May 6th, 2011

The “Progressive Majority” Delusion

The noisy progressives in our public life are forever claiming there is a “progressive majority” in Britain. If it was not for Murdoch, the City and the editor of the Daily Mail they would lead us into the social democratic utopia that the people so desire. That is basically the underlying worldview of many at the BBC, Guardian editorial meetings and the young wonks in the think-tanks around Ed Miliband. Tony Blair understood that this was a delusion which electorally crippled the Labour Party and the somewhat flakier LibDems. He fashioned a left-of-centre platform which addressed the real concerns of voters.

The British people are sceptical about “progressives”, their language and their disconnection from the reality of  their lives. The “progressive” idea that switching to the Alternative Vote was important to ordinary people, who are not on the whole interested in politics, was delusional. There is no untapped progressive majority outside the media and political elites.

It is one thing to be youthful and idealistically progressive, believing if only we cared and shared everything would be alright. When you become a taxpayer, parent or home owner you are mugged by reality. Caring and sharing with your family becomes your priority, that is human nature. The amount of your salary that goes to HMRC, the fear of crime, a desire for better schools for your children and the cost of petrol become more important priorities. Guido speaks to Labour Party supporters who think that Ed Miliband is overly influenced by “progressive” voices, his support for switching to the Alternative Vote shows that in truth Ed Miliband is himself a “progressive”. Voters are not.


194 Comments

  1. 1
    ssdb says:

    “There is no untapped progressive majority outside the media and political elites.”

    What a load of shite. Voters are sheep and easily led.

    We voters get stuck with rubbish politicians because of an outdated party system and a media class that supports it.

    Like

    • 3
      Anonymous says:

      Britain is a deeply conservative country. Small ‘c’.

      Revolution and radicalism are not in our nature. Our long history shapes us more than we realise.

      Like

      • 43
        ichabod says:

        We are also a very servile country ( it used to be politic to say deferential): that is why we let the EU control our public affairs, why we tolerate M*sl*m fanatics in our midst, why we allow so much immigration, why we give so much of our money to places like Pakistan and why we slavishly follow US foreign policy. Also why we let friendly nations like Australia to force us to admit criminals who left this country 40 odd years ago, when still in nappies. The spinelessness of our elected representatives echoes our own passivity.

        Like

        • 126
          Marmite says:

          Freedom of speech gone forever now ‘ichabod’ unless you are of a certain persuasion. It seems to me that some sections can say and do what they want [insulting our armed forces, burning poppies etc] but just you try to say anything about “wonderful” isl@m and you’ll be prosecuted. Great innit? Effin marvellous!

          Like

          • Cato Street Conspirator says:

            Try exercising ‘free speech’ IN the armed forces and see where that gets you.

            Like

        • 189
          Archie says:

          Well said, that man!

          Like

        • 192
          Andrew says:

          Stupid remark about Oz. If the criminals concerned are still British citizens they are fully entitled to lumber us – I hope (but doubt) that we would do the same “in reverse”. It’s a pity that the parents never got round to being naturalised while he was still a child, but that’s life.

          Like

      • 63
        Gooey Blob says:

        Indeed. There is a substantial small-c conservative majority in this country as tonight’s AV results will further demonstrate.

        Like

        • 158
          Dithering Gordon Brown says:

          I voted for Alex Salmon and he got in in my constituency. Maybe he’ll give me a job in Edinburgh.

          Like

          • David Laws Lib Dem fiddler says:

            We need a Lie Lab opposition in England, Wales and Scotland. Hopefully Lie Dems will be wiped off the map. Listening to their MPs this is all being passed off as public discontent for them being in government- all deluded stuff. Lie Dems want power at any price. They will give up promises, core values and anything else as long as they can stay in power.

            Smoking Gordon McClegg is a lying liability- wake up.

            Like

      • 68
        Logan says:

        Conservatives won 4 elections on the trot, and then Blair won another three by pretending to be a “nicer” tory.

        As soon as Brown went back to being an out-out out labour progressive, they got less votes than John Major in 1997.

        This country is marginally more conservative than it is “progressive”.

        Like

        • 79
          Logan says:

          Oh and the reason Cameron did not win a conservative majority are two fold.

          1. He defined himself and the tories as progressive
          2. the seat boundaries are still massively biased in labour favour.

          1997, Major got 165 seats from 30.7% share of the vote and 9,600,943 votes.
          2010, Brown got 258 seats from 29% share of the vote and 8,609,527 votes.

          A million less votes than John Major but still almost a hundred more seats. FFS if that is not a massive bias to labour I do not know what is.

          If a snooker table was as biased all the balls would roll off the table.

          Like

          • Anonymous says:

            Labour supporters used to vote LD to keep Tories away, now they aren’t doing it so Tories are doing well as well. For LD isn’t a disaster its a tsunami. Sad thing is LD leaders are so interested in power, they are refusing to see what is happening.

            Like

          • Osama the Nazarene says:

            Serves these Labour voters right, should have stuck with Labour if they believed in what they stood for.

            Lib Dems are known for showing a different face depending on their perception of the audience. On this occasion they took a decision in the National interest wittingly or unwittingly.

            Like

          • misterned says:

            Labour are claiming that the tories have used the liberals as a shield?

            Bullshit. Labour are using them as an excuse for why AV is being rejected, but the fact is, the liberals are being slaughtered, but labour are not making anywhere near the gains they need.

            The tories at the moment are UP on the very strong result they had in 2007. Labour have made NO impact at all.

            Labour have been thrashed by SNP in Scotland and failed to get a majority in Wales.

            And Miliband was on the WRONG side of the AV debate and lost most of his party over that.

            As far as a campaign goes, this is the weakest, most inept and pathetic campaign by a labour leader since foot’s “longest suicide note in history” in 1983.

            Miliband will now be labelled as a massive loser. He could not even win the labour party leadership outright and now all these losses too?

            Miliband = LOOSER!

            Like

        • 102
          Scotland Forever says:

          The country is MASSIVELY more small ‘c’ conservative than progressive. Jesus we’d still having hanging if the public had their say.

