RePost: A comment on ‘Defence Against The Dark Arts’ 

(The following comment was left on the original post and I present it here, unedited – Keevil)

It would be worth asking a conservative if your most ravenous, militant revolutionary anti-capitalist is evil – they will say yes, certainly and probably cite a similar argument to the one in your former Tory Councillor’s blog post that you referenced. These political differences are a conflict of social and economic interests – ‘lefties’ aim to do away with the excessive economic privileges of the minority of successful capitalists and share this wealth amongst all people to raise their living standards, what act is more evil than this to a businessman or the elected representative that swears to protect his interests? By their standards, they have earned this privilege through hard work – it would be very evil in their eyes for this to be taken away. On the other hand, the ‘leftie’ sees this privilege as something built by the masses of labourers who are the physical power behind all of these economic gains, therefore not one individual’s efforts can be attributed to these gains and they should be shared out for the benefit of the common good – for a small group to enjoy these gains is an evil act in this regard, or at the very least a horribly greedy and immoral act.

In reply to the Tory’s argument that you posted, I would say to him or her that wonderful capitalism causes more deaths, either directly or indirectly, every year than any kind of alternative ever has had the chance of causing and if pushed I would ask all of my leftie friends to help me dig out numbers to highlight this fair point.

Is a Tory evil? The Tory is just a person and his/her politics represent a certain set of interests that they may well find totally morally correct. With the definition you posted in mind, I will take one word: immoral – this will be the word for the basis of my determination of whether the Tory’s political and economic outlook on life is evil in relation to the interests I find morally correct.

Here’s one of the latest Tory policies that has made me feel sick to my stomach – is that immoral? Based on the false election pretenses alone, such as the ‘big society’, it is nothing short of immoral (unless we consider our homeless citizens outside of this ‘big society’).

Take your pick of other Tory policies implemented post-election – for me, it would be incredibly difficult to find a Con-Dem cut that could be morally justified. Perhaps we can justify these policies from an economic standing-point, from the perspective of business interests, but I would not accept the notion that the economic interests of those with a lot of money is a moral interest that has the majority of people in mind, from the single-mother who’s benefits are being cut, to the homeless man on the streets of London who’s soup kitchen has been closed down – what do these people care about what’s good for business? What’s good for business is almost always bad for these people.

So what can we say? Can the individual Tory, who really believes that what (s)he’s doing is morally correct, be called ‘evil’? I would say that they represent a political force which has a whole political and economic outlook that is immoral in a broad social sense, and I would argue that the policies they defend have met a majority of the population with significant misery and poverty – morally wrong or bad; immoral; wicked are words I think are perfectly adequate in this regard. With my perspective on the table, we assume that the individual Tory is either politically evil or politically naive and therefore evil by proxy of his or her ignorance.

The same goes for all mainstream politicians with my perspective in mind, or rather, all of those who are conscious in maintaining a system that is inherently immoral, as it serves a minority’s interests over the majority’s and is responsible for war, famine, poverty and conflict all over the world (including at home). These people, whether Tory, Labour or Lib-Dem all have lied or will hide behind nice, morally correct terms like ‘the big society’ whilst continuing wars, taking away people’s services, selling off their healthcare to private interest, evicting them from their homes and taking away their soup kitchens. It is not the individual that matters entirely, but the system they represent which is fundamentally immoral and perhaps evil by the definition provided.

Individually, these politicians might be the nicest, most loving people you could ever meet, but we separate their politics and their person and judge them accordingly. People aren’t inherently evil I wouldn’t say, but their actions can be, and Tory politics are inherently immoral by my ‘leftie’ standards, so perhaps Tories are evil by proxy of ignorance or they are evil because they actually like making people’s lives a misery in order – who knows?

I was talking to an ultra-conservative the other day and we had great a great conversation when politics was aside – I still find his views fundamentally morally wrong or bad; immoral; wicked though.

Olie Martin / June 4, 2011

RePost: Defence Against The Dark Arts

(This post was originally written in 2011 – Keevil)



Confession: I spoke to a Tory, and I liked it. In the moment we seemed to get along, they were friendly, funny, and I was so glad that they took time time to speak to me, a lowly prol.

