Tuesday, 27 September 2011

Too many soundbites

Some people (Jenny included) seem to have the impression that I loathe all politicians. Not true. I don't loathe all politicians. Only the ones who don't do their job properly and lie their way out of admitting it.

Of course we need politicians. And we need governments and local councils and all the other public bodies. How else would we organise our society efficiently and fairly and stop it descending into chaos?

I'm full of admiration for many of the politicians of the past who genuinely improved society and the lot of ordinary people whose living conditions were appalling. The politicians who founded the welfare state and created the NHS, old age pensions and child benefits. The ones who slapped new taxes on the wealthy and used the money to help the poorest.

I'm full of admiration for more recent politicians who legalised abortion, legalised homosexuality, encouraged equal pay for women, opposed the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, and fought racism and sexism.

Unfortunately there are still too many politicians who seem more concerned with lining their own pockets and ego-tripping than creating a fairer society and helping those who're struggling to survive and have a decent existence.

Too many politicians live in a cossetted bubble far removed from the miserable lives of those at the bottom of the heap. They're full of smooth soundbites about protecting the vulnerable and deprived, but in reality nothing much changes. How can a cabinet stuffed with millionaires seriously care about a debt-ridden office cleaner? They don't.

I don't loathe the politicians who sincerely want a better society and do something to achieve it. On the contrary. But the others - they should be booted out and told the gravy train is over.

15 comments:

John Gray said...

I do not loath politicians
it's worse than than
I dont TRUST politicians..

how sad is that?

Cinnamon said...

I truly find it difficlut to listen to any politician without feeling cynical. It is really hard to credit them with any sincerity.

Hi Nick- i had to delete my other blog (well i didn't HAVE to bit i did!)- my new blog is same name but slightly different web address- try www.cinnamon-cinnamonscircumlocutions.blogspot.com (no gaps)- if you have the patience! If that doesn't work i don't know why you can't leave comment- I havn't blocked anyone as far as I know- i will have to look into it.

Nick said...

John - Well, no, I don't trust politicians either. They have to work hard to convince me they're seriously committed to a fairer society.

Cinnamon - All the prominent politicians do media training so they're skilled at presenting a phoney self that's supposedly more appealing.

Will try that other URL.

nursemyra said...

we tend to forget how many good politicians there are - the lousy ones get all the publicity

Nick said...

Myra - They do indeed. And it doesn't help when practically every MP seems to have been fiddling their expenses on a grand scale and thinking that was okay.

Suburbia said...

"the politicians who sincerely want a better society and do something to achieve it." - which ones are they then?!

heartinsanfrancisco said...

You must be writing about my country, Nick. The good civil servants are few and far between - most are just politicians who are out for themselves, and don't care a whit about their constituents. I don't trust them either because most stand only for election.

Nick said...

Suburbia - Hey, don't be too cynical! As I said, I admire the distant politicians who created the welfare state, and also the more recent ones who've battled against discrimination and warmongering.

Heart - From what I can gather, the USA has the same scarcity of conscientious, principled politicians, and the same teeming mass of the disadvantaged and desperate.

Nick said...

Goodness, I seem to be in a minority of one here. The prevailing attitude to politicians seems to be cynicism, distrust and contempt....

secret agent woman said...

The few who actually devote themselves to doing good are often not held in high regard. Jimmy Carter springs to mind - he's especially been a phenomenal ex-President, working on eradicating disease in third world countries and building housing for the poor. But so many are just rich folks protecting their own interests and the interests of their rich allies. So disturbing.

Nick said...

Secret Agent - I think so many politicians turn out to be self-interested frauds that people are now habitually suspicious even of the ones who are genuine. The sincere politicians have an uphill srtuggle to win people's trust.

Liz said...

there's a programme on Radio 4 called ... hang on, I'll have to look it up ... In Defence of Politics - oh, 8 o'clock tonight.

Just thought you may be interested.

Nick said...

Liz - That does sound interesting. I missed the first part last week but I must catch the second part tonight.

blackwatertown said...

Refreshing to hear such a - relatively - positive take on politicians.

Nick said...

Blackwater - I understand the general loathing and distrust of politicians, but people should at least give them credit for the huge social advances they've brought about in the past. And more recent advances like legalising homosexuality.