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    I blame this on the 90s you know. I really must read your book on 1996, the devil's year

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      That's a kind of universal thing in UK politics though isn't it? It's all about personalities. It's what ye like to do. The coverage of politics and football are basically the same, and both of them are ultimately governed by the same story values that the bronze age myths were. It's all about great leaders and magical but flawed warriors, with exciting personal lives, engaging in acts of entertaining derring do, while the rest of humanity are helpless spectators. I mean sure more mainstream parties do have policies in theory, but those have very little to do with the politicians in those parties. I bet you Boris Johnson couldn't name you three conservative policies from their last manifesto. Most of the policies from a financial point of view differ very little in a variety of really important ways, but when it comes to meaningless signalling differences they can really go to town on each other. They are essentially gang colours.

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        The Westminster Lobby certainly functions like a football ground press box, with people whispering along the line to corroborate scorer details, quotes, etc. And they similarly operate on a "perspective of the powerful" bias as a result, because of the access they have. The thing is though, I reckon political writing needs to undergo the sort of change that football fanzines forced on a lot (though not all) of football writing after the 80s, but political hacks are that much more pompous and self-regarding so they tend to regard 'outsider' writing as a threat.

        This is probably one for a separate thread

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          Originally posted by wingco View Post
          I was actually going to address precisely this point when I got a moment on Facebook, E10. What do you actually believe in, folks? My suspicion is that they're still secretly hankering for some "third way", where we get past the old ideologies, etc, rather than commit to the perfectly reasonable policies advanced by Labour in the last election. Trouble is, they know that the moment they open their mouths, nothing but Chuka-style vacuity will come out. They want a third way to be the way but have no idea what shape or form it would take. So they stick to negativity and superior, nihlistic despair and a vague hankering for "grown-ups" to swoop in and take swift, decisive action.
          I don't think they think about things in that way. Perhaps the way in which blairism is the ultimate victory of thatcherism is the way that they got the labour party to paint nearly all of its policies beige. Gone was anything vaguely red, or industrial grey, it was all just the colour of the walls in a telemarketing barn. They seem to have fundamentally snapped the link between policies, and the people who were going to be governed by them, which is a normal thing for the right to do, but it's weird when the supposed party of the left does it. The problem with this thing is that it ultimately breaks the tradition of a whole sector of society being able to realistically engage in the political system and get some of what they want out of it. And it disconnects politics for many people, entirely from reality. The consequence of the end of the link between people and policies for the left isn't a new better way to govern, it's people thinking that their vote doesn't affect anything so they vote for brexit, or for economic platforms that are incoherent and possibly ruinous.

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            Originally posted by E10 Rifle View Post
            The Westminster Lobby certainly functions like a football ground press box, with people whispering along the line to corroborate scorer details, quotes, etc. And they similarly operate on a "perspective of the powerful" bias as a result, because of the access they have. The thing is though, I reckon political writing needs to undergo the sort of change that football fanzines forced on a lot (though not all) of football writing after the 80s, but political hacks are that much more pompous and self-regarding so they tend to regard 'outsider' writing as a threat.

            This is probably one for a separate thread
            It seems fair enough. but unless this whole TIG nonsense develops in new dimensions it is going to be a thin frame to drape a thread on. we shouldn't be afraid to live and breathe, if we can't see chuka umuna as Zeus, and anna soubry as athena, how are we going to stomach them?

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              Originally posted by The Awesome Berbaslug!!! View Post

              The problem with this thing is that it ultimately breaks the tradition of a whole sector of society being able to realistically engage in the political system and get some of what they want out of it. And it disconnects politics for many people, entirely from reality. The consequence of the end of the link between people and policies for the left isn't a new better way to govern, it's people thinking that their vote doesn't affect anything so they vote for brexit, or for economic platforms that are incoherent and possibly ruinous.
              Precisely.

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                British politics is s series of personality cults - Thatcher, Blair, Corbyn, Johnson, whatever. The only distinctive thing about TIG in this context is their cargo cult like attempt to replicate this around the unpreposesing figure of Chukka Umunna.

                Apropos of E10’s earlier point, I can see people on the left talking politics, and seemingly a lot more people on the left trading in superficial “my leader, right or wrong” stuff though I’m sure some of that is the stupidity-encouraging effect of Twitter.

                And there are centrists talking about politics, though I guess what they’re talking about can be dismissed as not “proper issues” depending on your agenda. Look at Stella Creasy on knife crime or Jess Philips on education funding, to pick two examples from the last week.
                Last edited by Lucy Waterman; 13-03-2019, 23:41.

