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

In recent weeks, Labour could not make a simple statement in support of those protesting for freedom in Iran. It couldn’t give a straightforward condemnation of a regime that stones people to death for adultery, publicly hangs gay people, and forces women by threat of criminal punishment to wear headscarves in public. The hard left’s virulent anti-Americanism renders it ‘just not that simple’. No, with the influence and influx of ‘Stop The War’ ideologies, Labour has been dragged so deeply down the rabbit hole of anti-imperialist theories that they cannot condemn dictatorial, theocratic, repressive Iran in case it somehow strengthens, or implies support for, democratic, secular and free America. My Labour would see America is a necessary bulwark against Iran, yet the Labour we have sees Iran as a necessary bulwark against America. I cannot in all good conscience tell a single person to vote for that.

– Nora Mulready, writing an article titled “Today I resigned from the Labour Party

As I am some manner of wild-eyed libertarian/classical liberal, I suspect Ms. Mulready and I might not see eye to eye on certain issues, yet I have to respect someone who has the emotional maturity and intellectual integrity to transcend the tribal impulses we are all prone to, to detach themselves from an institution they were once deeply invested in.

29 comments to Samizdata quote of the day

  • Laird

    “I make no judgments against those who are staying”

    Really? After all that she wrote before? That’s a degree of cowardice I wasn’t expecting.

  • Nicholas (Unlicenced Joker) Gray

    Laird, those who stay might be thinking that they can turn Labour around, and she thinks they can’t.

  • Vinegar Joe

    As usual, the Left eats its own.

  • There is a lot of handwringing on the left now over what Labour has become, speaking as if it were some bastion of tolerance and liberty before Corbyn took over. However, I remember it as being the party of choice for those who happily supported the Soviet Union throughout the Cold War, remained staunchly anti-American afterwards, and in the Blair years epitomised nasty, petty, authoritarianism and callous disdain for anyone who didn’t agree with them. I can accept that some things have changed recently, but the idea that the current Labour party represents a radical departure from what it always was is laughable: this was always going to be where they ended up.

  • Brian Swisher

    I can’t add much to what Tim has said, other than to note that I’m amazed that it has taken her this long to see it, and at least to applaud her that she has torn the cobwebs from her eyes.

  • Labour party represents a radical departure from what it always was is laughable: this was always going to be where they ended up.

    As with all transitional forms, this is but a stage they are going through. The final stage will be a fashion parade of hempen neck support with lamp post accessories.

  • Stonyground

    Well at least they are going to buy every homeless person in the country a house. Who could possibly disagree with such a noble enterprise?

  • Stonyground
    January 29, 2018 at 9:39 am
    Well at least they are going to buy every homeless person in the country a house. Who could possibly disagree with such a noble enterprise?

    I note the sarcasm, but I can only say with feeling, everyone who has ever been exposed to the homeless community could easily disagree. 🙂

  • Well at least they are going to buy every homeless person in the country a house. Who could possibly disagree with such a noble enterprise?

    The poor buggers that have to pay for it…but of course you were being sarcastic…

  • Patrick

    Are they still planning to give everyone a free owl?

  • they are going to buy every homeless person in the country a house (Stonyground,
    January 29, 2018 at 9:39 am, and John Galt January 29, 2018 at 10:00 am)

    Let me add to John and Stonyground’s sarcasm by remarking that the party of ‘get the new pronouns right’ (or it’s a hate speech prosecution) seems weak on older pronouns: surely, ‘They are going to buy’ should be ‘We are going to (be compelled to) buy’.

    Quantitative modifiers seem also a point of Labour weakness. We will be compelled to give enough money to them to buy every homeless person a house twice over, after which they will maybe succeed in housing some homeless.

  • Apostasy (political, religious, social) is always difficult for people who’ve earlier been public in their devotion, even in their own small set. The self-regarding dislike of saying, “I was wrong; I chose the wrong group as my vehicle for making the world better” both motivates you to stay and finds support in the hope that you can still turn things around in ‘your’ party.

    There is also a transactional aspect. After every decision to treat a given issue as not sufficient reason to leave, that issue looks smaller in the rear-view mirror as you progress to the next. You managed to explain it away – to pay its moral cost – in your own mind, so an overall moral bill that looks formidable to outsiders seems small to you – a lot of “settled” issues before the final, unpayable ones.

    So I’m less surprised than Laird (January 29, 2018 at 1:29 am) that she makes “no judgments against those who are staying”. Catastrophe theory may one day kick in as she reviews past issues, but it may have seemed a very closely balanced decision to her on the day before she finally made it.

  • ‘They are going to buy’ should be ‘We are going to (be compelled to) buy’.

    Oh no no no it’s worse than that: the report I read had it that they will give councils the power to seize houses that are kept “deliberately empty.”

