I'm not exactly a fan of Nick Clegg...

(54 Posts)
miffybun73 Thu 03-Oct-13 10:52:35

...but love the fact that he has said this, "if anyone excels in... vilifying a lot about modern Britain, it's the Daily Mail."

Full article here:

www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-24379322

ttosca Thu 03-Oct-13 13:44:44

Tweet the Daily Mail advertisers over Miliband family smears

The Daily Mail and the Mail on Sunday think it's OK to:

Smear a dead war veteran in order to attack his son.
Gatecrash a family memorial event to spy on mourners.

Tell major brands to stop advertising with with the Mail group until editor-in-chief Paul Dacre apologises.

politicalscrapbook.net/virals/daily-mail-boycott/

ivykaty44 Thu 03-Oct-13 13:49:32

the daily mail were nazi sympathisers in the 1930 - hardly showing a love of britian was it hmm

flatpackhamster Thu 03-Oct-13 16:18:52

Presumably you're referring to their support for Mosley's Blackshirts (who were Fascists, not NAZIs). You'll also be condemning the Mirror for their identical support for the Blackshirts, I'm sure.

ivykaty44 Thu 03-Oct-13 16:20:56

no

flatpackhamster Thu 03-Oct-13 16:22:30

How predictable.

sillyoldfool Thu 03-Oct-13 16:24:14

It's not so much condemning them for what they did in the 30s as pointing out their hypocrisy at using something a teenager wrote in the 30s to attack their son.

ivykaty44 Thu 03-Oct-13 16:25:18

I was referring to the praise for the hitler youth from the daily mail during the 1930's

exexpat Thu 03-Oct-13 16:30:10

The Mail still supports far-right parties: "Marine le Pen is the only responsible vote"

And the Mail has no idea about most of modern Britain. Do you remember the comment on the Olympic opening ceremony, which had to be hastily deleted, about how the mixed-race couple with children living in a nice-looking new-build house was obviously over-the-top political correctness, presumably because everyone in Daily Mail land knows that mixed race couples never stay married and only live in grotty inner-city council flats.

exexpat Thu 03-Oct-13 16:33:37

(I wonder what the Mail would make of one mixed-race couple I know - both highly-paid hospital consultants, living in a large Victorian house in a very posh area and sending their children to private school - obviously some kind of hallucination from my fevered politically-correct imagination.)

flatpackhamster Thu 03-Oct-13 16:35:06

sillyoldfool

It's not so much condemning them for what they did in the 30s as pointing out their hypocrisy at using something a teenager wrote in the 30s to attack their son.

If their son hadn't repeatedly referenced his father as an inspiration, and if his father had ever shed his vile beliefs, I think that there'd be a case to be made.

ivykaty44 Thu 03-Oct-13 17:14:28

Rothermere being friends with hitler and mussolini was just a blip then was it? Praising the Nazi regime's accomplishments in the 30's in the newspaper was showing they were a good British newspaper

sillyoldfool Thu 03-Oct-13 18:25:57

I don't have an intimate knowledge of miliband seniors views, but the telegraph reprinted their obituary for him -
Professor Ralph Miliband, who has died aged 70, was an inspiring teacher of politics and an internationally renowned figure of the British Left.

Though committed to socialism, he never hesitated to criticise its distortion by Stalin and other dictators. He also inveighed against the timidity and limited horizons of West European social democracy. The ideal he sought was a democratic and open Marxism.

Miliband's scholarly writings, at once passionate and lucid, had great influence not only on students and dons but also beyond academic circles.

His Parliamentary Socialism (1961), in which he attacked the Labour Party for its lack of radicalism, became a classic text, as did The State in Capitalist Society, which analysed Western power structures.

Ralph Miliband was born in Belgium on Jan 7 1924, and fled to Britain in 1940 to escape the Nazis. He studied at the London School of Economics, where he was deeply influenced by Harold Laski, who became a friend and then a colleague.

Miliband's studies were interrupted by three years in the Royal Navy. He returned to the LSE to finish his degree, worked on a PhD (under Laski's supervision), and later, after a stint teaching at Roosevelt College in Chicago, became a lecturer in the LSE's department of government.

