An open letter to the UK Pri’Minister (sic)

Cambridge, England
24 September 2011

Dear Mr Cameron,

My dear Sir, with the very greatest respect (I think that this is how one honourable gentleman is supposed to begin addressing another in our civilised society; please accept my apologies if I offend by addressing you in what, today, you may possibly consider to be an ‘incorrect’ manner — I am not privy to the time-honoured customs and traditions appropriate to your elevated status).

At this time — and I do not think it is an exaggeration to say that ‘this time’ is more critical to us all than any previous time in all of the history of humanity — we need strong leadership. But, more than this, we need strong leadership that is taking us in the right direction. Strong leadership that has vision, that has foresight; traits that were, in hindsight, so clearly absent in the run up to 2008.

Recently, the democratic peoples of the so-called ‘First World’ have been voting in our droves: we have been voting with our feet, and with our wallets, and with our ever-diminishing paypackets: we have been voting to stop the madness.

We, the peoples of the West, are, en masse, doing what is really quite a simple little thing. It is something that you should be able to see, to understand, to comprehend; we are choosing to slow the rate at which we consume.

It is my impression that you have not been listening to what it is that we have been saying. Which comes as something of a surprise, especially since the words are in a language with which I am certain you are deeply familiar — the language of money. With the very greatest respect, Sir, perhaps you should listen.

Perhaps you will see that no matter how many carrots are offered, no matter how many sticks are used, not even you, Sir, will be able to persuade a goose that has been repeatedly flogged almost to the point of death to get back on its feet and resume laying its mythical golden eggs in accordance with the divine schedule prescribed by the false prophets of free market fundamentalism.

We the peoples are telling you, as clearly as it is possible, that we need to change direction. Now.

I urge you, Mr Cameron, to take the weekend off and read Prosperity Without Growth by Tim Jackson. It has a nice foreword by His Royal Highness The Prince of Wales. The Financial Times referred to it as ‘one of the best books of the year’, and the New York Times called it, somewhat ambiguously I have to admit, ‘bold and provocative.’

Please, would you read this book and consider what it is that our country, our nation, our world needs most at this time.

Thank you for your time.

Yours sincerely,

(s) Colin Reynolds
Just another citizen of the UK.

P.S. Oh, would you be so kind as to ask Mr Clegg to read the same book so that you can both discuss what to do next together — I think I’ve heard a rumour that we in the UK are being governed by two parties in something termed a ‘coalition government,’ whatever that label means today. “Plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose,” as our neighbours across La Manche would say.

P.P.S. Some of us will be doing what we can to help, today, by taking part in Moving Planet.

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About pendantry

Phlyarologist (part-time) and pendant. Campaigner for action against anthropogenic global warming (AGW) and injustice in all its forms. Humanist, atheist, notoftenpist. Wannabe poet, writer and astronaut.
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2 Responses to An open letter to the UK Pri’Minister (sic)

  1. Your Mum says:

    I have read the letter to Mr Cameron and concur with your sentiments. (You see I am able to be guided to the correct places in the net, when shown and told).

    However, your opening paragraphs are too sarcastic to say the least and put people off and they give up, thinking that is one of those cranks who sent this. You should have just asked him to read the book mentioned in your closing para. only. That would have done the trick, I think.

    Love, Mum

    • pendantry says:

      Hi Mum 🙂 Thanks for showing interest! I’m sure that my tone does put you off, but we are not all the same (and what a boring world it would be if we were!). You’re absolutely right (as ever) that my general tone is too sarcastic. There are two reasons for this.

      The first reason for choosing this tone is that it is a deliberate attempt to raise hackles, to get attention. I very much doubt that it will ever register on the Pri’Minister’s radar: he’s far too important to pay attention to the rants of some random nut in the blogosphere (and, believe me, there are a lot of us out here). The issues facing our society are so large and multifaceted that only the concerted effort of many passionate folk will elicit any response at all, let alone offer any hope of real change. Our governments promise us change for the better, and they renege on most, if not all, promises they make. Have things got any better? No, they’ve gotten a lot worse; and the general trend is for worse still yet to come. You may feel that I should show more respect to the duly elected (moot) leader of our nation, but from where I sit, if someone, by their disingenuity, dismissive behaviour and outright propaganda continually insults not just me, but a large proportion of the people he is in theory ‘representing’ then I have no qualms at all about chucking a few insults back. “I’m mad as hell, and I’m not going to take it any more!

      Secondly: Your suggestion that it would have been enough to ask him to read the book would be a total waste of time. I very much doubt that anything I could say would entice Mr Cameron — assuming he’s even listening — to read Tim Jackson’s book. Its very title flies in the face of all of Conservative ideology. The mantra that the Tory party lives by (and by which we will all die) is ‘growth is good’. This dogma is too firmly ingrained in the economic theories that underly the very fabric of our society; and it’s not just the Conservatives; it’s also industry (who are, in reality, the ones whose interests our government really represent). The fact that our news media are dominated by discussions about how we are going to ‘return to growth’ simply reflects the fact that we only have the illusion of a free press. All of these megamedia outlets are owned by people to whom the concept of anything other than ever-increasing sales is anathema. These people are only interested in selling thneeds, and to do this you must cut down truffula trees. “Unless someone like me cares a whole awful lot, nothing is going to get better — it’s not!

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