          Like

          • Bring back hanging says:

            And what’s wrong with that?

            Like

          • Logan says:

            I shall see what the final results of yesterday’s election reveals before I agree with that. I would like for that to be true, but the opinion polls do not bare that out yet.

            Mind you, according to the opinion polls, labour should have picked up 1000 seats from lib-dems and tories. Tories should have lost about 800 from an admittedly very very high level in 2007.

            That fact that the tories appear to be improving on that very very high level shows them to be even further ahead of labour than they were then. Most of labours gains have come from lib-dems protest voting for labour and independents losing support.

            And it was reported yesterday that Ed Miliband has put the labour party on election alert? Well with a blank piece of paper for a manifesto and only having to campaign on one issue, AV, and even then losing most of his own party on it…

            …BRING IT ON!!!

            Like

          • Scotland Forever says:

            Nothing.

            Like

          • Dave666 says:

            Perhaps if we had public hangings there would be less scope for dubious expense claims?

            Like

      • 89
        The British people are sceptical about “progressives”, their language and their disconnection says:

        Like

    • 21
      Sir William Waad says:

      “Progress is merely a metaphor for walking along a road, quite possibly the worng one.”

      Like

      • 99
        John Adlington says:

        Cockwaffle – walking along a road is itself a metaphor. So Progress is a metaphor for a metaphor?

        Like

    • 46
      Crikey says:

      What is “progressive” about introducing a surveillance state Ed as the last government did. A state in which every word had to be analysed less it offend someone or you ended up being sued for harrassment. Every activity a potential disaster area.

      Like

    • 83
      Scotland Forever says:

      10 years ago in Scotland when the “progressive” Labour & Lib Dems wanted to pass a law promoting gay rights in school the guy who owns that bus company set up his own referendum against this. More than one million people voted and more people voted against the “progressive” change in the law than had voted for Labour, the then government, in the 1999 Scottish Election. Most Labour supporters are socially more conservative than Tory voters. Ed Miliband is heading ever further down the rabbit hole.

      Like

    • 85
      Anonymous says:

      LD say they are with Conservatives for national interest? Can some one explain what national interest they are talking about.

      Only thing I can see is personal interest; like big salary, massive government house, big cars, chaffer, nice dinner and lunch, etc. If its anyone other then Clegg they would have resigned as party leader.

      Like

      • 93
        A Calm Dispassionate Englishman says:

        If this Country had ME as Chancellor now, the bond market would tank, short-term interest rates would be much higher and the IMF would be knocking at the door again, just like it did in 1976 under Liebour

        Like

        • 105
          Anonymous says:

          Unlike other countries in EU, we still have the printing press to print as much money as we can. BOE print money and give it to banks for 0.5% then banks lend it for around 6%. Printing £15bn per year (to stop cuts) is small changed to printing £250bn plus and giving it to banks; even if BOE has lend it at 5% to banks, government would have made £12.5bn a year.

          Like

          • What Dave saves, Dave wastes says:

            Printing money causes inflation.

            If you want to stop cuts, instead of printing £15bn, just stop giving £11bn to the EU and £10bn in foreign aid every year.

            Like

          • Logan says:

            Agreed.

            Wonder if all those “progressive” tax protesters realise that labour would waste even more if they were in power?

            Probably not. They are not all that bright.

            Like

  2. 2
    Steve Miliband says:

    What the fuck does it mean anyway?

    Like

    • 9
      Anonymous says:

      It means destroying the family, and anything else the deluded Left don’t like. Oh, and f’ucking the economy.

      It would be laughable if the implications weren’t so serious.

      Like

    • 27
      john in cheshire says:

      Progressive = marxist

      Like

      • 52
        Alex says:

        i.e. following the teachings of a bloke who died more than a century ago – not very progressive really is it?

        Like

        • 163
          Never bought the Guardian! says:

          Exactly.
          The Left love to try to convince people that they are something new by using words like “progressive” and “radical” when, in fact, they are peddling a load of antiquated, already disproven bollox!

          Like

    • 71
      Gooey Blob says:

      I’ve always considered Ed’s union friends to be regressive, as they would seek to take Britain back to the bad old days of the 1970s.

      Like

    • 140
      Logan says:

      It means progressively punishing successful people a bit more each year to steal their hard earned cash to waste the proceeds on whatever deluded pet scheme that they can think up.

      It is a progression from rich to poor, hence progressive.

      As in, conversation in the treasury circa Jan 2010, “How are we progressing in destroying the economy?”

      “Very well. We have spent 166 billion more this year than we took in taxes. We will have to increase tax even more to make some of that back.”

      It used to be called ‘redistributive’ but we all knew what that meant. It meant stealing.

      Progressive sounds so much more nice and positive.

      Like

      • 171
        Anonymous says:

        Closely allied to “social justice”, “equality” , “diversity” and ” relative poverty” .

        Cameron and his cronies liberally sprinkle their conversations with all these words and phrases.

        Like

  3. 4

    “When you become a taxpayer, parent or home owner” I’m a renter, paying for other people’s kids ;o)

    Like

  4. 5
    Lord Bowden of Middlesex says:

    Well they have curtaied free speech and meaningful debate, Progressives want the state to takew the place of personal freedom.

    Like

    • 23
      The Labour Parteh says:

      The interests of the individual are of no importance. All that matters is the State. The State is all that is, and all that will ever be.

      You exist to serve the State. Without it you can be nothing.

      Like

      • 181
        steam iron says:

        amusingly at a labour party conference where I was working on the bar, someone from the labour party assured me that my opinion meant nothing as ” the people will submit to the will of the party”.

        I went to do the washing up at that point to avoid calling him a see you next tuesday and getting fired.

        but a see you next tuesday he was.

        Like

    • 94
      Scotland Forever says:

      There is no free speech in Great Britain. You can be jailed in Britain for hurting someone’s feeling. Not threatening them, not stealing their property, not discriminating against them just hurting their feelings. Crazy.

