Conservatives ought to know better by now

David Davis

Over at Guido’s place, someone called Tim Yeo, described as a “Conservative”, writes in the Guardian about increasing spending on “green” projects, such as windfarms and the like.

There is nothhing intrinsically bad about writing pieces for the Guardian, if that gets your rocks off for you. However, most liberals in the classical sense are more like classical conservatives than Guardian readers and contributors tend to be: they are also more skeptical than not, about the next neopastoralist-fad-religion such as GreeNazism.

Yeo of course, as you shall see, takes  one position where the placing of wind-farms is concerned if it benefits his pocket, and quite another where it will affect him personally regarding a particular one. This is standard GramscoStaliNazi behaviour and has been seen on countless occasions to date, in others.

I do not view these people while wearing quite the same charity-tinted glasses through which dear Sean Gabb looks, when he talks of the Enemy-Class. The extent of his magnanimity towards them astonishes me. To my mind, there can be no really useful place for many of the “top people” in this group, once an approximately libertarian civilisation emerges and becomes self-sustaining.


  • David, I loved your post above. I don’t think SG really is soft on the Establishment, just careful in his opposition to them. I personally can’t wait for the revolution!

  • Christopher Houseman

    Perhaps Tim Yeo thinks he’s conservative in the sense of wanting to conserve both:
    1) The (presumably taxpayer subsidised) expansion of his “business”, and
    2) The views around his own home

  • @dj
    Thank you very much. It just saddens me, how real people can really get away with holding two views at once, and also have a lovely life at the same time.

    I have never learned the trick of it. Perhaps that is why I am very very slightly less positively-disposed towards these people than I would ordinarily be.

  • There is a certain type of ‘pink’ conservative who gets an easy ride from the media whatever they do. Because they are seen as ‘moderate’ they are automatically assumed to be good and nice and honest.

    Remarkable how groupthink can work in direct defiance of the clear facts.

  • Conservatives are not libertarians and never will be. Neither are conservatives any closer to libertarians than their purported enemy, “socialists” are. It is simply wrong to be surprised or disappointed when a conservative does something statist. Conservatives are statists. That is the end of it.

    Conservatives and Socialists- our “left” and “right” are simply the two wings of the movement that overwhelmed classical liberalism before it could even get going properly. They are like Protestant and Catholic, Sunni and Shia, or TOS and TNG. Two aspects of the same thing. Each side wishes to use an ever larger active state to control society, because conservatives, like socialists, believe that without strict central organisation society will collapse into the Lord Of The Flies. Libertarians do not believe this.

    We are atheists in terms of the state. Left and Right simply argue which faith-based plan to follow. Only libertarians select the “no plan” option.

    I am (rhetorically at least) mystified why so many declared libertarians seek to associate with conservatives. It reminds me of the kid who gets picked on, asking to carry the popular kid’s books home from school, in the hope of currying some kind of favour. He doesn’t grasp that no matter how much he tries to be like the cool gang, he will never be a member, only their whipping boy and laughing stock. It is demeaning to liberals and libertarians to have other supposed libertarians- even “leaders” of the movement- window-licking the conservatives. It makes us all look like sad fools.

    I really would have thought that the LA would have twigged by now, from the reaction received from talks to Conservatives, that they are not anything like us and do not want us. Neither should we want to be them. They are a nasty bunch of pompous statists, the kind who only complain about the BBC because it is currently delivering left-wing propaganda rather than the right-wing propaganda they want from it.

    Libertarians are not conservatives, and conservatives are not libertarians. “Conservatives” didn’t lose England, and we sure as shit don’t want them to “get it back”. Libertarians lost England, thanks to the combined efforts of socialists and conservatives, and we are in the business of winning it back for liberty. The conservatives, the whole sorry shower of statist shit, can go fuck themselves.

  • It’s terrible: I always end up agreeing with IanB. This seriously will not do.

    Look, conservatives, by contrast to leftists and other Marxist-Leninist-Green-Nazis, are comparatively harmless. On the balance of probabilities, they are not especially likely to corrall dissidents and state-atheist-libertarians into barbed-wire-enclosures, the better to pre-concentrate them for later selective execution – as the logical conclusion of leftism must dictate. This must mean that we are less unlikely to find persuadable material, and possible co-operation in our long and slow march through society, and through things such as “institutions” (vital, as the left has always known) among conservatives than on the traditional “left”.

    I _/really want/_ conservatives to be able to see sense. They are, kind of, “halfway to salvation”, and merely stuck, often with statist notions about what “government” ought to be doing, and often slightly besmirched by what IanB calls Anglosocialism. But there is hope for a lot of them, which is why I get angry.

  • Dear me – am I turning into the Voice of Moderation on this Blog? Perhaps I am growing old!

  • Just for the record, i know some very Libertarian minded Conservatives. I don’t know any Libertarian minded Labour or Lib Dem supporters.

    Libertarianism and Conservativism are not mutually exclusive, although there is a Statist element to Conservatism that is a serious problem and is often perversely portrayed as being more ‘moderate’ and ‘compassionate’.

    Influencing the Conservative party is one of best tactics Libertarians have.

  • There is stateism in the Libertarian firmament, like it or lump it, night watchman state supporters are conservatives more often than not, though they would see themselves, I suggest, as libertarians. The anarcho capitalists are given to dismissing such people as somehow doctrinally impure. Nuts, there are so few libertarians; it might be a mite bit silly to throw out anyone who furthers the cause. Purism leads to petty pogroms, the last one resulted in the LA going through a silly split that left a nasty taste for many of us.

    It does little good to be disappointed by some Tim Yoe, Yo Yoing between uber stateism in favour of green policy stuff (Soylent green on the menu anyone?) on the one hand and, on the other, being a campaigner to remove unsightly windmills. I have a much more splenic view of those ridiculous windmills rather than doctrinal differences that can only result in unnecessary rancor where it isn’t needed.

    For me libertarianism is about real tolerance and an appreciation of things like unintended consequences and spontaneous orders. Inconsequential spats over conservatives who don’t quite cut the mustard are absurd. So they don’t measure up to the Coleman’s mustard test? Live with it or more to point get over it. The LA is as much about disagreement as it is about agreement that is the difference between libertarians and the left. Follow the left and you know where that goes.. to the cemetery for large numbers!

    For those who want a more purist libertarianism join the LPUK where brave folk actually take the ideas out on to the streets. There is nothing like convincing the skeptical public about the “night watchman state” let alone the “anarcho capitalist society” for starters, as favoured topics in the hustings.

  • @CHI
    We did try, many years ago. Chris Tame thought it would be a good idea.

    Under Thatcher to be precise. It didn’t work, we got rumbled, and a fairly small but noticeable number of good honest young conservatives lost their lives, and didn’t get to be allowed, by Francis Maude and his sub-priests, to f*** the girls in ball-dresses. It was very sad and seemed like a waste of effort. You should never of course reinforce failure.

    Perhaps the Conservative Party is not really quite ready for us, and we should infiltrate the Labour Party.

  • David Davis, i’m not necessarily suggesting that Libertarians infiltrate the Conservatives, but they can still take the argument and ideas to sympathetically minded Conservatives.

    As for the Labour Party, i can’t for the life of me see any grounds for hope there, it is simply a coalition of special interests looking to squeeze as much as possible out of other people. Perhaps some elements of the Lib Dems still have some residual liberal memories.

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