petej + anger   63

The country I walked through deserves better than Brexit | Mike Carter | Opinion | The Guardian
Nearly everyone I spoke to in those towns said they were going to vote for Brexit. There was a lot of talk of “taking back control”, and in the context of the industrial wastelands, that sentiment made a lot of sense. But the EU issue was, for a majority, a proxy for their pain.

There was a brief moment when it appeared the Conservatives grasped this. When Theresa May became prime minister on 13 July 2016, after David Cameron had fled the post-referendum carnage, she addressed the “just about managing” and said the government “will be driven not by the interests of the privileged few, but by yours … When we take the big calls, we’ll think not of the powerful, but you.”

But since then we have had a government paralysed by Brexit, effectively not governing at all. We have ongoing crises in most aspects of public policy: housing, transport, prisons, the benefits system, health, education. Homelessness is rocketing, as is food bank use. In some areas of our inner cities, Dickensian diseases such as rickets and beriberi have re-emerged. At a time when politicians should be reaching out to leave voters with concrete proposals for rebalancing our economy, heavily based as it is on services and centred in the south-east, we get a continuation of turbo-charged austerity. In their call for a second referendum, remainers should ask themselves whether the anger that drove the result in June 2016 has been even remotely addressed.

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Brexit will deliver none of this. As driven by the right, it is the final part of the race to the bottom that started 40 years ago. There are no easy answers, but until our politicians begin to acknowledge that the globalised neoliberal economic model is a disaster for human beings and the planet we inhabit, we will remain angry and scared and vulnerable to dog whistles. And maybe that is the point.
UK  Brexit  economy  inequality  poverty  deindustrialisation  homelessness  anger  housing  rents  gambling  Bet365  austerity  localGovernment  cuts  AlstonPhilip  UN  politics  TheRight  neoliberalism 
6 weeks ago by petej
Where next? How to cope with Brexit uncertainty | Books | The Guardian
The result of the referendum was a transfer of angry feelings from many leavers, those who had been economically and socially squeezed, to remainers. There was no escaping the leavers’ fury. We have all had to see the country as broken; to give up the delusion that everyone was OK. Manifestly people weren’t. The question is how to absorb and reflect on the dispossession and rage. The Brexit vote said to remainers: “You will no longer have it your way. You are going to feel threatened as we have felt threatened. You can lose your hope as we lost ours.”
UK  Brexit  referendum  anger  fear  uncertainty  psychology  emotion  division  polarisation  psychotherapy 
8 weeks ago by petej
Grenfell is political. The right can’t make that fact go away | Suzanne Moore | Opinion | The Guardian
Rightwing ideology, currently in crisis, insists that politics takes place in a safe space, a well-defended zone away from the everyday. Everything else that happens is just the natural order of things.

This fire and its aftermath has consumed these foolish notions. Politics is about power, who has it and in whose interests it is wielded. The freedom of the market and the freedom from red tape meant people were trapped in a flaming building. No one is “playing politics” here except those desperately trying to police the boundaries of acceptable emotion and acceptable politics.

Grenfell is as political as it gets. To deny that is an insult to the dead and an assault on the intelligence of the living.
GrenfellTower  housing  politics  anger  McDonnellJohn  regulation  deregulation  fire  safety  dctagged  dc:creator=MooreSuzanne 
june 2017 by petej
Politics doesn’t need a brick through the window, or civility. It needs basic fairness | Abi Wilkinson | Opinion | The Guardian
In the rush to condemn such toxic behaviour, however, I think a subtle distinction has been lost. Actions can certainly be morally unacceptable. In my opinion, emotions cannot. Really, it’s a manifestation of extreme privilege to insist that people engage with politics in a calm and emotionless way. The further you are from experiencing any negative effects of the policy you’re debating, the more cushioned and secure your social position, the easier it is to adhere to the Oxford Union norms of cool detachment and skilful argument.

