Monday, 19 January 2009

The Brown Bounce, Anacyclosis and Ochlocracy

There were 2 polls in the papers over the weekend, which saw the Tories return to election winning leads: ComRes in the Independent had the Tories 9% up (they recently posted a Tory 1% lead) and YouGov in the Sunday Times which showed a 13% lead. During this crisis, fear of an unknown quantity - the Cameron conservatives has seen Labour pick up floating voters. Nationalisation of banks has seen the Labour core strengthen. But as perception of a sure hand on the tiller gave way rapidly to hubris, spin and hyperactive policy making - spending taxpayers' money with the accuracy and care of a man urinating after 20 pints, so the public support waned.

As unemployment rises inexorably towards three million, and ever more tax-payers money is shovelled into schemes to get banks to commit commercial suicide by lending to marginal companies in a recession, whilst being pressured simultaneously by a hyperactive and panicked regulator to rebuild balance sheets, that 'fear of the unknown' will give way to anger. That anger will be directed at the Government, and there is nothing they can do about it. The next stage in the cycle will be Hope, yet this will not save Gordon Brown.

Hope will be invested in the incoming Government rather than the incumbent, though as Conservatives, it will not be so euphoric as 1997; luvvies will not be leading the cheerleading. Instead it will be led by the middle classes, grey business people and others who will be doing the rebuilding of the economy once more. Hope will give way to optimism, though I fear that is many years away. A return to fear, and the completion of the cycle is a decade or more hence.

This is the political cycle in a democracy. But democracy is dying - it was already on its deathbed but is now being smothered by Labour who are hastening the move to Ochlocracy: the final phase in the development of societies in Polybius' Anacyclosis. This time it is not just the Rulers who have been corrupted, but the mob too: corrupted by a sense of entitlement. Alexander Tytler supposedly observed that democracies are...

always temporary in nature; it simply cannot exist as a permanent form of government. A democracy will continue to exist up until the time that voters discover that they can vote themselves generous gifts from the public treasury. From that moment on, the majority always votes for the candidates who promise the most benefits from the public treasury, with the result that every democracy will finally collapse due to loose fiscal policy, which is always followed by a dictatorship
Apathy has given way to dependence, and dependence is giving way to bondage. Look how the Daily Mail and the Sun - the best selling papers in the UK demand ever more surveillance and support CCTV, the suspension of Habeus Corpus and the draconian powers of the State. Even tax-cuts are viewed with suspicion. The British people have become slaves - at least the Northern half of them because they have become totally dependent on state hand-outs. This coming recession will merely complete the process.

Unless...

It is easy to go onto Wikipedia and find a cycle, see where our society is on that cycle - be it Tytler or Polybius and fear. But these cycles were written not as predictions but warnings. Polybius was lamenting the demise of Republican Rome - as was Tacitus when he put freedom-loving soundbites into the mouths of ancient British noble savages.
"they call it 'social justice' when it is part of their slavery."
But the fall of Roman democracy was not inevitable, it just became so with hindsight. People can influence history. It was inevitable that Germany would defeat the British Empire in 1940 but the British people pulled together. It was inevitable that Sterling would join the Euro (and aren't you glad that didn't happen?) but a coalition of papers and politicians made that politically impossible without a referendum. Just as inevitabilites were not so, these political cycles are warnings not forecasts. If heeded, we can become free once more. All it takes is that pressure be applied in the right places We should eshew revolutions until we have tried the simple things first: Have you written to a local Conservative MP demanding the end to the database state? Demanding the repeal of a specific law? because you can bet that plenty of people have written to the incoming party of Government demanding something be banned. Let's use our remaining democratic feedoms to persuade our next Government to relax the choke-hold a bit, and hope that the long-forgotten but ancient instinct for freedom gets rekindled in the British heart. It's going to take a long slog to climb out of the economic and political mire left by this most odious of Governments, but it is achievable with a bit of faith, in the country, its people and their capacity for hard work. Democracy has failed. Long Live democracy!



3 comments:

Anonymous said...

A rousing speech; so much so, I found myself heading to the front door to take to the streets with banners, chants and an angry mob; unfortunately my subconscious was really in control and was merely sending me to the loo for a quick pee.

I particularly like this “tax-payers money is shovelled into schemes to get banks to commit commercial suicide by lending to marginal companies in a recession,”
I would add that this massive risk and the following debate seems to have been and gone within the papers with employment wining over building sustainable competitive companies for the future. Which fits nicely with your lovely turn of phrase: “spending taxpayers' money with the accuracy and care of a man urinating after 20 pints”

Anonymous said...

The Dude

Prodicus said...

I think I love you.

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