The iron law of politics

Editorial note: If you have not yet read our mission statement above, please do so in order that you can put our blogs in context. 

15 October 2018


“Never believe governments, not any of them, not a word they say.”


Martha Gellhorn (1908-1998), US novelist, travel writer, journalist and war correspondent.



For a minor example of this iron law of politics, let’s check out the current issue of UK satirical magazine Private Eye (No. 1480 of 5 to 18 October 2018, page 7).

In October 2009  Sadiq Khan, transport minister in the then Labour Government, assured a fellow Member of Parliament that privatisation of the railways had been a success: 

Dr B. Ching, who writes the Signal Failures column [in Private Eye], is a long standing advocate of nationalisation, but the Government takes the view that the current system has delivered many benefits for passengers, and can continue to do so, without the wholesale upheaval of a complete industry restructuring.”

In September 2018 Sadiq Khan, now Mayor of London (the Labour Government having been booted out of office in 2010), tells the City AM freesheet why he backs rail nationalisation: 

Privatisation has been a failure. All the evidence is there.


You might perhaps care to view some of our earlier posts.  For instance:

  1. Why? or How? That is the question (3 Jan 2012)
  2. Partitocracy v. Democracy (20 July 2012)
  3. The shoddiest possible goods at the highest possible prices (2 Feb 2012)
  4. Capitalism in practice (4 July 2012)
  5. Ladder  (21 June 2012)
  6. A tale of two cities (1) (6 June 2012)
  7. A tale of two cities (2) (7 June 2012)
  8. Where’s the beef? Ontology and tinned meat (31 Jan 2012)

Every so often we shall change this sample of previously published posts.


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