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Werthead

UK Politics: Winter of Discontent

278 posts in this topic

29 minutes ago, Hereward said:

                                                                     Republicans          Conservatives

Universal Health Care                                       No                               Yes

Global Warming Acceptance                             No                               Yes

Gay Marriage                                                    No                               Yes       

Anti-Muslim                                                       Yes                              No

Abortion                                                            No                               Yes         

Increasing Foreign Aid                                      No                               Yes

Voter Suppression                                            Yes                              No

Government Aid to Industry                              No                               Yes

Acceptance of Racism                                      Yes                              No

Colludes with Russia                                         Yes                              No

But sure, they're becoming more and more alike. :rolleyes: I'm a member of the Conservative Party, and if, Heaven Forfend, I were American, I'd be a Democrat, and so would most of the Tories I know. So would Cameron and so would May, I believe. OTOH, if Clinton was British she'd not even be on the centrist wing of the Conservative Party, but somewhere in the middle of party orthodoxy.

 

Hey man, I get it. I’d be defensive too if my political party was being compared to the Republican party, and to a lesser extent, Trump. But you’re cherry picking issues that make it seem untrue, and in the process, you got some wrong. Let’s go through this line by line.

Many believe the Tories are going to go after your healthcare system, much like Republicans are going after ours.

Pat yourselves on the back for believing in global warming, at least you can claim victory there.

Gay marriage is actually more accepted than you’d think here among Republicans, but still not as accepted as it is in the UK among conservatives. Good job!

Conservatives may not be as anti-Muslim as Republicans, but they are anti-immigrant, *cough* Brexit *cough*, and really, that’s just splitting hairs. Republicans and Conservatives are both trending anti-immigrant. 

Again, congratulations on not being against abortions. Would you like a gold star? As I’ve said before, that’s the big difference, religion.

You’re wrong on foreign aid. That’s just Trump. Republicans are mostly OK with it, and I believe the US gives more foreign aid than any other country, and that’s not just because of Democrats.

I’ll give you voter suppression too, though I actually have no idea if you’re right or not.

Now to government aid to industry. WTH are you talking about?????? Did you miss that monster handout Republicans just gave to big business? There might not be a party in the history of political parties more in favor of corporate welfare than the Republican party.  

You’re wrong about racism too. It was one of the main motivating factors in Brexit. Or at least xenophobia was, and really, again, splitting hairs. It was the fear of the other.

And good job at not colluding with Russia. But again, that’s more about Trump than Republican trends.

Now that that’s over, should we list all of the similarities? I’ll need some time, but I won’t be cherry picking the moderate wing of the Tories with the extreme end of the Republican party. We’re going to go cra cra vs. cra cra.

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24 minutes ago, Tywin et al. said:

Many believe the Tories are going to go after your healthcare system, much like Republicans are going after ours.

That's not the same thing as being opposed to universal healthcare though. Elements of the Conservative Party probably would like to get rid of the NHS but what they want to do is replace it with a more market orientated unversal healthcare system. I doubt there would be significant support for actually getting rid of universal healthcare. The Republicans actually are opposed to universal healthcare.

24 minutes ago, Tywin et al. said:

Conservatives may not be as anti-Muslim as Republicans, but they are anti-immigrant, *cough* Brexit *cough*, and really, that’s just splitting hairs. Republicans and Conservatives are both trending anti-immigrant. 

The Conservatives are pretty split on brexit, the entire point of the referendum was for remain to win and the eurosceptic wing to get slapped down, which didn't work out too well for Cameron and Osborne. For that matter it's a little more complex than pro brexit equals anti immigrant. Corbyn for example isn't exactly vehemently pro EU

Edited by ljkeane

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11 minutes ago, Tywin et al. said:

Hey man, I get it. I’d be defensive too if my political party was being compared to the Republican party, and to a lesser extent, Trump. But you’re cherry picking issues that make it seem untrue, and in the process, you got some wrong. Let’s go through this line by line.

Many believe the Tories are going to go after your healthcare system, much like Republicans are going after ours.

First off, could you please can the contemptuous attitude.? I've addressed you respectfully and I would appreciate if you did too.

Now, "many believe"? Source please. And Werthead doesn't count. Now, I'm sure there are some few Conservative MPs who would like to. But they know it would be electoral suicide to do so. The NHS is wildly popular amongst Tory voters. More private companies being involved in providing a service that is "free at the point of delivery" is not dismantling the NHS, no matter what is claimed, particularly as the vast majority of service providers are, and always have been, private.