And the confusing thing for me in dealing with this is that;

Conservatives are evil.

(Saying quite possibly evil doesn’t seem nearly as provocative!)

And a conversation with a Tory is akin to talking to Kaa in Jungle Book.

Now I don’t mean this to be offensive. No, really I don’t. Individually Tories are, as I mentioned, friendly. They can be caring and passionate. And the people that vote Tory are certainly not evil.

Except for any that you know who maybe are.

Wait. What do we even mean by evil?

Online Dictionary Definition: morally wrong or bad; immoral; wicked

They have an incredible way to stick fast to what they believe, to phrase points and use information as if their answer was the only possible answer, in a way that Labour can only dream. Well, with the exception of ‘The Big Society’ which it seems can’t be got across at all. Well in any way other than, we want to cut everything and then expect you to do it for free Like the ‘well-unfair’ state.

A former Conservative Councillor in Medway (2015 interjection: link no longer online) in a recent blog about the local Love Music Hate Racism event wrote:

“It would be good to have a genuinely valuable topic for such events one day, such as “Love Music, Hate Mass-Murder” – but that wouldn’t be comfortable for Lefties, who collectively the world over encompass virtually all those who have committed deliberate mass-murder down the years. Still, at least it would have some real signifiance rather than mere tokenism. It’s a thought!

Its an interesting quote in that it makes you stop and go ‘WHAT?’, I find it so hard to respond to. I feel my brain shutting down trying to find a suitable response, a polite response. I just stare at it.

Lefties, who collectively the world over encompass virtually all those who have committed deliberate mass-murder.

Can somebody commit accidental mass-murder? is the best response I have so far come up with, and that’s just rubbish.

It’s a bit like the oft used Basil Fawlty line about “don’t mention the war”. As long as we stay off certain topics then everything will be okay.

I find this continually confusing, how can a Party with Boris Johnson be all bad? Once a contender for great living Englishman. Based on Hair, cycling and a spectacular performance presenting HIGNFY.

(2015 interjection: This sentence was written before Boris Island and before this)


I worry that we are not given enough training in the defence against these dark arts. It’s dangerous to dismiss them, they are after all are in power locally and nationally. Somebody – a lot of somebodies – have voted for them.

And it seems the power of rational thought might not be strong enough to save me from them.

(2015 addition)


Cleaning Up Their Pledges

In politics, making a pledge to help you get elected is a fairly standard thing. Particularly for the challenging upstart trying to separate themselves from the tired incumbent. Some are fairly minor, some are fairly major, others (if you’re Liberal Democrat Independent Labour councillors) are made to be broken.

Going into the 2010 General Election, distrust in politicians was rife following the expenses scandal. This offered those candidates vying to become new MPs a great opportunity to make themselves seem like better, more open candidates. So it was, that all three Medway Conservative candidates signed up to Tracey Crouch’s Clean Campaign Pledge. Much of this was centred around fighting a good, clean campaign, but it also included a whole section on what all three (Crouch, along with Rehman Chishti and Mark Reckless) would do if elected to make themselves more transparent.

Well, all three were elected, so let’s see how they have done.

Pledge 1

To publish online details of all of personal expenses incurred as a Member of Parliament.

Pledge 2

To publish online details of all office expenses incurred as a Member of Parliament.

These should be the easiest ones for any candidate to comply with – all each of them had to do was publish their expenses. Not one of the candidates has managed to do this is in full. Tracey Crouch comes the closest, having an ‘Expenses’ page on her website, with some information on things she has claimed, along with her full expenses for the current financial year. It’s unfortunate that the data for the previous years isn’t also listed, but it’s better than nothing.

Nothing being exactly what we get from Rehman Chishti and Mark Reckless. Indeed, when you search for the word ‘expenses’ on Chishti’s website, this is what happens:

Chishti expenses

Now, if we could play devil’s advocate for a moment, the full expenses of all three MPs are available via IPSA – but that’s a bit of a pain in the balls, and not exactly meeting the pledge to publish their expenses online.