In 1972 Miliband took up the Chair of Politics at Leeds University, where Lord Boyle of Handsworth, the former Conservative minister Sir Edward Boyle, was Vice-Chancellor. Despite their different political perspectives, Miliband and Boyle developed a considerable mutual respect.

In his inaugural lecture at Leeds Miliband warned against treating Left-wing orthodoxy as a substitute for hard critical thought. Five years later he accepted a Chair at Brandeis University in America, and he subsequently taught at York University, Toronto, and the City University of New York. London, though, always remained his base.

Miliband was never a cloistered academic. From 1964 he edited the annual Socialist Register. An entertaining and witty speaker, Miliband was able to stimulate debate as well as to clarify complex ideas. He was in demand throughout the world, especially in North America.

A man of great warmth and generosity, Miliband was endowed with an infectious sense of humour.

He married, in 1961, Marion Kozak; they had two sons.

And that's the telegraph, not the socialist worker!

Doesn't sound to me like a terrible man.

ivykaty44 Thu 03-Oct-13 21:47:51

Jonathan Harmsworth, 4th Viscount Rothermere is worth an estimated £1.02 billion and doesn't pay tax in the UK - interesting way to treat the country of your birth when you have such vast wealth hardly honourable way to conduct your affairs.

edam Thu 03-Oct-13 22:49:18

It wasn't just the blackshirts the Mail supported in the 30s. The owner, the then Lord Rothermere, was an admirer of Hitler. A public admirer of Hitler.

You'd think the Mail would avoid dragging up stuff from WW2, given it's their Achilles heel...

perfectstorm Fri 04-Oct-13 22:56:09

If their son hadn't repeatedly referenced his father as an inspiration, and if his father had ever shed his vile beliefs, I think that there'd be a case to be made.

What vile beliefs? He was a radical socialist - but a democratic and parliamentarian one. That's not a "vile belief". It's just one you disagree with. I disagree equally vehemently with Thatcherism and what the Tories are doing right now, but I also acknowledge that in a democracy such views are their right. I wouldn't sniff that those are "vile beliefs" even though I think anyone supporting cuts that have led to reliance on food banks at the same time as cutting taxes for the richest might want to question their position.

He fought for this country as a very young man when under no obligation to do so at all. He was an alien at that point and couldn't have been conscripted. He stayed here his whole life afterwards. How is that someone who "hates this country"? Please explain?

perfectstorm Fri 04-Oct-13 23:12:01

You'll also be condemning the Mirror for their identical support for the Blackshirts, I'm sure.

The Mirror was originally a stablemate of the Mail and both were inherited by Lord Rothermere, who slowly offloaded Mirror shares in favour of the Mail as it was more profitable. The person writing the Nazi supporting editorials in the Mirror, who still had huge influence despite not owning the paper anymore, was Lord Rothermere. Whose descendant still owns the Mail today. I'm sure people are very happy to condemn his work at the Mirror and the Mail in the 1930s.

I do not think your point proves what you think it does. In fact rather the reverse.

flatpackhamster Mon 07-Oct-13 07:30:09

perfectstorm

What vile beliefs? He was a radical socialist - but a democratic and parliamentarian one.

Democracy and radical socialism are inherently contradictory. You can't be a democrat and someone who wants to destroy the system and replace it with socialism.

That's not a "vile belief". It's just one you disagree with.

Socialism is vile. It treats people as things, and socialists are always astonished to discover that without the checks and balances of democracy it always descends in to dictatorship. It is anathema to Liberty and anathema to humanity.

I disagree equally vehemently with Thatcherism and what the Tories are doing right now, but I also acknowledge that in a democracy such views are their right. I wouldn't sniff that those are "vile beliefs" even though I think anyone supporting cuts that have led to reliance on food banks at the same time as cutting taxes for the richest might want to question their position.

Yes, woe unto the nation now that the state is being rolled back to its size in 2005. Truly a wailing and gnashing of teeth.

He fought for this country as a very young man when under no obligation to do so at all. He was an alien at that point and couldn't have been conscripted. He stayed here his whole life afterwards. How is that someone who "hates this country"? Please explain?

He loved it so much he spent his life trying to turn it in to something else.

The Mirror was originally a stablemate of the Mail and both were inherited by Lord Rothermere, who slowly offloaded Mirror shares in favour of the Mail as it was more profitable. The person writing the Nazi supporting editorials in the Mirror, who still had huge influence despite not owning the paper anymore, was Lord Rothermere. Whose descendant still owns the Mail today. I'm sure people are very happy to condemn his work at the Mirror and the Mail in the 1930s.

