Wednesday, 26 May 2010
New Politics Nick? You don't know the meaning.
A new politics. Just like the old politics, but new. Nick and Dave may struggle to convince us that a coalition government is actually a new idea or even a "completely new form of politics" but the truth is that very little in politics is really new. Mostly it's just the same old same old served up in a slightly different way. I suppose that the last time that we had a genuine flood of new political ideas was in the 1920's. In those days there was a host of off beat organisations on the fringe and many were a hairsbreadth away from breaking into the mainstream of political life. Every conceivable kind of ism vied for members and influence and some of the groups and individuals involved were very strange indeed. One of the most unusual and difficult to pigeon hole was the Kindred Of The Kibbo Kift. Founded by disillusioned scout leader and former Baden Powell cohort John Hargrave, the Kibbo Kift had Social Credit (much like the Green's Social Wage) at the heart of it's economic theory and somehow believed that this theory could be turned to reality by a combination of Saxon folklore, American Indian tradition and heaps of outdoor living and physical training. The Kindred would eventually morph into the neo-facist(?) Greenshirts but the only remaining legacy of this odd (but fascinating)movement is that icon of lefty parents and once described by Alexi Sayle as the para military wing of the CoOp- The Woodcraft Folk. Yes, they don't make 'em like Kibbo Kift anymore.