The measure of our government

These days, whenever there is criticism raised against one of their policies, the Conservative government, *most ignorant of what [it’s] most assur’d, asks that we mitigate any pesky details as “part of a package”. They want us to see them as having the full grasp of the big picture and to believe that they have a coherent and comprehensive plan to suit. The package always involves conjured projection and results in false economy, the effect of which is misery, division and fear-filled chaos. Just how much is down to carelessness and ineptitude or callous and deliberate disregard can be hard to discern.

Whatever the mix, they skim over most things with their blinkers on. Every promise is backed by revisionism or some impossible prediction, manipulated to complement an ideological agenda. They patronise with “look: these are difficult decisions” but they don’t have any difficulty, at all, in making their decisions. Rather, any difficulty the Government has is in the expanding audience that finds its words and deeds unpalatable. Every successful challenge to their preposterous machinations is to be congratulated but it behoves us to keep in mind that each occasion marks a tawdry default philosophy, yearning to dominate and manifest. It is not a philosophy divined through integrity, wisdom or justice. It does not contain respect or compassion for people and it makes little allowance for dignity.

The cheapest media salivates over each meme and event as though it were a turn in a Roman amphitheatre and the quality of coverage and scrutiny at the serious end is an intellectual hit-and-miss and, too often, occurring too long after the fact to be an effective holding to democratic account.

What kind of Society does this prevailing political machinery believe it is keeping secure? Not one within which to find stability and contentment. Which silly, self-absorbed playground values do its proponents believe they are upholding while they undermine or dismiss the universal values over which they love to claim mastery? We are quickening on the cusps of monumental shifts at every level and whether this heralds an age of enlightenment or darkness is being determined by how we respond to the present. Those that lead and inform and shape public discourse are dabbling with nuance and detail at their whim and at our peril. We are wasting time.

Domestic and foreign policies are mirrors to each other and together, they reflect the measure of our government and project the potential of our country.

It is perfectly reasonable and understandable to be worried about the motivation, competency and integrity of the people in control and their processional devotees. Why on earth should we believe that they truly care about people, the planet or peace? Look at how easily they treat disadvantaged and vulnerable people as burdens and threats. Look at how they causally disregard the environment. They are not in power for the love of Humanity, not at home or abroad.

Having serious reservations about, for example, Cameron’s Syria ‘plan’ does not mean that you are unpatriotic, a lefty pacifist, a coward or an appeaser of fascists. And railing against their cruel, socio-economic nonsense that threatens nearly every good thing about us does not mean that you are anti-business, envious of the rich, a ‘Corbynista’, a scrounger/shirker, or an extremist.

I am afraid. Not of the things our leaders tell us to be afraid of but because I fear that our leaders really do not have a clue what they are doing. And I am quite terrified that, actually, they do.

 

*’Merciful heaven,
Thou rather with thy sharp and sulphurous bolt
Splits the unwedgeable and gnarlèd oak
Than the soft myrtle; but man, proud man,
Dress’d in a little brief authority,
Most ignorant of what he’s most assur’d—
His glassy essence—like an angry ape
Plays such fantastic tricks before high heaven
As makes the angels weep; who, with our spleens,
Would all themselves laugh mortal.’
[Measure for Measure, II.ii]

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