Britains place in a post SDSR world

Discussion in 'Strategic Defence & Spending Review (SDSR)' started by sunoficarus, Feb 2, 2011.

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  1. Over sixty years of bad government will destroy a country, eventually.

  2. We haven't left the world stage. The world has come to live here, Britain is the world.
  3. Well if you want to take what that odious little prick Simon Heffer has to say at face value then fine.

    But he didn't write any of that because he believes it. He is paid loads of money to write stuff that advances the distinct political view of his employers and this is his latest effort.

    And a jolly good one it is too, when looked at from the point of view of the people who paid for it.

    The message being that our leaders have been selling us down the river since the end of the the last war but luckily there is one great body of men and women remaining on which the roast beef eaters of Olde Englande can always rely.... Her Majesty's Daily Telegraph!

    An entirely synthetic 'point of view' spun up in a couple of hours by a clever man for the commercial and political benefit of his employers.
  4. X59

    X59 LE

    So, have we not sold or scrapped ( or mothballing ) all our military assets then ?
  5. Thatcher inherited a windfall of cash from North Sea oil, without which she would have been sunk, along with our pretensions to being a major world power.

    Britain does not exist to exercise its moral authority around the world. In fact for most of its existence - including its most prosperous era - when running our empire we studiously avoided such a role, infinately preferring trading goods to exporting cant.

    Not true, certainly to the degree he implies. Far more influence is gained globally by soft power, especially for relatively minor nations who want to "punch above their weight" without actually having to wade in with their fists on the US's behalf. And as for our defence, I'd far rather more went on the FCO, Police and the Security Services than to the RN for their through-deck carrier fantasies.

    What utter, utter balls.

    The piece is nothing but a pot-boiling whinge. I'm suprised its even made it to the pages of the Telgraph rather than the Mail.

    We declined long ago, and its about time that he and others acknowleged it, or at least ceased to beat a Victorian drum to the middle classes.

    Is Simon Heffer the new Peter Hitchens? On the basis of this piece you'd have good reason to wonder....

  6. No we haven't.
  7. I couldn't care less if it was spoken by some chav, the truth is the truth and attacking the messenger, ie Heffer, because said truth is unpalatable does not make it less truthfull.

    Plot a chart of the rise of the welfare state vs pretty much any indicator of political/economic clout you want and its an inverse one. While other countries were investing their national wealth into rebuilding their economies post WWII, we were busy squandering ours building a welfare state supported and nationalised new jerusalem.

  8. Dunno about that... I heard the sound of a journalist breaking the quiet of the newsroom on a slow news day by leaning back in his chair, cracking his fingers and wondering how he could dash off a piece which would pander to his readers' prejudices.

    I don't find it unpalatable, just exaggerated. Simon Heffer is evidently the Telgraph's equivalent of Simon Jenkins...
  9. She was also lucky (or conniving) enough to be in the seat when Galtieri pressed the 'wibble' button in the South Atlantic. Op Corporate was probably the antithesis of Telic as far as public support for HMG goes.

    Oh, come on now Charlie - all those 'Force for Good in the World' straplines plastered everywhere across MoD, Saint Tony and the British Army as a spiritual guide to the poor benighted Americans, who just didn't understand how to run a stabilisation operation.

    As for the Empire itself, whilst it started out as a purely commercial enterprise, the 'Pax Britannica' of the late 19th and early 20th Century was built entirely on the constuct of a 'Force for Good' (which was I believe, originally Lord Curzon's quote) - the idea being that rather than exploit them, we would teach the poor natives how to run their country properly before f#cking off. Of course, it never quite happened like that, and the military-industrial complex that protected and sustained the Empire became a self-licking lolipop.

    I agree to a certain extent. If the maxim "Speak softly and carry a big stick" is true, our interpretation would be to go around with a small twig, annoying people by telling them how dangerous we could be if we wanted to get medieveal with it...then speaking softly when they told us to "do one, dullards".

    I don't know - I think he has a point, but not in the Daily Wail sense of conservative outrage. I think his point is that our decline has been less than graceful in recent years, by the way we tried to convince everyone that the phrase "punching above our weight" was anything but a hollow soundbite to mask our sense of indignity.
  10. I would suggest that Britain's fall from influence began when we stopped being a red-in-tooth-and-claw bunch of piratical capitalists and conquerors, and started trying to be a force for good. Probably from the time the Royal Navy was used to put down the slave trade rather than monopolise it.

    Nations with the most influence are those with the most money and the least scruples. Nice guys finish last.
  11. We'd better start sucking up big time to China then.
  12. I go to the local Chinese buffet quite regularly, and therefore pay my taxes to Beijing... did know that all Chinese restaurants and takeaways charge a hidden 'prawn cracker tax' that goes directly back to the homeland, didn't you? ;-)
  13. I don't think his article has that much depth. He seems to be confusing symptoms with contributory causes - argiung that maintaining or increasing our Armed Forces would slow or even reverse our decline. Wheras a genuine fightback would be on economic & social grounds, allowing an ensuing budget surplus to enable us to twat our neighbours whether we fancy being a force for good, or simply for the fun of slapping the French around.

    That begins with a determination to succeed in the private sector, not the conservative classes perpetually genuflecting towards the past.

  14. Pah! Next you'll be telling me that we don't really need a pair of stonking great aircraft carriers, just because we're an Island Nation!

    Runs for cover, as the noise of the 'Why we need a Navy' thread, dragging it's heels round the corner, becomes louder