The Plastic Hippo

May 7, 2014

A year of living dangerously

Filed under: History,Politics,Rights,Society — theplastichippo @ 4:07 am
Tags: , , , ,
Via sabc.co.za

Via sabc.co.za

In slightly less than 364 days, polling stations across the United Kingdom will open for business in the great general election of 2015. We can be certain of this thanks to the Fixed-Term Parliaments Act 2011 which, for the first time, ensures power for five whole years. Previously, parliament could only be dissolved by Royal Prerogative on the advice of the Prime Minister under the Septennial Act 1715 and its 1911 amendment. The coalition changed all that. The result is that we now have a government that failed to secure a mandate and regardless of the damage it is doing, is almost impossible to remove until May 7 2015.

In slightly less than 13 days, polling stations will open for voting in local and European elections. Usually, this exercise of the democratic right to elected representation results in something less than a stampede but this year might just be different. The campaign trails leading to Town Halls, Brussels and Westminster remain littered with the familiar outlandish promises, lies, smears and fairy tale nonsense but this time there is a more disturbing feature. Permeating the lurid diatribes telling us what opponents would do and precious little about what the electoral appellant would do, we now have what amounts to open, blatant xenophobia.

Somehow, the burning issue of immigration has been allowed to dominate local, national and European elections and the increasingly febrile, invented hubris and bombast is a thin veil masking a dangerous almost primeval racism. After thousands of years of cross cultural assimilation, enrichment through external influence and adapting the best the world can offer, we might as well revert to wearing Woad and Woolly Mammoth skins now that election leaflets spouting racial hatred are dropping through our letter boxes. If Charles Darwin`s On the Origin of Species is correct, we are justified in fearing and, therefore, hating that bunch of Cro-Magnons from the other side of the lava stream coming over here and sharing their knowledge of tools and stuff. They want to take the roots and berries that are rightfully ours.

Alarmingly the mainstream political parties, instead of condemning the clubbing caveman little Englander rhetoric of the profoundly unpleasant, are stoking up the discrimination in the hope of attracting the votes of bigots desperate to defend English juniper bushes. This appeal to the most basic of human insecurity makes for a useful distraction from the more important issues of the economy, employment, care, education, health, the need to have a cave over your head and a fire to keep the saber-toothed tigers away. Astonishingly, the cavemen are likely to do well in the elections and might even gain some political clout if enough raw meat is thrown toward the doorways of polling stations to attract the apathetic to the electoral process.

There was a time when politicians wooed “ethnic” minorities for votes failing to realise that “ethnic” minorities are us rather than us and them. Given the rich history and diversity of this island nation, there are at least 63,181,775 “ethnic” minorities according to the 2011 census. With 87.1 per cent describing themselves as a larger group of “ethnic” white British, it is little wonder that politicians are banging the rocks with a bone to drum up anti-immigration support even though immigration is beneficial to the nation`s fortunes. Proof of this can be found in the numbers of immigrants running major British corporations and institutions including the Bank of England. These folks tend to be white but after the plundering of empire and the barbarity of colonialism, it`s not just the chicken tikka masala that`s coming home to roost.

When reports are published by right-wing think-tanks dividing the population up into white, non-white, Asian and others, you might be forgiven for recalling something called apartheid. How non-white is defined is surely guesswork given the popularity of tanning studios and a quick glance at a map of the world will tell you that Asian could mean anyone with a tradition ranging from Inuit to Aboriginal.

Mercifully, we have only 13 days left of local and European electioneering when nasty people say nasty things and remain unchallenged by people who tell us that they are nice people. There is no compulsion to vote, especially in elections for local government when all the parties are useless. However, by not voting we will allow the nasty people to have a louder voice because the frightened and the gullible will vote for nasty people. Vote, even if it`s for the least worst option.

Unfortunately, we still have a full year before a general election and so a full year of scaremongering and false promises is in prospect. The major parties are already manoeuvring for a hung parliament and such is the apathy at this pathetic self-interest that a low turn-out is inevitable. It is likely to be a very dangerous year.

In a few hours time, polling stations across South Africa will open for business. Given that nation`s turbulent, oppressive history and difficult present, black, non-black and “other” South Africans are queuing up to cast their ballots. If they can secure a rainbow nation, then we deserve one too.

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1 Comment »

  1. A ignorant leftist. Now there is something you don’t see everyday. If there are so many ethnic minorities, I’m sure you wouldn’t mind moving to Iraq where you can be enriched further by being decapitated.
    There is nothing worse than a self hating Brit. If living in a country that created the largest empire on Earth upsets you, leave. And, this may come as a shock, but we aren’t the only ones who have had an empire. Try reading something called a ‘history book’ before moaning. (And we gave them civilization. It is not our fault they couldn’t look after it)
    Amazing use of Buzzwords by the way. You have the fantastic ability to say absolutely nothing while appearing to say a lot. Must take real skill to spout such rubbish.

    Comment by tom — June 9, 2016 @ 8:17 pm | Reply


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