Liberty versus authority? It’s a numbers game

IS THE Conservative Party libertarian? Judging by comments left on this and other blogs by their supporters, the answer has to be a resounding “yes”.

But Dizzy has today has an intersting post, contrasting the populist views of leading Tories like Ed Vaizey and Iain Duncan Smith with libertarians on the specific issue of the controversy over The Dark Knight and its certification.

The fact, surely, is that the Tory party will only ever be as libertarian as the electorate will allow them, and as authoritarian as the electorate want. There’s no principle at all here. Should the party adopt a more libertarian stance on Issue X? A quick poll suggests 30 per cent in favour, with 32 per cent for a more authoritarian approach. Decision: authoritarian approach.

Isn’t politics so easy when you’re in opposition?



Filed under Blogging, Conservative Party, Movies, Politics, Society

9 responses to “Liberty versus authority? It’s a numbers game

  1. John

    “isn’t politics so easy when you’re in opposition?

    Dunno Tom, but I think you’re about to find out soon. Perhaps you’ll give us your judgement then.:-)’

  2. I’ve not seen Dark Knight yet so I can’t judge whether I would personally want a 12, 13, or 14 year-old to see it, but when I read that the Tories were ‘reminding’ councils that they could impose 15 certification locally three words immediately sprang to mind: Same. Old. Tories.

    As for the libertarian/authoritarian battle within the Conservatives, wasn’t that precisely what the David Davis thing was all about? And they have the cheek to call us divided!

  3. Johnny Norfolk

    The Tory party will always be less authortarian than labour. Labour want to control everything as we have seen in the last 11 years. The Tories beleive in individual endevour and not the collective. Thats why you do not publish my posts as you will not with this one.Proves my point.

  4. Andrew F

    It wasn’t that disturbing, which is what annoys me about this. The Tories are just using it to position themselves on the socially conservative side of the aisle. I suppose they’re probably trying to claw back a few of the votes that Davies’ moral stand lost them.

    There was nothing in it which I wouldn’t have seen watching episodes of Star Trek with my dad when I was about eight.

    It says something about the quality of modern acting that when the evil villain is portrayed well enough to make him seem, you know, actually evil, people act like they’ve seen something shocking.

  5. True conservatives believe in absolute liberty for everyone who shares their views and beliefs and who acts exactly as they do. The other fifty million of us, they think, should be deported…

  6. madasafish

    I am obviously not a true conservative from Brain Hughes’ definition above.

    But then I “##could## ” define a Labour supporter as someone who makes outrageous claims about his/her opponents: claims which cannot be justified and are obviously wrong.

    But I will not, because making sweeping generalisations about your political opponents says more about the person making those generalisations than about your opponents.

  7. Patchouli

    Has Glasgow Council lifted the ban on public showings of The Life of Brian yet?

  8. Not as far as I know. Fortunately, I have the DVD.

  9. “The Tories are just using it to position themselves on the socially conservative side of the aisle.”

    I’m not what you’d call conservative and whilst I loved the film, I was surprised at the content for a 12A. I wouldn’t take most 12 year olds to see it, nevermind kids younger than that.

    It’s not simply an issue of the state dictating what children can and can’t see; parents also use certificates to help them decide whether a film is appropriate for their child to watch or not. Not to mention the fact that a kid has a lot more leverage over the parent if it’s a 12A certificate than if it’s a 15.

    The division in the Tory Party on this issue says a lot about how far the loony libertarian faction of the Tory party is removed from reality.

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