      Like

      • 117
        Rat's arse says:

        Under Leiber, we were told what to think & how to act. They destroyed completely our way of life and our national identity, and gave certain sections of our community more rights than others, whilst having the gall to say we all had equal rights.

        Like

  5. 6
    Anonymous says:

    Well said. Absolutely spot on. Socialism deals with the problems of another era. We have to compete globally in the world now. What are we going to be – a trading nation or some kind of soviet on the fringes of Europe?

    Like

    • 34
      I hate Lefties, too says:

      I agree, but.. wasn’t the Soviet system (as originally envisaged) quite a good idea? An interconnected interdependent network of co-operatives (Jesus, a Big Society?)

      It was only when Lenin showed up that it (and Russia) went to Hell in a handcart – which is why the Germans sent him there in the first place.

      Like

      • 82
        Anonymous says:

        No man is an island… You just can’t cut yourself off any more… Socialism is inward looking and defensive…

        Like

      • 97
        Scotland Forever says:

        It would be great idea if we still lived in the stone age.

        Like

    • 77
      Fubar Saunders says:

      +1

      Well said Guido. Good piece.

      Like

  6. 7
    Righty Right Wing (Mrs says:

    There is nothing progressive about the neo third way socialism that all three main partys in Westminster spout.

    There is nothing progressive about big state, with high taxes & maximum legislative control over the lives of private citizens.

    There is no democracy in the UK – just a cabal of crooks stitching up an elected dictatorship between themselves time & time again.

    Blue / Red / Yellow Labour out.

    Like

    • 104
      Scotland Forever says:

      Let’s all move to China.

      Like

      • 139
        Righty Right Wing (Mrs says:

        I would rather live in China than a recycled version of East Germany under EUSSR federalist rule.

        Seriously, I would.

        Like

    • 142
      Logan says:

      The results show far show two things…

      1. The countries voters are returning to two party politics with seat increases for labour and conservative at the expense of Liberal and all the others.

      2. More and more people who are sick of the lib/lab/con are just not voting at all leaving the big two to share the spoils between them.

      Like

  7. 8

    All sensible stuff though I am struggling a bit with your linking of AV and progressive politics. Seems to be a bit of a sideshow on the road to wherever when the real key is reducing the intrusion of the state by say 70%.

    Like

    • 107
      Scotland Forever says:

      It was Miliband & Clegg who said AV was progressive. The Yes campaign basically told anyone who had the slightest leaning to right of centre not to vote Yes as a Yes vote was all about stopping the “wicked” Tories getting into power again.

      Like

  8. 10
    Mornington Crescent says:

    So, Labour Party supporters think that Militwit “is over influenced by “progressive” voices”.

    It’s far worse than that: he hasn’t been outside the salons of Islington in his whole life – and it’s painfully obvious to anyone outside the deluded Labour Party and the BBC.

    Like

    • 110
      Scotland Forever says:

      Miliband has led a more sheltered life than Cameron. And that’s saying something.

      Like

  9. 11
    Two Eds cause Labour pains! says:

    Spot on Guido – I have been saying the same for years. There is no “progressive majority”. What the majority of voters want is competent Government which delivers rising living standards, security and decent public services which provide value for money spent.

    Labour are always incompetent in Government, because of a disconnect in their thinking about how wealth is actually created in order to deliver the services people need and want.

    Like

    • 16
      HFC says:

      What Two Eds said.

      Like

    • 17
      South of the M4 says:

      And there you have it. The state has, for too long, provided services that people want, rather than need. If you need it, the altruistic taxpayer can contribute. If you just want it, pay for it yourself.

      Like

    • 24
      Hugh Janus says:

      +10

      Like

      • 114
        Old dog no tricks says:

        I know a couple very well !
        She works for the state and brags about her 100K (more now) a year salary whilst her husband works in the private sector on about 35K – they voted tory at the last election but will never vote tory again because they are going to lose their child benefit !

        Says a lot about the immorality of the grasping child breeders !

        Like

        • 121
          Scotland Forever says:

          Better give the money to the lazy fuckers who sit about all day smoking Benson & Hedges, drinking Special Brew & watching Trisha. And that’s just the wimin.

          Like

        • 148
          Logan says:

          Better to cut taxes and allow people to keep more of their own hard earned cash.

          Like

      • 182
        steam iron says:

        +50

        Like

    • 69
      sockpuppet #4 says:

      “What the majority of voters want is competent Government which delivers rising living standards, security and decent public services which provide value for money spent”

      I’m sure that would count as progressive. hooorah.

      Like

      • 153
        Socialism has murdered 150 million human beings pride says:

        Govt has no power to deliver any of those things.

        They steal, they counterfeit, they kill, they rule by threat of their monkey-suited thugs.

        Thats it.

        Anything worthwhile, people have done for themselves and the political scum parasite off of that.

        Like

  10. 12
    Lord Bowden of Middlesex says:

    Progressive is another name for socailisim/Marxisim

    Like

  11. 13
    Honest View says:

    Strikes me that “progressive” now means exactly the opposite of “making progress”, but looks back nostalgically at the East Germany of the 70’s, a golden age of dominant state broadcasting, state housing, state employment and a nasty Stasi (yes even nastier than the baby-eating Tories) to see that no-one steps out of line or leads an independent life.
    Talk about hi-jacking a word; a classical example.

    Like

  12. 14
    capt apollo says:

    hear hear, i have the title for Richard dawkins next book, i suggest

    “THE SOCIALIST DELUSION”

    Like

    • 98
      Jabba the Cat says:

      It was published a long time ago under the title of Das Kapital and subsequently found to be only useful for wiping your arse with.

      Like

      • 120
        Postlethwaite says:

        Pages are a bit scatchy though

        Like

      • 143
        stilyagi_air_corps says:

        You can download “Socialism” by Ludwig von Mises at mises.org, for free. Says it all.

        His “The Anti-Capitalist Mentality” is the best field-guide to the species ever written.

