Should the BBC have sacked Carol Thatcher because she said in a private conversation that someone looked like a golliwog? No, says Sean Gabb, Director of the Libertarian Alliance. Jo Brand was investigated by the police for allegedly inciting violence on BBC 1 against her political opponents. Carol Thatcher used a word. One gets the sack, the other the BBC’s unconditional support. But, then, Jo Brand is part of the New Labour Establishment. Carol Thatcher is the daughter of a Prime Minister who still makes the ruling class shudder.
Charles Moore (grand honest fellow) lays into the Beeb here.
UPDATE….and Tim Worstall does it better than I do as well….
That’s it for this year, you’ll all be relieved to know…but first, I will direct you to the Devil, who writes all this quite important stuff, which ought to be noted and spread virally into the endarkening before it’s too late, far more effectively that I do. Then I’ll just make the point that this being the 90th commemoration of the end of World War 1, it’s probably the last one of any size: moreover, that it’s remarkable that we have any of what my old dad used to dub “the poor old chaps” left to witness it.
The centenary will probably have State-regulated fireworks compèred by Jonathan Ross. There will be scantily-dressed BBC-news-readerettes who will hand out strangely unfamiliar red flowers in the streets shopping prestinks, to bemused passers-by, the whole thing edgily-videoed by wildly-waving handycams. (“And now it’s back to you, Russell Brand, in the studio!”)
There are many strands of Libertarianism. Chris Tame used famously to say that “there may be two Libertarians somewhere who agree about everything, but I’m not one of them!” Of course he was just making a point theatrically, which he was good at, but he meant that, unlike Trotskyo-Marxian fascists and big-statists, we can amicably discuss a large range of ideas without pogromising each other.
For example, Sean Gabb and many others have always opposed British involvement in Iraq (and for all I know elsewhere too) as not involving any vital British interests and therefore totally unjustified. He may turn out to be right, but I have always disagreed. I think the West responded with much too little, and much, much too late after 9/11, dragged down and back (until it was too late) as it was, by internal traitors in the UN, the EU, on the Beltway especially, and elsewhere, from the easy and clean fulfilment of its essential and unitary objective.
Then, there are Libertarians who would restrict the Franchise on property criteria. Insofar as we have a State, and a government, and while this is unavoidable, then it should be a pluralist democracy and so therefore I support these people, Salisburianly speaking. But I risk scandalising others as a result. It does not matter: we will not bury ice-picks in each other’s skulls.
To libertarians like me, Western Civilisation, especially when conflated with all the popular externalities created BY free markets and minimal State-Planning and especially when un-influenced by what Sean Gabb calls the Enemy Class, offers the fastest and least-destructive path for all Men to improve their lives and be happier. We do not know what comes after this life, if anything (that can be perceived in a physical sense) and can’t ever so far as we know find out; although many of us – even among Libertarians – believe there is a God, and that He approximates to that Being hazily described in 1.Genesis and also in 1.John.1. Paul of course said that “for now, we see as through a Glass, Darkly”: all we can therefore do is what seems best, or least bad, at the time. Human existence is imperfect, but small bits of progress can be made, and accumulated, provided they are allowed to. It’s the “not allowing” bit that totalitarians do that causes the problem.
What distinguishes Western Christian (in the old pre-secular sense) Civilisation from those others it has had the bad fortune to have to oppose and defend against, is the gradual if imperfect rise of a notion of individual conscience and liberty of thought and action. The going has not always been easy or uninterrupted. But in the end, we arrived shakily, “darkly”, at something whereby one could go through life substantially without coming into contact with the jaws of the State (Sean’s words roughly interpeted, not mine) and a degree of liberty meant also that there was a degree of spontaneous order.
These poor old chaps now finally pass out into the sunset of history, soon to be followed by those left from a later and worse conflict. They thought through the prism of their time, rightly or not, about what was worth defending. It would be nice to think we didn’t have to, but what we face now is just another manifestation of the enemies of individual freedom, this time very sadly right at home inside the West. Yes there may be a few terrorists skulking about, but add up all the deaths and destruction they have wrought and yet could, and it’s a pinprick compared with what the Gramsco-Marxians intend and are incrasingly coming out into the open with. Terrorists can only kill people and blow stuff up: they can’t begin to erase ideas.
If individual people are strong in what they believe, and if they honestly believe it, then terrorists can only isolate themselves further. But if we all acquiesce in the deliberate and purposeful Gramsco-Marxian elimination of our culture and the freedoms it gave rise to, then there is no place for llibertarianism to hide.
I admire Samizdata: not so much for what is posted, but for the sort of people who comment, often and deeply, and who seem to have all the time in the world to do marvellous thinking, when I have not the time to wipe my bottom, let alone do anything else that’s intellectual. I don’t agree with all the comments on this Ross-brand thread, but the entire experience of reading it was awsomely enlightening. I share it with you now.
Just look at the buggers. There’s a spat I hear, about one of them phoning some old guy about his grand-daughter. I’m sure it was “good broadcasting”. Now, I know jack-shit about slebs, not finding the Wireless Tele Vision News very helpful in my estimation of what’s happening to the planet – so I don’t watch it – at all at all at all. But these two have got to have been smoking or snorting something.
Which one of the buggers is which? I do not know. Pray tell.
How are we going to re-encompass the regrowth of liberalism, if we have to contend with buggers like this, who contrive to upset people, for money, paid for by our taxation-take? What useful work could they do in a Libertarian nation, holding the beliefs they clearly do? I do not know.
What is to become of the BBC? What goes on these days is embarrassing to an old and civilised culture which thought it had given birth to it.
I am not suggesting that we ought to shoot all its directors, programme-controllers and major-presenters out-of-hand, against a wall in White City (a bit drastic I admit.) But ought a way to be found to curtail these Enemy Class excesses, while also removing the prohibition on ordinary British mortals from receiving RF signals?