Wednesday, January 31, 2007

There's No F in Liberalism

A great POST by Stephen Tall on the LibDem knee jerk reaction to the Casino announcement. Here's the concluding paragraph. Pay particular attention to the last sentence. Classic.
Liberals are rarely full-blown libertarians: we accept the individual’s
freedom has, of necessity, occasionally to be curbed by government for the
greater good of society. But our pre-disposition must always be to allow
individuals freedom of choice over their own lives; including, crucially, the
freedom to make mistakes. Yet, too often, the Lib Dems appear to be the party of
party-poopers, reluctant to relinquish state power to the individual for fear
they will mis-use it. Last year, we (take another bow, Don [Foster]) carped about liberalising the alcohol licensing laws. Now, apparently, we are against super-casinos even when they are wanted by local communities.The Lib Dems often invoke the two Fs as a slogan: freedom and fairness. Perhaps we should toss another F into the mix: fun. (Steady now, Lembit.) Because, on the basis of today’s statement, there’s no F in liberalism.

37 comments:

Anonymous said...

Blogged the local reaction - I think before the announcement so he thought it was a 20-1 shot - from the no-brainer worst-MP-ever John Leech.

Anonymous said...

Ha ha.
Yes, but of course this particular pun was first unwittingly coined by a BBC weather forecaster decades ago, when weather symbols were magnetically attached to the map of the British Isles. The symbol for fog was simply the letters "F O G". On one occasion, the letter "F" lost its magnetism and fell to the floor, and the weatherman, spotting this, quipped "Sorry about the 'F' in "Fog"!

Anonymous said...

The idea that super-casinos are welcomed by libertarians is, I am afraid but further evidenc o the poverty of the ideology.

Kafka said...

Obviously they haven't even got to the reading-out-loud stage of their education yet either ......

Anonymous said...

Gosh and jolly gosh! Fabulous Liberalatarianist Johnnies, make me proud! Sitting here in my club, snorting coke and shagging a pig with my other rich casino owner mates, just wanted to say hi and thanks Iain to you and the other Libneralians for making all this happen! Of course, it's all just fun, fun, fun all the way! And if a load of deluded poor idiots want to walk into my shiny buildings and give me all their money in rigged games, who are we to complain? Remember, there's no "f" in moron. Fantastic! Well done all of you. Sniff. Off to Russia and Sicily now to pay my "taxes".

Anonymous said...

Just because a few drunken layabouts interviewed by the BBC say they welcome the super casino doesn't mean that's representative of all the people of east Manchester.

The main beneficiary of this casino will be the dodgy South African businessman (infamous for "buying politicians) who won the contract for building and running it.

The growing army of local gangsters may also benefit from running protection rackets.

Anonymous said...

bryan:

Libertarians are not in favour of or against super-casinos, we're in favour of letting people spend their money as they wish, and of private business being free from stupid regulation and to let local communities decide for themselves whether they want such opportunities nearby.

We're in favour of the government and state getting out of our faces and letting us live our own lives.

The fact that leftists are against super-casinos because people can't be trusted shows the poverty of their beliefs.

Anonymous said...

So Tristan, you're also for: shady businessmen buying influence with crooked politicians, and organised crime syndicates involed with gambling moving in on Britain with the aid of this bent Government are you?

Is that what "libertarianism" is about these days?

GlassHouse said...

The fact that leftists are against super-casinos because people can't be trusted shows the poverty of their beliefs.

Do you have any evidence that leftists are more likely to be against super casinos?

Or are you just assuming that they are because of your warped view of what the left believes?

Anonymous said...

If a moron wants to go into a casino and spend his/her money, good! I shan't be doing it. Like smokers they'll be paying taxes they don't need to, how stupid is that. As for caring who runs or benefits from the morons spending their money and paying taxes on something so stupid, don't care!

Anonymous said...

Tristan, it isn't foolish leftism to believe that a great many people are going to gamble away money that rightfully should be allocated to the wellbeing of family members such as children and grandchildren. People do this because they have been conned by a well-oiled machine (the super casino) and degenerate government apparatus. Against the millions poured into generating this particular exploitative tool, the ordinary deluded person has little chance of forming an objective opinion. The fact that everything in the casino is rigged to separate the hapless punter from their cash also means that this is not fair trade. The money is taken away from businesses locally that provide a good service and given instead to gangsters who use it to further finance undesirable activities such as the drug trade, wars, child theft and sexual abuse (by the criminals who run these institutions) and racketeering. If this is a libertarian society, I look forward to it's overthrow. Signed, a rightist.

Anonymous said...

