Will we see another left of centre government in our lifetime?

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aaronlowe
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#1
Report Thread starter 6 years ago
#1
Something I realised today, that pre Maggie Thatcher the Tories had to adopt some socialist policies to keep the economy stable. E.g. the welfare state. To begin with they were against lots of social ideas, like the right to vote for working class citizens, the NHS etc

So, back then we managed to drag the Tories a little to the left in a similar way that New Labour had to adopt some right wing policies to stay in power.

But with Labour and the Lib Dems desolated in the UK, it's going to be at least 2 sessions (10 years) until they can recover. It's possible that Labour has received a fatal blow and is only going to decline from here on.

Will we see another left of centre government in our lifetime?

People refer to the SNP as left wing. But I see them as slightly right of centre. Politics in the UK has become so right wing that all parties have to shift to the right in order to have a cohesive argument and not be fobbed off as a bunch of tree huggers or communists like they are in the USA.

Some people refer to the SNP as the Tartan Tories. So, to me it looks like right wing from here on baby...
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plasmaman
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#2
Report 6 years ago
#2
(Original post by aaronlowe)
Something I realised today, that pre Maggie Thatcher the Tories had to adopt some socialist policies to keep the economy stable. E.g. the welfare state. To begin with they were against lots of social ideas, like the right to vote for working class citizens, the NHS etc

So, back then we managed to drag the Tories a little to the left in a similar way that New Labour had to adopt some right wing policies to stay in power.

But with Labour and the Lib Dems desolated in the UK, it's going to be at least 2 sessions (10 years) until they can recover. It's possible that Labour has received a fatal blow and is only going to decline from here on.

Will we see another left of centre government in our lifetime?

People refer to the SNP as left wing. But I see them as slightly right of centre. Politics in the UK has become so right wing that all parties have to shift to the right in order to have a cohesive argument and not be fobbed off as a bunch of tree huggers or communists like they are in the USA.

Some people refer to the SNP as the Tartan Tories. So, to me it looks like right wing from here on baby...
The SNP are not right-of-centre.
The people of Britain clearly prefer this sort of right-of-centre politics. There's very little appetite for socialism at the moment and I believe that will remain so.
But the Labour Party will come crawling back soon enough.
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aaronlowe
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#3
Report Thread starter 6 years ago
#3
(Original post by plasmaman)
The SNP are not right-of-centre.
Then why are they nicknamed the Tartan Tories?
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plasmaman
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#4
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#4
(Original post by aaronlowe)
Then why are they nicknamed the Tartan Tories?
Who calls them that?
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aaronlowe
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#5
Report Thread starter 6 years ago
#5
(Original post by plasmaman)
Who calls them that?
The Scotsman, The Courier. Oh, I get it. It's just a smear campaign. Disregard...
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ChaoticButterfly
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#6
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#6
There is a resurgence of soft left governments in south america. Nationalizing stuff, legalizing weed. We can't use the soviet union to prop up to some Pinochet's now
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Joefinchy
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#7
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#7
I doubt they will be back any time soon... I'm just excited to see what will happen with the EU referendum.
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Josh_Dickson
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#8
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#8
(Original post by aaronlowe)
. Politics in the UK has become so right wing that all parties have to shift to the right in order to have a cohesive argument and not be fobbed off as a bunch of tree huggers or communists like they are in the USA.
I certainly agree that to argue anything vaguely in favour of workers having more rights, in favour of the environment, in favour of any heterodox economics then you're likely to be slapped down as some kind of sandal-wearing dope smoker (to steal a friend's phrase).

There's lots of plausible explanations for this broad but, i think, accurate summary - and whilst it's clearly more complex than a monolithic relationship of media manipulation of public opinion, I really think there's something in the idea that the dominant media outlets are themselves giant corporations and so help to aggressively create/maintain the hegemonic control of capital. Been re-watching the movie 'Manufacturing Consent' recently and there's a lot of good, and relevant, arguments in there.

On wider point: if a centre-left party (nevermind an actual left-wing party) is unelectable at present then this is because capital has been successful in mobilizing its political representatives to achieve this balance of probabilities: people don't have some inherent political position that must be accommodated... political positions are achieved through class-struggle (not referring here to binaristic proletariat/bourgeoisie battle) and there needs to be a strong coherent challenge to the current orthodoxy to begin to change this....
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saayagain
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#9
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#9
(Original post by aaronlowe)
Something I realised today, that pre Maggie Thatcher the Tories had to adopt some socialist policies to keep the economy stable. E.g. the welfare state. To begin with they were against lots of social ideas, like the right to vote for working class citizens, the NHS etc

So, back then we managed to drag the Tories a little to the left in a similar way that New Labour had to adopt some right wing policies to stay in power.