11 minutes ago, Tywin et al. said:

Conservatives may not be as anti-Muslim as Republicans, but they are anti-immigrant, *cough* Brexit *cough*, and really, that’s just splitting hairs. Republicans and Conservatives are both trending anti-immigrant. 

Source please. It may have escaped your attention, but the Conservatives didn't support Brexit. Government policy was to Remain. Now, to the extent that the Leave vote was down to anti-immigrant feeling, and I'll admit it was one, but only one, of the major causes, that feeling came from UKIP voters most of all, but amongst Labour voters in the north too. The Tory's main heartland of the south voted to Remain. Second, I am comparing the party, not the voters anyway. Conservative Party leadership has consistently and strongly condemned racism and anti-Muslim rhetoric, even after terrorist attacks. Can you same the same about the Republicans?

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You’re wrong on foreign aid. That’s just Trump. Republicans are mostly OK with it, and I believe the US gives more foreign aid than any other country, and that’s not just because of Democrats.

"Only five countries in addition to the UK met or exceeded the 0.7% of GNI target in 2015. Those countries are the Netherlands, Denmark, Luxembourg, Norway and Sweden, according to the United Nations. Germany, France, Italy, the US, Japan and Canada each spend 0.4% or less." - the BBC http://www.bbc.co.uk/newsbeat/article/39653421/uk-foreign-aid-where-does-it-go-and-why

So, you're wrong again.

Quote

Now to government aid to industry. WTH are you talking about?????? Did you miss that monster handout Republicans just gave to big business? There might not be a party in the history of political parties more in favor of corporate welfare than the Republican party.  

I'm not talking about cuts to corporation tax, but of government intervention in the free market.

Quote

You’re wrong about racism too. It was one of the main motivating factors in Brexit. Or at least xenophobia was, and really, again, splitting hairs. It was the fear of the other.

No, I'm not, as I've already explained. You are conflating the Leave camp with the Conservative Party. 

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Now that that’s over, should we list all of the similarities? I’ll need some time, but I won’t be cherry picking the moderate wing of the Tories with the extreme end of the Republican party. We’re going to go cra cra vs. cra cra.

Then you won't be doing a fair and reasonable comparison. In case you haven't noticed, the crazies are in charge of the Republican party. To the extent that there are crazies in the Conservative Party, and there are crazies in every party, THEY ARE NOT IN CHARGE OF THE GOVERNMENT.

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34 minutes ago, ljkeane said:

That's not the same thing as being opposed to universal healthcare though. Elements of the Conservative Party probably would like to get rid of the NHS but what they want to do is replace it with a more market orientated unversal healthcare system. I doubt there would be significant support for actually getting rid of universal healthcare. The Republicans actually are opposed to universal healthcare.

True. A better way of phrasing it would be to say that both parties are considering cutting and/or privatizing their countries long standing popular welfare programs. That’s what I mean when I say they’re trending in the same general direction, albeit your country’s conservatives are a lot more sane than ours.

Quote

The Conservatives are pretty split on brexit, the entire point of the referendum was for remain to win and the eurosceptic wing to get slapped down, which didn't work out too well for Cameron and Osborne. For that matter it's a little more complex than pro brexit equals anti immigrant. Corbyn for example isn't exactly vehemently pro EU

Yeah, I recognize that they’re split on it. Republicans are split on Trump and are split on a lot of policies.

And no, pro-Brexit=/=anti-immigration. But basically everything I’ve read and heard has listed anti-immigration sentiments in the UK as being one of the bigger motivations for leaving the EU.

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38 minutes ago, Hereward said:

First off, could you please can the contemptuous attitude.? I've addressed you respectfully and I would appreciate if you did too.

Contemptuous? I was going for jocular. I like laughing at politics. I worked for the Democratic party in one form or another for a decade, and I laughed at it all the time. So apologies if it came off in a different way. I’ll have to address the rest of your post later as I’m late for a series of meetings. Well except this one part:

Quote

To the extent that there are crazies in the Conservative Party, and there are crazies in every party, THEY ARE NOT IN CHARGE OF THE GOVERNMENT.

Not yet. :P

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9 minutes ago, Tywin et al. said:

Contemptuous? I was going for jocular. I like laughing at politics. I worked for the Democratic party in one form or another for a decade, and I laughed at it all the time. So apologies if it came off in a different way. I’ll have to address the rest of your post later as I’m late for a series of meetings. Well except this one part:

Not yet. :P

OK, sorry for the misunderstanding.

