Err, why?

If you believe politicians are useless, you’ll end up with useless politicians
In an age where it’s fashionable to be utterly cynical about all politicians, Alex Proud says it’s time we stopped belittling and denigrating our elected leaders

Given that I do believe that they’re useless cunts why should I stop believing they’re useless cunts just because they turn out to be useless cunts?

13 comments on “Err, why?

  1. It is logically false. I believe in data privacy. I get mass surveillance.

    Okay – if wider society believes politicians are useless, then you are (logically) going to attract people with thick skins. But a thick skin does not imply uselessness.

  2. Blair may not believe he screwed up over Iraq, but, that aside, he was our most talented leader since Thatcher and did a great deal of good.

    The unprincipled, egomaniacal, power hungry twat didn’t do any good let alone a great deal.

  3. “useless” is clearly wrong. They might only be good for sitting in the stocks and being pelted with wet sponges, but that at least is a use. I suppose you should also reflect on the fact that to get rid of the stuff that is useless (e.g. EU membership, most of the NHS (mis)management, etc, etc, etc) requires either parliament or a revolution, and the latter is something that happens very rarely. So the question becomes how to channel their enthusiastic zeal into stuff that is actually useful. Personally I am in favour of the Monty Python approach. Whenever they stand up and pontificate they should be subject to a 16 ton weight falling on them when they reach a certain level of uselessness. That should help them to focus.

  4. “he was our most talented leader since Thatcher”: out of a choice of two! The trouble was that the talents in question were merely thespian.

  5. The are only useless at helping the rest of us. When it comes to helping themselves and their friends they are skilled indeed.

  6. Useless would be fine. It’s the combination of useless plus a messianic sense of their own ability to change the world which is the bad part.

  7. This sounds like a variant of the witch doctor medicine, “only if you believe it enough does it work”! scam.

  8. alastair harris: I favour the approach taken by Zaleucus the Lawgiver of Locria. Any politician, bureaucrat or Fourth Estate parasite* proposing to extend or amend the law does so with a ligature round his neck. If the proposal is rejected, he is garrotted on the spot. We should probably garrotte most of the Labour Party, half the Tories and all the LibDems anyway, just to be on the safe side. The only exception is proposals to repeal laws; those would have a presumption of automatic passage.

    * would this apply to BMA bigwigs trying to ban things? Oh God, yes. In spades.

  9. @BiCR

    Nice one! Though his punishment for adultery is a bit harsh, except for politicians. We should hold politicians and others who purport to rule us to higher standards than we hold ourselves. I like this from Guido.

  10. I’ve just heard a wonderful comment on a Cato Daily podcast. The subject was immigration but he went on to say it applies widely. I paraphrase

    “when you’ve lived in DC a long time you realise it isn’t a battle between left and right but between politicians and common sense”

  11. In an age where it’s fashionable to be utterly cynical about all politicians

    Does Alex Proud really think that’s only a contemporary fashion?

    I have simplified my politics into an utter detestation of all existing governments; and, as it is the shortest and most agreeable and summary feeling imaginable, the first moment of an universal republic would convert me into an advocate for single and uncontradicted despotism. The fact is, riches are power, and poverty is slavery all over the earth, and one sort of establishment is no better, nor worse, for a people than another.

    — Byron

    Seems to have been pretty fashionable in the early 19th Century.

  12. I think the problem is that the broader the remit of any governance system, the less effective it will be at governing. The collapse in trust of politicians is down to the recognition that all they produce is continual failure, and this has come about as a result of the inverse proportionality between the government’s size and effectiveness.

    If they were only charged with doing a few well defined things, they might have a chance of doing them quite well. Charged with doing everything, they achieve nothing. Of course, this was the intention of the USA’s federal constitution; which was destroyed by the other problem; any governance system charged with doing a few things well will naturally seek to expand its remit so that it does everything, badly.

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