Nobody I know thinks I\’m an extremist!

So says our Ritchie.

I discussed this with a wise friend last evening, over a glass or two of quite nice wine, I admit. They thought I was mad to accept any such comments on the blog: I said it came with the territory. The idea I was an extremist, as many of these commentators like to suggest, made them laugh: as my friend noted, and as I know to be true, being a social democrat is not extreme. It fits you into all mainstream UK political parties right now bar the Tories (I don’t count UKIP and the BNP as main stream). Not so long ago the Tories were happy to embrace it too: Red Tories are trying to revive the idea. Some extremist then.

Reminds me of Pauline Kael: how could Nixon win? Nobody that I know voted for him…..

15 thoughts on “Nobody I know thinks I\’m an extremist!”

  1. Sorry Tim, he’s actually completely right. An extremist is somebody far removed- at the extreme- from wherever the society’s ideological centre currently is. Murphy isn’t in the dead centre, but he’s far closer to it than you are, or the readership of this blog, including myself.

    Extremism is not in itself either a good thing or a bad thing. A person campaigning for gender equality in much of the Islamic world is an extremist, for instance. Gandhi was an extremist. Socialists were once extremists; they are now the centre. A centrist is just somebody who agrees with the ideological hegemony. It may be a good or bad ideological hegemony. That’s what matters, not whether one is in the centre or at the extreme.

  2. Is he an extremist? Yes and no. Comparing his opinions with those of ordinary, non political people that I meet every day- yes. Comparing with the stated opinions of those into politics, no just a bit off centre. Which seems to me to give a clue to low turnout at elections and disinterest in politics- the ordinary Joe has to chose the candidate he disagrees with least- and he’s not articulate enough to explain the problem, so often as not he doesn’t waste his time.
    BTW I expect Stalins views were entirely acceptable to his circle of friends.

  3. “all mainstream UK political parties right now bar the Tories”…?

    That just leaves the Labour Party then, the increasingly-marginalised Lib Dems are no more “mainstream” than UKIP or the SNP and probably less so than the BNP.

  4. So Much For Subtlety

    “I would remind you that extremism in the defense of liberty is no vice! And let me remind you also that moderation in the pursuit of justice is no virtue!”

  5. Experience would tend to indicate that when amusing little ‘prove a point’ anecdotes are recounted they rarely actually occurred.

    Shouldn’t think he has a friend,wise or otherwise.
    Probably goes to bed early with a book on great accountants in history.
    Wouldn’t know a decent wine from dog wee.

  6. The thought that he is so upset by hostile comments that he complains about it to his real life friends over drinks is quite sad.

    Is his drinking a way to cope with the pressures of negative criticism?

  7. It’s odd. I’ve checked all the comments on his posts back to the beginning of September and the words “extremist” and “extreme” are not used once against Richie. The only place that I can see anyone calls him an extremist are on external websites.

    Reading through some of the comments thread, the most obnoxious person, the one most likely to resort to emotional attacks to defend his arguments is… Richard Murphy.

  8. Not that I care for the man whatsoever, but he is no extremist. He suffers, like so many others, of lacking the chops to put across a coherent argument without being construed as a mentally defective ranter. He is the interweb equivalent of the harmless loonie who walks down the high street wearing a sandwich board.

    For all the hundreds of thousands of words he spews out, has he ever caused a dissenter to come round to his way of thinking ? I doubt it very much.

  9. This is just a 9 year old writing under a nom de guerre, oui? Someone to irritate the hell out of people with an IQ greater than double figures as he carries out his own prepubescent crusade?

    “A wise friend” – I’m that good I know someone who I think is wise and therefore I am wise too.

    They must be hermaphrodite because the friend becomes “them” in the next sentence – or perhaps Ritchie is just being coy.

    All mainstream parties apart from the BNP and UKIP, oh, and the Tories – err, why not just say you fit in with Labour and the LibDems? And, if you’re honest, only factions of each of those parties anyway. But then you couldn’t use the word “all” could you?


  10. I think dearieme has the point – I don’t care that he is, or isn’t, an extremist. The fact that he is a burbling idiot is, however, extremely worrying, given that some people seem to be taking him for a sage.

    Extremism of itself isn’t bad – extremism in the defence of stupidity is as bad as it gets. I suppose we’re just lucky he hasn’t founded a religion – 72 tax rises in paradise if you bankrupt a capitalist?

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