Progressivism is not a cancer. In fact, it has been credited to some of the best times that human civilisation has ever known. Conservatism, on the other hand, has been known to induce the purest form of human suffering from as many people as were affected by it. These are the facts that Kenpruitt666 needs to keep in mind when describing me and my contemporaries as a ‘cancer’.
Now, after that brief reprimand, lets take a look at what he actually said:
- His first point- “Would you accuse “For Profit” food and water production of exploiting the hunger and thirst of the people in the same way that you accuse Private Healthcare of exploiting people’s sickness?”
Yes I definitely would. Healthcare is something which is needed on a more spontaneous basis, and is also very much more expensive. Everyone but the poorest American or Brit can afford a bottle of water, whereas keno-therapy is enough to bankrupt a family that’s living on the edge. It is for that reason that the British Working Class fought for a National Health Service, and that we haven’t regretted it since. We also fought for a financial safety net for the poorest in our society, so that people who couldn’t afford food and water would be provided for by the state.
In an ideal world, I would not have ‘food and water production’ in the hands of private companies. However, the practicalities of this plan are difficult. A more balanced solution would be to gradually increase support to community food growing groups, like Transition Eastbourne. I will always view it as exploitation that for-profit organisations control our means of sustenance. You shouldn’t be able to buy life.
- His second point covers the living wage, with rambling intensity which makes it difficult to read and even more difficult to process. The first half of the argument regards the economic mechanics of the Living Wage, which I would be lying if I said I understood. However I might be able to help him out with the second half: “I’ve been told by many progressives that a Living Wage is that wage by which is absolutely necessary for survival. In other words, if you were paid less than a Living Wage, you couldn’t survive; you couldn’t afford all of the necessities of life, such as food, clothing, and shelter.
This is nonsense, of course. I’m not sure who told him that, but I wouldn’t listen to them in future. The Living Wage is the level of payment which workers require to lead a decent, well-rounded life. Since their chief executive is likely paid 350 times more than them, I doubt this is such a difficult boon to grant. Ken claims that different workers have different responsibilities, and therefore the living wage differs between them. This doesn’t really matter, we only need to set the bar at a respectable level that will serve for the majority.
- His third point, that politicians are not “patriarchs/matriarchs of the public good, working tireless for the welfare of all”. He also tries to excuse political corruption on the grounds that the politician is able to betray its funder.
This is no excuse at all. Are we supposed to feel better about our public servants being bought and sold for on the basis that politicians can abandon their funding if they want to? Surely a far better solution would be simply to ban private donations and give each party a set lump sum, which came out of the taxpayers kitty. Not only would it level the playing field for smaller parties (allowing national debate to widen, diversify and improve) but it would be the right thing to do. Ignoring the fact that the main theme of ken’s work is that he despises people who ‘do the right thing’.
Later he emphasises the difference between gambling and speculating, presumably in an effort to restore the good names of the banking community, following their successful attempt to destroy Western economies.His main argument is the difference in risk, in that the gambler creates his own risk, whereas the spectator is given risk by the market on which he is betting. This is no way diminishes the terrible effects that this vile practice can have.
- His fourth point deals with “how silly progressives are being when they take up the mantle of environmentalism:” He claims that environmentalists are hypocrites for wanting to invest in alternative energy, and at the same time wanting to invest in roads to create jobs.
No progressive has ever said that, least of all myself. No one would ever be stupid enough to propose such a contradiction. He also claims that we ‘vilify’ people who don’t agree with us. At times this is true, I concede. But this a problem that the whole political community faces, not just the left-wing segment. To suggest that all bigoted people are left-wing is simply ridiculous, especially when right-wingers are just as bad.
People who speak against the idea of climate change aren’t all the puppets of big oil companies, but lets face it, most of them are. It’s difficult to argue such a hopeless case unless you’re being heavily paid.
“The government has no stake in actually repairing or managing infrastructure efficiently. Why should it when those average people, who you selected to be elected representatives, can get far more by pillaging other countries, by bartering with each other for favors/votes, or to put it more simply; why should they try to serve the public when they can get far more by playing baseball?”
If anybody knows what that means, please get back to me.
To round off, he starts talking about the failure of public programs, including the state-school system. I can’t be bothered to argue this case, as it is so painfully obvious. I’ll simply end with a quotation from John Stuart Mill:
“Conservatives are not necessarily stupid, but most stupid people are Conservatives.”