A blog for the socially and politically conscious, written by a young, gay activist who strongly believes in equality and justice.

Saturday, 27 March 2010

Many faces of Mr Darling

Daft neophyte influence-pedlar Geoff Hoon has just realised that his antics merit an apology to his constituents and the public in general. They certainly do, not that it makes a blind bit of difference whether he apologises or not. There's nothing which can excuse his mendacious attempt to trade on his parliamentary experience, apology or no apology. But, while we're at it, let's have an apology from Tony Blair for being a hypocritical God-bothering war criminal who seems to have found God simultaneously with organising the deaths of hundreds of thousands of innocent Iraqis. Let's have an apology from Gordon Brown for financing it. Let's have a bit of abject grovelling from Peter Mandelson for having had to have three tries at being a responsible minister before he finally established a secure and unelected position from which to betray the working class. And let's have an apology from the bankers for profiting from their own corruption, from Justice Secretary Jack Straw for presiding over a historic erosion of civil liberties in this country and from David Cameron for, well, simply being David Cameron. Lord knows, that's probably a crime against humanity in itself. But let's have the biggest apology of all from Alistair Darling for having more faces than Cerberus; there's the face that purports to defend the economy of the country from excessive and over-hasty cutbacks proposed by the Tories.

There's the face that bungs billions at the bankers to help them survive the consequences of their own excesses and then turns to the taxpayer to fund the measure while still tolerating a frivolous and greedy banking bonus culture. There's the Labour face that decried Thatcherism and all its works all through the extreme right-wing government of the not-so-blessed Margaret. And there's the face that, when asked whether the Treasury figures suggested deeper, tougher cuts than those of Thatcher's government, replied: "They will be deeper and tougher." Now, they could be deeper and tougher that those of the Thatcher government and still be totally acceptable to anyone on the left. But the track record of this government suggests that this is unlikely. There could be, for example, a realistic assessment of the Trident weapons system. Not the replacement cost which is being debated at the moment with estimates between £20 billion and £35 billion, but the whole useless article itself, running costs, replacement costs and all, with Greenpeace suggesting a total of £130 billion for that. Then there're the two new aircraft carriers that are projected by the Ministry of Defence - there's about £15 billion sitting there. And then, of course, there's the war in Afghanistan and the continuing cost of the Iraq occupation. Mr Darling, wearing his hawk face this time, announced yet another £4 billion for the little adventure in Afghanistan in this week's Budget. That's on top of the existing costs, of course, estimated as £4.5 billion last year over the two theatres. All of these projects are dubious politically, and should be considered so by any Labour politician. And Trident is considered dubious operationally by some very highly respected military Establishment figures. In and around those figures is a sum far in excess of what the Chancellor feels he needs to save. Even leaving taxation of bank bonuses and bank profits, ignoring levies on the banks to force repayment of sums owed and a transaction tax on speculations, there's enough to sort out the debt problem. So how about another face, Mr Darling? Why don't you try the face of plain common sense? Or is it going to be just another useless po-faced apology some time in the future?

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