Iain I am no longer able to sign in the same way via Google what on earth is going on at the moment absolutely nothing seems to work. I have to go back to my site and come back here ...anyway

IT IS NOTHING TO DO WITH FUN

Libertarianism has its boundaries, as Simon Heffer pointed out. Why not legalise drugs and prostitution. Why not legalise paedophilia between consenting parties? To some extent , excluding paedophilia , we may be going down just that road but Gambling is not fun for all . For many it is more like a drug and the special property it has is of seeking out those in desperate need and addicting them to false hope.
Nick the Greek, ( the players will know him), said about Poker that the best thing in life was playing a winning hand and the second best thing was playing a losing hand but that is not the sort of sang froid you will find about this place.
We know what it is all about don’t we another revenue stream for the morally and fiscally bankrupt Brown Government. Like the Lottery it is a tax on the poor and will partly take their funds and bolster the welfare state that catches them when they fall . From adult to child, from citizen to serf..
This sort of measure often gets misguided support for those, who, like me support market based analysis . This to agree with the Socialists to who in their ignorance see bodies like the LSE and even Lloyds as no more than casinos . Gambling is the opposite of the proper function of the market and it is exactly at this point that the market will not work. The South Sea Bubble is a good example
It is absolutely typical of New Labour that having poisoned the real economy they are covering it up with slash and burn measures like this. Cheap migrant Labour and loosening planning regulations are other examples
In this country we spend £60bio per year on food and £53,bio on gambling the vast majority of which is from underprivileged homes who become addicted .
Manchester will never be Las Vegas it will be the crime centre and god awful abyss it is now but with even worse problems for its many poor areas.

We impose limits of Freedom in order to preserve it . In particular this means the predation of the strong on the weak. This is such a case and all Conservatives should deplore this new evidence of Labor’s lack of principle .

Andy D said...

Bryan, the ultimate thing is that libertarians trust people and give them the freedom to sometimes make their own mistakes.

Socialists don't trust people so the state needs to control and run their lives, they think that people are stupid.

The above is a very simple and one-dimensional view of it, but that's what it boils down to. I believe I should have to right to do what I like with my money, and if that's gambling it all away I should be able to do that. Of course i'm not an idiot, so I don't.

It's not about casino's, it's about freedom.

Anonymous said...

BRIAN APPLEYARD
The idea that super-casinos are welcomed by libertarians is, I am afraid but further evidenc o the poverty of the ideology.

No Brian that ideology is a very rich one for criticising encroaching statism and other developments that disregard Freedom. It is not the same thing as anarchy however and Conservatism is another thing again inlcuding largely cultural constraints on our behaviour. I have argued againsy Casinos as they inhibit freedom but the Libertarian component of the debate is vital. It cannot form Policy alone.

Libertarian thinking , however, is vastly more useful as an ideology than Socilaism which has no reespectable support at all and is still informing governement policy.

Incredible isn`t it

Anonymous said...

Speaking as a libertarian, I am aghast at the poverty of ideas and action many of you display. I for one am hugely in favour of allowing Sol Kerzner, a man investigated eleven times for corruption, to purchase Manchester if he wishes to. Thank goodness for creative businessmen of his calibre! So good also that we have done away with the pathetic obsession this country used to have with industries like aerospace, technology, intellectual development and so on and replaced it very sensibly with the roulette wheel and blackjack. And as for peadophilia - of course it should be legal, and not just amongst consenting persons! Not that consent has anything to do with it - if a gangster wishes to purchase children in the open market, then he should be free to do so! And they can of course later be taken to the casino and traded in for chips. Bloody hell it's good to be a libertarian Englishman in these fine times. I was previously alive in 1725 when things were very similar. Roll back the clock on nasty socialism!

Curly said...

It is an unusual position for the Liberals to take, just think of the card games they could stake reputations on!

Anonymous said...

"there’s no F in liberalism"

Not what the Cheeky Girl's mum says - she even put it on the Calendar on the wall when Lembit had his evil way!

Anonymous said...

Iain, I am disappointed in you.

Are you really saying that having city centres full of drunken chavs at 2am in the morning, and people's lives ruined by problem gambling is 'fun'?

If you are, then 'F'ing well be brave enough to say so...

Anonymous said...

Perhaps there will be a stake-out and we can finally arrest Lord Lucan?

Anonymous said...

ANON:in 1725 when things were very similar. Roll back the clock on nasty socialism!....

It entirely sums up Socialists does it not that in their view the only thing that prevented paedophilia was the advent of Socialism .I think not

In this case ( Casinos)it is precisely Socialism that has destroyed all our real supply side economy .Not just the big flashy "governemental ones beloved of African dictators like aerospace.By killing business beneath a regulatory pillow the cockroachs have mafe themsleves dependent on the very worst sort of unfettered capitalism In a proper Conservative business enviroment this would not be necessarry. This latest attempt to exploit the poor and misguided is of a piece with much more.

I agree with ANON but his implication that Socialism is a good thing is wrong , stupid and painful to behold

Anonymous said...

Hmmm...Like Mr Appleyard I think this represents the poverty of Nulabour Britain.

And why is 'liberal' a term of derision now in this country ? Just because those yanks don't like it doesn't mean we have to follow. It's like people in England have started to refer to 'movies'. What are they then?
Are they a bit like films ??

