The Purpose of Politics 192


A stark example of the entire purpose of modern politics; careers for the political class. Lib Dems may agree to a referendum on EU membership because it “reflects the thinking of English Lib Dem MPs in seats where they face Eurosceptic pressure”. That is, nothing to do with their beliefs, just trying to save their jobs. Exactly like the Westminster Labour establishment in Scotland.


192 thoughts on “The Purpose of Politics

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  • Ben E. Geserit Muad'Dib Further Confounding Gender Speculators

    Should have checked the link before posting. It’s been edited away from death to the story that was the ONLY story; that he was critical.

    Interesting still. Fred, I think will confirm that the story said he was already dead.

  • Silvio

    “Now that Sweden has pissed off the US and Netanyahoo, how long before”……

    Stockholm undergoes a terrorist attack by fanatical, Muslim (nudge, nudge, wink, wink) terrorists?

  • oddie

    surprised? no.

    Guardian: European Commission approves Hinkley Point nuclear subsidy deal
    Brussels gives go ahead to state subsidy scheme, that offers EDF Energy a set price for 35 years, clearing the way for first nuclear reactors to be built in Britain for almost 20 years
    The Austrian representative spoke out against the deal and his country has previously promised to launch legal action to halt the scheme – the first since Sizewell B was built in Suffolk.
    Joaquín Almunia, the EC’s vice-president in charge of competition policy, earlier oversaw a stinging report criticising the Hinkley subsidy arrangements from the Department of Energy and Climate Change (Decc).
    But today he said: “After the Commission’s intervention, the UK measures in favour of Hinkley Point nuclear power station have been significantly modified, limiting any distortions of competition in the single market…
    There was little explanation from the EC on what exactly had been changed, argued critics. The basic deal allowsthe French-owned electricity generator to be guaranteed £92.50 per megawatt hour over the 35-year life of the Hinkley plant. This subsidy, twice the current price of electricity, will be paid out of household energy bills…
    http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2014/oct/08/european-commission-approves-hinkley-point-nuclear-subsidy-deal

  • oddie

    as usual with nuclear, the price keeps going up and up and up…and never ends:

    Guardian: Terry Macalister: EU approves Hinkley Point nuclear power station as costs raise by £8bn
    EDF Energy overcomes last hurdle for Somerset plant which EC warns could cost over £24bn by the time it is completed in 2023
    The ruling was welcomed by ministers and the nuclear industry but Austria threatened legal action against it, while consumer champions said it could add more than £5bn a year to energy bills…
    Horizon Nuclear Power, owned by Toshiba of Japan and which wants to build new stations at Wylfa in Wales and Oldbury in Gloucestershire, said the EC move was “a huge boost”.
    http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/oct/08/hinkley-point-european-commission-nuclear-power-station-somerset

  • DoNNyDarKo

    Nuclear power just isn’t cheap without any solution for dealing with spent fuel.
    It isn’t safe either.
    Hunterston has been found to have cracks as Torness had.
    Should anything happened there there’s nothing to stop radiation seeping into the subsoil and artesian water.
    A century ago,Tesla was pulling electricity out of thin air.Said it was everywhere and 100 years on we are doing it the hard way.
    That’s progress I s’pose.

  • Macky

    Fred; “Did you have any suggestions as to a solution? Attempts to solve the lobbying problem was met with a lot of opposition from people like charities and trade unions who considered they should be allowed to unduly influence governments”

    There you go again, conflating for example an environmental lobby group, with a Corporate sponsored & therefore “owned” politician, who corruptly either directs money/contracts to a corporation, or pushes for policies that will be in that Corporation’s interest, with the knowledge of course, that he/she will be well rewarded for their efforts later with lucrative “Board positions” or “directorships”.

    The solution is very simple, and begins with the premise that those who seek to serve the Public, should do so for primarily for the Public Good, and not as a profitable career option, so they should readily accept a prohibition on seeking future employment in any field that their Public service had dealings with.

  • fred

    “The solution is very simple, and begins with the premise that those who seek to serve the Public, should do so for primarily for the Public Good, and not as a profitable career option, so they should readily accept a prohibition on seeking future employment in any field that their Public service had dealings with.”

    So someone goes to university and gets a degree in economics, goes into politics and becomes Chancellor then on leaving politics can’t get a job as an accountant.

    If another employer tried to do that, made it a condition that before you could work there you must sign an agreement never to work for anybody else in the same field again what do you think might happen?