MPs might only be human, but they also hold a power over the lives of 70 million fallible, vulnerable human beings. Telling people that they’re wrong to feel anger towards an individual who voted to restrict housing benefit and place them at risk of homelessness is patently absurd. Similarly, journalists hold an unusual level of social power that makes them a reasonable target of scrutiny. If we think social media discourse can influence behaviour, why would that not also be true of mainstream media?

The question isn’t about the level of anger that is acceptable, it’s about the forms of expression of that anger that should be condoned. Obviously, physical violence isn’t justified. Similarly, racism, sexism and other forms of prejudice don’t become more or less acceptable depending on the specific target of the slurs. What about other insults, though? Is it OK to describe a politician as “evil”, for instance, or is a blanket condemnation of an individual always toxic? Does it make a difference whether comments are addressed to politicians rather than made about them?
politics  emotion  anger  power  violence  insults  harassment  threats  dctagged  dc:creator=WilkinsonAbi 
july 2016 by petej
Brexit: a disaster decades in the making | Gary Younge | Politics | The Guardian
"If remain had won, we would already have returned to pretending that everything was carrying on just fine. Those people who have been forgotten would have stayed forgotten; those communities that have been abandoned would have stayed invisible to all but those who live in them. To insist that they will now suffer most ignores the fact that unless something had changed, they were going to suffer anyway. Those on the remain side who felt they didn’t recognise their own country when they woke up on Friday morning must spare a thought for the pensioner in Redcar or Wolverhampton who has been waking up every morning for the last 30 years, watching factories close and businesses move while the council cuts back services and foreigners arrive, wondering where their world has gone to.

Many of those who voted leave will undoubtedly feel that they have had their say after years of being ignored. But they are beginning to discover that they have been lied to. Even when it feels that there is nothing left to lose, it turns out that things can always get worse. And even when it feels like nobody tells you the truth, it turns out that some factions of the elite can and will do more damage to your life than others."

"For the last 15 years, governments and the press have stoked fears about whether British culture could withstand the integration of Muslims – of whom 70% voted for remain – when they should have been worried about how to integrate the white working class into the British economy.

Brexit didn’t create these problems. It exposed them and will certainly make them worse. The decision as to whether we live in or out of the EU has been made. The choice before us now is whether we are finally ready to confront the issues that we have blissfully denied and engage with the communities we have carelessly ignored."
UK  EU  referendum  Brexit  politics  xenophobia  IraqWar  finance  crisis  austerity  distrust  hopelessness  fragmentation  ToryParty  LabourParty  NewLabour  poverty  inequality  aspiration  racism  BNP  UKIP  FarageNigel  immigration  freedomOfMovement  publicServices  anger  blame  exclusion  dctagged  dc:creator=YoungeGary  BlairTony  farRight 
july 2016 by petej
The rise of Donald Trump is a terrifying moment in American politics - Vox
Most people feel shame when they're exposed as liars, when they're seen as uninformed, when their behavior is thought cruel, when respected figures in their party condemn their actions, when experts dismiss their proposals, when they are mocked and booed and protested.

Trump doesn't. He has the reality television star's ability to operate entirely without shame, and that permits him to operate entirely without restraint. It is the single scariest facet of his personality. It is the one that allows him to go where others won't, to say what others can't, to do what others wouldn't.

Trump lives by the reality television trope that he's not here to make friends. But the reason reality television villains always say they're not there to make friends is because it sets them apart, makes them unpredictable and fun to watch. "I'm not here to make friends" is another way of saying, "I'm not bound by the social conventions of normal people." The rest of us are here to make friends, and it makes us boring, gentle, kind.

This, more than his ideology, is why Trump genuinely scares me. There are places where I think his instincts are an improvement on the Republican field. He seems more dovish than neoconservatives like Marco Rubio, and less dismissive of the social safety net than libertarians like Rand Paul. But those candidates are checked by institutions and incentives that hold no sway over Trump; his temperament is so immature, his narcissism so clear, his political base so unique, his reactions so strange, that I honestly have no idea what he would do — or what he wouldn't do.
USA  politics  election  TrumpDonald  RepublicanParty  racism  sexism  anger  populism  narcissism  shame  provocation 
february 2016 by petej

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