Today's question: Do political policies you want or get actually affect you directly, and if so how?
My long term study of politics (beginning with A level in 1977) has shown me a large gap between theory and practice among those most politically active, and from them nearly all on the left. The right is really anti-policies, as the purer you become the fewer actual policies you want, as you believe the people can pretty well govern their own lives with a strong legal system and safety net for the poorest and sick. More than that is simply interference, so technically the libertarian right have so few policies the consequences can basically be seen as freedom.
The left clearly do not trust others to behave nicely without a lot of direction. Therefore their fears feed upon every threat and develop a constant stream of new ideas to patch holes in society wherever they see it happening, as well as building an entire social system from the bottom up.
Now my own parents are examples of the absence of policies, as both came from fairly poor families who worked hard and did well with barely a qualification between them, my grandma could probably have become a doctor but even though she got a further education scholarship her family could not afford the compulsory uniform and instead she qualified as a book keeper. But they certainly could not pay for my parents to go to private school as I did, but as they were both highly academic simply went to grammar school, and whizzed through with top marks, my father ending up at Cambridge as a result. They had no spare money or privilege, just the brains combined with education and hard work to do it.
Wind forward to today. From a relatively lightly governed 1950s we now have a growing level of restrictions, ones I remember watching in the USSR in the 70s onwards and wondering how a massive country could actually be run to restrict everyone's freedom for many decades and nothing was done about it. Of course the actual reason was Stalin simply killed serious opponents and put the rest in prison camps so the opposition was simply mopped up until whatever caused the shift in the 90s (I have no idea why it suddenly fell without even a slight push). Technically the policies just went westward from the Soviet Union to the European Union, but without Stalin's purges had to be subtle and mainly secretive. How many British laws do you know were from the EU? They don't stamp it on the papers, you need a lot of effort to find who makes each new law now, and believe me most of the big ones are neither ours or voted through any parliament as that is not how theirs are made. Drifting off the main issue a little, besides the fact one consequence which certainly affects us having been voted into the EU as it now is are the fact we no longer make most of our own laws.
I will list some of the major themes of interventionist ideas, the greatest being redistribution of wealth. Beginning with the fact the majority of those in Britain who promote this policy are actually the top 10% and probably far less of the wealthiest is more than ironic, but moronic. As if they did get Labour in and ramped up the top rate to 50% then 60% or more, as well as reducing the threshold it came in, they would lose more than nearly everyone else, and no doubt do all they can right now to pay as little tax as possible.
One word hits me in the head so hard it nearly knocked me out. Hypocrisy. The intellectual left are mainly rich and if they are fervent in removing the wealth of the richest few, then they are promoting a policy to give away their own money more than anyone else's, as most people are not affected by this policy except them and their friends and families. All of whom will join them in avoiding any possible tax payment. I can wholeheartedly say, simply from observation of maybe hundreds of similar London professionals, whose houses now nearly all are worth over a million pounds, these people act like someone prepared to cut their foot off if it argues with their hand. Or so they say for everyone else. They support a mansion tax, which would cost each and every one of them around £10,000 a year should Labour get in, and as soon as it does come in they will be at their accountants finding ways to avoid it. I have been surrounded by these types all my life, sitting in their Hampstead lounges mouthing off about how wonderful Russia is and how they need to march and support the workers and plunder the rich. Except they are all the rich they are talking about. Besides SW1 you can't actually be any richer than dwelling in Hampstead, so if they really mean what they are saying they would have to employ a government to remove their wealth as well, and after a few years of mansion tax they'd all be selling up and moving to pastures new as they'd have nothing left to pay it any more.
Free speech is another London grown classic. I am very doubtful if either such proponents of word banning, some councils actually now have long lists given to every employee of words they are not allowed to use (you know, the ones I roll out every time), actually both learn them by heart and then don't even use one when seriously intoxicated. But far more importantly, banning a bad word doesn't ban the attitude behind it. I don't have any major examples, but would bet my left testicle on the fact many such council employees and academics from the red band of north London have either considered moving or actually moved when their area became too, er, dark for them. Those shrill androgynous ranters who stand up and harangue the staff and public on racism and sexism, diversity and tolerance, in private dinner parties and family gatherings, are quite probably echoing the exact words of their less deceitful neighbours in wondering how long it will be before there are fewer white people in Camden than blacks, and whether they should consider moving to Dorset. Again, the great demon hypocrisy raises its vile and ugly head. Flies on walls ought to confirm this suspicion, and I'm pretty sure when caught in relaxed states without witnesses I've heard comments to that theme, which in themselves are perfectly reasonable, unless from someone whose entire mission in life is to stop other people from saying it.
