Trying to reconcile two seemingly polarised views is the essence of politics for me nowadays
Since I was a kid I have had an emotional connection to the British Labour Party. I’ve always described my politics as socialism and I’ve recently got engaged in some fascinating discussion on Tom Peters Blog about capitalism versus socialism.
My earliest recollections of politics entering my thinking was in my early teens and my late beloved Dad coming home from his work after his shift on the front line in the massive Perkins Diesel engine factory in Peterborough (in those days it employed in excess of 10,000 people). He would complain about how management were not interested in the front line workers. Dad was a staunch Union man and fought hard for the workers he supervised as a fairly senior engine inspector. He had many battles with what he called ‘out of touch management stuck in their offices.’
It was these formative years that I suppose led me to believe the Labour Party was the one for me. As a result I've always voted for either a Labour Candidate (or a Liberal Democrat as a tactical vote just so that a Conservative is not elected)
I will not change my basic allegiance to socialism but I have discovered Socially Responsible Capitalism as a concept for the first time and I am going to do some more reading on this concept.
The thing that aways worries me about a purely capitalist dogma is this rose tinted illusion we are supposed to believe that business will allow 'trickle down' of wealth taking some of the profits ‘down’ to those who are at the bottom of the pile. O yeah, who are you trying to kid is my response.
I just cannot see this as ‘real world thinking’ without some form of government regulation which is alien to capitalists.
As a consequence I've never voted for a Conservative because that party is passionately capitalist.
Mark JF one of our regular commenters posted this comment a few weeks ago:
"A young man who isn't a socialist hasn't got a heart; an old man who is a socialist hasn't got a head." David Lloyd George.
In spite of Lloyd George’s assertion that I ‘don’t have a head’ I remain socially minded and nothing will change my view about that – but at the same time I want to see the spread of genuine socially responsible capitalism.
Maybe what I am saying for the first time in my voting life is that I will look at which candidate in my constituency stands for socially responsible capitalism and he/she will get my vote. The test for me will come if that person in a Conservative I guess.