20 July 2011

Meltdown In Politics, Banking And Now Media. But What Progress?

My hopes just keep getting raised; a referendum on changing the electoral system (ok, to a system not much better) but.., result - lost; MPs caught with their hands in the till, result - no real change, bankers - ditto.

So I haven't raised my hopes during Murdochgate. Yes we have some judicial inquiries, yes some resignations (with handsome payoffs no doubt), yes the BskyB bid is defeated (for now), but will any of this really convict the establishment figures up to their neck in it?

My reasons for starting this blog 6 years ago were to highlight how centralised and monopolised our politics, media and finance had become. This breeds a lack of competition. The main solutions seemed simple enough to me - proportional elections, regulated ownership and impartiality rules for the media, and regulating speculation, debt and inequality. All these things could be achieved if only powerful rich vested interests could be defeated. There has been no time better than the present, yet somehow the people have been sidetracked, bamboozled and it remains 'business as usual' for the powered rich elite that form the establishment. I really don't know how they do it.

On MPs expenses, what highlighted just how little had changed was Tories like David Cameron berating large families on benefit for claiming £20k in benefits just so they can pay their exorbitant rents (not their fault). While at the same time Cameron claims £20k from the taxpayer for interest on a mortgage he doesn't even need. While this guy on a taxpayer funded salary in excess of £150k and worth an estimated £30m can get away with this there is little hope (MPs still get 3 times average salary and £100k expenses on top). What real chance has a family on benefit got to change their circumstances when it is obvious to anyone that there are no jobs going to pay them the amount they need to live. Is that their fault? Isn't the solution to make sure work pays, rather than throw them on the street? Of course you would never read any of this in the press. Even if Murdoch is destroyed, would it be better if the Daily Mail or Richard Desmond have even more power? And of course bankers are still getting millions in bonuses.

I was trying to reason that surely Murdoch can't be all bad, but looking at Fox news in the US and hearing Murdoch wailing at the injustice of it all just emphasises we should have no sympathy for this guy (face-pie or no face-pie - I just wish that idiot hadn't done that).

4 comments:

  1. Agree Mail/Express (and Mirror for that matter) are scarcely any better, except for one thing: Murdoch has been more upfront about wanting to destroy the BBC -- getting all his organs to go on and on about how unsatisfactory the BBC is, when anyone can see that the real reason is pure self-interest on his part.

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  2. Trouble is, I don't think 'anyone' can see the pure self-interest of people like Murdoch, Desmond, Rothermere etc.

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  3. Good point about Cameron's interest claims.

    Just keep on keeping on Neil - no worthwhile reform ever happened quickly.

    Mind you, it is depressing when progress seems to have gone into reverse in so many ways - old Etonian PM, wider gap between rich and poor, less chance of working class people getting into the exclusive professions like the law ... I could go on.

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  4. I thought Cameron's second home claims were closer to £24K. Anyway, I can't recall who said it, but some MPs became tax-payer funded property investors under the old rules.

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