        (0 0)
        v
        ///I\\\
        III I III
        III I III
        III I III

        Like

  13. 15
    Phantom says:

    The more it keeps happening, the more this guff looks sheer fantasy.

    The BBC were all geared up with his b*llocks last night, their agenda is fully exposed – again.

    As for Ed Millic*nt, battered in Scotland on an anti-Tory campaign, battered on the AV vote. Now the public know he’s a loser, he is finished. If it wasn’t for those lefty Northern monkey’s going home, he’s be stuffed in England too.

    The Tory council vote didn’t just hold up, they increased their number of councils and councillors.

    All that’s happened is lefty Lib-Dems went home to the Labour Party to f*ck-up where they live and do that properly.

    I hope the Lib Dem MPs really kick off now, dissolve the coalition and CMD throws another referendum promise on EU membership into the mix and calls another General Election.

    Tory landslide, Lib Dems and Labour stuffed for 15+ years.

    Like

    • 30
      Hugh Janus says:

      “I hope the Lib Dem MPs really kick off now, dissolve the coalition and CMD throws another referendum promise on EU membership into the mix and calls another General Election.”

      Music to my ears – but such a move would require guile and balls. So, no chance.

      Like

      • 49
        Party manifestos are lies says:

        The other problem is, if CMD made an election promise of a referendum on EU membership, he’d break the promise as soon as he won.

        Like

        • 119
          Old dog no tricks says:

          None of the big 3 are ever going to offer a referendum on the EU !

          They are alike enough to collude on this agenda and they know that if one of them offers it – they will all have to offer it ! If they do not – they will get tossed out like a ten year old loaf !

          And if they offer it – they will break their promise ! Guaranteed – because they all want it ! It is gravy for their mates (and them) as per the unelected regional councils which have been installed – without elections – because the people when asked said they did not want them !

          Ex politicians also get well paid quango jobs (or directorships in the area’s they have influence over !) This is why so few quango’s got burned !

          They are well happy with the status quo and do not care whether they are in government or opposition ! It is a charade and until people vote for parties that are not part of it – and absolutely refuse to vote for the big 3 to the point of not voting if they are the only choice – then the charade will continue !

          Like

          • Scotland Forever says:

            I’m not even sure if deep down UKIP wouldn’t miss the gravy train.

            Like

          • Party manifestos are lies says:

            “and absolutely refuse to vote for the big 3 to the point of not voting if they are the only choice”

            Well said. It is for that very reason that I didn’t vote yesterday, nor in last year’s general election. And I used to be a member of the Conservative Party.

            Like

    • 57
      NuAttack Dog says:

      I’m really beginning to detest the BBC.

      Like

      • 131
        Scotland Forever says:

        “I’m really beginning to detest the BBC.” Beginning??????? Where have you been for the past 30 years.

        Like

    • 88
      Vladikavkaz says:

      A saw a nice graphic last night that they kept pedalling, that a ‘good’ result for the Conservatives would be to lose between 600-800 seats, and that a bad night would be over 1000. Seeing as currently the Tories have gained 50 seats so far, what would that be considered?

      Like

      • 103
        jgm2 says:

        A complete re-write for the BBC.

        As it is, rather than leading with the unthinkable ie that Scotland looks to have rejected Labour outright they’re making hay with the LibDem’s bit of local difficulty.

        Like

      • 135
        BBC Political Department says:

        The 50+ seat Tory gains will be impartially reported tonight as a complete repudiation of David Cameron. Labour’s historic victory in Scotland once again shows Ed Miliband heading for a historic General Election victory.

        Like

    • 96
      Geordie Tory...... says:

      Less of the “Northern Lefties”, I can’t stand Labour and the unions because of the utter destruction they caused up here. I agree though, the majority of fuckers up here a too stupid to see it!!!!

      Like

      • 154
        The Golem says:

        +1

        Like

        • 161
          steve lloyd says:

          As a proud Welshman i agree with these sentiments completely, my own mother spent the weeks in the run up to the general election slagging Liebour off to anyone who would listen, then went out and voted for the f*ckers, you really couldn’t make it up. Elated at the SNP’s victory in Scotland knowing the arrogant Liebour K*nts thought they would walk it. And whats especially delicious is that Cyclops has been booted out as well, no more sponging of the taxpayer for him. Well done the good folk of Kirkaldy.

          Like

          • South of the M4 says:

            The Welsh probably have the longest history of active socialism in the UK. Remember Robert Owen and the ‘Owenites’ . Responsible for improving housing and conditions for mill workers in the UK, started the first ever primary school, and worked to replace private ownership with state ownership. That culture runs deep. All well meaning but unrealistic in practice. As an Englishman, happily living in Wales, it grieves me to see this ingrained attitude and the Welshman’s willingness to servitude. A great country, but intent on keeping itself down.

            Like

      • 169
        misterned says:

        Ditto, from me in the most working class town in the country.

        Like

      • 184
        steam iron says:

        wish more of you lot felt like this

        Like

  14. 18

    Britain is generally a conservative country – we tend to take a dim view of change, and require a case to be made for it. The case was not made for AV, which is why I suspect the referendum will return a ‘No’ result.

    However, politicians have also grasped the fact that the mob are fickle, and voting patterns actually have little to do with agreement with a party’s policies, and everything about the image that party conveys.

    Blair won because he was a smooth operator, putting forward a slick image of a rejuvenated Labour Party that was markedly different from the tired-looking Tories at the time. Brown lost because he was a mad, disconnected loon, and only got the votes that he did because Labour had managed to engineer a huge client state that would keep voting for them in exchange for benefits.

    The idea of a progressive majority is rubbish. But that won’t stop people voting for the socialists.

    Like

    • 22
      Anonymous says:

      People vote for Labour because they (the voters) genuinely want to be compassionate.

      Unfortunately, they don’t realise that 99% of Labour politicians are incompetent megolamaniacs.

      Like

      • 36
        Alexsandr says:

        people voted for blair because he promised schools and hospitals with no tax increase.

        So he paid for them with grubby tax grabs like the pension raid, and by borrowing

        It beggars belief people are so stupid to think you can have something and not pay for it somehow.