  • Paul Marks

    Yes – the Marxist (Frankfurt School plus French Post Modernism – which is also disguised Marxism) Labour Party is evil, it regards the West as being about “exploitation” and “oppression” and will ally with anyone (even the Islamic Republic of Iran) who hates the West.

    But the Labour Party is not some fridge group – it represents the MAINSTREAM of Western (not just British) schools (including many private schools) and universities.

    That the West is about “capitalist oppression and exploitation” is the heart of what the Western education system teaches – and the people who have said (for decades) that it does not matter what the schools and universities teach, as people will “wise up” when they enter the “real world” with have a brief time to think about their mistaken view – when Comrade Jeremy Corbyn’s followers are eating them.

    And I am not using a figure of speech – as starvation (caused by “Social Justice” policies) will make “eat the rich” far more than a slogan – accept that “the rich” will be anyone the Reds do not like.

  • Jeremy Corbyn has just announced that every left-wing man will be given a bigger dick in the name of equality.

    And every left-wing women bigger tits…

  • John Galt III


    All your parties are corrupted not just Labour. No wonder Trump isn’t remotely interested in going to London.

    Israel gets it but Europe is hopeless.


  • Stonyground

    The thing that annoyed me about the buy everyone a house policy is that it is an absurdly simplistic answer to a very complex problem. Cornyn presumably thinks that we will all say ‘Oh durr why didn’t we think of that?’. Rather than genuine questions such as where is the money going to come From? How many times do we rehome some guy every time he trashes the place? What will happen to the already sky high house prices so that people who are actually prepared to work and pay for their own house get screwed?

  • Runcie Bulspune

    I wonder just how far Ms Mulready will take this notion, will it be a sudden realization that this kind of activity stems from an undercurrent of authoritarianism, and is the inevitable result of where an authoritarian ideology leads? Of course, like any good little socialist, she may actually like authoritarian beliefs and is just ashamed the route of the current tyrant is not leading her where she’d rather drag everyone else.

    Labour has been dragged so deeply down the rabbit hole of anti-imperialist theories

    There is a theory that bunnies have their own secret universe, beneath their subterranean infrastructure is a vast under-rabbit world, and therein is a sub-rabbit that plagues them in turn and burrows into the cavernous bunny under-cities, and these creatures themselves have deep holes, and Labour is at the bottom of one of those – digging.

  • Runcie Bulspune

    The issue with housing is a simple case that the likes of Corbyn refuse to admit it was a problem caused by government policy, otherwise he would look stupid promoting more government policy in his “we can fix it” diatribe. Housing is expensive because of lack of supply, ostensibly caused by government regulation, and too much demand, undoubtedly caused by government immigration control (or lack of).

  • Laird

    “it was a problem caused by government policy”

    That can be said about almost every problem plaguing society.

    “Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly and applying the wrong remedies.” — Groucho Marx

    “There is always an easy solution to every human problem – neat, plausible and wrong.” – H. L. Mencken

  • AndrewZ

    “it was a problem caused by government policy”

    “That can be said about almost every problem plaguing society”

    That could make for a good libertarian talking point. Ask people if they can name a single major problem facing our society today that was not either caused by government, made worse by government or needlessly prolonged by the government blocking any effective action to tackle it. Can you name even one?

  • ragingnick

    From where Im sitting both the major UK parties have been thoroughly infected with cultural Marxism, so leaving labour is all well and good, but to go where? the only actual conservative party (UKIP) looks finished.
    The Donald chose wisely to stay well away from London, aka Riyadh on the Thames.

  • Mr Ed

    Why did anyone ever vote Labour if not to steal?

  • Sam Duncan

    “I have to respect someone who has the emotional maturity and intellectual integrity to transcend the tribal impulses we are all prone to, to detach themselves from an institution they were once deeply invested in.”

    I’ve always found those people who claim to “love” the Labour Party disturbing. If you’re that emotionally invested in a political party, something has gone very, very wrong.

    I’m sure if I said you never find that attitude outside the Left, someone would instantly come up with examples (as you say, we’re all prone to tribal impulses), but it does seem to be much rarer. Largely, I think, because the rest of us recognise that parties are a means to an end, not the end in itself. We’d no more profess love for a political party than we would for a fridge. If it goes wrong, dump it and get a new one.

    I actually find the paragraph before the one you quote more revealing:

    The controversy over regeneration in Haringey is a perfect example of the conflict at the heart of the Labour Party. Those who believe in picking up any tool you can find to make people’s lives better now, and those who believe it’s the statist nature of the tools that matters. In their campaigns against the regeneration of some of the most deprived parts of the borough, those who now dominate Labour revealed an unforgivable willingness to exploit. They fought, (and have probably won), to keep people in positions of deprivation. Why? To manufacture anger and hatred as fuel for their desired class war.

