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October 03, 2017

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From Arse To Elbow

Meanwhile, Boris Johnson is farting in the general direction of Europe ...

Steven Clarke

I dislike 'big think' pieces on free markets vs. socialism because the Tories aren't offering a free market economy and I doubt Corbyn will provide a successful socialist economy.

I like Mancur Olsen's idea of distributional coalitions. Tory and Labour policy is not dictated by a coherent economic logic or considerations of justice, freedom or other goods.

Rather, they buy off vested interests with concentrated-benefits, diffuse-costs policies. Housing policies that benefit homeowners at the expense of renters and national prosperity. Pay and condition policies that benefit unionized public sector workers at the expense of service users and the tax payer.

The workings of the economy are gummed up to cobble together a large enough electoral coalition.

I believe this is only a partial truth, but a big enough truth to make me cynical that political parties are vehicles for putting into effect a principled world view.

Blissex

«Pay and condition policies that benefit unionized public sector workers at the expense of service users and the tax payer.»

That's a lot less of a problem than the Conservatives make it look like. Also because unionized public sector workers are also tax payers and service users, but owner-occupiers and landlords usually are not renters or buyers.

Even more so, Conservative-voting pensioners are usually proprietors and shareholders and don't have income from jobs, and their pension income is a vested right, so many welcome lower wages, higher unemployment, less job security, reduced pension contributions for everybody else.

«The workings of the economy are gummed up to cobble together a large enough electoral coalition.»

That is a lot less of a problem with Labour because it represents the natural interests of its voters.

It is a much bigger problem with the Conservatives because the party represents the natural interests of its sponsors, not its voters, so it has to bribe voters to reach mass towards a majority.
That also was the case with New Labour, that also chose to bribe with massive house price increases the “aspirational voters who shop at John Lewis and Waitrose” of the south, as it was pursuing the interests of its sponsors.

A very big change with Labour is that currently it is entirely funded, and well funded, by its now numerous members, who feel that it now represents their interests; the New Labour party was funded by "donations" by billionaire sponsors, and its membership had dropped drastically, as intended, and this its own funding.

Anarcho

"In the labour market, they have raised the minimum wage and support immigration controls."

No mention of the anti-union laws? Regulate unions and strikes means regulating the labour market. "Whenever the law has attempted to regulate the wages of workmen," Smith stated, "it has always been rather to lower them than to raise them."

http://anarchism.pageabode.com/anarcho/poor-adam-smith

Little wonder wages have been stagnating...

cjcjc

Are you objecting to the raising of the minimum wage?
And while the Tories may support immigration controls, they haven't exactly controlled immigration have they, not least for the obvious reason.

Bonnemort

"Ten years of stagnant real wages"

It's 20 years. Real male median wages are lower now than in 1997. And that's without taking the huge increase in property/rents.

Blissex

«Real male median wages are lower now than in 1997. And that's without taking the huge increase in property/rents.»

Median male workers could be less selfish and realize that thanks to their restraint the living standards of so many businessmen, professionals and property owners have improved so much. Rejoice! Rejoice! :-)

coprolite

This sort of pish is not supposed to make literal sense in a coherent way, taking into account the meaning of the words.

It is just branding, both of the tories as the heirs of Thatcher and Regan and of JC as the heir of Michael Foot.

This stands up to logical scrutiny no better than adverts that make you associate having a big car with being attractive to the ladies.

In this context, as a strategy, it probably will work to a large degree.

Lidl Janus

"His claim that “our economy is not broken: it is fundamentally strong” reminds me of Monty Python’s Black Knight"

You don't need to go back to the 1970s, or to fictionalised comedy. Not when there's John McCain available to present disturbing (for Conservatives) historical parallels.

(From this, we can predict that Boris Johnson will become PM in 2030, and by then the persona will have long since stopped being an act and become worryingly serious).

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