Politics

The last ten days have been full of politics and sleaze. It seems to me that the apparent surprise shown by many with regard to phone hacking, favours and access to influential politicians, is ingenuous at least. Anyone who has read a holiday blockbuster knows that money passes hands in exchange for information or favour, and that cover-up is used as an incentive to bury bad publicity.

It being only a few days until the Local Government elections, I wonder what stories will surface next. So far we have had almost a full turnout of hopeful councillors in Dalamory. They are working very hard to try and ensure votes. Mike Russell, the Education Minister at Holyrood, turned up at the door with the local cohorts. The Scottish Nationalists are throwing tremendous energy into these local elections. I never used to understand how important they are in the grand scheme of things. Politics in Scotland is an interesting mix-match between London and national affairs and Edinburgh for Scottish devolved power plus the very local councils. It has taken a long time for most of us to get to grips with how it all works. And we seem to be getting a great deal of media coverage for elections in Europe, the United States and throughout the world. It takes a lot of energy to keep up.

As a Christian, I am drawn towards fairness and good manners towards human beings and the planet. Thus, I look out for hints of that in the speeches that are going the rounds. What I find hard to stomach is the stirring up of hostile attitudes towards the less fortunate in society – especially the disabled. So I am glad to read that some senior Conservatives and LibDems are thinking of actively campaigning against the next round of cuts. People are frightened enough about how they are going to manage their finances. When a big bill comes along it can be a choice between staying out of debt or eating. Many charity workers have been reporting that more and more parents admit to skipping a meal each day, so that their children can be fed. This is horrendous in this supposedly civilised country.

Can you tell that I am starting to get mad? I suppose this all seems a bit remote for readers not in the UK, but for those of us who live here the constant warnings of yet more financial hardship are very wearing.

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6 Responses to Politics

  1. Ray Barnes says:

    I agree Freda, and for those of us who are of more mature years there is an ominous familiarity about it.
    Apparently the numbers of people applying to food banks for help to feed themselves and their families is increasing daily.
    I’m far too cynical to believe election promises, from whatever complexion of politician, but there is a real opportunity here for those who really have the common good at heart, to act to prevent further penalising of the poorest.

  2. Dianne says:

    In the UK or the US or anywhere else, 99% of politicians lie, lie, and lie. Even our illustrious president can be found in the odd lie. Unfortunately, it has always been like this although two wrongs don’t make a right. There never were any “good old days” when it comes to politics…both left and right are to blame.

    I do think Murdoch is probably telling the truth when he says he didn’t know what was going on. Sadly, few CEOs, prime ministers or presidents know what’s going on.

  3. Dianne says:

    PS I am not at all persuaded that cutting benefit programs as part of an austerity measure is helpful to the economic situation, let alone individual welfare. As for cuts to programs here in the US, the proposed cuts are all to “future growth” in benefit programs. There are probably ways we can reduce costs, especially health care costs. Something must be done, we cannot go on like this. The national debt is a huge problem. Currently our debt is bigger than our GDP and growing faster than the GDP.

    Unfortunately, if certain programs here in the US are not brought under fiscal control the whole kit and caboodle may go down the drain and that will really hurt the poor and sick.

  4. Graham says:

    Don’t be fooled by the Hype America, the UK and most EU countries are still rich countries, It’s the one’s who hold the wealth and control the wealth have decided that as they don’t use welfare programs they will no longer contribute. “Only little people pay tax” the others have accountants who’ll manage it for them.
    One our Govt’s proposed wheezes for the next budget is not just regional pay for public sector staff but regional benefits for the rest of the population. austerity my eye its just pure greed…(sorry for the rant)

  5. Tabor says:

    Not bored by Scottish politics. Very interesting except to some extent they sound very similar to our here in America. I think everyone wants fairness and good manners, but when you enter a pen full of mud…!

  6. Mina says:

    I am following all the current affairs with a very sceptical attitude. Having grown up with local politics influencing my father’s life (he was a local gov’t civil servant) and seeing how corrupt it was then – 1940s, 50s and 60s – I never developed a respect for the parties. Occasionally a good person would stand and hopefully was elected but on the main once councillors were elected they were in office for themselves, not for those who elected them. I do not see any difference today either in local or national government, Scottish or UK.

    On a more personal note – the local parties do not seem interested in my little vote – so far only one leaflet has been delivered, once to the back door and once to the front door! As of today, I do not know who is standing. However as I strongly believe in voting I will attend the polling station and find out who is looking to be elected and what their views and stance are. This will not give me much time to decide but at least I will be making an effort. I wonder how many others will bother.

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