A couple of days ago, the queen delivered a speech about the sort of things the UK government were going to be doing over the next few months. Who knew that the queen did summer speeches now? Not me, for sure. I don’t remember them from my childhood, but maybe I just didn’t care then either I assume that only the most ardent royalists actually listened to it, or cared what she had to say, because the response in the news and amongst people I talk to has been fairly muted.
It must suck having to give a speech that David Cameron (or more likely someone working for him) has written. Being queen is probably quite weird like that. In some respects you are the most powerful person in the country, but then something like this appears on the schedule and you get treated like a cheap acoustic guitar, pulled out of the bag by the arsehole who wants everyone to listen to him while he sings round a campfire. I guess this is mitigated by having a load of palaces and chauffeured limos, and small dogs, but you’re asked to sell yourself out completely in exchange. And instead of being asked, you have to do it because of who your dad was. Would I trade? I actually don’t know. Anyway, I’m meandering off topic here…
The topic was referendums, because crucially (apparently) the queen’s speech lacked a reference to a referendum on Britain’s continued membership of the EU. Personally, I think that’s a great thing to not discuss. I don’t agree with a lot of what DC puts in (or omits from) other people’s speeches, but this is certainly something we don’t need to talk about.
You see, here is the problem with referendums in general: MOST PEOPLE ARE IDIOTS. If we were to have a vote on European membership, most people would be voting on the basis of one or more of the following:
– Wanting to keep the queen’s face on coins and banknotes
– Wanting to reduce the red tape that EU BUEROCRATS IN BRUSSELS (!) have wound us up in
– Getting rid of ridiculous “elf and safety” (funny, no? No.) laws
– Hating French people, just so much
And that’s it. No consideration of the billion pound impact of such a decision, no understanding of the relevance of the European Union to our entire economy, just simple, common garden xenophobia.
Here’s the thing – I work in finance, I read financial news everyday and have studied some economics. I am probably better qualified than 99% of the population to make such a decision, and yet I don’t actually feel like I am properly equipped to do so. That is why politicians (should) exist: I vote for someone who is intelligent and trustworthy to make difficult decisions from an informed position on my behalf.
The same is true for the Scottish independence issue (which has kind of gone away for a bit now). It boils down to the same problem – stupid people who hate anyone who lives somewhere else. I actually don’t care about the outcome of this one, as I don’t think it will affect me that much either way (although I really don’t want to have to look at Alex Salmond’s smug face on any newspaper front pages), but I would still rather the decision was taken by the people whose job it is to do so.
Does health and safety even come from the EU? I’m not convinced at all. I do understand the issue people have with it, by the way. It is very demeaning being told not to climb a ladder carrying 4 pots of paint and a loaded gun, and I once received an official warning at my first job for throwing a balled up piece of paper at someone (seriously), but it does have its uses. The reason we are given lessons in bending over to pick things up is that people hurt their backs doing that sort of thing all the time, and because in general MOST PEOPLE ARE IDIOTS who benefit from being protected from their own poor decision-making abilities.
So fine, least funny blog post EVER. I apologise for not being amusing, but I feel very strongly about this issue. Normal service will shortly resume (maybe).