Friday, August 01, 2008

Policy Changes - or clear policy positions from politicians - would make a difference - vague talk about 'change' or a change of Prime Minister or Party in Government will make none in themselves

David Miliband’s Guardian article was remarkable only for recycling Blairite rhetoric from 1997 and for the complete absence of any clear policy positions whatsoever, making it fairly obvious that his policies don’t differ from Blair’s, Brown’s, Cameron’s or most of the Lib Dem’s.

His ‘for the many not the few’ rhetoric repeats the existing gap between rhetoric and policy.

Do we need yet another politician who talks about change while failing to explain what kind of change and continuing to back the same disastrous policies? Do we need another politician who won’t do anything significant about the two main causes of unemployment – the shortage of apprenticeships in trades and unconditional trade deals with repressive governments like China’s that allow them to keep jailing, torturing and organ harvesting their own people and banning independent trade unions? Trade deals that exploit people abroad on slave labour, 19th century, wages and conditions which allow their country’s exports to undercut ours on price and cause unemployment here?

Do we want to keep paying more taxes to increase NHS spending only for the result to be cuts in the total number of beds and staff as all the new money goes to PFI consortia and investors? Do we want to keep paying to subsidise private rail companies with public money while they raise our train fares at rates several times higher than inflation?

Do we want to keep increasing taxes on the majority to fund tax cuts for high earners and big firms?

Do we want more nuclear power stations when the current cost of decommissioning the old ones is an estimated £73 billion and rising, plus more leukaemia deaths? Even when a recent report found that relatively modest increases in government subsidies to help with energy saving measures such as home insulation could save as much energy annually as five nuclear power stations could produce?

Do we want another war against a non-existent ‘threat’ from a Middle Eastern country, despite it’s government having shown itself unwilling to commit suicide in the past and willing to negotiate, so a ‘threat’ easily deterred, then negotiated with?

If so vote for Brown, or Miliband, or Cameron, or for the Lib Dems (who, to be fair, are at least against war on Iran). Everyone has their own preferences on personalities, but at the end of the day rivalries between different personalities in politics are trivia. What matters are the policies – they are what make a difference to people’s lives – or cause their deaths. A new Prime Minister or a new party in government will make no difference without real policy change.

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