‘Two Cheers For Democracy LOL JK’: Youth and Dogmatic Politics

The French Revolution’s Ideology of ‘Reason’ Is a Prime Historical Example of When a Good Idea Gets Taken Too Far.

‘I find that faith is the stiffening of the mental starch that ought to be applied as liberally as possible- E.M.Forster

Over the past month or so whilst I was in the depths of revision for my university finals I took to visiting the common room of the Arts building on campus to escape the oppressive air of the library and the distractions of my room. On one occasion, I was distracted from British imperialism in the nineteenth century by a conversation I overheard between two members of the university youth wing of a political party that shall remain nameless about the previous week’s local election. They were discussing their disappointing poll numbers in our local area and wondering what they could do to drive them up. One of them said he hoped it was raining next polling day because then it was less likely that the proles would turn out to vote and with a reduced turnout they may be able to squeeze a majority. They also commented that the upcoming Jubilee celebrations and the Olympics should ‘distract’ the public away from economic troubles to improve poll ratings.

Now I do not want to cast aspersions and say that the reason these two men were flying in the face of the democratic tradition was because of the nature of the party they belonged to. I think that active members of parties on opposite ends of the political spectrum are just as prone to sacrificing principle for power. However it is a shame that the rot has set in so young as we are supposed to be the idealistic ones who want to convert the masses to our case, not to just push them out of the way.
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