The Dead Hand of the State

June 1st, 2009  |  Published in Journal  |  4 Comments


Godfrey Bloom MEP for Yorkshire and North Lincolnshire

In this article Godfrey Bloom calls for a move to allow people to control their destiny unfettered by EU regulation, Whitehall and the welfare system.

As a regular speaker at schools and universities one of the regular questions I ask young people is in what kind of world would they wish to live. It is a particularly difficult question because being a student is a highly protected occupation. It is difficult to avoid the “motherhood and apple pie” answer. Until relatively recently, by historical standards, we have lived in a fairly free society. Before the Great War a gentleman could travel all over the world with just a visiting card. He could set up a business with almost no interference at all. In the nineteenth and twentieth century some of the great national icons were created from nothing. Marks and Spencer, Sainsburys and Boots, all from humble beginnings. They gave the nation some great philanthropists whose contributions are with us still. There was a concept of public service, duty and tolerance which we can only dream of today.

The massive encroachments on our freedoms, to an extent, have been the effect of the Second World War.

Conscription, vast numbers of people of both sexes in uniform led to unprecedented curtailment on the rights of the individual. This was compounded by the post war ‘khaki election’ of a socialist government. My generation (I am 59) a post war baby boomer have been brought up with the received wisdom that the state will provide. This has been endorsed over the years by public service broadcasting and the academic elite.

Of course there is no such thing as a free lunch. In exchange for the promise of a cradle to grave welfare system the regulatory and taxation system has grown out of all proportion. Government spending is now over 80% of GDP. Is this a good or bad thing? Debt is out of control. The question better asked is what do we get for it? I would argue not much. Our NHS for example often referred to as ‘free’ is no such thing. It is actually monstrously expensive. We pour billions of pounds into it every year but to what end? It has more administrators than nurses. £24 billion has been wasted on failed IT systems. We are at the bottom of the European success tables for the treatment of many major killer diseases. We have more casualties from MRS than road deaths. In short it is a shambles.

We pay millions of perfectly healthy people of working age to sit at home watching day time TV while hundreds of thousands of east Europeans do jobs which they won’t. Why go out into the freezing cold to pick sprouts for the minimum wage if you can be guaranteed a house and money by having a couple of children?

Look at the bonanza in government jobs in the last 10 years (over 500,000) bringing us to over 5 million in total. Twice as many as manufacturing. Most are not real jobs. Get the Thursday Guardian if you want to know what I mean, you will not even understand the job titles but they are all sucking greedily at the public teat.

So what sort of world do you want to live in? I would like to see us move back to the British system of common law and parliamentary debated statute. What does that mean? Well pretty much you can do what you like as long as it is not against the law. Live and let live. Toleration for all. Not the corpus juris system we have imported form the EU which is pre-scriptive, i.e. this is the book of words which tells you what you may do.

I believe an Englishman’s home should be his castle. I am horrified at the number of jobsworths who can force their way into your house without a magistrates’ warrant. Scandalous that you can now be arrested without a warrant by a foreign policeman for something which is not a crime in the UK. I am bewildered that our beer and petrol are the most expensive of any country in the industrialised world. I find it deeply depressing the average family breadwinner now has to work from January to June for the government (tax freedom day).

I am amazed 24% of the British population of working age live on welfare yet, until recently, industrious east Europeans appear to have no trouble finding paid employment as soon as they get here. I am astounded that you can earn up to £60,000 per annum and still be subject to the tax credit system. I am angry that over 70% of our laws are made by unelected Commissioners and make national law with no parliamentary debate in our own elected chamber in Westminster. Did you know that in the last 10 years we have had more laws passed than in the entire post Bill of Rights period hitherto – 1688! There are 1,300 pages of road traffic law. We get 3,000 new regulations from Brussels every year almost none of which go through any form of cost benefit analysis.

So, I would hope you would want to live in a world that rolls back the might of government. Slashes the massive tax burden which weighs most heavily upon the poor. Dismantle a welfare system which keeps people in a strange twilight world of semi poverty. Create a world where you win back control of your own destiny, unfettered by the dead hand of the state. Where philanthropy and a sense of responsibility out weigh the blame culture of today. Where the criminal and the anti-social are left in no doubt as to the dire consequences of their behaviour and the urban streets are won back from them. Where there is tolerance of the other man’s view and vicious politically correct fascism is a thing of the past.

Let there be a new motto for the nation, the man in Brussels or Whitehall does not know best.

Nor, sadly now, can he even be trusted. Lastly I wish you a Quango free future, possibly the worst invention since TV.

Read more from Godfrey Bloom on his new blog.


  1. trevor thomas says:

    January 10th, 2010 at 3:36 pm (#)

    I totally agree with godfrey bloom, it is not only the present politicans that are to blame for todays situation, this as godfrey mentions started from the end of the second world war our prime ministers from then are all guilty macmillan,wilson,heath,thatcher,major,hague,blair,brown. these are the politicans who have systematically been giving our traditional way of life and our rights away by deception, lies and are still doing it, I hope you notice that the two parties that supplied these politicians are the labour party and conservative party, they cannot be trusted, the answer, in my opinion the people of great britain must insist on direct democracy, that means the people will make the decision.

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