Friday, September 22, 2006

Can you be left-wing and still think it's OK to have fun ?

I read yesterday's posting on the Richard Hammond again in the light of an article in today's right-wing Telegraph newspaper

Wait a minute - I'm calling for less government intervention and more personal freedom too ! Is it possible I've become (gulp) right-wing ?
I quickly checked through my other positions :-
(1) Socialised medicine good (left wing)
(2) Out of control militarism is bad (left-wing)
(3) Taxation of those who can afford it to support those who can't (left wing)
(4) The Market can't be allowed to control everything unaided (left wing)
OK - so not a major "Road to Damascus" conversion. So why am I agreeing with the Telegraph ?
The problem here is that no-one on the planet exactly conforms to the stereotypes. No-one exactly toes a party line on everything. Right wingers hate government control until it comes to Abortion. Left wingers think there should be more state-control until it stops them taking their drug of choice. 

It's a complicated world and simple beliefs can't get you through it.
Which brings me to my favourite Islamic extremist up against John Humphreys on this morning's Radio 4 "Today" program.
Mr Izzadeen has a unexceptional mind and little clue about how to make a point coherently. Mr Humphries is one of the country's all-time best interviewers. I hope to whichever God may be protecting us that Mr Izadeen speaks for a tiny group of people, massively outnumbered by people like John Humphreys who can show them to be the delusional cranks most of us suspect them to be.
The program was better than coffee for getting the adrenalin going. Even more painful to experience than last night's episode of The Office. Incidentally, I was particular amused by his repeated use of the phrase "Wake up and Smell the Coffee", a cliche from his "Great Satan", America.
In my new found devotion to personal freedom - let him speak the language of the Koran if he wants, let him be woken by the beverage of choice, but if he wants to change my view of him and his cronies - he'll have to be elected to something and give something recognisable as an answer to a whole lot of questions.

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