I do not think your point proves what you think it does. In fact rather the reverse.

Editorials set the direction for the paper but they aren't produced in a vacuum and unless they share the ethos of the average reader. And people aren't just as happy to condemn the Mirror, because for many of them this is a DM witch-hunt. They went after Murdoch on Leveson and now it's the DM.

claig Mon 07-Oct-13 09:00:33

' They went after Murdoch on Leveson and now it's the DM.'

And that was their fatal mistake!

Murdoch was an easy target, but the Mail is a different kettle of fish.
I think the philosopher Eric Cantona summed it up best when he said

"When the seagulls follow the trawler, it is because they think sardines will be thrown into the sea"

Just like the Vietnamese forces in the IndoChina War had millions of people behind them, so too does the Daily Mail. They began the battle with the Mail and it will be their battle of Dhien Bien Phu.

Let them try to take on the Mail - the result will be an epic fail.

perfectstorm Mon 07-Oct-13 11:07:21

He loved it so much he spent his life trying to turn it in to something else.

Utter codswallop. That's the very foundation of liberty - the ability to work towards a society you regard as a better one, as long as you do it in a non-violent and democratic way. Change is an inevitability - without it women and most men would still be voteless, women would still be subject wholly to their husbands and fathers and unable to own property, and domestic violence would be "reasonable chastisement". There would be no assistance for the poor, the elderly or the sick, and nor would there be free and compulsory universal education. Change is not necessarily bad! And engaging in a country's public discourse in order to support and implement changes you sincerely believe are to the better is one of the most patriotic things you can do. That is so no matter what end of the political spectrum someone hails from.

Socialism is vile. It treats people as things, and socialists are always astonished to discover that without the checks and balances of democracy it always descends in to dictatorship. It is anathema to Liberty and anathema to humanity.

Most of that is meaningless adjective soup. Do you always talk in such vague and nebulous terms when trying to defend your position? Don't you have access to any facts? But there is one point that is plainly ridiculous: the entire point of capitalist economies is to treat people, in the form of labour, as a commodity. As much of a commodity as the raw materials, power bills and housing costs necessary to produce the end product. As such, they are treated as things - as objects, as a resource. It's ridiculous to argue that a system that produces such horrors as the Bangladeshi factory collapses or the Texan factory explosion is somehow an exemplar of "Liberty". It's just a figleaf soundbite, not merely meaningless but actually mendacious. Unrestricted capitalism exploits the economically weak majority in order to assist the tiny group with power and money. That's the default setting. How is that "Liberty" for the overwhelming majority of people, and how does it treat them as human individuals rather than a resource? It's stupid to argue otherwise. Socialism attempts to ensure that working people benefit from their work and that they live lives in which nobody suffers extremes of poverty or want. Yet to you, that is "treating people as things". Quite bizarre. Accepting the human dignity of each and every individual is the least dehumanising and objectifying system of belief possible. It seems impossibly idealistic to me, as I don't think human nature is as altruistic as socialism in its extreme form requires, but I have to say, I find the underlying aims laudable. How are the underlying aims of capitalism - that the few exploit the many - laudable, in a world where your birth defines so much about your life chances? It harnesses the least admirable traits of humanity well, drives the economy forward as a result, and for that reason I think it very much has a role to play, but pretending capitalism is the guardian of "Liberty" is just laughable. Left in its purest form it simply ensures an oligarchy. Which is the antithesis of liberty for the vast majority of people.

And why on earth are you sneering that socialists are always astonished to discover that without the checks and balances of democracy it always descends in to dictatorship? I appreciate it's a handy straw man argument if you happen to be someone more comfortable tilting at windmills than actually dealing with the realities of a diverse political landscape, but Miliband actually wrote a book on democratic socialism. He didn't feel the Labour party went far enough, true, but that's hardly an unusual or even very extreme position, is it? In case it's escaped your attention, without the checks and balances of democracy extreme right wing governments also descend into dictatorship and terror. It has nothing to do with the views and everything to do with the kind of enraged venom aimed at opponents your own posts display. You hate people with views that differ to your own and feel it acceptable to call them "vile" and opine that they have no right to hold or express them, because to do so is an assault on "Liberty"? Seriously? And you don't see that as an attack on democracy on your part? I can't think of many things less likely to foster a healthy democracy than hysterical rage when people hold views you dislike, and an insistence that those views have no place in the country and those who hold them clearly hate the place. Demonising diversity is profoundly, fundamentally anti-democratic.

