Political Edition: Type What You're Thinking - Page 152 - Social Anxiety Forum
User Tag List

Reply
 
Thread Tools
post #3021 of 3059 (permalink) Old 02-14-2021, 10:48 AM
drifting in mist
 
firelight's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2019
Posts: 388
Quote:
Originally Posted by blue2 View Post
I picture the author as the sniveling caricature he is ridiculing. Maybe they are tired of being told to have empathy because they continue show none in their actions and words.
firelight is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #3022 of 3059 (permalink) Old 02-14-2021, 04:39 PM Thread Starter
SAS Member
 
crimeclub's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2013
Location: Utah
Posts: 10,981
crimeclub is offline  
post #3023 of 3059 (permalink) Old 02-15-2021, 03:49 AM
Guide - Politics Section
 
Pechorin's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2020
Location: Glasgow, Scotland
Language: English, Czech
Gender: Male
Age: 28
Posts: 245
The poster-child for corporate interests in the media, Andrew Neil, will soon help launch GB News, Britain's answer to Fox News. In what can only be viewed as a grifting opportunity, Neil and his fellow status-quo warriors will attempt to rail against "wokeness" and the scary bogeyman of "the Left", a term that has no meaning in their mouths. Neil has previously used his platform on the BBC's flagship politics show to promote his own Hayekian views, while showing disregard for the BBC's impartiality rules. With a rap sheet too long to list, Neil has misled the public on several matters down the years, including the remarkable unfounded claim that 1 in 5 Scottish children were illiterate. The imminent launch of GB News comes on the back of Paul Dacre, former Daily Mail editor, taking over at OFCOM, the media regulator, and Richard Sharp, who has openly donated £400,000 to the Conservative Party, moving into the role as chair of the BBC.

According to the register of journalists' interests, via the government's official website, Andrew Neil's links to the corporate world include the following:

Chairman, Press Holdings Media Group (The Spectator, Spectator Health, Life, Money & Australia; and Apollo, the international arts magazine). Chairman, ITP Magazine Group (Dubai). Chairman, The Addison Club (London). Director, Glenburn Enterprises Limited (provides media and consultancy services). Fees for speaking at, hosting or chairing an event were received from the following organisations: Mergermarket (publication covering mergers); Investment Fund Managers (umbrella for investment managers); Standard Life Aberdeen (global asset managers); The British Security Industry Association (trade body representing the UKís private security industry); BNY Mellon (global bank); Brewin Dolphin (fund managers); IBC Amsterdam (annual trade fair for global broadcasters); Step (association of Financial Planners); Parliamentary Review (publication for business and politics); Weil, Gotshal (law firm); British Retail Consortium (association for retailers); Clyde & Co (law firm); Tudor Capital (hedge fund); Goodacre (financial services specialists); Retail Motor Industry association (vehicle dealers); London Metal Exchange; IIR (Association of senior investment managers); AON (professional services firm); HSBC (bank); EY (professional services); Construction News (publication for UK construction industry); National House Building Council; PARC (professional services); Lloyds Bank; Christie & Co (property advisory service); Premier (asset management advisers); Zurich Insurance (global insurance company); NBC News executives (US news network); ABI (association of insolvency experts); SES (European satellite providers); Publishers Association (of British book publishers); Stonehenge (property developers); Landmark (association of small retailers); RBS (bank); Belfast Chamber of Commerce; GAIM, Global Alternative Investment Managers Conference; Dairy UK (association of dairy producers) (registered July 201.

Make of that what you will. If GB News is going to be railing against "wokeness", then what exactly will it be speaking in favour of? The above list of "interests" gives a decent indication of exactly whose interests are being served.
Pechorin is offline  
 
post #3024 of 3059 (permalink) Old 02-15-2021, 01:21 PM
Failure's Art
 
either/or's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2020
Gender: Male
Posts: 1,814
Despite the threats of violence and arrest against them, thousands in Myanmar are taking to the streets to protest the military coup that occurred earlier this month. They face up to 20 years in prison for their activities. You have to respect their refusal to back down.