Travel restrictions are easily the simplest to observe. Those mountains in the middle of roads from Cornwall to Kirkwall hit the suspension of Porsches and Skodas alike. And buses and ambulances. They fuck up every single journey on the planet where in place, and the only possible explanation I can think of is those who place them on every road in their borough at a cost of around £10,000 each do not drive themselves so have little to affect them directly. But like spraying metal salts in the air to pretend to control the climate, they are breathed in by everyone and their own families so unless you are a fourth dimensional lizard being without human lungs you will also get respiratory and digestive problems like everyone else if you arrange spraying. But everyone uses the roads one way or another, and the delays and damage caused whenever traversing a road so affected also hurts passengers including using public transport. And the widespread idiot brigade trying to ban driving and flying altogether have nearly all been abroad and unless they live in the Antarctic probably use cars nearly every day even if they've ponced someone else to drive them as they won't own one themselves. They can't rely on a minicab if they are injured but not badly enough to get an ambulance, they will have to get themselves to a station or bus stop and hope it's a time when they're even running as some places have no bus after 9pm.
Unfortunately idiocy trumps rock, paper, scissors and even nuclear devices. Nothing, not even personal experience, will shine through the thick fog of stupid. It is not connected with academic ability, as most of the worst culprits have enough letters after their name to form a page of anagrams, but they have no common sense. They are simply very good at learning and repeating facts, but as a teacher myself am very familiar with the set of pupils who can do this but when you try and get them to explain what it is about haven't a clue, and can never fit the small parts into a single picture. Therefore they can easily think that person X has too much money and ought to share it, but even given a mirror they will never in their lives imagine they have more money than X so would lose even more as tax is not selective. They park their BMW in their private space in Camden and then post on Facebook driving cars is destroying the planet, and then go and lobby their friend's friend Ed Miliband to increase the restrictions on car ownership in their manifesto, which will usually be accepted as these people are who get Labour elected if they are catered to.
In the end it is pretty easy to imagine the world of the politically correct anti-success anti-individuality left as we know their views so bloody well it's impossible not to. Taking their most pure or extreme form I come across frequently enough to know if they get in they will go as far as they can, we will end up in a country with:
No cars for private use. A wealth cap. Taxation based on property value. Using banned words will be a criminal offence. Every public (and probably private) office must employ staff representing society as a whole. Racism will be a crime simply by inference, with serious penalties. It will be a crime to state the race of any criminals. Fossil fuel will be banned totally leading to permanent energy rationing. Remaining energy prices will be so high only the people with the most remaining wealth after tax will be able to heat their homes constantly when required. Most if not all foreign businesses will leave the country, leaving many offices empty and vastly raising unemployment. Many people will be employed by the government to constantly scan the internet and publications for dissident speech which, like Russia previously, will be a serious crime. Ultimately a constitution may be drawn up being almost impossible to amend, writing in the new permanent values of society which must be followed at all time. There must be no mentioning of racial differences. Immigration is a universal right. No person is born more talented than any other so must not be treated differently through selective education or tuition. Denying climate change will be a capital offence as more dangerous than murder. It is illegal to be obliged to reveal your birth gender. It will be illegal to document your birth parents as no individual has more rights over a child than another, anyone taking up the responsibility of parenthood automatically becomes that child's parent. No area will be allowed to have a different racial mix relating to the country as a whole, so if an area has a lower number of black people they will be moved into the area until it matches up with the total. The same will apply to every place of work. There will be a universal wealth limit based on the number of times above average income and capital reach, after which everything will be returned to the state.
I've come across nearly every single one of these ideas many many times, and added a few extras of my own (can you tell which they are?), and can guarantee on my family's life not a single person's life would be better had their entire set of well known and expressed wishes been granted by this or any other magic fairy. Not that I'm magic. Or a fairy.