Bemoaning the fact that he seems to be fighting his corner without much support from organisations who should be doing so for themselves, he makes this observation.
Cowering in their dug-outs, that's where they are, most of them, while the poor bloody infantry (that'll be me, then) go out and do all their dirty, scary, dangerous work for them, thankless and mostly gratis. Either that, or worse still, they're giving succour to the other side, paying for enemy's ammunition, funding his propaganda, kow-towing to his anti-capitalist prejudices.Now, he is talking about the supposedly all-powerful energy industry, but I think readers here will notice the similarities with the issues discussed here.
While those who enjoy their products are doing the arguing, we see - for example - fast food chains contributing to their own downfall by backsliding without any sign of reciprocal appreciation, and drinks companies falling on their own swords.
If all this sounds like sour grapes, that's partly because it is. Being paid as little as I am is galling enough; but what really takes the biscuit is regularly being told by enviro-loons like George Monbiot that only reason people like me write the stuff we do is because we're so lavishingly rewarded by Big Capitalism.Yep, the old 'you must have been paid' nonsense that just about anyone who has ever taken time to challenge the 'consensus' on comment sections will recognise. A prime example here.
So why won't capitalism defend itself? Partly, I'm afraid, because so many have sold their souls to the corporatist devil. That letter from the chairman of Shell UK, et al, is a case in point. Big corporations actually quite like government regulation: not only does it shut out small competitors (who can less easily wear the costs of compliance) but it also, as in the case of wind farms and solar, enables them to make a fortune via taxpayer-funded environmental levies.This is the 'level playing field' when faced with a smoking ban writ large. Instead of recognising the threat to their business, pub companies just caved in and pointed at the other guy as the bigger problem. Why not? The guns weren't trained on them at the time.
Partly it's because businesses are in the business of making money, not fighting for the right and true. If they think that their bottom line will be improved by "greenwashing" their image by sponsoring a few eco-initiatives or signing up to some sustainability code of practice imposed on them by the thugs at Greenpeace, then that's what they do, regardless of whether or not they believe in the cause.
But as Charles Koch noted recently in the Wall Street Journal this approach is short-termist and ultimately self-defeating:
"Crony capitalism is much easier than competing in an open market. But it erodes our overall standard of living and stifles entrepreneurs by rewarding the politically favored rather than those who provide what consumers want."
They certainly are now, though. George Osborne will be ramping up the beer tax again very soon, and there is very little appreciation of any efforts to satisfy dozy prohibitionist MPs being exhibited in parliament towards fast food or fizzy drinks manufacturers.
Apart from our esteemed mascot, of course, when was the last time you heard any MP stand up and defend McDonald's or Pepsi against their detractors? While they, in turn, endorse the prohibitionist cause without seeming to recognise that encouraging these people will only serve to enhance their opponents' case.
I make no apology for yet again quoting Crampton on this curious 'anyone but us' culture amongst those industries who are not approved by government.
It's like a bunch of folks on the scaffolds complaining that the other guy's noose isn't quite tight enough. Y'all might instead direct your attention to the hangman sometime and try helping each other cut those ropes.There is so very much that other targeted industries could learn from the anti-tobacco crusade. There is very much to benefit them by forming some kind of coalition and sharing notes, even surreptitiously. Yet the behaviour we saw prior to, and post, 2007 suggests that they haven't even considered it.
These are multi-billion pound organisations without a spine. While their detractors are forming coalitions to share information and tactics, drinks companies - amongst others - are shouting "not me, Guv", and hoping they will be left alone.
They won't be, of course, nor will those who popularly provide fatty food, sugary drinks or the amber nectar. By dividing themselves, they are simply making it more easy to be conquered.
Where is the coalition of the sane we would like to see? One which would pull in support from all manner of regular, working people? One which would yank the Islington set from their elitist daydreams by harnessing the power of millions of ordinary people who are - contrary to the public health cultists - very happy indeed with their occasional Big Mac, can of Diet Coke, pint of Fosters, and packet of Marlboro Lights?
Nowhere. Because they are scared shitless of being marginalised and excluded from debate like 'Big Tobacco'. As if they have a choice!
It's coming to them no matter how much they think appeasement actually works. The only option is a full frontal attack.
We are living in an age where 'exposure' to second hand smoke in open parkland is supposedly dangerous enough to inspire a multitude of bans, without any supporting evidence whatsoever.
When the same kind of rhetoric is directed at food with just a little bit too much salt, sugar or fat being advertised during EastEnders, alarm bells should be ringing all over the place.
It follows recent research which suggests children are still exposed to the same level of junk food advertising despite tighter regulations.What are these businesses doing allowing this?
Help us out here guys, for crying out loud! Stop thinking that by joining in the healthist crusade that you will be protected, it's just not a viable business model.
Stand up to them and stop being such pussies. Get round a table, discuss a joint approach - just as your opponents are doing - and write some bloody huge cheques. It's the only thing that will properly scare MPs.
We're waiting here to back you to the hilt - you know, us poor saps who buy your products? - just give us the nod and we'll be up front and centre.
Just like we are already, doing your work on comments sections and everywhere else that you fear to tread. As Delingpole points out, there are a whole load of us just waiting for some resistance from you to help us out.
Get to it. Before unelected supra-national pressure decides that none of you are allowed to talk to us again. Ever.