From Tiny Acorns, Mighty Oaks Do Grow…

Revolutions like 1917 don’t come very often. Revolutions don’t normally come from people who usually think of themselves as revolutionary: idiots like Plane Stupid, Climate rush or any of the alphabet soup of Marxist wankers smoking in east-london pubs whilst calling each other “comrade”. Revolutions instead usually happen when someone from the broad mass of working and middle class people says “enough” and makes a stand. Someone in authority overreacts, but the public back the person making the stand, rather than “THE LAW”. The governing authorities either catch the mood or get swept aside. Rosa Parks springs to mind. I’m not going to compare the myriad small injustices of British jobsworthery with the civil rights struggle in the southern USA – the latter clearly is a moral absolute, whereas the former is grumbling by people who are in any historical context, enormously wealthy and lucky, but I am going to compare the process by which change happens. Rosa Parks defied the law, and eventually the law caught up with the people who backed her. Today, in the UK, Every day, working and middle class people break the law. Speeding (remember 80mph on an empty motorway is “speeding”), Running red lights on a bicycle, smoking pot, snorting coke, enjoying a lock-in at the local, taking or offering a discount “for cash”. Next year, millions of us will write “none of your fucking business” on a census, risking a £1,000 fine. Maybe one or two of us will be prosecuted. Buglary and robbery are decriminalsed, and it’s only possible to get the police interested in rape, murder and strict-liability motoring offenses.

The law has already become arbitary, ridiculous and widely ignored.

Given the fact there are going to be a lot of people losing their (mostly parasitic) livlihoods in the next couple of years as a result of benefit changes and public-sector cuts, those of us in the majority, paying for the whole shooting-match ought to see some benefit, but probably won’t, and will endure ever higher taxes to pay for it all. There are going to be a lot of pissed off people. At what point does the dissatisfaction with shitty services, rapacious taxation, jobsworths abusing their positions, turn into politicians dangling from lamp-posts on lenghts of piano wire? Instead of remaining small acts of rebellion like a commuters wandering across an area roped off by workmen?

3 replies
  1. Tim Newman
    Tim Newman says:

    The 1917 revolution was against a provisional government and was swiftly followed by a 4-year civil war which featured at least four sides and the Bolsheviks won thanks largely to the help of outsiders. It was less of a revolution than a bog-standard coup d'etat, rewritten by the eventual winners as a popular uprising.

  2. Nigel Sedgwick
    Nigel Sedgwick says:

    I have a fairly simple proposal for you, to sort out all this mess of too much government expenditure, on which no one seems to be able to decide what to cut.

    Firstly cut: taxes to be reduced, without doubt and in totality, by 2% pa in real terms WRT PPP GDP.

    Secondly: government expenditure to be cut, in near-totality, by at least 3% pa in real terms WRT PPP GDP.

    Thirdly, the near-totality to be defined as all expenditure except on interest. Thus, if interest payments (by all defined means) exceed the difference between the 2% and the 3%, then government expenditure is to be further cut to stay within a balanced budget – and it will need to be – at least until the economy grows.

    Fourthly, differences between met budget and actually are to be corrected, cumulatively, year-by-year by carry forward of budget misbalances of whichever direction.

    Then stand well back and let invective (and even blood) flow: it will only be in government circles.

    Government should advise all tourists and other non-combatants to stay at least 15 minutes walk from Parliament Square, and not to loiter near any building occupied during working hours more than 10% by Civil Servants or local authority employees. [The working hours bit is somewhat troubling, but let's not be petty – some of them do work, even quite hard.]

    Concerning the invective and any blood-letting, too much interest in the detail should be avoided (except by historians). And the tax cuts will stimulate the rest of the economy.

    After 5 years: rejoice, at least somewhat. The severe pressure will concentrate the 'government' mind most wonderfully on what government really need to do, as distinct from the rest. And the non-government economy (the really important bit) will have grown well.

    Best regards


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