Sunday, June 5, 2011

Southern Rhythm and Idle Thoughts

In the end, no waterfowl, I fear. The weather was looking a bit dodgy, though in fact it turned out rather pleasant. But a decision had to be made on the available evidence and it was not to go too far. So we went running instead, which means we can't be 20 miles from home when the rain starts. I say running but, Mrs Hickory having short legs and your blogging hedgehog long ones, in practice she runs and I walk, and we both do satisfactory exercise and see the world a bit. The old railway line is our usual route for this, because it's flat, the ground is even and you meet a lot of people.

But, as I say, no waterfowl. Instead I offer you an observation on the limitations of political debate, and a feel-good song from the deep south; Alabama this time:

"Those who are strictly of the right tend not to recognise that some are genuinely fearful of not being able to provide for themselves and their families. Those of the left frequently forget that someone else has to pay for all their plans. When commentators of the right talk of rights (not a word they use very much, but the idea is often present) they mean freedoms, the absence of interference by government in private life. When the left speak of rights they mean other people’s money. It isn’t easy to understand each other like that, even if it’s only for the purpose of arguing. There is no common ground.

When David Cameron is asked to be, or acclaimed for being, or accused of being, brave, or responsible, or whatever, because he has approved some measure which will benefit some section of society, what he has done is simply to make a calculation as to the distribution of lost/gained votes that will result from his promising that other people will be forced to spend their money to make it possible.

By all means characterize left-wingers as being either stupid or lazy- which some of them undoubtedly are- and right-wingers as being greedy and uncaring- again, some of them are- but they both have a point, an important point essential to their ideas, which is unrecognized by those who disagree with them. We look at the world and we see different things."

2 comments:

James Higham said...

When commentators of the right talk of rights (not a word they use very much, but the idea is often present) they mean freedoms, the absence of interference by government in private life. When the left speak of rights they mean other people’s money.

Nicely put.

CIngram said...

Wouldn't it be great if children were at least taught to recognise that their perspective may be different from that of the person they disagree with. It would make communication just a little easy and might lead to less demagogy and a little less thuggery. Even better would be if they learnt to analyse their own ideas, or even think about about a subject, find out a bit about it, before forming an opinion. Wouldn't that be great? It won't happen, of course, not in our schools.