Myanmar security forces intensify crackdown on protesters
https://apnews.com/article/aung-san-...d83f2ff6827978

YANGON, Myanmar (AP) ó Security forces in Myanmar pointed guns toward anti-coup protesters and attacked them with sticks on Monday, seeking to quell the large-scale demonstrations calling for the military junta that seized power earlier this month to reinstate the elected government.

More than 1,000 protesters rallied in front of the Myanmar Economic Bank in Mandalay, the countryís second-largest city, when at least 10 trucks full of soldiers and police arrived and immediately started firing slingshots toward the protesters, according to a photographer who witnessed the events.

The soldiers and police then attacked the protesters with sticks, and police could be seen aiming long guns into the air amid sounds that resembled gunfire. Local media reported that rubber bullets were also fired into the crowd, and that a few people were injured.

Police were also seen pointing guns toward the protesters.



Myanmar coup: Protesters face up to 20 years in prison under new law
https://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-56067423

Myanmar's military has warned anti-coup protesters across the country that they could face up to 20 years in prison if they obstruct the armed forces.

Long sentences and fines will also apply to those found to incite "hatred or contempt" towards the coup leaders, the military said.

The legal changes were announced as armoured vehicles appeared on the streets of several cities.

Hundreds of thousands of people have taken part in protests in recent days.

The demonstrators are demanding the release from detention of their elected leaders, including Aung San Suu Kyi, and the restoration of democracy in Myanmar, also known as Burma.

You live up in your head
Scared of every little noise
Someone's always breaking in accidentally
Using nothing but their voice
either/or is offline  
post #3025 of 3059 (permalink) Old 02-15-2021, 06:52 PM
Moderator
 
WillYouStopDave's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Location: United States
Gender: Male
Age: 47
Posts: 33,353
My Mood: Relaxed
You know you're in trouble when Bill Kristol is the voice of reason


/WYSD
WillYouStopDave is offline  
post #3026 of 3059 (permalink) Old 02-16-2021, 05:23 AM
Guide - Politics Section
 
Pechorin's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2020
Location: Glasgow, Scotland
Language: English, Czech
Gender: Male
Age: 28
Posts: 245
The week-long People's Plan For Glasgow project gets underway on Monday 22nd, February (next Monday). The project will bring together different groups and individuals from across the city and beyond to discuss alternatives to Neo-Liberal models of governance and economics in the post-pandemic world. The groups hosting events over the course of the week are very diverse, covering housing issues, the food-system, representation of minority groups, migrant rights, climate issues, participatory democracy (political and economic), the city planning system, economics and more. The event will be entirely online due to the covid-restrictions.

I'm looking forward to it. I feel as though it is easy to get trapped in loops of negative feedback, only hearing what's wrong with our current practices. To hear people discuss what we can do about it and propose alternatives is long overdue. Since 2014, when the country held an independence referendum, there has been a noticeable politicisation of the population, especially in and around the cities. It's important to direct that new energy into positive change. Neo-Liberalism has failed to deliver for the majority of the city's people and the experiment in radical market reforms has been given a fair run. Time for something different.
Pechorin is offline  
post #3027 of 3059 (permalink) Old 02-16-2021, 06:56 PM
Failure's Art
 
either/or's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2020
Gender: Male
Posts: 1,814
Oh Boy.

Adam Kinzinger, a US Rep who voted to impeach Donald Trump, received a letter from members of his family telling him he has disappointed God with his decision and had joined "the Devil's Army" (the Democratic party and the news media). In the letter they suggest that he's been "brainwashed" despite the fact they're asserting that God himself wanted Trump acquitted. They then close the letter by declaring "we're not judging you" lol. The insanity just won't end.

