Wednesday, 30 August 2017

Triumphant returns, the global order and Corbyn

Ever looked back on your writing from a few years ago and balk in shame of your own ability to write anything of worth at all, I do just about every month. So now, out of shame I feel I should write something here, if only as a means of pushing my previous works down into the recesses of increasingly distant page numbers.

Last couple years have been a bit of a clusterfuck haven't they? I mean before 2016 reviewing politics felt like being immersed in glue, the whole argument was around the gradual erosion of the state by market oligarch forces but the general battle felt worn out and inevitable, that we might prevail over the social fight but people would continue to have their living standards stagnate while the richest 0.1% takes most of the gains of whatever fleeting growth we have, I remember being happy at the thought of an extra 50p an hour from George Osbornes minimum wage increase and that was the small silver lining to the funnel of shit that continues to drown this country into a stinking irrelevency. But holy shit how much can change in a year.

So before I get onto America, I'd like to address my homelands own brand of crazyness. that went down in the last couple of years. Corbyn should get a mention, because I think his rise is for me more a tale of the populist rise that can be seen across the world. So let's be real, he was a joke candidate in the nominations, only placed there to give a token gesture to the left wing of the party a sense of inclusion, no-one took him seriously and generally engaged in light putdowns when his chances for nomination were brought up. Unfortunately for the Labour apparatchics there was a general move in the children of the left, and when it was relayed to them that he was in terms of the legislation he backed, the statements he made and the fights he has had, was the most leftwing candidate, and people who were reflexively left wing, surged back into the labour party, taking advantage of special memeberships for voters, en masse voted in a man on the first count, obliterating the chances of any other candidate.

This was the first miricle, then the Tory media began its campaign of fear and misinformation, seeking to castigate him as some kind of terrorist in teachers clothing, at once boring and terrifying, out of touch except for in courting the youths, in which he was a master of misinformation. The image of Comrade Corbyn may have enraged the Conservative base, but these insults rebounded off the theoretical levity of his allottment owning, jam making persona and with a little help from the reflexively liberal entertainment elite, was able to bring out the youth vote in unprecedented numbers, delivering a second great embarrissment to Conservative Britain, who have now failed to win a majority of the vote for almost four decades now, with two of the last elections forcing them into Coalitions, it was Theresa May's election to loose, and a highly qualified win such as this, should make them fear the next one.

So then what does this mean? Do we have a new force on the left that will return the United Kingdom and dare I say the world, to a new age of equality, prosperity and newfound understanding? I doubt it. This man is not bringing new ideas to the table, at best he is offering solutions that would have been the de jure realm of the state, reducing student debt, nationalising the transport and energy sectors. Some I think are great (Trains!) Some I think could use some work and others like energy, while I'm in favour of a public alternative, It might be more costly in terms of political capital. That being said, left wing parties have been hammered in europe for most of this decade because triangulation has diminishing returns, a left wing party can moderate for a first election, but after that fatigue can set in as the base fails to see real enduring victories made, it can also end up feeling like these parties are run by a bunch of paternal autocrats who think its just marvelous we participate so long as we vote the right party leaders in and canvass on elections but really they want to be the driving seat on all official policy, which is written by a bunch of thinktanks that are financed by business. This is the case on both sides of the atlantic and beyond, it is a key element of the power dynamic of our time and whether they know its because of this or not, people are pissed.

I think it goes down to what people believe a Democracy is supposed to be, the peoples will carried out into law. Increasingly government only governs for the interest of the rich, and use social wars as a means of drawing support from everyone else, while effectively dividing us on partisan notions that don't much effect the economy, which is essentially bought and paid for by conglomerates. This divide and rule by the free market autocrats has made politicians increasingly unimportant middle managers, it has made them so weak, that all it takes is a person who says the right things to upend the order. We have seen this across the world today, in light of any real comprehensive solutions to the day to day problems, people have drifted to the fringes creating a valley of poltiical opinion, in the sense that the middle ground has shrunk while the two sides become steeper at the fringes, shows a desire for political solutions, and why not? Government is the collective power of our society made manifest, it is the only way to really solve most issues, because it first and foremost creates our economic structure before there is a market, there is a state, because before there is a state, there is an army.

You cannot have a functioning market on the scale and complexity we have today without the guarentees of security from external and internal threats that the state assures us against, and we take this for granted. In lieu of this, we have leaders across the world proposing an extreme return to the political. Trumps policies have very little to do with efficient markets and a lot of strong political narratives about the world, though the targets change, there is little differences between Modi in India or Duterte in the Phillipines, Maduro in Venezuela and Traian Besescu in Romania. It is unclear to me yet which way Jeremy Corbyn will lean, his understated, generally reasoned wording of what he says, makes him an unlikely bedfellow to these far more verbose and autocratic rulers, but there is certainly signs that he could go down this path, at the same time, perhaps he is the one to buck the trend, who manages to gain power not just legally, but without vitriol, offering a genuinely better alternative that will reverse the UK's divided society in decline. Or he could make a total mess of it, I don't hold anything as certain anymore.