Divided society

The death of Margaret Thatcher has brought into stark relief what a divided society we still live in. I’m not talking about the divide between North and South, or East and West, or rich and poor. I’m talking about the divide between Left and Right.

It’s been a whole generation since Thatcher came to power, and the political debate hasn’t moved on. Left and Right still argue exactly the same points and nothing has changed. I find that hugely frustrating and quite depressing.

In everyday life, we make plenty of mistakes, but usually we learn from our errors and don’t repeat them too often. We aspire to learn something about the world we live in.

In science, thought moves forward decisively. Ideas are discussed; correct ideas become mainstream and incorrect ideas are dropped. Scientific knowledge grows.

But in politics, nothing changes. Personalities come and go, but still nobody knows anything. It’s all just noise. Decades and decades of nothingness. Left wing, right wing, back to left. Nationalise, privatise, nationalise again. Lower taxes, raise taxes, lower them again. We may as well get rid of all politicians because not one of them is sure to know anything. We could put a team of monkeys in charge and the outcome would be no different.

To make progress we need to try to understand and to learn. Politicians won’t do that for us, because few politicians are ever willing to admit they might be wrong. We have to do it for ourselves. And with the arrival of the internet, there is a way for ordinary people to discuss such things.

But debate isn’t enough. In order to learn, we have to be open-minded and prepared to admit when we’re wrong. And to start making any progress whatsoever, we have to leave the hate and lies behind. Because we really are all in this together, and the sooner we fix this politics thing, the sooner we can start to move forward instead of endlessly repeating past mistakes.

Although I have particularly strong political views myself, I’m going to try and examine the key questions of politics on this blog and see if I can shed a little light on them. I’m going to strive to understand all points of view, even the more extreme ones, and try to identify the core beliefs they are built on. If I find that I’m wrong about something, I’ll own up. And I hope that readers of this blog will join the debate and hold me to account if I say something that isn’t right.

In short, I’m going to try to take the hate out of the Left-Right divide.

11 responses to “Divided society

  1. I think New Labour showed that the difference between left and right isn’t as clear cut as it was when Kinnock and Thatcher faced off. It seems that the money men back both sides so they always own the winning horse, therefore whoever is in no.10 it is not the interests of the masses that are beiing served.

  2. Raphael's Legacy by Barry Hardy

    I enjoyed the balance and enquiry that flowed through this post and my view is that all the underlying problems stem from the fact that politicians, their backers and bankers et al are left brain thinkers.

    That being said and on a personal note I couldn’t stand the woman, therein we shouldn’t be wasting money we can ill afford celebrating the short term nonsense and suffering that she upon our nation and all for political gain.

    Therein I think its enough and certainly more than she deserved to be graced to pass over amidst the splendour of the Ritz hotel in London.

    Especially given that during her divisive governance, far to many decent british mortals, passed away in agony on trolleys in corridors in run down and ill funded NHS hospitals.

    Lest we forget………that was the PM who said; “society, there is no such thing as society” and boy did some of us feel the wroth of her dispassionate right wing agenda.

    Sincere regards, Barry

    • Hi Barry, thanks for commenting. The misquotation that you mention is something that I keep hearing. Here is what she actually said:

      There is no such thing as society. There is a living tapestry of men and women and people and the beauty of that tapestry and the quality of our lives will depend upon how much each of us is prepared to take responsibility for ourselves and each of us prepared to turn round and help by our own efforts those who are unfortunate.

      Source: http://en.wikiquote.org/wiki/Margaret_Thatcher

      This misquotation is a good example of the problem I am referring to. It is used by Thatcher’s enemies to portray her as supporting an uncaring, free-for-all, survival-of-the-fittest philosophy. You can see from the words she actually spoke that she believed the opposite.

      • Raphael's Legacy by Barry Hardy

        Hi Steve,

        Many thanks for that, position conceded in terms of the actual quote.

        It doesn’t however change my view of her. She was still an extremely divisive and malicious mortal, who didn’t care or give a hoot about the life expectations of the communities that I grew up in. She destroyed my career before I’d even got it up and running and changed my life and expectations forever.

        So I don’t agree with your assertion that amidst her language she was perhaps misunderstood and therein actually a caring politician. You only had to; grow up, live and try to work in my homelands during her term of office and 20+ years on to see just, feel and sense how little she cared.

        Therein; there can be no possible defence for throwing generations onto a politically motivated scrap heap, destroying millions of people’s lives including their well being. Whilst doing nothing to fill that void save for politically posturing.

        But probably her most obscene act of all during that period was that both she and her henchmen simply revelled in blaming those out of work as scroungers et al. No help or responsibility there only very clear language which was simply opportunist rhetoric, that divided a nation, the scars of which still run deep.

        The sad thing is; we’re seeing that all again with and in Dodgy Dave’s language e.g. “we’re all in this together”. Well the fact is we’re not all in it together and as with Thatcher, Dodgy Dave’s language its the language of nonsense……therein nothing changes in the world of the left brain thinkers, save that some of us will lose and some of us win.

        The sad thing is that not all the winners are the most talented in society, they’re often the product of and hence part of the left brain thinkers institutionalised networks, which is why its time for right brain thinkers to step up to mark.

        With right brain thinkers we could really create a world where change really changed everyone’s realities and for the better, indeed a world where that language is the language of unity and not division 🙂

        Heres hoping, have a great weekend, sincere regards, Barry

        By the way I’m wondering now if Dodgy Dave has actually said; “we’re all in it together” 🙂

        • Barry, sorry to hear about that. I guess that we are all shaped by our personal experiences.

        • Raphael's Legacy by Barry Hardy

          Hi Steve, you’re gentleman, and I do appreciate your generosity and feedback, albeit there’s really no need.

          I am a different man to the young man of those years, unlike many of my peers I sort out options on the international engineering stage. Whereas many of more significantly more talented than myself fell by the wayside. Therein I still weep for the destruction of talent, hope and well being that thatcher imposed upon so many great souls.

          Such that whilst I respect the passing of a soul from this planet, I am neither full of joy or indeed sadness, for I see that passing as an ending within my own healing and that’s all that really matters.

          I am neither judge or high controller of what awaits her soul, all I know is that better am I for my own healing journey.

          Have a great weekend, delivery and candour of your blog is refreshing, sincere regards, Barry

  3. It seems to me that the biggest changes in society often occur within the social fabric itself and outside of politics. The zeitgeist changes. Here in the States we have gone from most people being appalled by the notion of a mixed marriage to having a President who is the product of one. The politics mostly followed the changing notions in society; it did not lead it. The same is now happening with gay marriage. Now that over 50% of the population says they approve of it, the politicians are “transitioning” (to use their amusing term).

    • Absolutely, Craig. It very often feels to me like politics is a sideshow and the real action is all happening out in the real world. After all, if you look at things that really shape our everyday lives – employment, cars, air travel, medicine, computers, the internet, smartphones, music, fashion, books, etc – government has very little to do with it. I can imagine a world one day when government simply becomes an obsolete concept.

  4. Pingback: Left, right, left, right (part one) | Blog Blogger Bloggest

  5. Pingback: Left, right, left, right (Part two) | Blog Blogger Bloggest

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