The Bickerstaffe Record
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About me, Being Labour, The world beyond West Lancashire

A bit of defending unions and critiquing postmodernism and stuff

07.19.08 | Comment?

Myself and a couple of seemingly like-minded bloggers have been challenging the well-right of centre views of a blogger from the other side of the pond who’s accusing the UK unions and all who support their right to do what they were set up for of a ‘return to the 1970s’.  My view for what it’s been worth is that it’s he who is returning to the spirit of the 1970’s – the decade that brought the neo-liberal economics onslaught that haunts all government action today. 

Some of the words I were going to use were more or less taken out of my mouth by this excellent post on the same day.  It impressed me no end that the bloke who wrote it says he’d originally written it in an exam of some kind a few weeks previously, but that he’d had the energy to do it all again for his university blog.  Impressive – I thought students stayed in the pub after their exams.

I’ve also been being (quite rightly) corrected on my half-baked intperpretations of postmodernist French bloke Jean Baudrillard over at Dave’s Part, where I started out arguing that socialists shouldn’t be deflected from campaigning for social justice by the right’s tactics of ‘sucking us’ into debates about (poltically correct) language, but at the same time we need to strengthen our capacity to critique the right use of language as a control mechanism. 

 It all sounds a bit obscure, perhaps, but I maintain unapologetically that the left needs a coherent intellectual base if its ‘on the ground’ actions are to be coherent, and short ‘time-outs’ like this in the ‘blogosophere’ do help me to crystallise what I’m supposed to be up to, and give me intellectual energy to get on and do it.  In the end, I wouldn’t be spending hours setting up the statistical software needed to scrutinse the hypothecated institutionalised injustices of West Lancs District Council’s Enivronmental Health services if I didn’t really believe in socialist theory.

When I comment on others’ posts, I always seem to end up writing a lot more than I thought I would at the start, and wondering whether I should have just done my own post to link to it.   So this post is just a compromise – I’ll get this blogging process sorted in the end.  Any advice welcome, as I’m still quite new to the blogsophere (indeed I’ve never typed that word until just now), and want to abide my etiquette at least initially.

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