Yes, woe unto the nation now that the state is being rolled back to its size in 2005.

And with that you expose your own wholesale ignorance of what is happening in this country at the moment. Perhaps if you read papers other than the Mail - or even better some books - then you might learn something? Policy on the NHS, education, welfare reform, for example. (You might even understand the difference between anarchism and parliamentary socialism, which at present you do not.)

Editorials set the direction for the paper but they aren't produced in a vacuum and unless they share the ethos of the average reader.

Indeed, which is presumably why the Mirror's circulation fell, and as the paper was no longer owned by the Rothermere clan (unlike the Mail, then and to this day) it was free to alter its political tack from that the family had set. Which it did. Might I suggest you actually start reading up on these things yourself instead of blindly parroting the Mail's line, and then clinging to it stubbornly when presented with the actual facts? You might post a little more effectively.

And Claig, I suspect that the overwhelming majority of those who read the Mail do so to learn what sort of knickers Kim Kardashian wears and whether Simon Cowell is having an affair with Cheryl Cole. Touching as your faith in the Mail's political influence is, I fear it's a fantasy.

claig Mon 07-Oct-13 11:13:52

'Touching as your faith in the Mail's political influence is, I fear it's a fantasy.'

Yes, you may be right, but I sincerely hope not. Because without the Mail, we as a nation are sunk.

exexpat Mon 07-Oct-13 11:23:24

PMSL at Claig's last line "without the Mail, we as a nation are sunk".

That's the last straw - I think claig must be a parody account, no one could say that with a straight face, could they?

claig Mon 07-Oct-13 11:25:23

I do like to make a bit light of it grin

claig Mon 07-Oct-13 11:45:04

Hence the reference to to the profundity of Eric Cantona's "When seagulls follow the trawler" gem.

When it comes to politics, you have to laugh or else you'd cry.

claig Mon 07-Oct-13 15:43:22

perfectstorm , I don't think that flatpack is a Mail reader based on some past posts.

perfectstorm Mon 07-Oct-13 19:45:13

Claig, I honestly thought you were bonkers. grin You just made this grumpy, flu-laden pregnant woman's evening!

claig Mon 07-Oct-13 19:50:54

Bonkers, I'm a Daily Mail reader, how can I be bonkers? grin

But I do like having a bit of a laugh and exaggerating the case for the mail's preeminent position in British journalism a little bit.

perfectstorm Mon 07-Oct-13 20:08:54

It's basically Grazia for free, isn't it. With swivel-eyed lunacy on the side.

My Facebook feed is covered in Mail piss-takes this week. I'm sure you've seen them, but just in case:

How Much Are You Hated By The Daily Mail?

The Internet V the Daily Mail.

The Daily Mail "hates Britain and everyone in it, experts have confirmed" says the Daily Mash.

And last, but never ever least, The Daily Mail Song.

claig Mon 07-Oct-13 20:17:54

Yes, they are good, I have seen most of them.

I did the Hated by the Mail survey and the result was that even I was "loathed" by the Mail and I said yes to Gove, so I think that survey is a bit biased grin

But seriously, the Mail is very powerful politically and there was an interview with Jonathan Powell, Blair's former Chief of Staff, after Murdoch was humbled, and he said something like the paper the politicians really fear is the Daily Mail.

I think the reason is that it has so many readers and they do (like it or not) represent the mainstream opinion in this country.

The battle over press freedom will be fascinating but I think it is one that teh politicians will ultimately lose due to the power of the press. I don't think that is a bad thing because the politicians do not really represent the mainstream opinion whereas some parts of the press do. A system of checks and balances and pressure groups of all sorts exerting influence probably guarantees that democracy works well in the end.

perfectstorm Mon 07-Oct-13 21:22:29

Yeah, as a white married straight person I wouldn't imagine myself as a primary target for Mail loathing, either! Have to try answering wholly as the Mail would approve, and see what happens. grin

That's really depressing, frankly. Though to judge by the comments, even their readers haven't been happy with the Miliband thing - they overplayed their hand there. And I wonder if the power is as great as people believe - I mean, if the Mail really were that mainstream, no Labour government would ever have been elected, and there'd be no welfare or abortion provision to speak of. I also wonder if their very successful online version hasn't diluted their influence, because it's so US-oriented for advertising reasons, as well as celebrity-heavy. I do think most people in this country are quite socially conservative, but I don't think they're as resentful and lacking in compassion as the Mail portrays.

