Monday, 10 December 2012

Master Or Servant?

There's an interesting new contributor at the Freedom Association in the form of Tunbridge Wells Conservative Councillor, Nicholas Rogers.
Some talk of the ‘liberal establishment’ but the distinction is no longer worth making. These groups (e.g. Alcohol Concern, CASH, NICE), and others like them, ARE the establishment. Anyone who has been in local government or worked in the public sector will recognise the same attitude time and again; we know what’s best, you aren't living your life in the correct way and we will use taxpayer cash to ‘encourage’ you in the right direction. Challenge them about it and they don’t understand why anyone would disagree. 
The establishment mindset is that as long as intentions are good, actual outcomes don’t matter so much. It’s a mindset that demands conformity and punishes those who hold opposing views. The tragedy is some of those good intentions are really worth having – tolerance, openness, diversity. But often these concepts become tainted by the state’s involvement.
He's not wrong, you know.

The above paragraphs were written last week as part of a piece on minimum alcohol pricing but, as if to confirm precisely what Rogers was saying, the Irish government has today given us a perfect example of this anti-social state mindset.
SCOTTISH ministers have received strong support from the Irish Government in their battle with Brussels to avoid having minimum unit pricing of alcohol declared in breach of EU rules. 
Dr James Reilly, the Irish health minister, backed Scotland's position, saying: "I wish to express my full support for the Scottish proposals on minimum unit pricing of alcohol. 
"This is an important policy measure to reduce the harmful consumption of alcohol, and in this regard, the Irish Department of Health is preparing proposals for similar legislation in Ireland. The introduction of a regime of minimum unit pricing per gram of alcohol was one of the main recommendations of a published report on alcohol earlier this year."
Minimum alcohol pricing is deeply unpopular, devoid of any credible evidence whatsoever, and is deliberately designed to hurt the least well off in society. Three key elements which should have seen this policy die a death a long time ago.

If you were tasked with explaining democracy to an alien from the planet Klung - you know, about how politicians are elected to act on the wishes of the public - he would point to minimum alcohol pricing and laugh his over-sized, pear-shaped green head off. Yet here we see governments ganging up to impose it against public will and all measures of common sense.

There are now two distinct sets of people in society; those who go about their daily lives doing normal things; and politicians and other state employees who have kidded themselves into thinking they are zoo keepers for the human race. If you complain, they just throw a bucket of bullshit at you and carry on regardless.

There's going to be a run on piano wire if these jumped-up servants (yes, servants!) don't start remembering that they're paid by the very same people they seem determined to marginalise, and that their first and only concern is to listen to the public - not vested interest fake charities and NGOs - and do as they're fucking told.


Lyn said...

Well said Dick. For a long time now I have said it is about time government remembered that they are our SERVANTS Not out MASTERS!

Yes, they have to pass laws to protect the public, but these laws are about protecting us against criminals and those that would do us harm, NOT ourselves.

When will they remember or even realise that we are ALL individuals and as such what is good for one is not, necessarily good for another and our choices are about what we feel and believe is good for us. Yes, some take this to extremes and in the main are only harming themselves.

As far as health costs are concerned, another thing government need to remember is that it is NOT a free service, WE pay for it! In this respect is it no different to having 'private' medical insurance, except that we are not given the choice as to whether or not we contribute.

So many times, as I listen to the radio whilst driving I hear things that government have said and my immediate thought is 'What bloody planet are they on? It bears no resemblance to the one I am living on!' Yesterday, for example when the PM said that drugs were under control and they were winning the battle - in his dreams! It really gets to the point when you don't know whether to laugh or cry, but sadly none of this is a joke, although it would make for a good career in Stand Up!

Ivan D said...

I do worry about the Irish people. They achieve self governance after years of struggle and then elect one of the most fussy, authoritarian governments in Europe. Is it somehow OK to be ruled buy a bunch of autocratic, meddling fools provided that they are your own? On that basis, the oily one should be feeling confident about the outcome of the Scottish referendum. England however seems to be an exception to this theory so I do hope Dave gets what he deserves for pushing minimum pricing against the will of the people and in spite of the evidence against it.

DP said...

Dear Mr Puddlecote

It all comes down to: too much time, not enough to do.

We now have whole sections of the nation with too much time on their hands and too much of our wealth to indulge their compulsive obsessions. Those which involve doing nasty things to people for their own good come top.

"Of all tyrannies a tyranny sincerely exercised for the good
of its victim may be the most oppressive. It may be better to live
under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies.
The robber baron’s cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may
at some point be satiated, but those who torment us for our own good
will torment us without end for they do so with the approval
of their own conscience."
C S Lewis

I have an idea that this will come crashing down soon, for a rather simple reason. Watch your fuel bills over the next few years.


Tomsmith said...

Not sure why having the opinions of a democratic majority imposed upon everyone is much better than the opinions of a mad political elite