  • Ba'al Zevul

    Thanks for the info on the latest Windows virus (Windows 10), RoS. It seems to be evolving independently of actual user input, despite what they say. Real users would demand that they have some real choice as to the UI, as they do in Linux systems, or indeed the integrated compulsory junk which only the simpleminded would actually turn on and use. Still, I guess the ‘Doze obsession with forcing crap into customers’ boxes is handy for flight-testing novel bits and pieces which, if they are any use at all, can then be rewritten as Linux packages and made optionally available in repositories.

    I thought the mention of the (several expletives deleted) Ribbon UI was interesting. When I was first forced to use this, several expletives weren’t deleted, and could be heard in distant buildings. The Egyptian civilisation probably died because only the priestly caste could write and decipher the hieroglyphics, while the hired hands in Sinai were inventing written words with letters. I am surprised the bastard Ribbon didn’t die for the same reason.

  • Ba'al Zevul

    So someone goes to university and gets a degree in economics, goes into politics and becomes Chancellor then on leaving politics can’t get a job as an accountant.

    An economics degree doesn’t qualify you to be an accountant, Fred. Still less a PPE degree. And how many of the current government even have a pure economics degree? Answer, Vince Cable.

    Not the point, anyway. The point, and I’ve said this before, is that the revolving-door (s.l.) politician/general/civil servant isn’t actually employed as an accountant/insert trade here. He’s given a non-exec directorship or something equally deadweight and meaningless on the understanding that he will earn the enormous wad that goes with it. And he is assumed to be capable of working out that he will be paid for using his contacts, his influence and his connections to ensure (eg) that not too much of a fuss is made about the firm’s bribery of Saudi minor royals or (eg) offshoring the profits of a UK-registered company or (eg again) fixing LIBOR rates (though that one’s rather fallen through recently). And, of course, pushing the general agenda in the direction of a low-wage, high salary economy.

  • Macky

    Fred; “If another employer tried to do that, made it a condition that before you could work there you must sign an agreement never to work for anybody else in the same field again what do you think might happen?”

    Again you start from a false premise, specifically with MPs, those choosing to serve for the Public Good of their community/Country should know that it is NOT the same as any other occupation; it should only attract those with desire and a calling to work for the benefit of their communities, and not those whose primarily motivation is for self-enrichment; the problem with our present system is that it attracts mostly venal careerists rather than conviction politicians, hence the dire situations we keep finding ourselves in.

    Again your example of a Chancellor not being able to get a job as an accountant, is a false dichotomy, as it’s not the same as an MP pushing contracts & favorable legislation towards specific corporations for the guaranteed kick-back. A point that Ba’al has just had to reiterate yet again; funny how you keep managing to avoid addressing this substantive point.

  • Ba'al Zevul

    Mr. Blair will advise JPMorgan Chase’s CEO and senior management team
    on a part-time basis – drawing on his immense international experience to
    provide the firm with strategic advice and insight on global political
    issues and emerging trends.

    http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/tony-blair-appointed-senior-advisor-to-jpmorgan-chase-56871787.html

    This is the man who fucked Iraq, committed us to more than a decade in Afghanistan, and failed to notice that the economic boom which gave him the illusion of prosperity was founded on thin air. The sole evidence that he can spot trends lies in his cutting and running in 2007, leaving Gordon to preside over the wreck.

    http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=newsarchive&sid=atrJFZT2p9Kc&refer=uk

    Switzerland’s biggest insurer, said former U.K. Prime Minister Tony Blair has agreed to advise the company on international politics.

    Blair, 54, will specifically help the insurer with its climate initiative, the Zurich-based insurer said today in a statement. He will also advise Chief Executive Officer James Schiro on general political trends and developments.

    And no, Tony has no environmental science, let alone climate science qualifications, whatever Tony doesn’t know a citation index from a camel’s elbow. Tony lets his advisors do all that shit (and all of them are arts graduates too)

    Revolving door boi.

  • fred

    “Again your example of a Chancellor not being able to get a job as an accountant, is a false dichotomy, as it’s not the same as an MP pushing contracts & favorable legislation towards specific corporations for the guaranteed kick-back. A point that Ba’al has just had to reiterate yet again; funny how you keep managing to avoid addressing this substantive point.”

    It’s just I don’t understand how you can define it well enough to legislate.