        Trouble is it will be our children and grandchildren who pay…..

        Like

        • 48
          Backwoodsman says:

          OPM – other peoples’ money – when you’ve come up through the ranks of student politics or the public sector , like 90 % of labour politicians, you firmly believe you have a divine right to a direct line to the OPM fairy.

          Like

      • 50
        The politics of envy says:

        Some vote Labour because they want to be compassionate. Most vote Labour because they want to “bash the Tory scum” and steal their money.

        Like

      • 138
        Scotland Forever says:

        People vote Labour out of self interest. They believe they will receive more services/benefits themselves whilst expecting someone else to pay for them.

        Like

        • 172
          Honest View says:

          Partly true. Some vote out of misguided generosity- it feels good to be caring etc. They assume that Tories don’t care and are selfish.
          Some vote because their family “always votes Labour”- plenty of this unthinking type.
          Some vote because they are young and idealistic and think they are going to change the world etc. Then they grow up.
          Some hate anyone better off or more able than themselves. Envy is a strong Labour promoter.
          And as you say, some vote for other people’s money to be handed out to them.

          Like

          • Archie says:

            It all boils down to the class system, sorry to say. Give people one and a half bathrooms and a new car and they’ll vote Tory because they think they’re on the way up.. At least that’s what happened in the sixties when they got a stainless steel sink and a new Ford Anglia. Bring back the grammar schools. Aspirational, innit?

            Like

    • 29
      Anonymous says:

      Alternative AV: taxpayers 3 votes, public sector 2, others 1

      Like

      • 42
        PD77 says:

        Immigrants on benefits: 0

        Like

        • 47
          PD77 says:

          Oh and no Postal Votes allowed unless you can prove incapability to attend the Polling station (ie: disability, hospital inpatient or holiday out of the country), if you can’t be arsed to attend a Polling Station then it proves you can’t be arsed about who you elect!

          Like

          • Anonymous says:

            Exactly – election day should be a community festival – take your elderly neighbour out to vote – local teller has know you all your life – as I was when I was a boy… zzz …

            Like

          • Penfold says:

            And of course no votes for the unemployed, or those on social benefits, or those in social housing.
            After all if you don’t contribute how can you be allowed a voice on how someone else’s tax revenue is spent.

            Like

          • jgm2 says:

            No votes for public employees for the same reason. Ie they don’t pay taxes.

            Like

          • Phoenix says:

            I use a postal vote because I have a commute that means I can’t make it to the polling station and I bloody well want to use my vote! One reason I think Liebour do so well is because all the benefit scammers are sitting at home all day and can go vote anytime during the day.

            I agree that immigrants shouldn’t get a vote either unless they have become citizens (not sure if this is the case already maybe?)

            Like

          • Ahmed says:

            But my 250 cousins can’t be bother to leave my house to vote. I prefer to post their votes after they fill them in. Keep postal voting
            thank you very much.

            Like

          • Andrew says:

            Which prat thinks public sector workers don’t pay taxes? We pay PAYE, council tax, the whole lot.

            Like

      • 56
        Mr Nice says:

        Frontline troops: 5 votes. If not more.
        Civil Servants with the word “Community” or “Equality” in their job-title: 0 votes. Or a bullet in the head.

        Like

    • 31
      Anonymous says:

      I think the idea of a progressive majority is as much rubbish as the idea of a conservative majority. I think the only real majority are those who are undecided.

      Like

  15. 19
    Anonymous says:

    Two problems with this article.

    First, it tries to connect the Alternative Vote with the progressive position. I doubt many progressives liked AV on its own merits, but merely saw it as slightly superior to FPTP and a dirty little stepping stone towards true, progressive, proportional reform.

    Others disagreed, however. I spent a lot of time talking to progressives who were against AV because they felt it was a step backwards, not an improvement.

    Therefore trying to paint the failure of the Yes vote as indicative of a lack of progressive sentiment in the country is misleading: many progressives voted No.

    Secondly, painting “progressive” desire of reform as separate from real voter concerns is setting up a false dilemma. Voters can be very concerned about daily practicalities _and_ the fact that their vote is entirely wasted in their safe-seat constituency.

    A closing observation: much of the hype that surrounded the LibDems in the General Election was the belief that they would finally deliver real, meaningful change. The anger and backlash they have suffered today is, at least in part, reflected by the depth of betrayal that many of those who voted for them have felt.

    Like

    • 25
      Righty Right Wing (Mrs says:

      “I spent a lot of time talking to progressives ”

      How do they identify themselves?

      Is there a secret handshake or is there a badge of some description?

      Like

      • 26
        Anonymous says:

        No, just ones that self-identify as progressives — generally in the context of expressing a desire for voting reform towards proportional representation.

        Like

        • 60
          I quite like being able to choose my local MP says:

          I think you got confused, there. They were regressives.

          Like

      • 39
        Progressive says:

        They’re normally to be found shuffling round town in their PJ’s!

        Like

      • 115
        Anonymous says:

        You can tell by the smug self satisfied look, and if you stare deeply into their eyes, a large wedge of self-hate and fear.

        Like

    • 86
      Lee Jon Ayres (dec'd) says:

      Your para starting “Secondly…” is its own false dichotomy. You evidently have spent too much time talking to ‘progressives’.

      Like

  16. 20
    Mornington Crescent says:

    Talking of the BBC agenda, I vaguely heard Our Eric bollocking Naughtie about a “secret BBC briefing note” at about 2am this morning.

    I’d love to see that note. Come on, Eric, publish!

    Like

    • 64
      QWERTY says:

      Since when have the BBC c u n t z been secret about briefing against the Tories?

      Like

      • 144
        BBC Press Release says:

        There is nothing more conservative than handing a whole day over to the future King Of England’s wedding day. We only like lovable smelly working class northerners as long as they stay oop north. Keep the smelly ones away for north/west London. Thank you.

        Like

  17. 27
    Lord Bowden of Middlesex says:

    What does the “B*” tag mean?