I agree on press freedom. I think for private individuals there should be a public interest requirement before their privacy is invaded/lives upended simply for circulation, and hefty fines should be levied if that is ignored. I don't think public interest and public prurience are the same thing. But a healthy democracy does require diversity, absolutely, and people wanting a role in public life, or even to hold a position of power/influence, should expect to be minutely scrutinised. In the States, political parties employ researchers to muck-rake on opponents - find out if there have been accusations of spousal abuse, child support payment defaults, tax evasion etc. Here, the media are needed for the role.

I do think there's an issue in the way most of the press are owned and managed, though, because there isn't an awful lot of diversity when you need so much money to run a paper. Interesting to see what the internet will mean for us all in the future - more access, but less fact-checking and accountability, perhaps. And the way journalists are paid less and less as the internet supercedes print is also really problematic I think - it may become tricky to attract the very best into the profession if they're not paid enough to live reasonably well, in future.

claig Mon 07-Oct-13 21:41:12

The Mail reader is to the right but they aren't Tory.

I voted for Blair in 1997 and I read the Mail in those days too. I am for nationalisation of railways and water and electricity. Also a lot of people don't vote at all, so their views are not really reflected in general elections, and also our voting system is a joke with first past the post which means that people's views are not truly reflected.

"there isn't an awful lot of diversity when you need so much money to run a paper"

Why don't the unions set up a paper? There are also lots of leftwing millionaires who could set up a paper.

'Interesting to see what the internet will mean for us all in the future - more access, but less fact-checking and accountability, perhaps.'

The internet will eat into the newspaper business. The mainstream is often His Master's voice, whoever pays the piper calls the tune, and they will not give the full story and also they will often pump out propaganda (whether that is on climate change or on Syria etc etc). Readers know that and therefore supplement the mainstream with the independent media who take the facts and do commentary on it. Interpretation of what is happening gives a deeper understanding than plain facts. It is how the facts fit the big picture that is more interesting.

Yes, it is vital that our mainstream press remains popular because it is the mainstream press that is listened to and provides a check on politicians. That is why I like the Mail, because it represents the views of many ordinary people - such as over the Liverpool Care Pathway, for example - and in the end it forces the politicians to listen.

If we have a diversified media which does not have mass readership in the millions and where editors do not meet with politicians, then there will be no checks on politicians.

flatpackhamster Tue 08-Oct-13 11:11:59

perfectstorm

And I wonder if the power is as great as people believe - I mean, if the Mail really were that mainstream, no Labour government would ever have been elected, and there'd be no welfare or abortion provision to speak of.

70% of people in the UK get their news from a single source. That source is the BBC. Theirs is the dominant narrative, not the Mail's.

Didn't Hitler get Time Magazine's Person of the Decade award or something like that back then?

People really didn't know how horrific it was all going to turn out and what a fruit loop he really was.

Does the Mail stand behind a certain party like The Sun used to? I remember the uproar when The Sun changed political allegiance.

PetiteRaleuse Tue 08-Oct-13 12:15:54

The Mail are going to be seriously pissed off - the new guidelines they have cooked up with the Murdochs and others have been rejected by the Privy Council. I think they'll be turning heat up on their enemies. If that is possible.

NicholasTeakozy Tue 08-Oct-13 13:57:05

Neoliberalism is vile. It treats people as things, and neocons are always astonished to discover that without the checks and balances of democracy it always descends in to dictatorship. It is anathema to Liberty and anathema to humanity.

I've improved what you wrote. Neoliberalism is the flipside of the socialist coin, and has as much relevance to capitalism and the free market as soup. I'd love to see a free market; that would mean not bailing out the banks instead of saving them and blaming it on the poor, which is what the current shower are doing.

Chipstick10 Tue 08-Oct-13 14:07:24

More daily mail bashing. Yawn.

