I have not been keeping up with the news and blogging much over the holidays.
One of the things I have been waiting for since the election is for the left to start quoting half of one of the dialogues in Oscar Wilde’s play Lady Windemere’s Fan. They did this throughout the eighties and into the nineties. It was tedious then. I guess we will have to put up with it for another fifteen or twenty years.
This Conservative-led government knows the price of everything and the value of nothing. The abolition of Bookstart will deprive children of an early opportunity to discover the joy of reading. It is one of the programmes introduced by Labour of which I am most proud. It was a gift from the government to the next generation.
Note the use of the Newspeak term “Conservative-led government”. As a full-on socialist Miliband makes the mistake of describing your money (which he is eager to spend on your behalf) as belonging to “the government”. Maybe if Miliband himself had more booklearning he wouldn’t have chosen this quote. The full dialogue from Lady Windemere’s fan goes like this:
LORD DARLINGTON. What cynics you fellows are!
CECIL GRAHAM. What is a cynic? [Sitting on the back of the sofa.]
LORD DARLINGTON. A man who knows the price of everything and the value of nothing.
CECIL GRAHAM. And a sentimentalist, my dear Darlington, is a man who sees an absurd value in everything, and doesn’t know the market price of any single thing.
The whole point of the dialogue is that there is a happy medium and the socialist position which says we know how best to spend your money is an extreme one. With the deficit still running at a rate of about £150 billion per annum, the equivalent of £5,000 a year for every taxpayer in the UK, there are some nasty cuts to come and Miliband’s sentimentalist is simply not the right man for the job. Cameron clearly is.