    Like

  18. 32
    E. lection says:

    “He fashioned a left-of-centre platform which addressed the real concerns of voters.”

    He let in 6 million immigrants to “change Britain”

    Like

    • 38
      Cynical-old-bag says:

      …and look at where that’s got us.

      Another good reason for Mr Bag and I to live somewhere else.

      Like

    • 66
      An unrepentant Labour Party says:

      Well, it worked didn’t it?

      Like

      • 108
        jgm2 says:

        If by ‘worked’ you mean that Scotland, relatively unflooded with several million new Labour immigrants just threw Labour out of power whereas the North of England ‘enriched’ by new Labour immigrants just threw a bunch of Lib Dems out then I suppose it ‘worked’.

        Like

        • 147
          Scotland Forever says:

          At least the Eastern Euorpeans work bloody hard unlike the lazy work shy c*ntz who did fuck all work throughout the 15 year boom.

          Like

  19. 33
    Penfold says:

    Weren’t Hitler and Stalin progressives, along with Mao?
    They believed in the elysian fields of a social utopia, which could be reached with the elimination of those anti-social elements who didn’t share the same dreams and aims and aspirations.
    After all, if you’re a progressive, then your idealism is beyond dismissal, beyond reproach, it is the be all and must be accepted by all as the magic mantra which will solve all of societys’ ills.
    As ever in things progressive there is a trade off, and non-believers, heretics and blockers will have to be eliminated, permanently as we can’t have heathens raining on the victory parade as we achieve that cornucopia of social equality and plenty.

    Seems such a shame that all three made vast in-roads into their “social enemies”, yet never achieved that cornucopia, or equality, or shared wealth, or even enough food to feed the masses.

    Progressive I suspect is camouflage for yet another attempt to foist the autarchic communist empire upon us, which will allow a political elite of wonks and commissars to rule over us, whilst enjoying the fruitful cornucopia that the position of privilege enjoys.

    Bah humbug, screw ‘em.

    Like

  20. 34
    boulay says:

    “progressive” is a suitably arrogant term for an arrogant bunch of pseudo-intellectuals. it assumes that only they are after “progress” and that only their way of “progress” is right.

    it only works as a title in opposition to the term “conservative” which indicates (misleadingly) that people like things to remain broadly as things are and will not countenance change.

    the problem lies in the fact that (a quick read of the guardian comments and indie will demonstrate) the “progressive-left” think that they are intellectuals and that the right is full of dumb hoorays. i imagine a lot of this is down to the fact that when they were at oxford etc they could see the right wingers running around getting drunk and having a marvelous time whilst the lefties were stuck in the library and thus assumed that the righties were not academic. they never saw that actually the righties were able to have fun, live a little and still get their degrees – for example a certain mr d cameron gaining a 1st.

    this deep resentment and misunderstanding lives on sadly.

    anyway this myth that “progressive” automatically means “good” and “conservative” means “bad” is easily dismissed when one looks at the results of “progressive” government, ie a massive benefits culture, increased wealth disparity, greater division due to increased immigration and a lack of forced integration to the existing culture and the destruction of an entrepreneurial culture where everyone can make something of themselves through hard work destroyed by high taxes making people question why they should work hard and put their future on the line in order to hand back over half the fruits of their labour so it can be distributed “progressively” to lazy fuckers and immigrants.

    sorry for long post – i just get wound up by the arrogance of “the progressive majority”…..

    Like

  21. 37
    MiguelM says:

    A very well written and thoughtful piece Guido. You will, no doubt, be highly gratified to know that I intend to continue reading your musings.
    Keep up the good work.

    Miguel
    Old Isleworth

    Like

  22. 39
    Did Dave win? says:

    How did Dave the green, pink, gay escort from Brighton do?

    Like

  23. 41
    Clarence says:

    ‘Progressive’ is a word used by self-righteous, arrogant bloggers and journalists with the intention of making themselves sound intelligent and sophisticated. These are the people who supported Blair when he invaded the Middle East yet they have the gall to lecture us on what is Right. C

    Look, I am small business owner who cares about his fellow human beings and would like to see the UK become a modern powerhouse. I am happy to pay my taxes and I am strong supporter of the working man because, hey, the working man is the fibre that sustains this nation. I don’t have a racist bone in my body and despise injustice yet I cannot identify with these so-called progressives. I regard myself as, right-of-centre economically, yet left-wing in terms of social policy. I hate to see people suffer. So why do I despise Toynbee et al so much? Because, subliminally, the despise the people they claim to represent.

    The 13 years of the Brown/Blair axis have left me deeply politicised and very, very cynical. In fact, I loathe that pretentious, patronising and ignorant claque of clueless class-room experts with an intensity that scares me – yes, you Brown and your fellow travellers.. They are like a bunch of classical Victorian hypocrites: talk the talk, yet they switch faces and do the complete opposite of what they proclaim the rest of ‘society’ should be doing. Harriet Harman is, possibly, the greatest hypocrite and shyster of the all, but Straw, Benn…yuck. I can’t bear to think of them.

    At the moment, I despise the Labour Party and all they claim to represent. As far as I can tell, the Labour Party is chock-full of wealthy, pampered brats who have no life experience, no empathy with the working population and no understanding of the British psyche. Why did those fuckers give us Gordon Brown when they knew he was a bully, a freak and a complete Hoon? At least Cameron has a heart – despite his privileged background.

    I’d like to see a Labour Party that understands Britain and what we are trying to attain. I see no signs of that. And as for that fuckwit Miliband – gives us your brother, you hopeless Hunt.

    Like

  24. 45
    cheche says:

    The biggest looser os the BBC. They spent the last general election bigging up the Lib dems. Then they gave us cuts cuts cuts and still the vote held. They also support the Union. Essentailly the BBC won in Wales

    Like

    • 61
      QWERTY says:

      Yes looks like the BBC haven’t spouted “evil Tory cuts” enough, only 500 times per hour, looks like we need more student/BBC/Trade Union inspired riots.

