Thursday, August 11, 2011

Some Good Points ... From a Socialist?

I was reading posts on Planet Atheism, an aggregator of atheist sites, when I noticed one about the London riots written by Anna Johnstone. I've never been on her blog before, and was surprised to see forthright condemnation of the rioters, and points that would normally be made from the right. Despite being a self-described socialist, Johnstone apparently doesn't buy into the cult of victimization the pervades the left. Instead of excuses for the rioters, there was the following:
These rioters are NOT freedom fighters of any kind regardless of what they claim to be! They are an insult to the idea of a free society. As a socialist I am disgusted with the lot of them and have been seriously considering my stance on corporal punishment over the last couple of days.
She writes about her own strict upbringing in contrast to kids allowed to run wild.
I now believe that my parents actually did know what they were doing and I thank them for it. They were preventing my brother and I from turning into the sort of selfish, greedy animals committing these vile acts in our major cities. They didn’t let me grow up thinking that the world owed me anything.
And when was the last time you heard this much sense from the left?
I was taught that a social safety net was just that: a safety net. It’s there so nobody who falls on hard times has to starve or go homeless and it should not under any circumstances be abused or in any way taken for granted or relied upon as an indefinite source of income especially if we are able to work.
There's more.
I am getting rather sick and tired of hearing how ‘Austerity measures’ have led to these riots: they haven’t. This began as an outraged cry over a bungled arrest. What has happened since is completely unrelated to said shooting. The violence and destruction which has followed is in no frame of the rational mind, neither proportionate or appropriate.
Now granted, she does attribute the mindset of the rioters to "a left-over bi-product of the Thatcherite brand of ‘Individualism‘ and her despicable policy of ‘there is no society,'" which I found pretty funny. She might want to read Max Hastings' much more convincing argument. But overall the post is right on the mark. I will return to her blog to see her thoughts on other topics.


  1. There is a wide spectrum of thought on "each side" for any particular topic. The trick is not to be fooled by big media and buy into their caricatures of different political groups.

  2. That's true depending on the topic. But in general there are positions that are fairly consistent within even broad political groups. I don't think it has anything to do with the media. If you read large numbers of right-wing writings, or large numbers of left, you will find a large degree of agreement on certain themes. So when someone goes against type, I think it is noteworthy.