Sunday, 18 July 2010

Parties Without Purpose

Writing in the Sunday Telegraph, Patrick Hennessy queries whether Labour is now a party without a purpose, commenting that "formed in the early years of the 20th century, it promoted socialism, public ownership, intervention in the economy, the welfare state and the redistribution of wealth. When it looked as though it had run out of steam decades later, Tony Blair re-invented it as New Labour. Now the candidates tell us New Labour didn't really work – but seem unable to say what they would put in its place."

The Conservative Party, traditionally, is held as a party that believes in 'centre-right' philosophies of 'conservativism and unionism' and 'free market' economy. Formed from Whig beginnings,  the name Conservative Party was adopted, by Sir Robert Peel, around 1834 (Wikipedia).

The Liberal Democrat Party, formed from a merger of the Liberal Party and the Social Democrat Party in 1988 believe in constitutional reform, electoral reform, civil liberties and rights, and higher taxes for public services (Wikipedia). The original 'Liberal' beliefs included social reform, personal liberty, reducing the powers of the Crown and the Church of England (many of them were Nonconformists) and an extension of the franchise (right to vote) (Wikipedia).

It can be argued that there are only two types of government on which any society can be based: that of socialism which believes in the state being the dominant partner and thus having the right to dictate to a people how those people should live their lives; and the opposing view that the people are the dominant partner; that people are the only ones to determine how they should live their lives and that governments should enact what the people desire. Changes in society have dictated changes in those three party's beliefs and political creeds resulting in them all attempting to occupy what is called the 'centre ground' - in other words attempting to appeal to all sections of the electorate.

In that respect it can then be argued that none of the three main parties: Conservative, Labour and Liberal Democrats no longer have a purpose, when compared to their founding beliefs. They, now, all believe in subservience to a foreign government (the EU), an unproven 'science' (climate change, or global warming - take your pick); central control of funding for services; globalisation and neo-political union and in so doing expend a great deal of energy in 'shutting-down' any alternative views.

So the question must be posed: if these parties have lost sight of their founding beliefs, what is the purpose in their continued existence when presenting an image of 'much of a sameness'? Now and then a politician may present a new idea for a political party, one that does offer an alternative - witness Carswell and Hannan with Direct Democracy. Unfortunately, in the latter example, there would appear to be a marked reluctance on the part of those two individuals to do anything other than talk, Presumably this is due to the fact that to actually form a new political party would deprive them of their seats in their respective parliaments, the income and perks that being a representative of a political party brings them.

One can but live in the hope that, one day, a politician will emerge with the ability, eloquence, organisational skills and, above all, a crusading belief in order to return our country to that of being a self-determining, self-governing, free nation.

Not too much to ask, is it?


pop said...

It seems to me that political parties do not persuade anyone of anything.

They just seek to assemble enough people - with preconceived views - from enough groups to get themselves elected.

The 'green vote', 'gay vote', 'womens vote' etc...

UKIP is a bit different - its message is that if we remain in the EU then no groups votes will make any difference...

For anyone who thinks voting and democracy matters it should be a no-brainer to vote UKIP -- but there are a surprising (to me) number of people who actually just want to impose their own view on everyone and only really 'support' democracy in as far as it allows them to do that...

Witterings From Witney said...

pop, UKIP are ok (I am a member) but their admin is abysmal and some of their candidates at the last election lacked credability.

They must sort themselves out to be taken seriously - we need more Harry Aldridges.

pop said...

If we have an unelected, unaccountable government in Brussels then what we think is irrelevant because they will do whatever they want regardless of what we want/say/think.

To avoid this, there is only one option - UKIP - quality of admin is a detail, and an MP with (in your view) low credibility is better than the option of an MP who bows to the unelected, unaccountable EU commission.