Well folks, this is going to be my first blog post in about four years. A lot's happened in that time, I've finished uni, had a very frightening health scare, got a job, almost had a girlfriend and also watched with despair as the country slips further into the abyss.
In 2010 I had such high hopes for the coalition government that took office. I was a staunch Conservative but I thought maybe it could work. Perhaps I should have taken more notice of the people who were naysayers of David Cameron on my own side. He has (they would say predictably) managed to sell out on every promise he made. Even those people who I viewed as potential bright spots (Michael Gove and IDS) have come unstuck with the education system still being a mess and welfare reforms now taking on the appearance of being designed to kill off the disabled rather than help the needy and thwart the scroungers.
It's a far cry from that roaringly triumphant year long run up to the 2010 election. Even with the expenses scandal claiming several scalps we Tory types thought we had it all in the bag. Alas it was not to be. So much of the blame for that belongs to Shameron (as I now call the incompetent fool who occupies No 10) and his team. Against what many of us considered to be an open goal, he fell short and had to make a deal with the Liberal Democrats.
I think the point of my disillusionment began before I even started this blog. It was the rather absurd moment when the government declared it had no money left, scrapped Britain's only carrier borne fighter aircraft, hiked tuition fees up to approximately £9000, made swathes of cutbacks elsewhere but then somehow found £3,000,000,000 for the overseas aid budget.
Now don't get me wrong folks, I know that in the grand scheme of things, three billion pounds is a small sum and the DFID (Department for International Development) budget of twelve billion is tiny compared to what is spent on both the NHS and social security. However it's not always about the figures, it's about the principle. To tell people around the country to “tighten their belts” and then announce you can find money for other countries. At the time of writing (November 11th 2014), aid is still going to countries such as India and Pakistan. Pakistan is expected to become the largest recipient of UK aid, roughly £405 million in the fiscal year 2014/2015. I don't dispute the fact that many, many people in Pakistan live in terrible poverty and require help. What I find galling is the fact that Pakistan has:
-An endemic amount of political corruption and instability (three major coups that have resulted in Pakistan having a military dictatorship in power for 33 of the 67 years since Pakistan become an independent state).
-A very poor human rights record.
-Links to certain terrorist organisations (such as the Taliban).
-Has roughly 100 TO 120 NUCLEAR WARHEADS
I really cannot see why politicians in this country are prepared to justify such a country getting more aid money, indeed to become the largest recipient of aid from this country. How do you tell a Cancer patient there isn't money to fund the drugs to save their life but you can find the money for a nuclear armed state? It's almost as though they know it will antagonise people but do it anyway. I don't doubt that people in the countries we give aid to have issues and some of them will lead far harder existences than we could contemplate. I don't think we should have no aid program at all. My problem is with the ring fencing and then increase of the budget in the face of a tanking economy and the mantra we had drilled into our heads of “There is no money left” by politicians in the run up to the election and after it (compounded by Liam Byrne's now infamous note that he left for his successor David Laws).
If this sorry state of affairs was the beginning of my disillusionment, what followed merely reinforced my contempt for the Shameron led Conservative party. Despite all the Eurosceptic noises prior to the election, this government has probably caved in and done as little as possible to repatriate any significant power than any other. You get the occasional storm in a tea cup but when has the government ever actually followed through on any threats it has made? Even now we have the unedifying spectacle of the government trying to squirm out of having a vote on the controversial European Arrest Warrant.
There are other hair brained ideas that have illustrated the utter incompetence of this government. Weak gimmicks such as the “National Citizens Service”, the idea of a repealing tracts of legislation but conveniently missing out some of the more tiresome “nanny state” acts (such as the smoking ban), all the way to much more dangerous things such as the “Help to Buy” mortgage scheme (which has all the hallmarks of the things that led us to the financial crisis in the first place).
In short, I can't stand this government. Can't stand the potential government in waiting either (Williyband's bunch of imbeciles). Whoever wins, we're all going to lose.