Liberals are 'live and let live' and are in favour of abortion choice, gay rights, diversity and action on the environment. I would have thought those things would appeal to you Iain, even if they don't to a lot of the 'old fart' Tories like Norman Tebbit.

Anonymous said...

Iain, just to be consistent, do you also support the right of the banks to make profits unsupervised by Govt.?

To rake in as many 'credit card late fees' as they can muster? To charge £30 a time for bouncing cheques. And another £30 for writing a letter to tell you that they've charged that.

And to increase lending to the sub-prime market - because they can?

And that companies can pollute as much as they jolly well like without any of that nasty thing 'legislation' getting in the way ?

And that rail companies shouldn't have to worry about paying out any compensation if they kill a few people, 'cos that puts such a downer on their profits... As does legislation telling them how many trains they should be running and what punctuality they should have?

You should read 'The Corporation' by Joel Bakan - just to ensure that your views are consistent...

Anonymous said...

Notwithstanding tom tyler @3.52: I seem to recall reading that Ffiona William Hague's girlfriend had to ffs in her name because it was believed that there was no f in Tory Leader. This is still the case with David Cameron...

Anonymous said...

jhl - her name is Ffion, as well you know, and 'Ff' is only one letter in Welsh...

By the way, did you know the Welsh sided with the 'Yorkies' in the 'Wars of the Roses' ? You do now..

Anonymous said...

ANON 11.06

Good points . I think the encouraging the vulnerable to get into debt is an especially good analagy.
On the other hand normal tort (rail and pollution claims) has only a very tangential relationship with an "addictive product" like gambling .

Nicholas Bennett said...

Most Conservatives believe that there have to be some restraints on freedom of action. As Mill (a classical Liberal) observed my right to shout fire in a crowded theatre is not as great as the right of others not to be trampled to death.

We place limits on the handling of guns and knifes, criminalise the sale of hard drugs & make it an offence to make and obtain pornography involving children.

Gambling is similar to alcohol. Taken to extremes it ruins lives and has an effect on the addict’s family. Many addicts turn to crime to feed their addiction, however the answer is not a prohibition on what in moderation are a harmless pastime but help and guidance for those unable to help themselves. After all some people have an addiction to shopping and overspending and run up huge credit card debits. We haven't closed down shops and credit facilities.

makesmethink said...

There absolutley nothing on Sky or Beeb but this Birmingham thing.
do I see smoke around the HP or something spinning

Neil Craig said...

Despite being considerably more libertarian than the "Lib" Dems I don't think much of casinos. It may be the free market but it is not a free marketism that actually creates any wealth whatsoever it merely moves it around at some expense & hardship.

In historical terms the original Liberal party which was once the political expression of the non-conformist conscience, while entirely convinced of free trade, was against stuff like this.

Anonymous said...

reading a load a garbage on this blog ,I see the uni guys are spouting drivel , stop dreamin and try and sort out

Anonymous said...

There's no "free market", libertarianism or anything of the sort in yesterdays decision to award the super-casino to Manchester or more accurately to a shady South African jewish dwarf pictured in several of today's papers partying with Tony Blair before Xmax.

What is it with New Labour and super-rich, dodgy foreign businessmen?

Anonymous said...

A lot of Lib Dems wish there was no 'F' in Lembit!

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...
A lot of Lib Dems wish there was no 'F' in Lembit!

Most Lib Dems just wish he would F off and if he doesn't do it willingly there are plans afoot to make him.

This attention seeking clown, along with one or two others, has brought enough ridicule on the party already.

Simon said...

Oi! Hold on! I thought it was a male LDem MP's job to bring ridicule and scorn on his party!

Anonymous said...

simon - but oddly enough, since he took up with the cheeky lassie, the opinion poll ratings have shot up. Well according to the experts over at PoliticalBetting.com anyway - wonder if there is a link ?

Who will they try and fix up with the other sister ? Chris Huhne ? Simon Hughes ?

Anonymous said...

The majority of us in UK are against these super casinos. Many of us detest gambling because we have personal experience of what a destructive addiction gambling is.

Almost my entire family, my parents, my uncles, even my grandmother were obsessive gamblers. I first put on a bet for my parents when I was 7 - it was illegal then. I was told to look behind the shopping centre for a man with a leather bag and to walk past him if I saw a police officer.

I still recall the endless arguments over gambling, my grandmother lifting up the corner of the lino where she kept her betting slips and winnings and shame of being sent to the corner shop to ask (beg?) for 'tick' when my grandmother had gambled all her housekeeping money on the horses or the dogs.

Oh yes, it was great fun.

Anonymous said...

It's an old joke. THere's a fanzine called 'There's only one F in Fulham'.

simon said...

anon @7.40- i think any poll increase is down to incredulity that a LDem male MP is actually 'friendly' with a 'woman'! I thought Quentin Letts' brilliant bitchy aside that he regards any male LDem as gay- before he gets any evidence to the contrary! Being gay myself- i think LDem MP's give us homosexualists a bad name!