Friday 23 February 2024

Fatti Non Foste A Viver Come Bruti

In itself, the landing of Odysseus is wonderful news. Yet space is being both privatised and militarised, a very common combination but always a lethal one, and that by the country that does not recognise it as a common resource for all humanity. There needs to be a return to President Eisenhower’s proposal, in a speech to the United Nations General Assembly on 22nd September 1960, for the principles of the Antarctic Treaty to be extended to Outer Space.

If God had not intended us to be a spacefaring species, then He would never have put anything up there for us to find. People who think that these missions impoverish anyone, even as an initial outlay, do not understand how the money supply works. As a sovereign state with its own free floating, fiat currency, Britain has as much of that currency as it chooses to issue to itself, with readily available fiscal and monetary means of controlling any inflationary effect.

Why, though, spend that currency on this? Welcome to the Anthropocene, that is why. Life is the geological force that shapes the Earth, and the emergence of human cognition fundamentally transforms the biosphere, not least by the uniquely human phenomenon of economic growth, so that human mastery of nuclear processes is beginning to create resources through the transmutation of elements, enabling us, among other things, to explore space and to exploit the resources of the Solar System. Vladimir Vernadsky and Krafft Ehricke will yet have their day. They may be having it now.

“To increase the power of Man over Nature, and to abolish the power of Man over Man,” said Trotsky. “Dominion,” says the God of the Bible. Dominion over the beasts, thus over the land, and thus over everything on and under the land. Dominion over the fish, thus over the waters, and thus over everything in and under the waters. And dominion over the birds, thus over the sky, and thus over everything in the sky, as far up as the sky goes, and the sky goes up a very long way.

That dominion is entrusted so that we might “be fruitful and multiply”. Entrusted as it is to the whole human race, its purpose is, “To increase the power of Man over Nature, and to abolish the power of Man over Man,” per seguir virtute e conoscenza. Celebrate the full compatibility between the highest view of human demographic, economic, intellectual and cultural expansion and development, and the most active concern for the conservation of the natural world and of the treasures bequeathed by such expansion and development in the past. That means growth, industry, what someone once nearly called “the white heat of technology”, and the equitable distribution of their fruits among and within the nations of the world, for everyone to enjoy at least the standard of living that we ourselves already enjoyed.

There is always climate change, and any approach to it must protect and extend secure employment with civilised wages and working conditions, encourage economic development around the world, uphold the right of the working class and of people of colour to have children, hold down and as far as practicable reduce the fuel prices that always hit the poor hardest, and refuse to restrict travel opportunities or a full diet to the rich. In Britain, we must be unequivocal about regretting the defeat of the miners in 1985.

We sent our manufacturing to India and China, yet we have the gall to criticise their carbon emissions. And we expect to depend for energy on the Sun, the wind and the tides, precisely because it is beyond our power to stop them from doing what they do and we just have to live with it, yet we also expect to be able to stop climate change rather than finding ways of living with it. Let there be solar, wind and tidal energy in the mix. The base of that mix is nuclear and coal. The coal without which there can be no steel, and thus no wind turbines or tidal turbines, just as there could be no rigs, pipelines, or power stations. Britain stands on one thousand years’ worth of coal, and was the world leader in clean coal technology until the Miners’ Strike. Again, do not vote for anyone who will not say that the miners were right.

Fracking? There is no problem with any energy source in principle, but none of that shale gas has turned up yet, and if it is anywhere, then it is in heavily populated areas that could do without the earthquakes, the poisoned water, and all he rest of it. Any economic arrangement is a political choice, not a law of physics, and the “free” market cannot deal with climate change while defending and expanding our achievements. That is precisely why it is being promoted. But instead, we need the State, albeit a vastly more participatory and democratic State than has often existed. The energy sources to be preferred are those which provided high-wage, high-skilled, high-status jobs.

Say it again, let us harness the power of the State, and deliver an all-of-the-above energy policy based around civil nuclear power and this country’s vast reserves of coal. Around those twin poles of nuclear power and of clean coal technology, let there be oil, gas, lithium, wind, solar, tidal, and everything else, bathing this country in heat and light. This is why we have a State. Then there would be no song and dance over a lowering of the energy cap which, while welcome enough in itself, hardly began to address the overall problem.

The standing charges on gas and electricity are 50 times the cost of maintaining the networks, and although they are supposed to protect the suppliers from going bankrupt, not only have they repeatedly failed to do so, but they have never come down when those suppliers have been eye-wateringly profitable. The whole thing is a racket to rank with HS2, PPE, the money already paid to Rwanda to take absolutely nobody (having always said that it would take only 100 people per year), and the top secret £1,593,535,200 to rent the Bibby Stockholm for two years. Someone is being paid, and it is not us.

That is the customer base for the £450 million worth of cocaine that has been seized at Southampton Port. There cannot be a “free” market in general, but not in drugs, or prostitution, or pornography, or unrestricted alcohol, or unrestricted gambling. That is an important part of why there must not be a “free” market in general. Enacting and enforcing laws against drugs, prostitution and pornography, and regulating alcohol, tobacco and gambling, are clear examples of State intervention in, and regulation of, the economy. Radical change would be impossible if the workers, the youth and the poor were in a state of stupefaction, and that baleful situation, which has been contrived in the past, is being contrived again today. The United States stopped going to the Moon as it started to become awash with drugs. There as here or anywhere else, that way lies living as brutes, instead of that for which we were made, the pursuit of virtue and knowledge.

As John Cooper Clarke said on this morning’s Today programme, anyone would enjoy narcotic if they did it once, so do not even do it once. We need a single category of illegal drug, including cannabis, with a crackdown on possession, including a mandatory sentence of two years for a first offence, three years for a second offence, four years for a third offence, and so on. I no longer believe in prison sentences that include the possibility of release in less than 12 months; in that case, then your crime was not bad enough to warrant imprisonment, which the possession of drugs is. We need to restore the specific criminal offence of allowing one’s premises to be used for illegal drug purposes. And Peter Hitchens’s The War We Never Fought should be taught in schools, as pro-drugs propaganda is routinely.

This is our year. When I tell you that there is going to be a hung Parliament, then you can take that to the bank. I spent the 2005 Parliament saying that it was psephologically impossible for the Heir to Blair’s Conservative Party to win an overall majority. I predicted a hung Parliament on the day that the 2017 General Election was called, and I stuck to that, entirely alone, all the way up to the publication of the exit poll eight long weeks later. And on the day that Rishi Sunak became Prime Minister, I predicted that a General Election between him and Keir Starmer would result in a hung Parliament.

To strengthen families and communities by securing economic equality and international peace through the democratic political control of the means to those ends, including national and parliamentary sovereignty, we need to hold the balance of power. Owing nothing to either main party, we must be open to the better offer. There does, however, need to be a better offer. Not a lesser evil, which in any case the Labour Party is not.


  1. Only David Lindsay could have written Dante in Space. What do you think of Dante's Ulisse?

    1. Well, of course, he had no access to Homer, being dependent on Ovid and, especially, Virgil, with the Romans as the heirs of Aeneas, and with the sly tricks of Ulysses as affronts to honour. Hence Dante has him all the way down in the eighth ring of the Eighth Circle of Hell. But still telling a good story.