Thursday, 20 September 2012


Last weekend it was my 22nd birthday. The week immediately prior was my last week of work. The weekend before that was a holiday to visit my ancestral homeland of Yorkshire with my grandparents (yes, it turns out that I'm part Northern - I'm still coming to terms with the revelation).

And all this together, and the the general busy nature of things, has meant that I haven't blogged anything since last Monday and have spent most of my waking hours just generally taking a break from everything and, to be completely honest, spending a wee bit too much time playing video games. As a result I've missed Michael Gove's cackhanded and idiotic attempts to take our education system back to the 1950s (something which, according to the email he sent to Lib Dem members, David Laws thinks is absolutely wonderful) and Clegg's apparently heartfelt and honest but long overdue apology for breaking his word on tuition fees. Kudos to Clegg though for being the first politician in my lifetime to actually stand up and say sorry for doing something wrong - Mr Blair and Mr Brown, perhaps you'd like to do the same now?

And, to be perfectly honest, I quite liked having a brief break from politics and the world in general. Escapism is so much more fun than looking around you and realising what an utter shithole the world can be and is.

But today I read something powerfully written which touched me. I don't agree with all of it but James Graham's blogpost on the Cleggpology, former party strategist Richard Reeves, the coalition and the future of the Liberal Democrats is erudite, well informed and very insightful and it reminded me just how bad the state of politics in this country is.

And it also reminded me of the fact that there's no such thing as the big win in politics, of one woman or one man or a small group of people who can sweep to power and set everything to rights. It just doesn't happen. Instead it takes years, decades, of constant, relentless struggle by hundreds of people to make real and lasting change happen. And that's disheartening because, like most young people in politics, I like to think of myself as the dashing future saviour of the nation - and having to face up to reality that the absolute best I can ever hope to achieve is to make a few minor changes here and there is a bit of a let down compared to the dream.

But I suppose that dreams are necessary because it's only the vision of a radically better world that keeps us going.

So, putting melodrama aside, I've been reminded of why I do what I do and of why I think it's important not to abdicate responsibility for trying to make a better world and why I have no right to be selfish and ignore the injustice all around me in favour of escapism. Not to mention the fact that there are so many people fucking things up at the moment that I couldn't possibly do a worse job by trying.

I think I've now come to intellectually accept that I'm not going to change the world. Thankfully though, I don't think I've believed it yet. And who knows? If I keep on dreaming about changing things then there's a small chance that maybe, just maybe, I might actually be able to make a difference.

Anyway. That's enough self-indulgent introspection. Normal service of angry rants will resume shortly.


  1. A belated Happy Birthday and hope you enjoyed your break. Don't worry, I'll be back to berating your party and the mess they're contributing to right now as well. Break time's over my friend, for us both :)

  2. Happy Birthday, belatedly! George, do keep dreaming that you can make a difference. It's people like you who get things done; not these pampered MPs. No-one should doubt your commitment and enthusiasm. Respect to you as an activist from a Labour Party member and pensioner.

  3. You know George,sometimes,one man can bring about great change.

    Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi

    Martin Luther King.

    Sometimes its just about being in the right place at the right time.BTW,a belated happy birthday.

  4. Happy Birthday George. You are one of the few decent, caring individuals I have come across in politics. Continue your good work, the country needs you.


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