The full letter is posted here: https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/...ly-letter.html



You live up in your head
Scared of every little noise
Someone's always breaking in accidentally
Using nothing but their voice
either/or is offline  
post #3028 of 3059 (permalink) Old 02-17-2021, 03:11 PM
customusertitle
 
Myosr's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2016
Posts: 728

---

I sort of agree that language connects people more than anything.

the truth may vary
Myosr is offline  
post #3029 of 3059 (permalink) Old 02-17-2021, 05:38 PM Thread Starter
SAS Member
 
crimeclub's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2013
Location: Utah
Posts: 10,981
Rush Limbaugh was a key figure in leading my parents to view the world through a lens of racism, anti-feminism, islamophobia, apathy towards the poor, conspiracy theories, fear, etc. He spent about 35 years spewing mind poison over his airwaves to his massive audience and is a major reason a decent sized portion of an entire generation continually supports some of the most damaging policies and politicians. The Republican party being as extreme as it is today didn't happen by accident, it's the logical outcome of having people like Rush Limbaugh be one of it's rhetorical leaders for so long. Him dying isn't the way I'd choose for his hateful message to be off the airwaves however his message coming to an end is a major positive for the country and I'm very glad my parents will no longer be listening to him.
crimeclub is offline  
post #3030 of 3059 (permalink) Old 02-17-2021, 06:42 PM
Moderator
 
WillYouStopDave's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Location: United States
Gender: Male
Age: 47
Posts: 33,353
My Mood: Relaxed
Quote:
Originally Posted by crimeclub View Post
Rush Limbaugh was a key figure in leading my parents to view the world through a lens of racism, anti-feminism, islamophobia, apathy towards the poor, conspiracy theories, fear, etc. He spent about 35 years spewing mind poison over his airwaves to his massive audience and is a major reason a decent sized portion of an entire generation continually supports some of the most damaging policies and politicians. The Republican party being as extreme as it is today didn't happen by accident, it's the logical outcome of having people like Rush Limbaugh be one of it's rhetorical leaders for so long. Him dying isn't the way I'd choose for his hateful message to be off the airwaves however his message coming to an end is a major positive for the country and I'm very glad my parents will no longer be listening to him.
Well, I don't know if you can entirely blame the messenger, though I share your frustrations on having family members who do not have the mental capacity to hear such messages in a safe way and apply the same skepticism and moderation to them that they would anything else.

I don't think it's necessarily a message that should not be heard but I think in this particular world (or at least this particular country) circumstances are such that it can be very irresponsible to just thoughtlessly send out the kinds of messages he spent a lifetime sending. Which he obviously well knew were targeted at people with maybe less than ideal amount of skepticism and were well primed for being essentially "programmed" to behave in whatever way he thought they should.

It's a way bigger problem than just the media. One wonders why people are not more objective and skeptical in the first place and why critical thinking skills do not generally save the day when things go so far off the rails that it should be obvious.

There maybe shouldn't be any such thing as "a dangerous message" in a well-educated country. We should not see people running for their lives after a presidential election did not produce the results that pleased the people who are causing those people to have to flee. I don't know. Maybe I'm naive. I guess maybe I think we should be able to have those "dangerous" discussions and still maintain sanity and order and safety. That is (obviously) presently a pipe dream. I annoys me because I wonder if it absolutely has to be and if maybe the future can allow people to spout whatever things are going on in their minds without it having to be something that worries people and potentially causes violence.

The ideal that people should be able to express themselves is sometimes very hard to reconcile with the reality of 70 million people voting for a man who intentionally drove people in the wrong direction just because he knew he could.

/WYSD
WillYouStopDave is offline  
post #3031 of 3059 (permalink) Old 02-17-2021, 09:45 PM Thread Starter
SAS Member
 
crimeclub's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2013
Location: Utah
Posts: 10,981
Quote:
Originally Posted by WillYouStopDave View Post
Well, I don't know if you can entirely blame the messenger, though I share your frustrations on having family members who do not have the mental capacity to hear such messages in a safe way and apply the same skepticism and moderation to them that they would anything else.

I don't think it's necessarily a message that should not be heard but I think in this particular world (or at least this particular country) circumstances are such that it can be very irresponsible to just thoughtlessly send out the kinds of messages he spent a lifetime sending. Which he obviously well knew were targeted at people with maybe less than ideal amount of skepticism and were well primed for being essentially "programmed" to behave in whatever way he thought they should.

It's a way bigger problem than just the media. One wonders why people are not more objective and skeptical in the first place and why critical thinking skills do not generally save the day when things go so far off the rails that it should be obvious.