But with Labour and the Lib Dems desolated in the UK, it's going to be at least 2 sessions (10 years) until they can recover. It's possible that Labour has received a fatal blow and is only going to decline from here on.

Will we see another left of centre government in our lifetime?

People refer to the SNP as left wing. But I see them as slightly right of centre. Politics in the UK has become so right wing that all parties have to shift to the right in order to have a cohesive argument and not be fobbed off as a bunch of tree huggers or communists like they are in the USA.

Some people refer to the SNP as the Tartan Tories. So, to me it looks like right wing from here on baby...
Yeah. Will happen when tories fail to deliver and the fickle swing voters swing back to labour.
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Arbolus
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#10
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#10
(Original post by aaronlowe)
People refer to the SNP as left wing. But I see them as slightly right of centre. Politics in the UK has become so right wing that all parties have to shift to the right in order to have a cohesive argument and not be fobbed off as a bunch of tree huggers or communists like they are in the USA..
British politics is not become more right-wing, at least not as a long-term trend. You need only look at the fact that 50 years ago the Conservative Party was vehemently opposed to the NHS and the welfare state in all its forms, whereas now it's grudgingly accepted them, to see otherwise. Thirty years ago even Labour weren't considering removing the hereditary peers from the House of Lords; now, there are calls to elect it or to abolish it entirely. If anything, Britain (and the rest of the world) has lurched sharply to the left over the last century.
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babybuntin
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#11
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#11
(Original post by Joefinchy)
I doubt they will be back any time soon... I'm just excited to see what will happen with the EU referendum.
that will be fiddled as well
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Josh_Dickson
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#12
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#12
(Original post by Arbolus)
British politics is not become more right-wing, at least not as a long-term trend. You need only look at the fact that 50 years ago the Conservative Party was vehemently opposed to the NHS and the welfare state in all its forms, whereas now it's grudgingly accepted them, to see otherwise.
This appears to be a highly dubious account to me, not least because it fails to distinguish between pro-traditional NHS rhetoric and anti-traditional NHS policies, and not least because it says the tories 'now... grudgingly accept' the welfare state 'in all its forms' (how that argument is sustainable with the DWP's cuts & sanctions since 2010 is something I am waiting pleasantly to be convinced of); between 1951 and '74 tory governments were signed up to the postwar consensus, so again am keen to see the evidence that '50 years ago' the tories were vehemently opposed to the NHS and Welfare state in all their forms....

Thirty years ago even Labour weren't considering removing the hereditary peers from the House of Lords; now, there are calls to elect it or to abolish it entirely. If anything, Britain (and the rest of the world) has lurched sharply to the left over the last century
you're arguing Britain has 'if anything... lurched sharply to the left', not on any economic basis but on an unsourced and vague claim about the house of lords???
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whorace
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#13
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#13
Interestingly the Conservatives are not exactly the demons of history they are painted as, perhaps not surprisingly given the Whig dominance they have often been misrepresented. The Conservatives often allied with the urban and rural workers as a means of starving of big business and preserve land owners and local communities. I think the Cameron ministry is aiming to replace the welfare state with a system of local relief, which I quite support, surely welfare, education and health should be the responsibilities of our communities, it will teach us a duty to care for one another than rather relying on a state machine.
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whorace
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#14
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#14
(Original post by Josh_Dickson)
This appears to be a highly dubious account to me, not least because it fails to distinguish between pro-traditional NHS rhetoric and anti-traditional NHS policies, and not least because it says the tories 'now... grudgingly accept' the welfare state 'in all its forms' (how that argument is sustainable with the DWP's cuts & sanctions since 2010 is something I am waiting pleasantly to be convinced of); between 1951 and '74 tory governments were signed up to the postwar consensus, so again am keen to see the evidence that '50 years ago' the tories were vehemently opposed to the NHS and Welfare state in all their forms....



