26 December 2008
What shall we do about hunting with dogs? Nothing!
Boxing Day is hunting day in England - just as is has been for centuries. In theory the Hunting Act of 2005 should have put paid to the tradition, but as this Telegraph piece gloatingly reports, the act was so badly worded that a coach and horses can be driven through its various clauses.
My introduction to the world of hunting came in about 1983 when I was out canvassing in that year's general election. A door was opened by a tattooed man in his early 30s who announced that he was not voting Labour because of the party's policy on hunting. I remember making some general comment about rich bastards and their dogs and telling him not to worry about a bit of shooting on the Pennines. At that point he introduced me to his two lurchers and I was reminded of just how many people keep hunting dogs in the Lancashire mill towns.
Today Nu-Labour has the worst of both worlds. The rich carry on their hunting traditions and the working class who either don't give a stuff about the activity or thoroughly enjoy turning their muts loose to disembowel bunnies are further alienated from the party.
Would it not make more sense for socialists to argue that the issue isn't hunting, the issue is the number of rich bastards who are consuming far too many resources without producing anything by way of return? The way to deal with all rich bastards whether they ride horses or not is via punitive levels of taxation and inflation. The fact that our people keep dogs and hunt with them is neither here nor there - long may they continue with their harmless pastime.