There maybe shouldn't be any such thing as "a dangerous message" in a well-educated country. We should not see people running for their lives after a presidential election did not produce the results that pleased the people who are causing those people to have to flee. I don't know. Maybe I'm naive. I guess maybe I think we should be able to have those "dangerous" discussions and still maintain sanity and order and safety. That is (obviously) presently a pipe dream. I annoys me because I wonder if it absolutely has to be and if maybe the future can allow people to spout whatever things are going on in their minds without it having to be something that worries people and potentially causes violence.

The ideal that people should be able to express themselves is sometimes very hard to reconcile with the reality of 70 million people voting for a man who intentionally drove people in the wrong direction just because he knew he could.
Yeah I agree, you make some good points. I don't know what a realistic solution would be as far as getting the general public to be a little more media savvy, maybe some kind of media literacy class that is taken in highschool.

There used to be an FCC Fairness Doctrine law that required the news to show both sides of an argument and give both sides equal time if I remember correctly, the law was revoked at some point in the 80s, paving the way for channels like FOX to be the 24 hour source of misinformation that it is. Like if the law was still in place today FOX News viewers wouldn't just hear the pundits this morning say silly stuff like "Wow it's so cold in Texas, so much for that global warming!" There would possibly also be someone on their to counter the denial narrative and explain what climate change actually is. Or maybe there would be someone on there to counter the 'stolen election' narrative, or any number of the other conspiracy theories they push on their viewers.

As far as my comments about Rush Limbaugh I don't think he should have been stopped from broadcasting his views, I'm a fan of free speech, I'm just glad his show is over, despite the unfortunate reason it's over.
crimeclub is offline  
post #3032 of 3059 (permalink) Old 02-17-2021, 10:42 PM Thread Starter
SAS Member
 
crimeclub's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2013
Location: Utah
Posts: 10,981
I have to say, probably the best way to lose faith in the idea of any kind of leftist movement progressing forward in the US is to hang out in leftist circles online, particularly on twitter. Once this virus is at a point that's reasonable I plan on participating in leftist initiatives offline and in person (after a solid dose of klonopin), helping out in some kind of mutual aid effort is something that would actually be beneficial to a community as opposed to all the arguing and sh*t-posting that happens online, I'm so tired of it.

There's an anarchist group in my area that focuses on housing and helping people who are facing evictions, there's another anarchist group that helps supply food to food-insecure communities, it doesn't even need to be anarchists there are plenty of other leftist groups within driving distance, I just need to get the f*** off the internet and actually do something beyond just supporting different election campaigns.
crimeclub is offline  
post #3033 of 3059 (permalink) Old 02-18-2021, 12:19 AM
Guide - Politics Section
 
Pechorin's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2020
Location: Glasgow, Scotland
Language: English, Czech
Gender: Male
Age: 28
Posts: 245
Quote:
Originally Posted by crimeclub View Post
I have to say, probably the best way to lose faith in the idea of any kind of leftist movement progressing forward in the US is to hang out in leftist circles online, particularly on twitter. Once this virus is at a point that's reasonable I plan on participating in leftist initiatives offline and in person (after a solid dose of klonopin), helping out in some kind of mutual aid effort is something that would actually be beneficial to a community as opposed to all the arguing and sh*t-posting that happens online, I'm so tired of it.

There's an anarchist group in my area that focuses on housing and helping people who are facing evictions, there's another anarchist group that helps supply food to food-insecure communities, it doesn't even need to be anarchists there are plenty of other leftist groups within driving distance, I just need to get the f*** off the internet and actually do something beyond just supporting different election campaigns.
That's great to hear. The internet is not a good representation of what happens on the ground, in my experience. Getting hands on experience in the things you've mentioned will be invaluable. I hope when the time comes you feel able to participate.
Pechorin is offline  
post #3034 of 3059 (permalink) Old 02-18-2021, 03:34 PM
SAS Member
 
aqwsderf's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2013
Location: USA
Gender: Female
Age: 28
Posts: 2,361
How can anyone listen to Tucker Carlson

Oh my god
aqwsderf is online now  
post #3035 of 3059 (permalink) Old 02-18-2021, 05:43 PM
Failure's Art
 
either/or's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2020
Gender: Male
Posts: 1,814
Quote:
Originally Posted by either/or View Post
Despite the threats of violence and arrest against them, thousands in Myanmar are taking to the streets to protest the military coup that occurred earlier this month. They face up to 20 years in prison for their activities. You have to respect their refusal to back down.

