Tuesday, May 17, 2005

No link whoring

Jay is clear.

Also HT Jay, The Ambler quotes from "The Rape of the Lock" and reminds us:

The rights of Englishmen (and Canadians) were established long before the advent of universal suffrage, which has coincided with a relentless reduction of freedom.
.I really like the Ambler. I think I first found this blog through a link from Hit & Run to his obituary of Joe Strummer. The link described him as an anarcho-Tory. There's a great anecdote in there:
One night after some gig I found myself at a party in some dive face to face with Gerry Useless (né Hannah), bass player and political commissar of the Subhumans, a band still remembered fondly in these parts. Like DOA, they traded in Mannerist Marxism but were rather more earnest. I was disgusted by Mr. Useless’s ignorant attitudinizing and let him have it with both barrels. I was fiendishly subtle. I delivered a wholly false but passionate and closely reasoned diatribe against "left-wing Communism, an infantile disorder." Mr. Useless was quite shaken. When I was done, he asked, "Who are you?" (It helps if you picture me wearing a bespoke suit, which was my style at the time. I enjoyed the tension.) "Just a Leninist," I replied brusquely, turned and walked away.) The Subhumans broke up, and the next I heard of Gerry Useless he had been arrested. He had foresworn music for a group called Direct Action—the infamous "Squamish Five." No poseurs they; they bombed porno video stores and a BC Hydro substation in Vancouver and a weapons system plant in Ontario. Useless was sentenced to 10 years. Sorry guy, it was just a drunken prank; I never figured you’d take me seriously.
Update: May as well make this a full on generic quote'n'link post. GotCH:
The old victorian moralists who ran, or in modern perceptions of the period ran, much of the voluntary charity system of this country tended to be both small and local. They knew the people they were helping. It was thus possible to make judgment calls on specific cases. Bob needs a kick in the ass. John needs tea and sympathy. Margaret as much money as we can spare. All this seemed terribly quaint and inefficient to the post-war statists. Just as they believed in controlling the Commanding Heights in the for-profit economy, so they believed in applying the same principles to social provision. The anarchy of capitalism / private social provision would be replaced with planning. Planning led to economic disaster and social disaster. It's the same principle behind both.