stay out of your politics (which would be an understandable reaction). I just sort of figure all neoliberal-hating leftists everywhere are at least potential allies, and see a lot of similarities 'tween current British & European politics and American ones.

While I don't know his every position on all the issues, I'm very strongly supportive of Corbyn for a lot of the same reasons you are (not just his general pro-working class policies but the incredible venom with which his opponents and the media conglomerates have gone after him, which convince me these leftist positions are real & thus the desperate desire to keep him out of power/that plus what I gather is a long track record of consistency on these issues). He's all we've got on the national stage there right now so go Jeremy!

And yes again to that last paragraph. I can't see Brexit having been an easy vote for anyone, as a lot of problems come with either outcome; people I respect who've studied the situation a lot more than me seem to be united in Leave causes more immediate short term problems, otoh, unless the EU fundamentally restructures itself then that project, which I did, once, long ago, ignorantly hold so many hopes for, is now a long (or even medium) term apocalyptic disaster that is already unfolding, so it seemed like pick your poison, and hope you chose the one offering the best hope of ultimate survival for all concerned?

the global elite are strip-mining the world and letting the rest of us burn.

This is a brilliant line. Possibly the best one sentence summation of the current world situation I've seen. Bravo again.
( 25 comments — Leave a comment )

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