Archive for July, 2013

Slime, Divine? and Crime – Lynton Crosby, Royalty and the Death Penalty

July 26, 2013 Leave a comment

‘Crosby’ Show No Laughing Matter

Lynton Crosby is, to say the least, not a nice man. The latest Karl Rove scummy clone has made a career out of shifting the political Centre to the knuckle-dragging, anti-intellectual and prejudiced Right. Yet he is having an effect: Labour’s poll lead appears to be shrinking as UKIP get squeezed by Crosby’s appeal to the Mail/Murdoch readers’ baser instincts. Cameron, for all his Eton polish, really isn’t a very nice man either and the fact that he’s prepared to work
with such a political thug like Crosby says a lot about the values he actually has as opposed to the ones he espouses. It isn’t surprising that lizard-like Lynton is a tobacco lobbyist either – these types tend to be immoral, or at very best, amoral empty suits who bang on about freedom of choice when all they care about is the bottom line and making their fat wallets even fatter. Crosby is slime; right wing politics has always attracted such characters, but he is somehow more venal, scummy and loathsome than most political operatives in the past or working today. Labour is fighting a moral cause at the next British General Election; to keep the likes of Crosby, id to Cameron’s ego, away from positions of power and areas of influence. There is still a big difference between the two main political parties in Britain…you only have to look at Lynton Crosby to see where the difference lies. Politics doesn’t have to be about scape-goating, bullying and moronic sloganeering; Crosby is making the ‘Nasty Party’ even nastier.

Divine Wrong of Kings

Oh, the unhappy lot of an English Republican! Dragged onto ‘Sky News’ to play the village curmudgeon, nothing they say really ever gets any attention, being swept away by the fluff of another Royal Wedding or Birth. The ‘Bread and Circuses’ dismissal is too glib however – the Royals (or at least the concept of an hereditary monarchy) are shown to be popular across most of Britain and in all social classes. It seems churlish and misanthropic to be campaigning against what for millions of Britons defines them as a nation. But does it really make them who they are? And can the republican cause ever become the view of the majority? We can’t tell the future. Who knows what state the UK will be in, let alone the planet, in 50 years from now, let alone the 70 or 80 years from hence the latest royal scion may have to wait before becoming King. There may be little fervour for abolition of the hereditary principle now – surely one of the more ridiculous ‘facts on the ground’ around today – but people, cultures and societies change. Getting ‘rid off’ doesn’t have to mean a violent overthrow – the fate of the Windsors will not be the same as that of their Russian cousins – but it may mean that incrementally, and slowly, the absurdity of the whole institution will become apparent, like, well, the ‘Emperor’s New Clothes’. Britain is an inherently conservative nation though – don’t hold your breath.; ‘Long to reign over us’ may be sung for generations to come.

Nexus between Death Row and the White House

Its 25 years to the month since the Democrats nominated Michael Dukakis to run for President. Defeated the one-term Bush, Dukakis and his Campaign are significant for being the last Democratic nominee and campaign to oppose the death penalty in a US General Election. Presidential hopefuls might cavail the more grotesque forms of Capital Punishment i.e. the execution of adults for crimes committed as a Minor, the judicial killing of the mentally impaired, but by-and-large, they support it. A country that is still in many ways a cultural and political beacon for millions will not elect anyone to the highest position in their democracy who opposes the gassing, poisoning or shooting to death of a fully grown human person for the sake of vengeance (let’s forget about deterrence – if that were so, the murder rate in the US should be one of the lowest in the World). It is seen as weak or soft-on-crime for a politician to speak out against the Death Penalty; in a throwback to the mauling of Dukakis, representative of Northern Elitism versus the values of Main Street America. Support for the judicial execution can be eroded when you can demonstrate the danger of unsafe convictions, the lack of it being a deterrent and, when it comes down to brass tacks, by arguing  that the cruelty of the act is based primarily on a Theistic notion of an eye for an eye – a punishment is final and irrevocable. Yet, try saying any of this while running for President and you won’t make it out of the Primaries. This is one of the key issues on which Europe and America remain chasms apart. A classic example of where politicians can be terrified to lead from the front.

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