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                  TAB’s comparison with football is excellent I think. It ought to be possible to be a political leader in this country without becoming a) the recipient of impossible hopes and b) the target of lifelong and posthumous hatred when you don’t deliver on them.

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                    I think ed milliband managed to avoid that.

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                      Yes, probably needs the qualifier “relatively successful.” Ed Milivand would I guess be someone like Emlyn Hughes. There’s an obvious comparison no ones ever made.

                      Anyway, an exception to a rule that holds true for Kinnock, Major, Blair, Cameron, May in recent memory. Brown I guess was just pitied.
                      Last edited by Lucy Waterman; 14-03-2019, 00:06.

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                        Emlyn hughes was famously an insufferable prick though. Ed Milliband for all his faults wasn't that.

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                          No, that’s definitely the other one.

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                            I've actually not seem much "my leader right or wrong" stuff from the Lefties I follow on social media lately. At all. But I've filtered out the shit accounts long ago. If you follow Squawkbox or The Canary you deserve what you get.

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                              [URL]http://twitter.com/Mc_Heckin_Duff/status/1107946764064182272[/URL]

                              Prize wankers, Pt 53.

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                                Reminds of the time I got slagged off by The Guardian in 2009 for daring to say that Twitter wasn't the second coming of Christ.

                                Come to think of it, Jemima Kiss took to Twitter to call me a wanker. And didn't realise that I could see it.
                                Last edited by Snake Plissken; 19-03-2019, 20:00.

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                                  And she was a "tech correspondent"? Good old Grauniad.

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                                    It was a weird time to have a slight media pile-on. I ended up on the phone to Andrew Orlowski at The Register and he told me about how - at the time - it was basically a bunch of Noo Media marketing types who saw anyone else who wasn't in marketing as an alien. I think that they gave up after myself and a few friends manage to create enough to get "Paul Carr is a bellend" trending...

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                                      Good Lord.

                                      I was just wondering earlier about how centrists reconcile their beliefs with the reality of climate change. The phenomenon basically renders modern centrism utterly irrelevant at a single stroke. There is no "third way" when it comes to the destruction of the biosphere. It's blatantly obvious to anyone paying attention that the only way to save the planet is to ditch capitalism and radically alter our ways of life. Continuing to build coal-fired plants, driving cars running on fossil fuels and producing plastics in industrial quantities - these aren't things that can be negated by "moderation" or finding a "sensible" way to burn coal. What does your average centrist think about all this? What's their proposal for saving the planet?

                                      I ask that rhetorically because, knowing the character of the kinds of people we're talking about, they're more likely to scoff at a sentence like "saving the planet" as something a woefully naive teenager or hippy would say. They're more likely to affect the nihilistic, superior attitude wingco described earlier. And I suspect that's because it's easier not to care. If they did actually care about something, if they believed in a cause, then they'd have to grapple with their consciences about why they're not doing anything

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                                        Bang on cue, Wingco's thrown out another piece of Blair-baiting red meat on his FB today and all the same people have leapt on it, saying exactly the same things, wishing so hard The Nice Men Who Looked After Me In 1997 would come back

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                                          Originally posted by E10 Rifle View Post
                                          Bang on cue, Wingco's thrown out another piece of Blair-baiting red meat on his FB today
                                          Any chance of a copy and paste (provided wingco's cool with it) for those of us not on Zuckerberg's hellsite?

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                                            I can't see anything on FB or Twitter but I don't use either that frequently so I might just be being a bit daft.

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                                              Originally posted by E10 Rifle View Post
                                              Bang on cue, Wingco's thrown out another piece of Blair-baiting red meat on his FB today and all the same people have leapt on it, saying exactly the same things, wishing so hard The Nice Men Who Looked After Me In 1997 would come back
                                              I've blocked half of his Friend list, and visiting his page is a much nicer experience.

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                                                I dunno, that bloke who never stops going on and on and on and on about Corbyn is quite funny. I mean he must stop from time to time to eat or breathe or stuff, but I have no idea how someone could be so obsessed with one subject and still carry on a life of sorts.

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                                                  The word "Corbyn" is uttered so much more frequently by his obsessive opponents than by his supposedly obsessive "cult-like" supporters

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                                                    I know, I mean, I assume I live in some kind of left wing bubble but I have never yet encountered one of these obsessive Corbynites for whom Saint Jezza is the messiah. And yet I see online loads of people who are utterly utterly obsessed with Corbyn. There's a journalist who is not one of wingco's crew, called Ian Leslie, who I follow on twitter because I liked a few of his articles in the past, but over the last 2 years he has talked about nothing else. He's completely hatstand

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