Monday, August 03, 2009

I'm pretty sure this government are doing their best to take away any reason for me to vote for them

Part of me still feels like a natural Labour supporter. The underlying ideology that supports the majority of the Labour party is something I believe in, and I certainly do not trust the conservatives to do a better job. One thing this current version of the Labour party have been terrible at, however, is any form of liberalism. While having codified human rights by opting in to the European conventions were a great step forward, since 9/11 the government have tried, and succeeded, to impose many illiberal polices. These include holding people without trial, dramatic increase of the surveillance society, and the reduction of the right to protest. The latter is a significant one, and now is apparently linked in with immigration.

This story talks about immigrants "earning the right" to be citizens of this country. The notion in of itself is not necessarily utterly abhorrent: if we are going to control immigration, then it probably does make sense to prefer people who are more likely to "contribute" to society more. Unfortunately this is not the only benchmark the government is choosing to use. More and more a focus has been on being a "good" citizen, a rather nasty tabloid pleasing policy, with the idea of an oath of allegiance, and now, penalties for taking part in legitimate protest. The only way taking part in legitimate protest would demonstrate that a person was not a good fit for our country would be if we DIDN'T live in a fricking democracy. Protest is GOOD, it is healthy for democracy, people SHOULD express their differing opinions, the notion that you are a good British person if you agree with the government utterly ignores history, nor the nature of most citizens of this nation.

This government despises protest and differing opinions, and refuses to acknowledge that it might be incorrect occasionally. It has been in power too long, and has assumed this is the natural order. It is not, it is better for a party to be in opposition, than to sacrifice its principles to lead. The labour party needs some time in the wilderness, frankly, so it can reassess it's priorities.

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