Pledge 3

To publish online details of all donations in line with Electoral Commission rules.

None of the three have seemingly met this particular target, at least not in terms of publishing the data themselves. Again, most like the expenses pledge above, the information is online, as the data is taken from the Register of Member’s Interests where they are published, and placed online by websites like They Work For You. These websites do a great job, but we’d suggest the average constituent probably wouldn’t know where to look to find this data, and would struggle to understand parts of it even if they found it.

Still, the data for each MP is here, so feel free to try and make what you can of it: Tracey Crouch / Rehman Chishti / Mark Reckless

Pledge 4

To appoint a local firm of auditors to approve expenses accounts at the end of every financial year.

Pledge 5

To open up the unedited expenses claims to local newspapers at the end of every financial year.

We have no idea if these pledges have been met or not. We couldn’t find any references to these local auditors on the websites for any of the MPs, nor anywhere else. The pledge regarding opening up expenses claims to local newspapers may or may not have been done, but those newspapers should have the sense to throughly trawl from the IPSA records regardless, so it doesn’t really matter.

Pledge 6

Never to claim for food, furniture or household goods.

This pledge has been absolutely met by Tracey Crouch – she has never claimed for any of these things during her nearly five years in office. Rehman Chishti and Mark Reckless haven’t claimed for furniture or households goods, but they have claimed for food, albeit to feed their interns. Which given they seem to be unpaid (Chishti for one advertises this fact), it seems fairly hard to begrudge.

Pledge 7

To meet all tax liabilities – such as stamp duty – without claiming them from the taxpayer.

This pledge has been met in full by Tracey Crouch and Rehman Chishti – neither of them have ever claimed  any kind of tax liability from the taxpayer.

The same can’t be said of Mark Reckless though, who has claimed £4,799.89 in council tax in his time in Parliament. Now, to be clear, he is perfectly entitled to do so, but it’s fairly difficult to square this with the above pledge.

Overall, none of our current MPs have done exceptionally well with their pledges – Tracey Crouch is definitely the closest, and if she had the full five years on her website, we’d basically be there. Rehman Chishti and Mark Reckless have come out of this less well. True, most of the information they promised to publish is publicly available in some way, but only if you know how to find it – they certainly haven’t made it easy for their constituents to find the information.


What is Past is Prologue


In 2010 future Prime Minister, David Cameron, started his campaign in Gillingham, whilst the then Prime Minister Gordon Brown started at Morrisons in Strood.

This is because in the British electoral system, not every vote is equal. And the three Medway seats were hotly contested as they had a high chance of switching parties. They were, and had been since 1997, held by Labour.

illusion of choice

The 2010 General Election saw the Conservatives sweep the parliamentary seats in Medway, when; Tracey Crouch beat Jonathan Shaw for the Chatham and Aylesford seat, former Labour councillor Rehman Chishti, now Conservative PPC, won the Gillingham and Rainham seat from Paul Clark, and Mark Reckless beat Teresa Murray for the Rochester and Strood seat after Bob Marshall-Andrews chose not to defend his seat.

In 2011, all 22 of Medway’s council wards were contested as part of the four yearly cycle of local elections and resulted in the Conservative group maintaining control as they had done since 2003.  Things continued uneventfully in a theatrical ‘they said this, they said that’ style of minimal scrutiny and maximum point scoring that the Council leaders expected and accepted. Issues like Rochester airport expansion and the moving of Strood library are endlessly discussed, with little meaningful progress ever really made.

In 2014, an event occurred which was more shocking then discovering that ‘there is gambling going on in this establishment’: Mark Reckless MP defected to UKIP. This caused a by-election in Rochester and Strood. As a result of this, political turmoil descended on the towns: Britain First protested a proposed mosque in Gillingham, Medway residents protested against Britain First, a UKIP council group appeared on Medway Council, Mark Reckless based his entire campaign on opposing a development he previously supported, and Rochester and Strood residents voted for change by re-electing him back into office.

Will the Medway constituencies be visited by national leaders during the 2015 election? At this stage it seems likely, if only because the good folks of Rochester and Strood haven’t suffered enough in recent months.