      The Champagne bottles will not be strewn around the BBC today.

      Like

      • 100
        cheche says:

        I wonder whether the Bee is just now talking to itself. There is a solid group who believe it and others who can see thru their bias. I think here of the London election where they tried to get Ken elected.

        Like

    • 65
      Backwoodsman says:

      The bbc are the biggest promoters of the ‘progressive majority ‘ myth, because its who they see themselves as . They loose no opportunity to work the progressive meme into every aspect of everything they produce.
      The much vaunted beeboid ‘impartiality is in our bones’, consists of pretty nearly every current affairs discussion being between a left wing ‘progressive’ and someone so far to the extreme left that they are off the radar. Thus the bbc continually manage to present the progressive left as the norm.
      They really are a dangerous bunch of c unts and anyone not pressing their MP to scrap the license fee , please take the time to e-mail them politely suggesting it !

      Like

    • 87

      Are you using Billy Bowden’s spellchecker?

      Like

  25. 51
    ac1 says:

    also sadly applies to Dave ..

    Like

  26. 58
    sockpuppet #4 says:

    I believe you are chasing a make believe creature. I don’t know whether its some sort of flying unicorn or well meaning dragon.

    Something that means different things to different people, so everyone’s happy because they’re all thinking of their own magical creature.

    Like making “a better apple pie” everyone is indeed in favour. So there might well be a “progressive majority” but everyone wants to progress in different directions, at different paces.

    Sorry for this – but it sounds a bit like big society. Everyone likes a nice “feelgood” sound bite don’t they. Don’t they?

    Like

    • 72
      nell says:

      A real feelgood soundbite would be ‘lower taxes, lower petrol prices at the pumps’

      Like

  27. 59
    QWERTY says:

    Did the Tories get wiped out last night? Not a word on Radio 5, so I’m guessing ….. er no.

    Oh dear poor old Michael Prick on Newsnight, the Tories will lose 1000 seats spouted the big fat leftie faggot.

    More like Liebore are totally fucked. Get on with those boundary changes Cameron and really piss the jock faggots off, then we can get out of the EU as well.

    Like

    • 67
      nell says:

      Well the results for about 140 councils are now in and labour have not yet won 400 new seats.

      Will they make that 1000 they said would prove that militwit would be the next pm at the next election?

      It’s doubtful.

      Like

      • 80
        QWERTY says:

        Liebore have been wiped out in the South East, they are backed up into their cesspit hovels of Liverpool, Newcastle and a bit of Scotland and Wales.

        They have no political mandate, get rid of Scotland and they will never get power again, they’d have to merge with the Limp Dems.

        It’s mostly traditional Tory voters who voted for Bliar in 97, I can’t see them ever voting for Red Ed in the same way, the south east of England is totally blue.

        Like

        • 156
          Scotland Forever says:

          Labour is finished in Scotland. Free at last, free at last.

          Like

          • Honest View says:

            I hope you’re right, but no doubt eventually Salmond’s promises will run up against financial and fiscal reality, and then Labout will seep back like some vile leak of sewage.

            Like

    • 75
      An amateur brain surgeon says:

      Will Dave be able to push-through the boundary changes without LibDem support? I imagine the ever-opportunistic LibDems – with an eye towards a future LibLab coalition – might start shifting their allegiance.

      Like

    • 76
      Lord Bowden of Middlesex says:

      Boudray changes will be in place for the next genral election.

      Like

  28. 73
    Lord Bowden of Middlesex says:

    When are all final results in?

    Like

  29. 84
    Aunt Hilda says:

    the only progressive thing about the 13 years of labour government was the scale of the solid shafting the public purse took to fund the new labour experiment as spun by blair brown and mandelson…same old mantras cloaked in meaningless political soundbites all at the taxpayer’s expense.

    Like

  30. 90
    ST says:

    There is nothing progressive about ideologies which take us back to living under an iron fist of authorities. No matter how benign their intention progressives, and government’s in general, they threaten the use of force unless we do things which are “for our own good”. Such behavior would not be tolerated in an individual.

    Nor is there anything progressive about creating a welfare state which traps people in poverty, destroys hopes and ambitions, and then traps them as supplicants to be fed and ignored until their votes are needed.

    Like

  31. 91
    Moley says:

    Calling Socialism “Progressive” is analogous to renaming shit as “Chanel”.

    The label is designed to make the gullible accept the odious and repellent as desirable.

    What was “Progressive” about Soviet Russia, and why should we all desire to re-create it?

    Like

    • 159
      Zeno says:

      It’s the old Socialist trick of describing something by using its opposite: whenever you saw a country called “People’s Republic” it wouldn’t be popular, and no “Democratic Republic” ever was. So if something is reactionary, call it “progressive” and hope enough chumps believe you.

      Like

  32. 95
    Little Boy Blue says:

    Whatever else Ed Milliband is, I am convinced he is a loser. Moreover, so is his No.2 the other ED. Bring on a general election and quick before the Labour faithful realise it.

    Like

    • 109
      the last quango in paris says:

      +1

      last night was a huge blow to Labour – an utter disaster. long may it continue.

      Like

      • 136
        Old dog no tricks says:

        I am amazed that the BEEB is constantly asking limpdims if they will break up the coilition after their drubbing ! Are they that stupid that if they broke the coilition – judging by last nights results – they would be totally destroyed – never to be seen again (not a bad thing).

        In fact – I would suggest Cameron if he wants to govern (without his hands tied as he suggests) should call it now ! Labour are hated – limpdims are despised and the Tory vote is holding up ! Call it now Dave !

        But I’ll support UKIP – because out of the EU is all that matters for this country and every other aspect of its government !

        Like

        • 174
          Honest View says:

          There is an odd beeboid theory being pumped out that Cameron will have to save Clegg’s bacon by giving him even more of his favourite policies. For goodness’ sake, LibDems should resign from the Coalition out of shame, admitting that they clearly have no mandate to be part of a government.
          Proper Conservatives are getting increasingly annoyed at being shackled to a corpse.