    That’s not new, Nora. Look at the cities in Britain whose Councils have been dominated by Labour for the last 50 years or more. I watched the district of Glasgow where my mother grew up descend from a bustling, lively, little town-within-a-city not all that different to the salubrious West End where I live, if a bit poorer, into the poster-child for urban deprivation under successive Labour councils. Its stately Victorian Public Hall, donated to the burgh by a local businessman with the help of public subscription, was allowed over the decades to fall into disrepair, to the point where it more or less fell down. Traffic from the main street was diverted on to a new motorway which, almost in contempt, crosses over the old road at one point to create a gloomy underpass. The soul was ripped out of the place.

    Tory governments didn’t do this (for half of the 40 years I’m talking about, Labour was in power anyway); it was the council. Nor was it lack of “investment”; motorways cost a fortune. An eye-watering amount of money has been spent on the area in the name of “regeneration”.

    The question is, regeneration into what? The landscape is now dominated by a giant welfare office. Grateful clients is what Labour has always wanted, at least in living memory. Glad so see you’re catching on.

  • Stonyground

    “They fought, (and have probably won), to keep people in positions of deprivation. Why?”

    Because poor people tend to vote Labour. Start rewarding enterprise and hard work and in no time at all you have social mobility and a bunch of newly minted middle class people who are more likely to vote Conservative. At least that was the case when an actual Conservative party existed. The really great part is that you can tell these people that it is not your fault but the fault of evil Tories that they are being screwed over and they will believe you.

  • Paul Marks

    By the way – before anyone brings it up…..

    Kermit Roosevelt’s boast that his coup effort brought down the pro Soviet regime in Iran in 1953 (which was “elected” by preventing voting in areas of the country opposed to it) is wrong – his coup effort actually failed, it was a coup about a week later that succeeded.

    That was just in case some Rothbardian crawled out from under their stone to pretend that the Islamic Revolution of 1979 was caused by the coup against the pro Soviet regime (which would have had the Soviets down to the Gulf and with a stranglehold over the Middle East) in 1953. The Islamic Revolution of 1979 was only “the fault of the United States” in the sense of President Carter’s demented undermining of the Shah.

  • Rich Rostrom

    While Communist sympathizers infested the Labour Party, they did not always control it. Clement Attlee sent the RAF to assist in the Berlin Airlift, joined NATO, and sent British soldiers to fight Communism in Korea.

    AFAIK, Wilson and Callaghan never even suggested Britain should leave NATO, nor did they yield to the (Soviet-influenced) Left’s call for nuclear disarmament.

    I might also note that Tony Blair took Britain into the Iraq and Afghanistan wars over the vehement objections of the Left, and that Gordon Brown kept British troops in Afghanistan, again over such objections.

    Today’s Labour Party has lurched far to the left; but I’m sure that (as before, in a way) there is a large minority opposed to the current fashion, which hopes to redeem the party from its folly. Is this a vain hope? “New Labour”, under Blair, succeeded in part because it renounced many of the egregious errors of the past, and even adopted some elements of Thatcherism.

  • Nicholas (Unlicenced Joker) Gray

    Mr Ed, If the (Labour) Government does it, then it is not called stealing! Where you been?

  • Thailover

    This brings to mind my Leftist Pyramid theory. (Not original, nor brilliant, but worth stating explicitly).

    The majority of Leftists in the pyramid are complete fools, ‘brainwashed tools who worship the crypto-religion of Leftism, and accept it’s ostensible public claims on faith, depsite obvious contradictions and factual refutations. (Think Gender bias as a basis of the “gender wage gap” as an example). No amount of reasoning and refuting facts can shake their unwavering faith. (Otherwise known as pig-headed insanity).

    Then there is an upper-layer of the pyramid not made up of believers, but rather opportunists who know full well that they’re shoveling lies, but in their view, the end justifies the means, and no small amount of power comes their way. Even if it’s power over idiots, it’s enough for them.

    Then there is the rarified tip top of the pyramid that’s composed of pseudo-Leftists who aren’t really leftists at all. They’re globalists who are manipulating the sell-outs and the idiots below them.

    Globalists have one goal, complete control over others. They value nothing else.

    This is why, when the globalists import millions of primative 3rd worlders, the lower part of the pyramid, the useful idiots, lie to themselves about the nature and intent of the importation and the results of doing so. The upper level of sell-outs say it’s for the best and the globalists get their way. Actual Leftist values are diversity, equality, respect and empowerment for women, gay rights, etc. The wave of 3rd worlders have no respect nor tolerance for anyone not-them, consider women to be rape chattel and are fine with the idea of hanging infidels and gays from cranes in the public square.

    This is as anti-Left as one can get. So why endorse ideas from “radical” Islam? Why import millions of these savages and plop them down into small towns? Because 3rd worlders tend to vote for larger government. That’s the end goal. That’s the basket the Leftists are placing all their eggs in.

    Leftists are being used by the globalists.