Myanmar security forces intensify crackdown on protesters
https://apnews.com/article/aung-san-...d83f2ff6827978

YANGON, Myanmar (AP) — Security forces in Myanmar pointed guns toward anti-coup protesters and attacked them with sticks on Monday, seeking to quell the large-scale demonstrations calling for the military junta that seized power earlier this month to reinstate the elected government.

More than 1,000 protesters rallied in front of the Myanmar Economic Bank in Mandalay, the country’s second-largest city, when at least 10 trucks full of soldiers and police arrived and immediately started firing slingshots toward the protesters, according to a photographer who witnessed the events.

The soldiers and police then attacked the protesters with sticks, and police could be seen aiming long guns into the air amid sounds that resembled gunfire. Local media reported that rubber bullets were also fired into the crowd, and that a few people were injured.

Police were also seen pointing guns toward the protesters.



Myanmar coup: Protesters face up to 20 years in prison under new law
https://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-56067423

Myanmar's military has warned anti-coup protesters across the country that they could face up to 20 years in prison if they obstruct the armed forces.

Long sentences and fines will also apply to those found to incite "hatred or contempt" towards the coup leaders, the military said.

The legal changes were announced as armoured vehicles appeared on the streets of several cities.

Hundreds of thousands of people have taken part in protests in recent days.

The demonstrators are demanding the release from detention of their elected leaders, including Aung San Suu Kyi, and the restoration of democracy in Myanmar, also known as Burma.
It's so cool that the people of Myanmar aren't just taking this coup sitting down - they're resisting in any way they can. By protesting yes but also in other ways i.e. blocking city streets with broken down cars to restrict the movement of government forces and hacking government and military-run websites. This is so badass. I love that they won't back down from the fight despite the enormous risks they face.

Protesters try to block movement of security forces and civil servants, while hackers target military
https://www.theguardian.com/world/20...online-protest





You live up in your head
Scared of every little noise
Someone's always breaking in accidentally
Using nothing but their voice
either/or is offline  
post #3036 of 3059 (permalink) Old 02-19-2021, 04:49 AM
customusertitle
 
Myosr's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2016
Posts: 728
OMG.

The gap between the quality of VICE documentaries vs the ones from other news sources is just huge. I watched the 10 year anniversary video of the same topic on BBC and it was so bad (I mean really bad it made me upset by how bad it was).

This one's just perfect.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by don't quote

They also have my favorite 'political family' * and my favorite news site for interview :'')



---

* There's actually a song (at least partly) about the youngest sister's imprisonment. I don't really like the artist for reasons I won't go into, but it made me cry the first few times I heard it
https://youtu.be/xOo8BiSLVSE



the truth may vary
Myosr is offline  
post #3037 of 3059 (permalink) Old 02-21-2021, 01:45 PM
Failure's Art
 
either/or's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2020
Gender: Male
Posts: 1,814
The *******s in Myanmar have finally resorted to killing people (including a teenager) in order to stop the protests. It hasn't deterred them however, there were pretty big protests yesterday following the killings that took place this week.

Myanmar police kill 2 in bloodiest day of anti-coup protests
https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2021/...e-fire-reports


You live up in your head
Scared of every little noise
Someone's always breaking in accidentally
Using nothing but their voice
either/or is offline  
post #3038 of 3059 (permalink) Old 02-21-2021, 02:48 PM
Born Of Blotmonaū
 