    Mr Salmond is going to be resigning his job as First Minister soon and I don’t want to see him penalised for all the hard work he’s put in for the people of Scotland. Is it OK for him to get a job as an energy economist or will he have to become a brick layer?

  • OldMark

    ‘Video footage of Jewish Israelis with ISIS-style flags, chanting “niggers go home” at an anti-African rally in Tel Aviv on October 5 has surfaced. Hundreds of protesters could be heard in streets of Tel Aviv chanting anti-African racial slurs, following an Israeli High Court ruling to close down “Holot” detention facility within 90 days.’

    This rally happened 4 days ago; the bloggers at Harry’s Place, who are fervently pro Israel and also frequently parade their ‘anti racist’ credentials, have, qu’elle surprise, ignored this so far. They usually follow the twists and turns of Israeli politics minutely, and promptly report on racist demonstrations in places such as Hungary or Russia. That blogs’ failure to post commentary on the Supreme Court decision, and Israeli reactions to it, tells you all you need to know about the mindset of the people who run it..

  • Macky

    Fred: “It’s just I don’t understand how you can define it well enough to legislate”

    Well I guess that’s at least progress, in that you do indeed recognize that there is a revolving door problem here in the UK that needs to be addressed; the very quaint English terming of corruption as a “conflicts of interests” is already supposedly legislated against for MPs, in their requirement to disclose any financial interests that may be of relevance to work as an MP in the Register Of Members Interests. However nothing seems to be in place to safeguard against MPs acting corruptly for delayed/future self aggrandizement when they cease to be MPs. I’m sure that even if you can’t think of how to define & legislate against, many other can.

    @OldMark, Harry’s Place is a nest of extremists & racist vipers, who only indulge in shallow intellectually jerk circle pulling amongst themselves; occasionally the odd one will seek a higher level of intellectual discourse by posting to blogs such as this one, but their inability for rational debare as well as their biased pov’s quickly leads them to be identified as Trolls; I suspect that a few of our Pro-Establishment trolls here are very acquainted to HP; I believe that AngrySoba was/is a regular there. Rest assured that they will eventualy “discuss” the Holot situation, in their own blinkered way of course, as afterall they weren’t shy to “debate”/excuse/justify the Israeli mass mudering sprees in Gaza.

  • Ba'al Zevul

    Is it OK for him to get a job as an energy economist or will he have to become a brick layer?

    Absolutely. He’s qualified and experienced in energy economics, and he would benefit immensely from some outdoor manual work too. However, if he becomes CEO of China National Petroleum Corporation (UK), at ten times the going rate for economists, and they then decide to build their UK headquarters in Banff, we have a right to be slightly suspicious.

    How do you legislate for this? Good question. No MP to be paid a greater hourly rate, plus a small offset to be agreed, than they were scoring when in office, perhaps? Critical supervision of existing Members’ contacts with ex-Members in surprisingly better-paid and apparently unnecessary jobs? More than two meetings with ex-MP Mark Megacorp disqualifies sitting MP Aubrey Fatcat from voting on Megacorp-related issues?

    The basic problem is that MP’s would have to do the legislation, and while they are very happy to vote for Christmas if us turkeys are to get our throats cut, they’re much less sanguine about the integrity of their own windpipes. Our current system, despite the incessant propaganda, not only permits but encourages corruption. It needs drastic revision.

  • Mary

    I have just seen some photos of the bombs’ work in Gaza. There is a photo of my brother and myself sitting in our best wartime clothes in 1945 sitting in a similar pose except we both had our legs. We were of course privileged to be in a country with all the weapons and the guile.

    I transpose in my mind the image of these dear little Palestinian children showing their amputations with the tinted photo of our childhood.

    The Israeli high command should be in the Hague for these dear children alone.

  • Mary

    Gilad Atzmon writes on the outpourings of a Jewish philosopher, Asa Kasher from Tel Aviv University.

    ‘Today I came across a uniquely banal rant by Asa Kasher, a Jewish ‘philosopher’ at Tel Aviv University. Kasher, who also authored the ‘IDF ethical code,’ defended Israel’s military conduct in the recent Gaza campaign in an article published in the Jewish Review of Books.

