Article 43

The Political Party Most Likely To Adopt Knowledge-Only Policies.

This website was initially intended to give the voting public a basis for encouraging its political parties to replace belief with knowledge in the formulation of party-specific policy-options and to recognise the knowledge already available on which to deliver them successfully in reality, or to recognise the need to acquire such knowledge before attempting policy formulation and implementation. However,  the last paragraph of Article 40 of this section of this website indicated that if I were to invite a political party itself, to adopt  my newly definitive differentiation of the knowledge/belief dichotomy and with it those of truth/falsehood, wisdom/folly, right/wrong and good/bad, that party would be UKIP, because I would be able to re-cast Brexit as a knowledge-only policy, while all other parties have treated it as a remain/ leave debate of belief/counter-belief, and because all other parties have long histories of rejecting knowledge and of accepting this or that transient belief-consensus pending the resumption of debate to some other transient belief-consensus, and so on, ad infinitum. At this point, I choose to differentiate parties of Right, Left and Centre from UKIP, by analysing a timely article in The Sunday Telegraph of 31/01/21 by Janet Daley, entitled “Post-Covid socialism would crush the values that made Britain great”, and sub-titled, “It will be a disaster if our new spirit of solidarity gives rise to Soviet-style overreach by the state”. I chose this article because it shows that neither the labour nor the conservative party could  take a leading role in my campaign for knowledge to replace belief in all future policy-making without being embarrassed by their past and current failures to do so for themselves, while UKIP would suffer no such embarrassment in being able to claim that Brexit itself, is a knowledge-only policy, while all other political parties treated remain/leave as a debate of belief/counter-belief.

Janet Daley opens her article by observing that ‘there’s nothing quite like a life-threatening national crisis to justify monumental political changes that would have been unthinkable only moments before’; that ‘during the last world war almost all levers of economic policy, the production and distribution of goods and services, and the conditions of employment, were taken under central governmental control’; that Britain became closer, than would ever have previously been imagined, to having a Soviet-style command economy’; that ‘these policies, including the rationing of food, petrol and clothing, were accepted by the population at large as being necessary if this courageous little island was to survive – and most critically – if its people were to share fairly the sacrifices which the war effort required’; and that ‘the degree of willing compliance with those extraordinary privations still stands as a historical example to the world of civic decency and private heroism’; but that ‘when the Second World War ended, things got more awkward’; that ‘the agencies and officials who had seized these unprecedented powers over the manufacture of goods and the provision of services had grown accustomed to them’; that ‘in addition, there was a very well organised political movement which saw the command economy and the collectivist society which was its natural partner, as ideal solutions to (the problems) of modern life’; that this position was helped considerably by the fact that the Soviet Union had been our ally in the War and its population had suffered horrendously from the conflict’; that ‘the shared fate of the two peoples led quite plausibly to the view (the belief) that the USSR could be a model for the future’; that ‘Churchill’s assessment of a coming Cold War with the Soviets (“an Iron Curtain  having descended across the Continent”) was deeply contentious’; that ‘many of those centralised institutions and decision-making processes lasted for decades’; that even rationing of basic foods carried on into the Fifties’; that ‘almost all of the nationalised industries – mining, steel and car production – and the provision of public services such as electricity, gas, and telephones, remained in place until the Eighties; and that she ‘remembers having to join a six-month waiting list for a telephone in the Sixties’.

Thus, ‘post-war Britain remained trapped for two generations in this ideological (belief-only) model which undermined its progress at home and its ability to compete in the world’, while ‘the most generous interpretation’ is that ‘it was an attempt to ensure permanent “fairness” – the equal distribution of goods and services’; that ‘the argument against ending rationing was that people might starve if scarce food resources were not apportioned by government dictat’. ‘So what actually happened when a Conservative government scrapped the ration books’ asks Janet Daley, and her answer is that ‘food production increased to meet demand’; that ‘nobody starved’; that ‘it was an early lesson in what would be the Thatcherite principle’ that ‘you don’t have to cut the existing pie into small equal portions’; and that ‘market economies enlarge the pie’.

At this point in her article, Janet Daley looks at the present and future and observes that ‘we are again in a debate that sounds oddly familiar’; that ‘in the US and the UK, much rhetorical energy is being devoted to the idea (belief) that communal impulses and concern for others which the epidemic has invoked, should be, as it were, nationalised – taken over by government and turned into legally enforced policy’; that ‘we must move forward together- without nasty competitive inclinations – to embrace whatever opportunities the official government view (belief) decides are virtuous’; that ‘there is an uncanny similarity between the promised objectives of Boris Johnson on the Right and Joe Biden on the Left when they talk about how the economy should progress’; that ‘Green energy and the new industries which can provide it should be used to re-invigorate the post-industrial wastelands of both countries to create jobs and draw investment into the Rust Belt American states and the unemployment black spots of northern Britain by vast amounts of taxpayer funding under the supervision and direction of government departments’; that ‘the state is to be the progenitor and the funding source of a great infrastructure revolution which will create what Mr Biden called last week “good union jobs” – in other words ‘a new public sector empire: a project which he implied, as does Mr Johnson, will be a direct descendent of the national spirit fostered by the pandemic’.

Janet Daley then concludes that ‘the cry now is “Let this be a turning point”, that ‘we now realise how much we care about each other, and how much we are prepared to sacrifice for the greater good, so let’s institutionalise this and hand it over to be run by government (and the unions, in Mr Biden’s case)’; but that ‘unfortunately, there is all the difference in the world between state-administered virtue and real human communality’; that ‘the consequences of a government mistake can be far more catastrophic than an individual’s mistake’; that ‘on Biden’s list of inspirational ideas (beliefs) is the suggestion that America’s poor minorities should be encouraged to buy their own homes to “build equity”’ but that ‘this was precisely the good intention which inspired the sub-prime mortgage debacle of 2008 in which bad debts were packaged and sold on until they broke the world economy’; that ‘the road which the Biden administration and the Johnson government appear to be choosing is the one which leads to endless money-printing to pay infinite debt – and eventually to a currency which is fiction, like the Ostmark, and which is a needless tragedy’.  However, she spoils her analysis (with which I agree, as far as it is quoted above), by closing with the remark that ‘the US and the UK look likely to deal well with the vaccine programme – which is the real answer to this crisis’; and that ‘they can accomplish this without destroying the political philosophy (the beliefs) which made them robust and successful’. 

However, in contrast, I see Janet Daley’s analysis as demonstrating that politics remains as it always has been, a matter of debating belief/counter-belief to one or other transient belief-consensus in the absence of any recognition of the need for debate-terminating conclusive knowledge; that vaccines are manifestations of conclusive scientific knowledge in that they work as intended in reality; that political philosophy is mere belief which, of itself, is incapable of producing anything workable in reality; that belief/counter-belief politics, whether of the Right or Left, is accordingly incapable of producing anything which works in reality as promised; and that consequently I have chosen UKIP as the party least in thrall to belief, and as such, most likely to adopt my campaign for the replacement of belief with knowledge in its future policy-making, having already been the instigator of Brexit, which I will re-cast as a knowledge-only, debate-terminating conclusive 

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