A SPECTER is haunting Eastern Europe: the specter of what in the West is called "dissent" This specter has not appeared out of thin air. It is a natural and inevitable consequence of the present historical phase of the system it is haunting. It was born at a time when this system, for a thousand reasons, can no longer base itself on the unadulterated, brutal, and arbitrary application of power, eliminating all expressions of nonconformity. What is more, the system has become so ossified politically that there is practically no way for such nonconformity to be implemented within its official structures. . . .
Does this not ring true today, in Western Europe?
After 13 years of Labour rule, with its concomintent erosion of personal privacy and freedom, what is needed is a route of dissent. Party Politics and our system does not deliver this. Instead, it delivers, at best, centerist, focus-group approved lowest common denominatorism and at worst, corruption. Further in scope, the European Parliament is a virtual Oligarchy where accountability to the citizens of Europe is low and disenfranchisement is high.
There is a need once again for the Samizdat, a line of dissenting opinion. Well, and bugger me, along comes the internet. It is just perfect for the disemination of dissent, uncorrupted by people who want to create our opinions for us. Attempts have been made to control it, but on the whole, it is impervious to censorship.
Bloggers are forming opinion and those opinions are influential. This humble blog gets linked to by the BBC. A cursory look at the Stats reveals that from time to time, it is read by many of the policy-making organisations in the land, including the House of Commons and the political parties. Journalists trawl the blogs for stories. High profile bloggers with connections and sources are informed and able to in turn inform us. Often, they tell us things that those in power do not want us to know.
The Main Stream Media (MSM) loathe bloggers. They loathe bloggers because bloggers, even bloggers like me, do a fuck's site more work on stories than they do. And more often than not, they break stories that they cannot or will not touch. This is not always because they are open to libel threats. It is most often because the MSM have an editorial line to follow, and journalists cannot escape from that. If they do, they are shown the door. They hate bloggers because we expose the lazyness, the brown-nosing, the cutting and pasting, and the corruption of the MSM. They are not on the side of the people; they are on the side of vested interests and spend a great deal of time cultivating politicians and business in order to stay viable as a medium. Yes, they really, really, hate us.
But like a lot of things one hates, one often has to have it. They are hooked; of course, the editors read Guido, Dale, et al. These days, they cannot ignore us. We break and make opinion and we do this because we are free to do it.
As a rider to this, I am tickled, (that is the only word) tickled to hear that the former Prime Minister of Iceland has been summoned to a specially convened court in order to answer charges of negligence. This has little or nothing to do with the power of the blogger, except for one thing; for years now people on blogs have been suggesting that Tony Blair and Gordon Brown be arrested for Treason. Many might have considered that this cry was the voice of those nutty bloggers who are held in such contempt by the ruling elite; mere hysteria and hyperbole.
And yet, this idea is now creeping into the MSM. Jeremy Warner writes, in an article in the Telegraph entitled "Why Brown should be joining Iceland's former PM in the dock", writes
Iceland’s decision to push ahead with charges of negligence against its former prime minister, Geir Haarde, raises the not entirely frivolous question of whether it might be possible to mount a similar case against Gordon Brown
I wonder where Jeremy Warner gets his ideas?