The words of an enraged Tory youth

Saturday, June 24, 2006

What on Earth Does 'Islamist' Mean?

Michael Gove makes some good points in an article on the fight against terrorism in today's Times. However, one thing about this, and other articles and discussion of this type still perplexes me. What do we mean by ‘Islamist?' Gove goes on and on about the dangers of Islamists, while sympathising with moderate 'Muslims.' Surely an 'Islamist' is one who follows Islam, a Muslim. So why do we make the distinction?

There is no good way to condemn the beliefs of one group and praise the beliefs on another when they base their beliefs on the same text. So instead of attacking that text, that initial set of beliefs, we are forced by convention and taboo to make a distinction where there really is none and fill our lexicon with meaningless PC words.

The bombings in London were not the fault of any one group of people, be they 'Militants,' 'Extremists,' 'Fundamentalists,' or just plain old 'Islamists.' The Muslim faith itself was the inspiration and provided the rationale behind the attacks.

The same could be said of the Christian sects and the Irish troubles. Without religion, neither of these attacks would have taken place. So why do we insist on censoring any direct criticism of religion?

Thursday, June 22, 2006

The Doctrine of Dr. State

A recent Channel 4 documentary presented by Giles Coren seriously explored the idea of a 'fat tax.' This may seem bizarre, but a tax on fatty foods has been considered by the government in the past.


The government have correctly identified the problem; fatty food is delicious and cheap. Many parents who can't afford to dine on steamed asparagus at The Ivy often find that a cheap Burger King is the best, most affordable food that their kids will eat. There is not a lack of knowledge of healthy foods out there. Government campaigns will help encourage healthy choices but not significantly change the habits the country.

So on the surface a fat tax seems perfect. Unfortunately, there is no way I will let the government remove my right to slowly kill myself through bacon. Taxing a certain kind of food because eating it constantly can lead to health problems would be another grave infringement of civil rights on the part of Dr. Tony Blair.

New Labour's doctrine of 'Dr. State' is equally enfuriating and justified. The government provides healthcare through the NHS, and therefore they reason that are right in trying to save money by eliminating health problems before they develop, eg: taxing fatty foods, banning smoking in pubs. This is what I call Dr. State. Confusingly for Tony Blair and co, people like me who want the government to spend less on the NHS are equally angered when the idea of a money saving fat tax is floated. Let me help you Tone...

Interfering in the market and removing the right of an individual to choose which foods he or she can greedily devour is not something nice people do. We want you to save money but we don't want you to tell us what to do. I too would like to see a slightly less chunky Britain but authoritarian policies are not the way to achieve this.

Here's an Idea...

What if treatment for 'lifestyle-influenced' illnesses was not made free on the NHS? This would probably provide a strong deterrent for those who want to eat only fatty foods. It would encourage people to make healthy choices. We all, fat and thin alike, need money more than hamburgers. The same effect as the tax would be achieved, but rather that being prevented from eating fatty foods, we would have the option to have a cake or a burger once in a while and to pay only market price (plus VAT, but that's another matter).

Of course, this tax will probably never be implemented, but I feel this discourse would have applied equally to other laws such as the smoking ban. Personally, I do not like Dr. State. No matter how honourable his intentions, he seems less like Dr Smith my GP, and more like Dr. Goebbels.

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

We Need Nukes

An underdressed Gordon Brown today gave a keynote speech on the Trident missile system, drawing criticism from, as usual, both right and left. What to do with Britain's independent nuclear deterrent has recently become the subject of a surprisingly lively debate. I say surprisingly because to me there is only one answer. Despite calls for disarmament from hardcore socialists, and dodgy promises to keep the current system from Brown, I am convinced that Trident needs to be replaced with a new nuclear system designed for the 21st Century.

Let's be honest, who are we deterring with out nuclear deterrent? The war we are currently waging around the world is not a war against an "evil empire" but against an abstract noun. However, the phrase war on "terror" is misleading. We, the British and Americans, are really involved in an ideological struggle against, yes I’m going to say it, Islam.

We are not fighting terror; we are fighting an ideology and a religion. This religion is not something abstract though, it is more concrete than even the term "Terror." Militant Islam is solidly personified by states such as our favourite new nuke club member, Iran. You may feel that I am building up to a defense of Mutually Assured Destruction between the west and Iran. Unfortunately for us, this is not possible.

How can we deter an enemy that isn't afraid of death? The Iranian government openly trains "Suicide Squads," and never misses an opportunity to encourage martyrs to lay down their life for Islam. Clearly, the deterrence that worked against the USSR is not going to work against states like Iran where death from an infidel's bomb is followed by eternity in paradise.

No, we may, in fact, have to use the bomb. We cannot keep sending troops to far flung corners of the globe. We cannot simply invade Iran; it would be a logistical impossibility. We can, however, develop a nuclear capability that can be deployed rapidly and pre-emptively. Tactical nuclear strikes may have to become the norm if we are to punch above our weight in the 21st century. Instead of deterrent weapons intended to reduce Tehran to rubble, we need weapons that can eliminate a threat (a nuclear facility, a terrorist camp) quickly and effectively. Trident's replacement will have to come soon and it will have to be radically different. But make no mistake, we need it.

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

The Spirit of the Young Pretender

The Young Pretender, or Bonnie Prince Charlie as you may know him, is in no way a hero of mine. In fact, I regard him as more of a villain. This blog is titled not in his memory, but in reference to myself, a schoolboy who thinks he can blog with the big boys.

Speaking of Bonnie Prince Charlie...

I am currently residing in Scotland, and I regret to announce it is as you have always feared. The majority of Scots no longer see themselves as part of the union. When you ask the man on the street where he comes from, his answer is Scotland, not Britain. The response to this Caledonian nationalism south of the border is to fly the flag of St. George. I believe that this is the worst thing any Englishman could do.

Following devolution nationalism in Scotland has not been abated, it has increased. This has inevitably caused reactionary English nationalism, especially in light of the ever present West Lothian Question. The fact is that the current constitutional arrangements are breaking the United Kingdom apart. As I see it we have two choices: repeal the Scotland act or give England its own parliament.

Controversially, I would opt for the former.

Oh, the Scottish parliament may not seem too problematic now, but has anyone considered what will happen when Labour governs Scotland, and the Conservative party wins Westminster? What a mess! Bear in mind the Scottish executive does not set taxes but receives an allowance from Westminster. Can you really see a Tory government funding the people’s republic of Scotland? I can't.

The Scottish parliament has not benefited the lives of Scots either. All it has done is implement Labour's authoritarian policies for testing before they are rolled out in England (see: the smoking ban). It is a hotbed of corruption mainly due to the lack of attention it receives in general news; It adds a whole level of unwanted civil service bureaucracy, and most disturbingly it has created a new English nationalism that threatens to tear this country apart.

And what is Labour going to do to save the union?

English votes for English laws?
An English parliament?
Admit devolution was wrong?



no...



Have a Scottish chancellor watch the England game

Monday, June 19, 2006

Entry number one

Frustration with the lack of interest in matters of politics shown my peers has recently become too much to bear. This, complemented nicely by anger at the current state of the UK and indeed the world, has necessitated my decision to join the revolution and start my literary career with an expedition into the world of blogging.

Inspired by some of my favourite blogs (conservativehome.com, politicalbetting etc.), I have chosen to write political commentary. I seem to always have something to say but no audience; perhaps I can find one here.

I am an avowed Tory, and as such I suppose this blog is a Tory blog. Though I don't want it to be strictly political... oh well, I'm just going with the flow as it were.