RogerBW's Blog

The RogerBW Manifesto (2024 edition) 05 June 2024

It's time again for my occasional political rant. As usual, these are the things I'd try to do if anyone were daft enough to put me in charge; they're also promises that would encourage me to vote for people who made them.

The things I've said before are still valid, I think, but here are some things that are not in the mainstream political discourse and really should be.

  • Rejoin the European Union. More than half the people in the UK have said they want this. Why is no political party talking about it? (The Lib Dems mention it as an "eventual objective" waaaaay down their list of things to do. It should be a headline policy. After the last few years, the UK as an individual country has nothing left that the world wants, no reason anyone else should listen to us or do us any favours.)

  • Admit that COVID is still here, bird flu is coming, and we all benefit from a healthier population. Mask mandates and proper air-exchanging ventilation (a solved problem) in every indoor space, and if you can't mask, sorry, I know some people have genuinely good reasons, but you still spread disease and you can't come in. Free vaccinations for all.

  • The scary trans are not out to "recruit" your children and despoil the purity of your womenfolk. (Some of them are not saints. I gather there's the occasional non-saint among non-trans people too.) There are more visible trans people now just as there are more visible gay people, because they believed the politicians who claimed not to despise them. Everybody promised to ban "conversion therapy" for homosexuality, which does not work and is just legalised torture; they haven't even done that. While we're at it, tell the Americans who are coming here and paying to try to get abortion and contraception made illegal to naff off. All these things are part of the same sad little need to control other people's sexuality.

  • Genocide is bad actually. (Yes, time travellers, this is not a mainstream opinion among the political classes, though it's nearly universal elsewhere.)

  • Remember when we had the right to protest? We should have that again.

  • Holy crap the planet is literally on fire. Start by trying to keep older promises (like say not opening new oil fields), and immediately start phasing out all fossil fuels. Yes, I like my car, but I also like not being dead. Yes, we'll need more and better trains, so talking of which.

  • Nationalise them. Buses too. And the power and the water, and the gas until it's turned off completely. Competition over shared infrastructure just means shareholder profits come before everything else. Public benefits generate economic positivity by existing; they don't also need to give money to shareholders.

  • Immigration? Yes please! We don't have enough people working to look after our pensioners now (either in tax base or in the jobs that directly help them). It's immigration or Carousel.

As ever, my core point:

  • End the politics of fear. Yes, we have lots of challenges. Let's face them with open eyes rather than by cowering under the bed and calling for strong men to protect us. Strong men do not have our best interests at heart.

See also:
The RogerBW Manifesto (2015 edition)
The RogerBW Manifesto (2019 edition)

  1. Posted by John Dallman at 10:11am on 06 June 2024

    On re-joining the EU, I agree entirely we should do it, but the EU won't be interested until there's a solid political consensus in the UK, and we're quite a way from that. It would also have to be a consensus for the deal we'd get on re-joining, which would include adopting the Euro and not getting various rebates and opt-outs that we used to enjoy.

    Notable among those are media ownership rules that would end the Tory press' diversification into TV. That's their financial motive, and a significant reason why Labour are keeping quiet. When Rupert Murdoch dies, there may be some re-thinking, delayed by embarrassment over the way that politicians danced to his tune.

  2. Posted by RogerBW at 10:57am on 06 June 2024

    The thoroughgoing divergence of the political-media class as a whole from what most people actually want was very clear over the EU even before it became utterly blatant over Palestine. But I honestly don't think there is any way to change that other than bloody revolution, and that's no guarantee of making things better.

    In relation to joining the EU specifically, even if it's going to take ten years, if we don't make the domestic process a top priority now it'll take fifteen years, and if we don't start it at the next election it'll take twenty, and so on. It's probably too late for you and me anyway.

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