Thursday, September 15, 2005

They're 'The Treason Party' For A Reason

JohnJo has tracked down a peach of a quote from Vincent Cable - yes, that Vincent Cable, the one endlessly hailed by Libertarians as the sensible face of the Lib Dems. Judge for yourself whether that reputation is deserved:

The threat to harmonious social relations in Britain comes from those who insist that multiple identity is not possible: white supremacists, English nationalists, Islamic fundamentalists.

This is the opposition and they have to be confronted. An important element in that confrontation is the assertion of a sense of Britishness.

I can see how you could confuse English nationalism with Islamic fundementalism, y'know, English Parliament, flying planes into Parliament, sort of similar, really.

I doubt JohnJo was pleased at Vincent Cable trying to draw a parallel between his desire for constitutional symmetry between England and Scotland and the desire to kill 95% of the people in England and Scotland. Myself, I think an English Parliament is a really bad idea, but I'm even more offended the other way.

Here, we have a group of people creating mayhem across the globe, and Vincent Cable classes them with people who support a solution to the West Lothian question he disagrees with ? But, of course! This is the world view of the modern Liberal in a nutshell, a childish tautology whereby the Right is evil, and everyone who's evil is on the Right. The fact that a senior Lib Dem can seriously suggest that folks who support an English Parliament are the same as Osama Bin Laden should be borne in mind the next time you hear a Lib Dem talking preaching about their opposition to 'ya-boo' politics. But there's more to it than that.

What's really wrong with Cable statement isn't that he compares English nationalists to terrorists, it's that he compares terrorists to a group of people who think diffferently about devolution. The first thought is 'are you nuts ?' We've had September 11, Bali, Chechnya, Kashmir, Israel...well, you get the idea, but Vincent apparently doesn't. After all that, he can't think of these maniacs as anything more significant than just another bunch of right-wingers. This is the mark of a man, and a party, that has failed utterly to engage with perhaps the most pressing issue of our times. But isn't that the Lib Dems all over ? Nice headlines, pity about the complete abscence of any coherent policies.

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