Tuesday, 6 October 2009

If a party leader's university background is that important

The BBC are enjoying getting their teeth into David Cameron's Bullingdon Club membership, Jeremy Paxman seemed obsessed by it during his, now apparently edited, interview with Boris Johnson. I have yet to hear an interviewer raise Gordon Brown's university activities with Gordon Brown, so I will here.

Whilst student rector at Edinburgh University Gordon Brown edited a pamphlet called Alternative Edinburgh. Here are some extracts from what has come to be known as the "freeloader's charter", so you can see how Gordon Brown's mind worked even at such an early age (my comments):
"If you're British and can give an address, free money is available from social security, basic £5.80 per week." "free money" I am not sure Gordon Brown has even now worked out that social security is not "free money"

"Social and medical benefits are your right, not charity hand-outs, so never be reticent about claiming them. For whatever reason the so-called welfare state was brought into being, it can and must be used to its full extent." That phrase "must be used to its full extent" reminds me of the Cloward-Piven strategy; "Cloward and Piven calculated that persuading even a fraction of potential welfare recipients to demand their entitlements would bankrupt the system. The result, they predicted, would be "a profound financial and political crisis" that would unleash "powerful forces … for major economic reform at the national level."

How to get a free bath: "Sit in the lobby until reception is busy, then walk quickly upstairs or into the lift. Even the plushest hotels have at least one public bathroom to a floor." Or become an MP and get the public to pay.

How to get a free meal: "Con your way to asking for a glass of water or sit beside drinkers and they will feed you for nothing." Or become an MP?

How to get into parties on the cheap: attend a party with "a carrier bag of empty cans with two half-bricks at the bottom". I can imagine Gordon Brown pulling this stroke well into his thirties; he seems the sort of person who's mean with his own money but wildly generous with everybody else's

When caught by police attempting to con someone, the booklet advises, "You may think you are guilty but legal advice can show otherwise." The now almost standard Labour defence in prototype form.

Maybe someone should point out to Gordon Brown that Social Security is not "free money", it is paid for out of hard-working people's taxes. Clearly Gordon Brown's views have barely altered, as he has spent the last 12 years building up a society of freeloaders and buying the votes of more by giving some of their taxes back in the form of benefits.

In my opinion Gordon Brown's past as a propagandist for freeloading is even more relevant to his nature now than David Cameron's membership of The Bullingdon Club is to his world view. However I doubt that Jeremy Paxman will ever raise it with Gordon Brown or Channel 4 commission a documentary drama about it.


Stephen Fox said...

I believe the political strategy you are thinking of is the Cloward-Piven strategy.
As Richard Poe on Discoverthenetworks describes it, 'When pressed to honor every word of every law and statute, every Judaeo-Christian moral tenet, and every implicit promise of the liberal social contract, human agencies inevitably fall short. The system's failure to "live up" to its rule book can then be used to discredit it altogether, and to replace the capitalist "rule book" with a socialist one.'
Cloward and Pivens were followers of Saul Alinsky.
The use, by groups like Acorn of the CRA law to force banks to lend sub-prime mortgages, and the consequent triggering of the financial crisis is a perfect instance of that strategy.
The final touch has been to paint the whole disaster as a failure of the banking system.
Obama is of course deeply involved in it, having acted as attorney for Acorn in some of those lawsuits, being a self professed follower of Saul Alinsky, and in continuing now to reinforce the CRA in spite of the damage it did.

Kind regards

Not a sheep said...

Indeed it is, as I blogged here only a few weeks ago. That's the trouble with middle age, the short-term memory goes...

Stephen Fox said...

Tell me about it.
Had to look it all up myself...again.