you're arguing Britain has 'if anything... lurched sharply to the left', not on any economic basis but on an unsourced and vague claim about the house of lords???
I think the Conservatives did vote against the legislation which passed the NHS into law, however, if I recall correctly the main opposition came from those who supported a local system of healthcare. The Conservatives never reject the foundational principle of the Beveridge report (actually poor relief was a great concern in Britain for local government), but they were sceptical of state centralised administered health service.
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Little Popcorns
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#15
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#15
Really hope so
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TorpidPhil
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#16
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#16
(Original post by Little Popcorns)
Really hope so
The opposite; really hope not.
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whorace
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#17
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#17
(Original post by TorpidPhil)
The opposite; really hope not.
I can agree with liberals on this one, I want to see less state interference and more local community. Left of centre politics is the politics of sorrow, the politics of robbing communities of initiative.
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Rakas21
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#18
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#18
(Original post by Josh_Dickson)
I certainly agree that to argue anything vaguely in favour of workers having more rights, in favour of the environment, in favour of any heterodox economics then you're likely to be slapped down as some kind of sandal-wearing dope smoker (to steal a friend's phrase).

There's lots of plausible explanations for this broad but, i think, accurate summary - and whilst it's clearly more complex than a monolithic relationship of media manipulation of public opinion, I really think there's something in the idea that the dominant media outlets are themselves giant corporations and so help to aggressively create/maintain the hegemonic control of capital. Been re-watching the movie 'Manufacturing Consent' recently and there's a lot of good, and relevant, arguments in there.

On wider point: if a centre-left party (nevermind an actual left-wing party) is unelectable at present then this is because capital has been successful in mobilizing its political representatives to achieve this balance of probabilities: people don't have some inherent political position that must be accommodated... political positions are achieved through class-struggle (not referring here to binaristic proletariat/bourgeoisie battle) and there needs to be a strong coherent challenge to the current orthodoxy to begin to change this....
I don't really agree with this. To paraphrase a member known as Observatory.. 'the left have this idea that if the Telegraph and Times printed articles akin to that of Socialist Worker then public opinion would be similar to that of the socialist worker, in reality though it's far more likely that it's readership would decline to a level on par with the Socialist Worker'.

My personal view is that circumstance explains a significant amount. In the 70's we saw unions force 3 day weeks and allow their workers to get the sack rather than negotiate reasonably which led to the rise of Thatcher, over the next 3 decades we then saw neo-liberal economics increase the wealth of the vast majority of the country (for every sacked minor there's a homeowner sitting on rising home values) which naturally produces an electorate who are rather with the status-quo.

Now clearly over the last decade this system has stopped delivering in its current form and so those in their 20's now may feed into the future electorate as being more left wing but without a shock event you'll need another decade or two before they make up enough of the electorate to generate a profound shift and that's assuming that the political class don't get off their ass and solve the current problems.

(Original post by Arbolus)
British politics is not become more right-wing, at least not as a long-term trend. You need only look at the fact that 50 years ago the Conservative Party was vehemently opposed to the NHS and the welfare state in all its forms, whereas now it's grudgingly accepted them, to see otherwise. Thirty years ago even Labour weren't considering removing the hereditary peers from the House of Lords; now, there are calls to elect it or to abolish it entirely. If anything, Britain (and the rest of the world) has lurched sharply to the left over the last century.
The Conservative Party had accepted both of those by 1951, indeed it had been an active participant in enlarging the welfare state (albeit in a different way) since about 1890. British politics has moved more liberal and more capitalist since 1980 although your right that we moved to the left a lot between 1890-1980.
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Little Popcorns
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#19
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#19
(Original post by TorpidPhil)
The opposite; really hope not.
Ever struggled financially? Thought not... We've all seen your little sing song thread... Were you raised by Christopher Biggins?
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TorpidPhil
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#20
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#20
(Original post by Little Popcorns)
Ever struggled financially? Thought not... We've all seen your little sing song thread... Were you raised by Christopher Biggins?
Hahahahahaha.

That thread was entirely tongue in cheek! I'll have you know I'm from a rather poor family in one of the worst-off areas of Leeds (Harehills). I certainly have not had it easy and one my primary life-goals is to ascend out of the working class and ensure my children don't have to struggle as much as I did in their upbringing and that they will have far more access to social/cultural capital.

I happen to find that right-centre economics does more for the poor in the long-run than left-of-centre politics does.

smh, so prejudiced, if only you knew how I was raised...
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