    Kasher wrote, “Hamas unscrupulously violates every norm in the book.” And I wonder, what book? I would like to find out, at a minimum, what ‘book’ grants the Jewish State the right to uproot an entire nation in the name of a Jewish homecoming? Is there a book that permits the Jews to turn a city into an open-air prison? Is there a book that legitimates reducing Gaza into a pile of rubble? I am afraid that the answer is affirmative. There is more than one such book. But these books aren’t exactly philosophical texts. These books are the prime Judaic texts. The Talmud and The Old Testament are suffocated by Goy hatred and stories of Jews and their God pouring their ‘wrath on the Goyim.’ Rabbinical Judaism has historically been very careful in the way it treated some of those vile and barbaric Judaic verses and teachings. But Israel and Zionism draw inspiration from those genocidal verses, and the outcome is evident in the shattered urban landscape of Gaza.’

    http://dissidentvoice.org/2014/10/the-kosher-philosopher/

  • DoNNyDarKo

    Fred: It is only weeks ago that you were comparing Salmond to Hitler.Why don’t you keep your tirade against him and his party going and look to have him incarcerated in the Hague for all his crimes ?You were the man that was frightened in the North from all the grafitti.Go chase a paint sprayer.
    Are we to believe that you suddenly have learned the error of his or her ways ?

  • Ba'al Zevul

    Just to clarify…

    Writing for Earth & Sky Bruce McClure and Deborah Byrd point out that the referenced verse (Book of Joel, 2:31 – Joel’s a cross between a Bronze Age Billy Graham and Avigdor Liebermann, essentially -BZ) also says the “sun will be turned into darkness”, an apparent reference to a solar eclipse. They note that since the Jewish Calendar is lunar, one sixth of all eclipses will occur during Passover or Sukkot. Furthermore, there have been 62 tetrads since the first century AD and eight of them have coincided with both the feasts. Thus, the event is not as unusual as Hagee and Biltz imply. Additionally, three of the four eclipses in the tetrad will not even be visible in the biblical homeland of Israel, casting further doubt on Hagee and Biltz’s interpretation. (Wiki: Blood Moon Prophecy)

  • Ba'al Zevul

    e-cat: lolcat.

    More wooo. I won’t bother giving a findable URL for it. Details on how to fool a clamp ammeter on request.

  • Ben E. Geserit Muad'Dib Further Confounding Gender Speculators

    “The senior managing director – a top-ranking banker – walked onto the crowded elevator, focus fixed on her Blackberry, pressed the elevator button and farted loudly. As the smell filled the elevator, as others nervously coughed, some covering up giggles, her focus stayed on the Blackberry. Four floors later she left, commenting to a colleague, “The elevators are vile. The janitors are always on some break.”

    Another MD turned to me: “That’s why she earns the big bucks.”

    “Being able to fart?” I asked.

    “No, you idiot. Audacity. Audacity so great that you can fart on the elevator and blame it on someone else.”

    http://www.theguardian.com/money/2014/oct/09/fart-elevator-audacity-lingering-anger-aig-bailout?CMP=ema_565
    Maurice R Greenberg, the former chairman of AIG, has that kind of fart-in-the-elevator audacity.”

    Just like the audacity of hope, or the paucity of hope. I can’t remember

  • Dave Lawton

    Ba`a Zevul 3:48 pm
    “e-cat: lolcat.
    More wooo. I won’t bother giving a findable URL for it. Details on how to fool a clamp ammeter on request.”
    Another armchair sceptic. Is that the best you can do?
    You obviously have not studied the test report or understand how to take measurements. Unless you can demonstrate your ability to construct these devices and test them it seems to me you are not equipped to criticise the results of the test report.

  • Mary

    Carswell will walk Clacton apparently.

    Do UKIP have a Friends of Israel set up? Carswell is/was a member of CFoI.

  • Ba'al Zevul

    Re ‘cold fusion’ – it’s a scam. Sorry if you don’t like that. The guy’s a scammer. the ‘trials’ are not fully observable -intentionally – and while the report may have been compiled in good faith…that is a weakness when looking at scams. Bet you believe in chemtrails too…

    Unless you can demonstrate your ability to construct these devices and test them it seems to me you are not equipped to criticise the results of the test report.

    Since we do not know what is in the devices – intentionally, again, since the magic woo ingredient is not disclosed – no-one else can reproduce the alleged effect. Ipso facto, it doesn’t qualify as science. Basic scam theory, that. The mechanism alleged, however, should have emitted enough gamma radiation to sterilise everyone in the room. It (I think we can assume) didn’t.

    I’m not wasting any more time on this. I doubt anyone here has the kind of money to subsidise lol-cats; you’re probably wasting your time too.

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