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May 04, 2008

Comments

dearieme

The point is that Socialism is a blind alley: complete intellectual dickheadery. Time to return to Conservatives vs Liberals. We could always celebrate by hanging some Socialists. And warmongers, starting with the loathsome wee twat.

Meh

Since the Conservatives are amongst the warmongers, that might leave us with Liberals vs Liberals?

dearieme

Anyone in Opposition can talk tough: you've got to be in Government to launch a war. Or in Toni's case, 5 wars.

Andrew Zalotocky

I don't see how the Tax Credits system can be considered "egalitarian". Its extreme complexity makes it ridiculously expensive to run, and acts as a barrier to poor people claiming everything that they are theoretically entitled to. The only significant redistributive effect that it actually has is to redistribute wealth to the bureaucrats who run it. Indeed, the general effect of Blair-Brown centralisation has been to empower the highly-paid central government bureaucracy at the expense of everyone else. New Labour has become the party of the bureaucracy.

Captain Marvel

I have to agree with this "dearieme" character. The country went to shit when the Liberals were replaced by Labour.

kinglear

Chris - at no time was there EVER any intellectual rigour in NuLabour's thoughts - which never went beyond GET POWER. Blair should have been seen for the vapid empty hole he was when he duped the LibDems into thinking he was going to help them with PR in return for their supporting him - and the minute he won in 1997 he never even returned the phone calls. They never had any principles, which is why they now have nowhere to go. Stalinist tendencies will not win over middle England.

Paulie

I'd agree with most of this - apart from the last line, obviously. And I'd just pick a small quarrel with this sentance:

"You see that traditional social democratic arguments for redistribution don’t work."

A lot of New Labour's thinking on this was shaped by the slightly older new Labour thinking of Crossland - redistrubution largely funded out of growth, stability, and the ability of a left-wing government to manage a capitalist economy better than the thickets that join the Conservative Party at Varsity. Much as it would be fun to have a bit of punitive redistribution from the kind of posh-born freaks that think that their wealth is somehow a result of a 'meritocracy', NuLab (as your commenters hilariously insist on calling them) have managed to run the economy reasonably well - without any of the peaks and troughs of the previous shower.

Much of their profligate spending was simply the waste of cash that the Tories wouldn't have had in the first place.

Matt Munro

"Much of their profligate spending was simply the waste of cash that the Tories wouldn't have had in the first place".

Posted by: Paulie | May 06, 2008 at 10:21 AM

They wouldn't "have had it" because they wouldn't have raised the taxes, they would have let individuals (shock horror) decide how to spend (double shock horror) their own money......

Alex

Type one error of fact. You lose. Ken Clarke, if you recall, later said he had no intention of following his own medium term financial targets.

Matthew Cain

I understand your analysis but think the 1997-2001 position is a bit more nuanced. The key point was that Labour built a coalition around traditional and 'new' supporters which has gradually eroded from both ends of the spectrum. It was this, rather than the 'abandonment' of particular groups of people, that led to unprecedented electoral success.

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