HesterShaw Tue 08-Oct-13 16:07:58

It's quite interesting actually chipstick.

MrJudgeyPants Tue 08-Oct-13 22:29:28

Big statism is vile. It treats people as things, and big statists are always astonished to discover that without the checks and balances of democracy it always descends in to tyranny. It is anathema to Liberty and anathema to humanity.

Fixed it.

NicholasTeakozy Wed 09-Oct-13 06:30:25

Message deleted by Mumsnet for breaking our Talk Guidelines. Replies may also be deleted.

MrJudgeyPants Wed 09-Oct-13 23:20:19

Republicans, being the party who created the worlds most powerful military and a keen desire to deploy it, as well as the party who created Guantanamo Bay and the Patriot Act, are hardly small statists.

Similarly, a country with an unrepayable national debt approaching 17 trillion dollars can hardly be accused of being a small state.

Neither the Republicans, nor the Democrats are small statists. Their differences lie in how to spend lots of money, not in whether that money should be spent or not.

The few small statists in America, of whom Ron Paul (who does happen to be a republican) is probably the most preeminent, are very much in the minority.

NicholasTeakozy Thu 10-Oct-13 09:27:36

You forget the members of Congress who are responsible for shutting down government are Tea Party sympathisers. The Tea Party want small government.

Small government in action. But that's Bangladesh, I hear you say.

Green Bay bridge collapse and it's not the only one, all due to small government and refusal to invest in maintenance.

Here's an interesting fact: US states run by right wing Tea Party Republicans receive more Federal funds than those run by normal people.

MrJudgeyPants Thu 10-Oct-13 13:13:29

NicholasTeakozy The examples you provide are complete straw man (men?) arguments. It's well known that building safety concerns in Bangladesh are as a result of building owners either ignoring building laws or bribing officials to pass an unsafe building as a safe one. What you are doing here is (deliberately?) confusing small state governments with a lack of the rule of law.

As for bridges built, designed and owned by the US Department of Transportation (i.e. the US government) which have structural problems, I would have thought that that errs towards proving that government agencies aren't, by and large, fit to run a whelk-stand! How many privately built, designed and operated bridges have collapsed over the same period?

I don't think the 'evidence' you've put forward makes the case that you are trying to make.

NicholasTeakozy Thu 10-Oct-13 13:48:03

The states in which these failed and failing bridges are situated in have all been run by pro Tea Party Governors who have stripped their maintenance budgets to practically zero. Anybody with the ability to use a search engine should be able to suss that out for themselves.

...(deliberately?) confusing small state governments with a lack of the rule of law

Not at all. Your 'small state government' wouldn't be able to uphold the law.

I note you ignored my comment about US states with pro 'small government' governors requiring more Federal assistance.

MrJudgeyPants Thu 10-Oct-13 14:23:08

I ignored your comment because it was irrelevant. In exactly the same way as saying that "the traditionally Labour areas in the UK get higher government support such as unemployment benefits etc" would be irrelevant to a discussion about increasing or reducing the size of the state.

perfectstorm Fri 11-Oct-13 01:39:49

I ignored your comment because it was irrelevant. In exactly the same way as saying that "the traditionally Labour areas in the UK get higher government support such as unemployment benefits etc" would be irrelevant to a discussion about increasing or reducing the size of the state.

The Tea Party endlessly drone on about the necessity of reducing the state. The Labour Party do not. Thus Nicholas' comment is wholly relevant, indeed it is very pertinent.

HTH.

And please, do name three successful countries with small state government. Including information on the rights and standard of living of temporary workers, women and children; the presence or otherwise of the death penalty; and the provision of health, education, a functional and independent police/judicial system, a free press, and the democratic engagement of all citizens. Unless, of course, you think such things are inimical to "Liberty".

MrJudgeyPants Fri 11-Oct-13 08:12:24

Perfectstorm The mistake that you and Nicholas are making in trying to link the poorest states to their Tea Party representatives is that many US states have deep rooted poverty issues dating back to the civil war, whereas the Tea Party movement is only a few years old. When looked at from this perspective, voting for Tea Party candidates becomes the reaction to their poverty, not the driver for it. The Tea Party performs the same function in the US that Labour traditionally fulfils here.

