We are developing the social individualist meta-context for the future. From the very serious to the extremely frivolous... lets see what is on the mind of the Samizdata people.

Samizdata, derived from Samizdat /n. - a system of clandestine publication of banned literature in the USSR [Russ.,= self-publishing house]

Samizdata quote of the day

Nobody who asks for “authenticity” in politicians understands how decadent this sounds. Most people in most societies for most of history would have made do with administrative competence, incorruptibility and a disinclination to plunder citizens or conscript them as war fodder. Mid-20th century Britons dreamt of low inflation and heated homes before they caressed hopes of conviction politics. A country with the leisure to take umbrage at scripted interviews and bloodless technocracy is doing fine. The modern distaste for spin, which makes heroes of plain-speakers such as Jeremy Corbyn, the leader of the UK’s opposition Labour party, is like the campaign against obesity: warranted, but also a mark of how far we have come. There are worse problems to have and we had them not long ago.

Janan Ganesh

I made a related point about the use, or misuse, of the word “authentic” a short while ago here. Some people demurred and said a better word might be “integrity”, but I think that the way that people are praising Corbyn for being “authentic” is that they perceive him as being the opposite of slick or spun. That is all well and good, but I can see only one merit in being an authentic admirer of the IRA, of socialist Venezuela, of Hamas, of nationalisation, punitive tax and central bank money printing – and that merit is that the warning is out there, big and bold. There is no pretence.



6 comments to Samizdata quote of the day

  • 21st century Britons will be dreaming of low inflation and heated homes if Corbyn has anything to do with it.

  • Paul Marks

    whOOps – you are correct.

    I actually found the speech interesting – and not just because it was so old (as the Daily Telegraph reported – a lot of it was written in the 1980s, literally).

    The basic message was interesting.

    Some people tell that competitive markets (the world economy) should decide things – but the Labour Party rejects that offers another way….

    Perfectly true – it does.

    The Labour party rejects economic freedom – the market, supply and demand.

    It does indeed offer another way.

    Force and fear – plunder.

    That is what Mr Corbyn is offering the voters.

    I, Mr Corbyn, is offering more than the market can.

    Because I, Mr Corbyn, am going to take it by force.

    Under the “pacifist” pose – is a thug.

    No wonder he loves the IRA (and Hamas and the Iranian puppet “Party of God” in Lebanon and Syria) so much.

  • Nicholas (Andy.royd) Gray

    I remember another TV show from Britain, about the UK going socialist when the oil ran out, and how the upper classes treacherously conspire to bring the new PM undone by all means. The new man is so left that he always uses public transport, and has a campaign going against someone suspiciously like Murdoch.
    I think that show is more like what the average Beeb worker really thinks.

  • John Mann

    I dislike spin.

    However, some spin is particularly unappealing. The way that Jeremy Corbyn and John McDonnell spin the activities of the IRA and the way McDonnell spins what he said about the IRA seem to me to be about as contemptible as it gets.

  • Watchman

    If Jeremy Corbyn is authentic, then he would be like the TV persona at all times. Now I have my doubts on this, purely because I suspect he would not be so benign and avuncular as he comes across if he met me in person – I suspect he would show contempt and hostility because I disagree politically (pity – if he really is authentic, he might be a nice fellow to have a drink with – some of my favourite drinking partners are leftists, because at least then I get an intellectual stimulation as well as alchohol (and they are authentic people I suppose…)).

    So a test of authenticity in politicians might be whether if you meet them in a pub they are the same person. Wierdly I suspect David Cameron would win this one hands down…

  • lucklucky

    “The modern distaste for spin, which makes heroes of plain-speakers such as Jeremy Corbyn”

    Corbyn is not a plain speeker. A Marxist can never be a plain speeker it is in the political theory.

    He appears only a plain speaker because of context of Marxist media. And even then the fissures appear: when Corbyn changes the subject of being friend with anti-women and anti-semitics like Hamas and Heezbollah what is he doing? plain spin.

    When he, like others have said, spin the IRA, Khadafi,Soviets,Assad,Iran,Islamism what is he doing?

    So only in the mind of Janan Ganesh of increasingly under aegis of underlined Marxist narrative Financial Times Corbyn does not spin.