Saturday, 7 January 2017

Settlement Activity

The dispute continues between Downing Street and the Foreign Office, between the supporters of Theresa May and the supporters of Boris Johnson, over the UN Resolution condemning Israeli settlements.

If she has no idea what is going on in her Government, then the fault is in her.

I still say that no one ought to bet on her as the last Prime Minister of this Parliament.

But foreign policy is exactly what she, as a political project, is not for or about.

Astonishingly for a Geography graduate, she has no interest whatever in the wider world.

Instead, she perfectly embodies what to those of us who grew up in what were once the citadels of old school trade unionism, and perhaps supremely of the miners, is the mind-boggling parochialism and political indifference of the Tory heartland.

Militantly ignorant of the rest of Britain, never mind of anywhere else, that heartland votes for a party in which it is considered bad manners to talk about politics, and which still organises itself around such things as whist drives.

The last quarter for which the figures are available is the third of 2016, when the two largest donations to any political party were both by trade unions to the Labour Party, the third was by the Co-op to the Co-operative Party, and another union donation to Labour was in seventh place.

At Number 10, so to speak, what appeared to be a married couple gave a quarter of a million pounds to the Lib Dems.

But of the donations to the Conservatives in fifth, sixth, eighth and ninth place, three were by single individuals, while the fourth was the proceeds of a raffle.

A raffle. That raised £200,000. Making it the third highest source of income for this country's governing party. A raffle.

From that entirely foreign country comes a very high proportion of today's Parliamentary Labour Party.

When Tony Blair became Leader of the Labour Party, then the PLP was roughly evenly balanced between the broad Left and the broad Right.

That that is no longer the case has not happened by accident.

The beneficiaries of that non-accident grew up in places where Labour did not even contest local elections, and merely scraped together a parliamentary candidate every four or five years, a candidate who always came third or below by a very wide margin.

They may have joined the Labour Party at school, imagining it to have been founded by Tony Blair. But the first other, if any, members that they ever met were each other, at university.

There, they first heard very carefully vetted Labour MPs, while learning everything else out of some book about, so far as one can tell, the American Democratic Party, and not even a great deal of that.

But they were graduates in London before they ever met Labour Councillors, the ones whose seats they conspired to steal for CV purposes.

From there, they got themselves imposed on Labour parliamentary seats as settlers in what are therefore Occupied Territories.

They hold the local histories and cultures in exactly as much regard as do the residents of Kiryat Arba.

None of this is to say that people from Deep Blue areas ought not to become Labour MPs, any more than that there ought to be an absolute ban on Jews, or even Israeli Jews, living on the West Bank.

But what is going on in Palestine is something else. And so is this.

No comments:

Post a Comment