As for a list of small state countries, there are many that have aspects that we would be wise to mimic. Hong Kong's laissez faire attitude to business proves that minimal legislation can benefit their population whilst avoiding the worst excesses such as collapsing buildings seen in Bangladesh as mentioned upthread. Whilst New Zealand is a country that has taken great steps to shrink the size of the state recently, its reduction in taxation has corresponded with a sustainable increase in its wealth. Australia and Canada are, in many ways, far freer and Libertarian than the UK is without resembling downtown Mogadishu. Now I, quite frankly, can't be arsed to google all of your questions, but I would be happy to live in the countries named above. I also find it damning that each of these countries is a former British colony which has remained freer than what we have become.

BTW, the state doesn't have to be the sole provider of healthcare or education. To insist that this is indicative of a small state suggests you don't really understand the whole point of a small state.

perfectstorm Fri 11-Oct-13 13:06:26

Oh dear. Sweetheart, I AM an Australian. The state there intervenes more and provides more for its citizens than the UK ever does. You're pontificating from a position of complete ignorance, I'm afraid - yes, nice shiny pie charts make Australia look like a low state country for an OECD nation but that's because the spend on pensions is low (youthful population) and defence extremely low (tiny armies tend to be pretty useful if you don't want to spend a lot on the state). And I can't help suspecting that your knowledge of NZ is equally... well, I'll be kind and call it "patchy", shall I?

Hong Kong has just acknowledged it has a serious problem in terms of poverty, with 1 in 5 families living on half the average income, and inequality is growing, not decreasing as the economy itself grows. There's a strong agitation amongst worker organisations to provide a minimum wage... and a decent welfare system. Some people would regard that as something called "progress".

You seem to have this decidedly odd belief that people are there to serve the economy, rather than the other way around, and that worshipping the free market as some sort of deity has an inherent moral weight and worth. This, of course, turns people into objects... while anthropomorphising human-created economic conditions. Interesting definition of "Liberty".

perfectstorm Fri 11-Oct-13 13:08:08

The Tea Party performs the same function in the US that Labour traditionally fulfils here.

Forgive me, I forgot to say that someone capable of typing that sentence cannot, surely, expect someone to waste energy responding to it. Perhaps a little Google might assist you? But then again, you said you "can't be bothered to Google." Believe me, it shows.

NicholasTeakozy Fri 11-Oct-13 14:17:44

The Tea Party performs the same function in the US that Labour traditionally fulfils here.

Oh dear. There's a quotation I saw t'other day which is tailor made for your assertion: "in an age where information is readily available ignorance is merely an option."

FYI, New Zealand and Australia are part of the same online surveillance scandals as the US and UK. Using the search engine of your choice will confirm that.

Governments in Southern Europe are shrinking due to bailouts (watch for bail-ins. They're next) and poverty is soaring. They should just have defaulted and told the banks to get stuffed, the same as we should've.

MrJudgeyPants Fri 11-Oct-13 15:44:23

Without cherry-picking the quote, I actually wrote "When looked at from this perspective, voting for Tea Party candidates becomes the reaction to their poverty, not the driver for it. The Tea Party performs the same function in the US that Labour traditionally fulfils here."

For various reasons in the UK and across Europe, when faced with difficult economic times, our populations, and especially those amongst the working classes, have tended to support ever more statist political parties - be they the traditionaly more statist Labour party as in the UK or the more dictatorial nazi's, golden dawn etc...

For whatever reason, and I genuinely don't know why, amongst the working class voters across much of the 'red-state' US, there is a tendency to support the less statist elements of the republican party. In other words, the demographic that supports the Tea Party in the US the most would be the same target demographic for the Labour party here in the UK.

Or if you'd rather have that explained as a soundbite I refer you to BOTH sentences quoted above!

TheHammaconda Fri 11-Oct-13 16:19:46

Actually, Tea Party supporters are broadly representative of the US public. In fact, they are more likely to be of average or higher income. You can't catagorise them as 'working class voters'. The Tea Party has support accross all demographic groups. according to Gallup research However, [[ http://www.gallup.com/poll/147635/tea-party-movement.aspxthat support is falling]].

TheHammaconda Fri 11-Oct-13 16:20:34

Well that didn't work! It should have been this link

Sierra753 Sun 13-Oct-13 10:09:03

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