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2 hours ago, Hereward said:

Now, "many believe"? Source please. And Werthead doesn't count. Now, I'm sure there are some few Conservative MPs who would like to. But they know it would be electoral suicide to do so. The NHS is wildly popular amongst Tory voters. More private companies being involved in providing a service that is "free at the point of delivery" is not dismantling the NHS, no matter what is claimed, particularly as the vast majority of service providers are, and always have been, private.

Privatisation of the NHS is not official Conservative or government policy at the moment because they know it would be shot down instantly and would likely make them unelectable for generation. However, the long-term goal of the hard Tory right includes the privatisation of the NHS. It would be comforting to dismiss this as the ravings of a lunatic fringe, but then ten years ago that's what people were saying about Brexit (although granted that membership of the EU was never going to raise that amount of passion). The theory was that rational voters would not be swept up by simplistic logic and slogans and then they were.

Our current health secretary is all for the privatisation of the NHS. We know this because he wrote a book about it which, y'know, is kind of telling on the issue. The fact that the Prime Minister has kept him in this position and expanded his remit shows that she is happy with this situation.

More than that, if government policy was not to privatise the NHS, then it would not be privatising it by the back door. Instead, it has outsourced mental health to private companies (which would also have been seen as ridiculous forty years ago, but was done anyway), with the first point of contact being a laborious telephone call to multiple departments and people  with ridiculous targets and goals of making sure people say (after several calls and months) that they are happy so they can sign off and get paid by the government (not actually making sure the people are actually cured). This is widely seen as a model for how the stealth-privatisation of the NHS can proceed. In the 1980s and 1990s we had numerous, local mental health care facilities - including the one I did some volunteer work in as a teenager and another one just up the road - shut down in favour of "Care in the Community". This proved a bust, so mental health care has now devolved to the point where people with severe mental health problems have to be placed hundreds of miles away from their families in a few big facilities designed to deal with it, largely outsourced to private corporations. The NHS is now moving in the same direction, with almost 700 local surgeries closed since 2010 and 600 more in danger. This is forcing people to congregate in larger and larger super-surgeries which are much less convenient, far busier and far less efficient, and much more ripe to be taken over by private corporations.

We are also seeing the NHS constantly being underfunded. The 2016-17 equipment procurement budget was slashed in half against what was actually needed. Based on rising requirements, inflation and the number of ageing people who require greater assistance, the NHS budget should be approximately £40 billion higher than it is now. However, the Coalition and current governments have continued to deliberately underfund the service. The NHS has a very simple budgetary requirement: it has needs to be met and if those needs are not met, people will die, services will decline and the organisation will become nonviable. The Government can afford to pay that extra money - it's found £1 billion to line the pockets of the DUP down the back of the sofa and is planning to spend £80 billion on getting people from Birmingham to London half an hour faster than at present, because this is more important than making sure people aren't dying in hospital hallways - so the question is asked why is the NHS not being funded according to its needs? The answer is ideology, pure and simple.

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Then you won't be doing a fair and reasonable comparison. In case you haven't noticed, the crazies are in charge of the Republican party. To the extent that there are crazies in the Conservative Party, and there are crazies in every party, THEY ARE NOT IN CHARGE OF THE GOVERNMENT.

 

People currently in government: Gove, Johnson, Hunt, Davis.

So far this government has plunged the country into the worst constitutional crisis for generations and put its economic well-being at risk purely to satisfy an internal power struggle, put tens of thousands of people onto the streets, sent tens of thousands of people to food banks, divested this country of investment required to reboot the economy in furtherance of the long-discredited theory that austerity can lead to growth, fired thousands of police officers and whinged about rising crime, reduced NHS spending and whined about a decreasing quality of medical service and has cut a grubby back-room deal with ex-terrorists to keep its arse in power so it can keep screwing the country over.

If this your idea of sane governance, I'd hate to see what your idea of insane governance was.

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@Hereward

I feel like we need to begin where you finished:

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Then you won't be doing a fair and reasonable comparison. In case you haven't noticed, the crazies are in charge of the Republican party. To the extent that there are crazies in the Conservative Party, and there are crazies in every party, THEY ARE NOT IN CHARGE OF THE GOVERNMENT.