Canadian Brotha's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Over Yonder
Language: South Martian, North Terran, & Lunarian
Age: 33
Posts: 18,980
My Mood: Cynical
There are a lot of things about conservative politics I donít agree with but ultimately I want to understand their position despite that...just because you disagree doesnít mean there isnít a strong or valid logic to what you are disagreeing with, & it feels like so much of American political debate now gets stuck insubstantial talking points & crucifying personalities instead of actually explaining in detail why they think the policies they believe in will work better than those they oppose for the people of nation...it happens on the left too & I donít know if these politicians think average folk are too dumb to take in a reasoned & detailed policy explanations or what, but to me so much time & money is wasted on nonsense spin & governmental gridlock instead of getting **** done for regular people...I mean itís a Capitalist nation, everyone there understands in trade you give some to take some but now it just seems like every 4 or 8 years whoever comes in is just trying to undo whatever the previous govít implemented & to what end? How is that progress for anyone? Good for 4 or 8 years, ****ed for the next 4 or 8 years...itís quite absurd when step back & look at it from a birds eye view, makes the name United States sound like an oxymoron
Canadian Brotha is offline  
post #3039 of 3059 (permalink) Old 02-22-2021, 02:34 AM
Guide - Politics Section
 
Pechorin's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2020
Location: Glasgow, Scotland
Language: English, Czech
Gender: Male
Age: 28
Posts: 245
Quote:
Originally Posted by Canadian Brotha View Post
There are a lot of things about conservative politics I donít agree with but ultimately I want to understand their position despite that...just because you disagree doesnít mean there isnít a strong or valid logic to what you are disagreeing with, & it feels like so much of American political debate now gets stuck insubstantial talking points & crucifying personalities instead of actually explaining in detail why they think the policies they believe in will work better than those they oppose for the people of nation...it happens on the left too & I donít know if these politicians think average folk are too dumb to take in a reasoned & detailed policy explanations or what, but to me so much time & money is wasted on nonsense spin & governmental gridlock instead of getting **** done for regular people...I mean itís a Capitalist nation, everyone there understands in trade you give some to take some but now it just seems like every 4 or 8 years whoever comes in is just trying to undo whatever the previous govít implemented & to what end? How is that progress for anyone? Good for 4 or 8 years, ****ed for the next 4 or 8 years...itís quite absurd when step back & look at it from a birds eye view, makes the name United States sound like an oxymoron
I can understand the sentiment behind conservative worldviews. We live in a world that is rapidly changing. New technologies move at a pace that is way beyond our ability to understand the impact they will have on our lives. Globalisation has threatened traditional ways of life and unique aspects of different cultures. Old staples like the nuclear family and religious communities are disintegrating. Some of the stories and myths that people believed in are being undermined by a cold scientific rationalism. "Postmodernism" has challenged the intellectual foundations upon which Western Civilisation claimed to be built (or at least aspired to).

Conservatism also seems to be out of vogue in many institutions, leading to a feeling of alienation for people who believe in conservative values. A lot of progressive causes have been taken up on university campuses and by big corporations, from Starbucks to TV & Film studios. It's probably true (at least where I'm from) to say that Liberalism (in the broadest sense) is winning the battle for cultural hegemony. The economic system has become much more international in scope since the 1980s, so the old nationalistic financial classes are no longer as prevalent. While Nationalism has enjoyed somewhat of a resurgence in the West since the recession, the modern bourgeoisie are cosmopolitan in nature.

With regards to policies and the state of debate, it is widely recognised within politics that slogans and myths are more effective than detailed policy outlines. "Make America Great Again" or "Take Back Control" repeated over and over again is more fruitful than reasoned debate. Some of the debates that took place in the US and UK prior to elections were just mud-slinging exercises. They ended up more as personality contests, akin to reality game-shows, than political debate. Modern advertising is more relevant to politics than political philosophy or the art of debate.

Don't get me started on the media's role in all of this.

