11 May 2015

“A High Wall and a Deep Ditch”

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Rebecca Roache, Research Fellow and Senior Research Associate at Oxford, was moved to anger by the Conservative victory in the recent British election.

One of the first things I did after seeing the depressing election news this morning was check to see which of my Facebook friends ‘like’ the pages of the Conservatives or David Cameron, and unfriend them. (Thankfully, none of my friends ‘like’ the UKIP page.) Life is too short, I thought, to hang out with people who hold abhorrent political views, even if it’s just online. …

[T]he view that I have arrived at today is that openly supporting a political party that—in the name of austerity—withdraws support from the poor, the sick, the foreign, and the unemployed while rewarding those in society who are least in need of reward, that sells off our profitable public goods to private companies while keeping the loss-making ones in the public domain, that boasts about cleaning up the economy while creating more new debt than every Labour government combined, that wants to scrap the Human Rights Act and (via the TTIP) hand sovereignty over some of our most important public institutions to big business—to express one’s support for a political party that does these things is as objectionable as expressing racist, sexist, or homophobic views. Racism, sexism, and homophobia are not simply misguided views like any other; views that we can hope to change through reasoned debate (although we can try to do that). They are offensive views. They are views that lose you friends and respect—and the fact that they are socially unacceptable views helps discourage people from holding (or at least expressing) them, even where reasoned debate fails. Sometimes the stick is more effective than the carrot.

For these reasons, I’m tired of reasoned debate about politics—at least for a day or two. I don’t want to be friends with racists, sexists, or homophobes. And I don’t want to be friends with Conservatives either.

7 Feedbacks on "“A High Wall and a Deep Ditch”"


Well, I think I’ll be okay without her friendship. How does that go? With friends like that…


. . . and she has a degree in philosophy?

T. Shaw

Insane in the membrane . . .


Since the exit poll dropped one minute after the polling stations closed last Thursday it has been a pleasure to hear and watch the socialists implode as they show their true colours.


It’s important when understanding the liberal mind to understand that “while rewarding those in society who are least in need of reward” actually means allowing them to keep some of the money they earned. To a liberal it is simply greed that allows a working person to want to keep what they earn while there are lazy people without enough.


Could anyone tell me what are some of the “profitable public goods” to which she refers?

And how is it that she envisions getting someone to purchase the “loss-making ones in the public domain” from the government?

I’m going to hazard a guess that Rebecca didn’t study economics in school.

Michael Richards MD

Oh the icy heights of Rebecca’s reproache! Oh the disdain and the righteous indignation! The stick for them, the stick!

Rebecca my dear, has nobody yet taught you to think, to open your mind, to question orthodoxy? Didn’t think so. You have the mentality where ends justify means, and the emotion of the immediate above rationality. You’d have been a good little stooge for Stalin who also favoured the stick. His stick was the gulag.


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