I believe I would be doing a fair comparison because my original remarks were that, from a far, I've notice some things that are trending in a similar way between the far right faction of the Republican party and the far right faction of the Tories. I recognize that all Tories are not bad people, that you're more moderate and not on board with what the far right is doing and I can see why you took offense to the way I portrayed the issues you discussed to highlight the differences between the two parties. It's also important to point out that we cannot do an apples to apples comparison between the two parties because while both parties represent the right in two similar western states, the states are not similar enough for there to be a direct overlap. But I believe my point will stand, that the far right faction of the Tories is getting more extreme in a way similar to the Republican party and that their voice is getting heard by more and having a larger influence in the party and in the UK. So with that, let's begin.

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Now, "many believe"? Source please. And Werthead doesn't count. Now, I'm sure there are some few Conservative MPs who would like to. But they know it would be electoral suicide to do so. The NHS is wildly popular amongst Tory voters. More private companies being involved in providing a service that is "free at the point of delivery" is not dismantling the NHS, no matter what is claimed, particularly as the vast majority of service providers are, and always have been, private.

The main source I was going off of comes from two NPR contributors, one who works for The Economist and the other for The Guardian (apologies, don't know their full names). They come on NPR regularly, one leans towards Labour and one leans towards the Tories, but neither is a strong supporter. Both of them regularly say that the long term goal of the Tories, or at least a lot of Tory elites, is to privatize and/or reduce the size of the NHS. They used to say it wouldn't happen, or at least not any time soon, but recently they've made it seem like it's something we could see in the not too distant future. I did a few Google searches using "Tory" and "NHS" and most of the headlines reinforced their views. Now I'd be lying if I said I read any of the articles, but it offered a fairly good snapshot into the zeitgeist of what the far right wants in the UK. And I brought that up as an example because the exact same thing is happening here. We don't have universal healthcare, but we do have programs, namely Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid, that have a similar spirit and are widely popular. Republicans have secretly always wanted to privatize or do away with these programs, but like you said, they would never do it because they'd get destroyed at the polls. Well, now the third highest ranking Republican in the country, Speaker of the House Paul Ryan, is purposing just that, And while there is some push back, lots of Republicans are openly supporting it, which something no one expected to see, especially in the wake of Bush II's attempt to privatize parts of SS a decade ago.That's what I mean, as an example, that the Tories are showing some signs of following the Republicans path.

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Source please. It may have escaped your attention, but the Conservatives didn't support Brexit. Government policy was to Remain. Now, to the extent that the Leave vote was down to anti-immigrant feeling, and I'll admit it was one, but only one, of the major causes, that feeling came from UKIP voters most of all, but amongst Labour voters in the north too. The Tory's main heartland of the south voted to Remain. Second, I am comparing the party, not the voters anyway. Conservative Party leadership has consistently and strongly condemned racism and anti-Muslim rhetoric, even after terrorist attacks. Can you same the same about the Republicans?

Same dudes from above plus a number of articles I read around the time of the referendum, but perhaps in this instance I of should have referred to the political right to far right rather than the Tories specifically. Of course there were a number of reasons for supporting the move to leave the EU, but anti-immigration sentiments felt like one of the stronger ones. Either way though, I used it as an example to highlight how xenophobia is rising on the right in the US and the UK, as well as many other Western countries. 

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"Only five countries in addition to the UK met or exceeded the 0.7% of GNI target in 2015. Those countries are the Netherlands, Denmark, Luxembourg, Norway and Sweden, according to the United Nations. Germany, France, Italy, the US, Japan and Canada each spend 0.4% or less." - the BBC http://www.bbc.co.uk/newsbeat/article/39653421/uk-foreign-aid-where-does-it-go-and-why

So, you're wrong again.

I guess this one just by how you measure it. The US has the highest overall total, which is what I was referencing. Sadly, I doubt expect that to continue with the clown in office.

 

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I'm not talking about cuts to corporation tax, but of government intervention in the free market.

Different systems with different methods can still arrive at the same result. What the Republicans did was "aid" industries. That was my point.

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No, I'm not, as I've already explained. You are conflating the Leave camp with the Conservative Party. 

Fair enough, as noted about. I think part of the reason I made that mistake is because we view things in a very binary way when it comes to politics here in the US. A lot of the reporting made it seem like conservatives, even though they were in control of the government, were the type of voters that wanted to leave.

4 hours ago, Hereward said:

OK, sorry for the misunderstanding.

No apologies needed, but I think you Eurocommies owe us Americans a big thank you. By electing Trump, we showed you guys what you should absolutely not do. We took a bullet for y'all. :P

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17 hours ago, Tywin et al. said:

But basically everything I’ve read and heard has listed anti-immigration sentiments in the UK as being one of the bigger motivations for leaving the EU.

