It has only been days since the election, and it is clear that the Left in Britain are already lining up to oppose the government on principle; before it has even had its way with the statute book. Of course, politics based on conviction is in short supply in Britain, so in many ways I commend the genuine reaction of those on the Left who fear the abandonment of Liberal principles and look to their parties with some degree of introspection, to diagnose why against a seemingly unpopular government of cuts, their vision for 2020 did not win the day.
However, the vast majority of the Liberal reaction has completely failed to be this considered. Here is an example, an extract from the Guardian, which goes beyond absurd and smacks of an infantile bitterness and petulance unbecoming of political debate:
“The UK has become a flat, ugly, smouldering disaster zone, and by the year 2020 we’ll all be dressed in rags and feasting on abandoned placentas for sustenance, like the people in Threads.”
“The country is screwed. The electorate is evil”
Stuart Heritage The Guardian
Alongside insulting the electorate, the Independent published a ‘Guide on how to leave the country’ and of course, yesterday’s despicable charade of ‘direct action’ in Whitehall, which left WWII memorials daubed with vapid insults, which if written on the back of a napkin, would amount to a gross waste of low grade paper.
Lets be honest, it is the nature of the Left to be vocal and outspoken about one’s beliefs; to expose and speak up for social injustice and suggest ways to tackle it. This in itself, is laudable. However, the British Left is fast becoming characterised by an outraged, loud, patronising, demonising, vitriolic, entitled, self-righteous and strident mob, that creates the ‘Politics of Fear’ about the Right that the Left themselves rightly deride when they see it in other quarters. What’s worse, the young, allured by this seemingly radical approach to politics have championed it on the internet and social media; in a way that in my experience is over-representative of that approach in common discourse.
“So what? Ignore them!” you might say. “As a Libertarian, shouldn’t you let people get on believing what they believe and live your own life uninterrupted?” Perhaps normally I might.
However still being young, I was part of that Liberal ‘mob’ not too long ago. A strident atheist, social and economic liberal, believer in Rawls and despiser of Nozick, who would poke his nose into every issue just to have an opinion on it, and show that I cared. A person who, sadly I must confess, thought people who didn’t think the same way as he did to be stupid; “its obvious that this is the right way to think, how on earth could anyone else believe anything different?!”.
Well I was wrong; and I see an embodiment of that attitude in the Liberal Left, which eventually I became keen to temper and soften in myself. It may have taken a bit of Burke to get me there, but looking back on that attitude now, I feel embarrassed and ashamed of how dismissive and sanctimonious I was.
Yet one thing that I regret I lost, was my willingness to engage in debate. Perhaps I became too comfortable in letting people live their lives without being challenged on their beliefs. It is not mutually exclusive or an oxymoron to be an ‘Outspoken Libertarian’. However, it does require a more mature and considered approach than what we are seeing from the Left, or you might have seen from my former self. Britain needs a Libertarian ‘voice of reaction’ to dilute this torrent of Liberal outrage and bluster, and while I would like to start that process, I equally envision this as a place for all those with the same desire to express Libertarian values and beliefs, to act as a counterbalance to this Liberal onslaught that social media has too long experienced.
If you read. Do get involved, I would like immensely to add more contributors to the site, so please do not suffer in silence as I now have for too long.