Friday, 1 May 2009

The changing shape of British politics

Ian Parker-Joseph, leader of the Libertarian Party, has written his assessment of how British politics has changed over the past 12 years, and in particular how the main parties have changed.

I’m not going to reproduce his article here (not even the nifty diagrams of how the different parties have changed - though I was tempted to borrow them!), because you should go over to his site and read it yourself.

What particularly interested me was that his diagrams not only showed the major political parties all becoming less concerned about individual liberty than formerly (in my opinion, that was fairly obvious) but also showing the Libertarian Party today as not very far from where the major parties used to be.

And in similar vein he writes “We are looking to return Britain to a moderate Britain, where personal freedom is important, where our rights and Liberty are guaranteed at birth, not granted at the whim of a government, a Britain where our laws are consensual, based upon the rights earned by our forefathers, laws written and agreed in Britain, by members of a Parliament that represent the people who elected them rather than those who pay them from abroad.”

And I think that he is on to something there. The LPUK is not a utopian party, believing in doing something outlandish, and seeking to recruit people on the fringe of the political spectrum. It is a party of people who are aware that the personal freedoms that we have in this country were gained by the struggles of many people over the centuries, and are being lost rapidly as the political classes in Britain lose interest in those historic freedoms.

In short, the LPUK should be seen as the true party of moderation in Britain. While the mainstream parties may be considered moderate (simply because they are mainstream), they actually believe in increasing the power of the state in a way which in previous generations would have been recognised as completely extreme.

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