Yes but what has that got to do with Conservatives? The Brexit vote wasn't split down traditional party lines.

Edited by lessthanluke

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Wert, to be fair i dont think theyve actually fired police officers, theyve just failed to replace those who've quit/retired.  

They have made thousands of police staff redundant, which means increasingly depleted, overworked, underfunded police forces have to backfill office jobs with cops who cost more.

The Tories can be blamed for England & Wales.  SNP deserve the blame for the continuing Police Scotland fiasco.

Edited by Derfel Cadarn

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19 hours ago, Hereward said:

Source please. It may have escaped your attention, but the Conservatives didn't support Brexit. Government policy was to Remain. Now, to the extent that the Leave vote was down to anti-immigrant feeling, and I'll admit it was one, but only one, of the major causes, that feeling came from UKIP voters most of all, but amongst Labour voters in the north too. The Tory's main heartland of the south voted to Remain. 

That's a... bold claim to make. I might not be British, but the blue area on the first map (areas that voted Leave) and on the second map (areas that voted Tory in the last election) look to be about 90% the same to me:

https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/e/e4/United_Kingdom_EU_referendum_2016_area_results_2-tone.svg

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_Kingdom_general_election,_2017#/media/File:2017UKElectionMap.svg

 

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2 hours ago, lessthanluke said:

Yes but what has that got to do with Conservatives? The Brexit vote wasn't split down traditional party lines.

I tried to clear that up in my longer post.

Anyways, looks like you guys won’t have to deal with a Trump visit for now. Why couldn’t you do us a favor and babysit him for a few days? Is that too much to ask?

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48 minutes ago, Tywin et al. said:

I tried to clear that up in my longer post.

Anyways, looks like you guys won’t have to deal with a Trump visit for now. Why couldn’t you do us a favor and babysit him for a few days? Is that too much to ask?

We were happy for him to come and have rotten vegetables thrown at him; he just decided that we actually meant it when we said that we'd throw rotten vegetables at him, and he didn't like the idea. Pity, I'd just put a couple of small melons on the compost heap to get them started, and have been practicing my melon-toss since the New Year.

Edited by Which Tyler

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I think Boris may be challenging Trump in terms of the lack of self-awareness, after he responded to Sadiq Khan's opinions on Trump by saying 'We will not allow US-UK relations to be endangered by some puffed up pompous popinjay in City Hall.', which is a bit ironic coming from the person who would probably be the dictionary definition of 'puffed up pompous popinjay'.

I also seem to remember Boris once calling for Trump to be banned from visiting Britain because of his controversial comments, back when he was the puffed up pompous popinjay in City Hall.

 

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You have to give credit to Verhofstadt. That was quite some nice trolling of May.

 

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Yes but what has that got to do with Conservatives? The Brexit vote wasn't split down traditional party lines.

 

Yes, but they are now supporting it, even the ones who know it's a bad idea (although there are handful of hold-outs).

The Lib Dems, Green and SNP are against it, but the real issue is with Labour, who are officially supporting it although the majority of the Parliamentary Party hates it and are a bit vague on what sort of Brexit they want, because the leadership won't commit to any hard ideas.

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In the Republican vs Tory debate, I think the main difference between the two is UKIP. UKIP has had electoral success, which makes it a viable place for people with anti-progressive views to inhabit, politically. No far right party has had similar success in the USA, therefore they gravitate to the Republican party as they see the Republican party as being their only access point to political power. If there was a far right party that regularly won congressional seats the Republican party would be more politically lined up with the UK Tories.

If all the Nazis and white supremacists could band together in their own political party and guarantee themselves 20 or 30, or even 40 congressional seats, I think they would take that route over continued affiliation with the Republican party. And that woult lead to an ideological clean out of the Republican party.

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http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-42679187

 

The UKIP fiasco continues.  Another looming leadership contest?

I did mention a while back that this "polluting the gene pool" thing would come up. I thought Princess Di's "grey men" might try to prevent the wedding. I think that since this has caused a serious backlash against UKIP this will ultimately help the acceptance of Meghan Markle as a royal, but I also think there are a lot more British people thinking what this woman said but not saying it than many might care to admit.

Edited by The Anti-Targ

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While this woman is clearly a scumbag, i have no idea what this has to do with her partner.  Unless i'm mistaken there is no indication he has read, forwarded or sent anything similar. 

If my wife was sending innapropriate texts and i got called in to discuss it with my bosses i'd tell them to f'ck off.

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