As much as I am unsympathetic to Conservatism, I'm not unsympathetic to people. I think all of us have good reason to feel anxious, upset, angry, dejected, and lost. While I may not share the same view of things as a lot of people, or agree with their set of values, I can sympathise with their predicament. The more I think about things, the more I realise how little I understand about the world and myself. Who knows how I've come to see things the way I have? I've been born into a situation, a culture, a language-system, a meaning-system, an economic system. Had I been born somewhere else, or even into another social class in my own society, I'd almost certainly be a different person. There has to be a degree of humility in that fact.
Pechorin is offline  
post #3040 of 3059 (permalink) Old 02-23-2021, 03:11 AM
Guide - Politics Section
 
Pechorin's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2020
Location: Glasgow, Scotland
Language: English, Czech
Gender: Male
Age: 28
Posts: 245
I'm not sure what the situation is in other countries, but here in Scotland, not many people care about local politics (local council elections etcetera). Looking at the numbers, in 2017 when the last local elections were held, the total turnout was 46.9%. The previous election saw a turnout of 39.6%. The jump from 2012's number to 2017's is probably due to the independence referendum in 2014, a campaign that re-energised Scottish politics. Even so, less than half the eligible voters turned out in the last set of elections. No one I know voted in 2017. People rarely talk about the council administration, other than moaning occasionally about bin collection dates or what have you. This lack of engagement is regrettable, because local elections should arguably be the ones that people feel more involved with, given the difficulty in affecting and witnessing change at the national level. Our councillors live in the community and ought to be approachable and generous with their time. The actions of the council are usually immediately perceptible. It would be a good idea to inform oneself about these matters and to be aware of who is running our local administration.

Perhaps one reason for the disconnect between local people and local politics in Scotland is due to the poor state of local democracy. Scotland is, by some stretch, the least locally democratic country in Europe. The average population size for a local administrative region in Europe is 17,241. In Scotland, it is 169,525. A Scottish council is nearly ten times larger than a European council. They are nearly one-hundred times larger than French councils. The second-worst country for this problem is Denmark, but Scotland outstrips the Danish average by three-to-one. If the most local level of democracy is failing to meet certain standards, it does not bode well for democracy in general.

There are similar problems with representation in local politics, with working class people much less likely to vote than their middle-class neighbours. This has allowed certain parties who fail miserably at a national level to enjoy more clout in local communities. The Conservatives and the Liberal Democrats enjoy greater performances in these elections, for example. Neither stands a serious chance of forming a national government in Scotland. This has helped facilitate austerity politics in council administrations, though Labour and the SNP also deserve called out for this. It's very easy for politicians to outsource blame for spending cuts, especially at the council level. "Central government have slashed our budgets, our hands are tied". This is usually responded to with: "we have given you more revenue creating powers and you have failed to use them". The circle of blame continues in perpetuity, while local services are stripped to the bone and council workers fail to get pay rises. I work in a field that relies upon council funding: social care. Different care organisations bid for council contracts to carry out care provisions for individuals and care homes. Ideally, the council would be choosing the best overall package for the people needing care, but it's an unspoken truth that they choose the most cost-efficient, which often means the lowest quality. Workers end up over-worked and under-paid, with many suffering mental health problems of their own. A lot of people end up off work with stress-related illnesses, placing greater strain upon the remaining work-force. It's a disaster waiting to happen; a social-care crisis.

Unfortunately, while the centres of power in local communities remain fairly remote from the people themselves, I can't see too much changing. As part of a broader social transformation, away from neo-liberal capitalism, we must address the democratic deficit at our local levels of governance. The Left must take seriously the potential in local politics to transform society. Thankfully, more and more people are realising the limitations of State-led solutions, and are exploring ideas like radical municipalism. In Rojava and Chiapas, we have some exciting experiments in this sort of political programme. The basic premise of radical municipalism is "take democracy seriously". No more should local politics just be another way for career politicians to climb the ladder, while enjoying a better than average salary.
Pechorin is offline  
Reply

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page



Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Do you feel that thinking about political issues affects your personal life? Myosr General Discussion 9 02-16-2018 08:55 AM
Positive Thinking, the greatest Myth! hihoum Positive Thinking and Goal Setting 22 08-30-2009 06:55 AM
Enneagram Type & Addictive Personality Iron Butterfly Secondary Disorders 14 02-28-2009 05:58 AM
Why postive thinking is so important bsd3355 Positive Thinking and Goal Setting 10 04-30-2006 08:14 PM
Positive Thinking is Changing My Life ski-li Positive Thinking and Goal Setting 7 07-03-2005 01:48 PM

Posting Rules  
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off

 
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome