By common consent young Mhairi Black gave an inspired maiden speech. She was articulate not hesitant, confident not arrogant, generous too inviting SNP’s implacable for, the Labour party, to join in opposition and not merely abstain, but above all she was honest. Her transparent, uncomplicated honesty impressed all who saw her speak. Millions of hits on the recorded speech shown on YouTube bear out (not that bear) to the popularity of its message and the power of its delivery.
Other SNP MPs gave excellent maiden speeches, but we are always taken by surprise when wisdom emerges from the mouth of callow youth. Mhairi has given herself a lot to live up to. Then again, a First in Politics from Glasgow University tells us she’s no slacker.
Against all predictions she overturned a large majority of patented-with-the-Paisley-pattern, Douglas Alexander, Labour MP for Paisley and Renfrewshire South, a glum minister’s son and machine politician. Her win was a magnificent accomplishment in its own right, and a signal she is unlikely to disappear into the ranks and out of sight.
BBC the state broadcaster
To its shame BBC Scotland news staying true to its mandate – ‘Always Ready to Rubbish Scotland’. It chose to depict her entry into the Westminster political arena and history as a soured event. It broadcast a single sentence, and then cut to MPs around applauding, and straight to the Speaker of the House rebuking the SNP for applauding. Now we know. Mhairi is earmarked as an insurgent. The bears have her scent.
Insurgents in Westminster are more dangerous than Jeremy Clarkson served a cold meal after a hard day on his arse driving expensive cars.
When the young Tiger Woods won his first major tournament, the 1997 Masters, an established elder golfer offered an impromptu opinion of his achievement to a passing camera crew. He thought Woods should “go celebrate” with some “fried chicken legs”. “Isn’t that what those folks do?” he added, an allusion to stereotypical eating habits of African-Americans as seen by supremacist whites. The negative comments that followed Mhairi Black’s speech recall that attitude – unadulterated racism.
Lecturer without dignity
One insult that stands out from the others came from an emeritus professor, a pillar of the establishment, a remark laden with all the hallmarks of the onset of Alzheimer’s disease. “She’s a slut” was the good academic’s prognosis. Challenged by the press she refused to apologise. “Look up the meaning of slut” she said, as if its literal meaning somehow justified unspeakable abuse.
But there is a deeper, unconscious state of mind behind the sad professor’s detestation of Mhairi Black’s success. And it is implacably anti-democratic. There is blind acceptance only the educated, well-spoken elite can participate in politics and have real influence.
Mhairi Black is about to discover she is faced with bears trained to root out insurgents, and they don’t like their porridge eaten. They adopt a basterdised version of democracy. Actually, it’s standard neo-liberal doctrine of contemporary democratic theory. According to this version of democracy, the public are ignorant and troublesome outsiders. They have to be pacified, made to conform, put in their place. Insurgency bears believe decisions must be in the hands of an intelligent minority of responsible men, and a few women.
The electorate as herd
We do have a function, of sorts. We are expected to lend our weight and support to a choice placed before us, the responsible men themselves chosen by their peers, not us. We are allowed to make this choice only every five years, or when a referendum is called. Apart from that, our function is to be spectators, not participants in action. This severely restricted democracy is for our own good.
We’re in the hands of the financial elite, the City and Wall Street, and the IMF, each the harbinger of ferocious austerity, lacerating welfare cuts, privatisation, income inequality, and the marketisation of everything, from people to intelligence. Above all, it casts us as human capital who must tend to our own present and future value. Just ask the embattled leaders of Greece.
From a colonial perspective
We, the people, in particular the bloody meddlesome, whining, annoying Scots, must not succumb to the dogmatism about people being the best judges of their own interest. The slogan, ‘Scotland governed by the Scots’ is anathema, an abomination, a really stupid notion proposed by stupid people unfit to administer a first aid sticking plaster.
Being proletarian and therefore untutored and unreliable, we are not to be trusted with important decisions. Instead we are given a highly selected minimum of choices. Neo-liberalism is not only about economics, it’s about politics too. Liberty is reduced to market values, and what we are allowed to say and do, and the choices we are offered.
In the current case of a new Labour party leader, the choice is one of four, three so right-wing they might as well be members of the Tory party. The one on the left, Jeremy Corbyn, is so far Left he is talking to us from down a sinkhole somewhere in Outer Mongolia, never a threat. He is included among the choices for us to laugh at, a token gesture to the last remnants of the disenfranchised poor. He is the obvious no-hoper. You know how far to the Right the Labour party has moved when it plots to remove a colleague on the Left.
Mhairi has a lot in common with Corbyn. They are both traditional socialists. And like Mhairi, Corbyn offers hope and optimism to English voters, though none to Scots. he upholds the corrupted principles of the Union
“Elections don’t matter much because, “thanks to globalization . . . the world is governed by market forces,” not elected representatives.” Alan Greenspan, economist, former chairman US Federal Reserve.
Conformity, all is conformity
Insurgency bears expect conformity. They like uncritical acceptance. That means it is necessary to regiment minds by keeping control of the press and the media. Television companies must be in the hands of the feeders of the bears. Our information has to be sifted and edited. Mhairi should keep an eye on the press. They praise the enemies of the state only so they have further to fall when push comes to shove.
It’s also necessary to discipline the institutions responsible for the indoctrination of youth. That means controlling the finances of universities, and their curricula, in addition to intake of students and student types. Bears write the prospectus if universities know what is good for them – their grants increased.
In the hands of the elite
Our country is governed with the cooperation of a relatively small number of City of London bankers and high-profile lawyers, the ardent supporters of free market economics who benefit from it to a great extent. They are the masters of our universe. Insurgency bears are their security dogs. They don’t do it in the woods. They do it on us.
This is what we are presented with as the best theory of liberal thinking. Labour, Lib-Dem, Tory, all say the same thing:
Only figures from the British Establishment are fit to govern.
Scotland and the Scots, but especially Mhairi Black, know thy place!
Mhairi Black’s maiden speech: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=exQex_S_x-w
How the BBC covered Mhairi’s speech: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r2Rt4tVxHkA