          Like

          • Lord Effingham says:

            Agreed. Unfortunately, real conservatives aren’t in power right now. Cameron and Clegg are pretty much indistinguishable.

            Like

  33. 101
    the last quango in paris says:

    I have an excellent idea :)

    Given that Ian Gray is likely to resign in Scotland, there will be an opening for a Scottish heavy weight political leader, someone who can work with Miliband, get his figures right, be used to live political discussions, t v debates, mingle with leaders of the world…….

    step forward Mr Brown MP.

    Like

  34. 116
    the last quango in paris says:

    balls on sky now looks scary.

    Like

  35. 118
    Mike Hunt says:

    The LDs could promise the moon on a stick and their followers could vote the them confident that there was zero chance of them ever having to deliver but feel good that they voted for those nice people.

    The LDs have been badly caught out by reality.

    Good.

    Like

  36. 127
    houndtang says:

    The audience and panel on Question Time was a case in point re the BBC. I cannot believe (at least I don’t want to) that was representative of Britain that people were howling down Douglas Murray over his comments about OBL. It was a depressing spectacle.

    Like

  37. 129
    Kevin T says:

    If there was really a “progressive” consensus, why did left wingers feel it necessary to rebrand themselves with such a vacuously positive-sounding term? Why not just carry on calling themselves “left wing” or “socialist”, which is what they are and what they claim the public want? Tossers.

    Like

  38. 145
    Jesus says:

    This is probably the best post I’ve ever seen Guido write.

    I think on balance Britain is neither right nor left, it’s actually centrist with minimal hysteria, it defies any singular ideological slant, there is a basic and well-understood pragmatism behind what people belive, be it immigration, the NHS, or the welfare state – what has unfortunately happened is that the welfare state and immigration have become unmanagable burdens on the nation, it isn’t necessarily just ideology but pragmatism that will sort it out.

    I.e. we should have a safety net but come down hard on those that use it as a means to live, there is a balance between a duty of care and a wider duty not to end up with a generational dependency, we need to be cruel to be kind and for that reason cutting spending is a good thing as long as it maintains the british principle of fairness along the way.

    There is a very difficult balance that takes place between the right and the left, both of which have fair points to make along the way, both of which have a place in our society, what has unfortunately been the case since 97 is that a big spending state rode the economic boom all the way to the bottom, it only became apparent to the average voter how flawed that system was after it failed.

    We’re not a country of starkly divided ideologies, we’re a nation that still has the capacity for greatness in which there is plenty of room for pragmatism, at the moment that needs to come from the right of centre, perhaps eventually that too will travel too far along its path – but taken as a whole, it really is a centrist nation we have, and that is why we are neither wingnut america or fruity europe, we should celebrate it.

    Jesus

    Like

  39. 146
    Bazz says:

    Pure Guidospeare.

    Like

  40. 150
    Cato Street Conspirator says:

    ‘Caring and sharing with your family becomes your priority, that is human nature.’

    And adultery, a bit on the side, don’t forget that very important part of ‘caring and sharing with your family’.

    Like

  41. 155
    (I've been renamed) DA-Notice says:

    Aren’t all the Common Purpose mob and other progressives who have got jobs at local authorities part of the progressive problem?

    The Localism Bill is in reality just the EU’s susbsidiarity principle with the Government saying that locals should be able to influence local decisions, local democracy, but in reality we can’t get rid of these progressives that are permanently employed by councils and who really control what goes on, not the transient councillors.

    How do we get rid of the progressives whose decisions pervade or daily lives?

    Like

  42. 160
    andrew says:

    well said

    Like

  43. 175

    Eddie Izzard’s effect on the AV yes vote might give the BBC, and other such pushers of his type of approach and its appeal, some pause for thought about what you can foist on a public. Or perhaps not.

    Like

  44. 176
    Peter Grimes says:

    It’s not delusion – these ‘progressive’ ZaNuLieBor c.nuts just know that they know better than anyone else what is good for the UK.

    Like

  45. 177
    Labour Sock (sing leftie, sing) says:

    Stop yer ticklin’ Jock.

    Like

  46. 178
    Dunkin Donuts says:

    Well said, that man.

    Like

  47. 180
    'Progressive' is merely the latest word used by the left to Hide their Marxist agenda says:

    The Left are masters at hiding their true intent behind words

    Like

  48. 185
    50 Calibre says:

    Miliband = Yes to AV = Loser

    and there are still some idiots about who actually believe that he could be PM. Thery need to get out a bit more. Red Ed is about as prime ministerial as next door’s moggy…

    Like

  49. 186
    Anonymous says:

    “He fashioned a left-of-centre platform which addressed the real concerns of voters.”

    Hilarious.

    Blair fashioned a neo-Thatcherite platform that appealed bankers, wankers, and EUistas. Others went along with it for a time because everyone was so deliriously happy to get rid of the Tory party.

    Like

  50. 187
    Dave666 says:

    Lets revamp democracy in this country:-

    1) institute £100 fines for all those not voting.
    2) mandate that each ballot paper includes a non of the above choice.
    3) limit an MP to no more than 3 terms.
    4) Mandate that each MP has to have been in full time employment outside the financial and political sectors for 10 years before being allowed to stand for election.

    Like

  51. 191
    gildedtumbril says:

    Progressive means marxist. Marxism is lunacy.All ‘employees’ of the bbc and any admirers and fellow travellers of george sorarse should be tarred, feathered, hanged, drawn and quartered, their heads mounted on pikes on Westminster Bridge. The same restorative treatment is needed for the 650 shysters, charlatans, scumbags and scalliwags, all of whom are scoundrels in the House of Conmen and what is euphemisticall named upper house. There are at present 792 of those crooks. The country is awash with traitors of all varieties. They need remedial treatment as a warning to others. Pour encourager les autres.(Something like that)

    Like

  52. 194
    Swinging Voter says:

    Unfortunately, I have to agree with your gist Guido. Still, telling us the British public are troglodytes is hardly innovative. Just look at the AV reform vote!

    Like


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