Wednesday, 6 May 2009

Years and years - a riff continued

Charles Butler, looking at the same Jonathan Hopkin post I talked about earlier, comments:
We may find the right wing to be insufferably and unacceptably stupid since the time that the same Ronald Reagan took office, but the left has descended into the ethical black hole of defending only a restricted number of vested interests.
Would that he were wrong. But he's not. For me, one of the reasons that Thatcher got and kept power was that she challenged the entrenched interests that the left was in thrall to in the 1970s, notably the unions. (The unions of closed shops and entrenched employment rights for the few, that is.) If the general perception is that the Left is pandering to this kind of selfishness again, then it will be out of power in the UK for as long as it was in the Thatcher years.



Blogger Charles Butler said...


I'm not entirely sure of the comparison with the '70s (at least, not yet). Sad though, the smug and cynical, fin-de-something fatalism on the part of the Spanish left.


3:18 pm  
Blogger David Murphy said...

You know the Spanish example far better than I, so I won't comment on that. The Brown government, though, is reminding me a lot of the Callaghan years ('76-'79). More people are making the comparison with Major, of course, but sadly it feels more like a repeat of Callaghan to me.

12:13 pm  
Blogger Jonathan Hopkin said...

In some ways I think Labour is in trouble precisely because it isn't tied to any vested interests. Sure, there is the public sector, but academics don't like tuition fees (even though they should) and doctors - the biggest beneficiaries of Labour largesse - are a very conservative group.

Labour hasn't really done that many favours to its core groups. It has pitched a big tent, which is fine when things are going well, but when it all goes wrong, who do you fall back on? My bet is Zapatero will last a lot longer!

9:35 pm  

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