Never did me any harm…
Today the Tories, aided by Michael Caine, unveiled their plans for a version of National Service, what you might call National Service Lite. It won’t be compulsory, but will combine a few weeks of outdoor fun with a bit of community service. You can always rely on the Real Tories to come up with gimcrack social policies designed to take revenge on the young (short sharp shock, anybody?); and why not? I can’t abide teenagers myself, with their stupid hats and boom bang bang music. For the first time in living memory, we have some anti-social teenagers here in Presteigne. One of the lads has countless ASBO’s against his name, and we all look forward to the day when he is safely behind bars. National Service would be just the job for this young fuckwit and his handful of moronic chums. Grumpy old bastards all over Britain agree; a dose of National Service is the palliative we’ve all been longing for.
A non-compulsory scheme, however, seems to me to have several major snags, not least of which is that all the lovely kids would volunteer to go and do a bit of canoeing and helping old people, leaving the stupid hatted fuckwits in charge. So what to do?
The Presidents of the USA and Russia have come to my aid today, by making real and significant cuts in their holdings of nuclear weapons, thus making the case for the renewal of Trident even more hopeless. We don’t want it, we don’t need it, and we can’t afford it. But what can we do if our once-great-nation comes under military threat?
The answer seems simple, and comes from the impossibly far-distant days when I was a supporter of the Revolutionary Communist Party of Great Britain (Marxist-Leninist). My daughter Charley is horrified by my Marxist-Leninist past, and so am I really, though I regard it as a cultural curiousity arising from the peculiar circumstances of living in Brighton in the mid-eighties, and trying always to be more right on than thou. Anyhoo, one of the policies of the RCPGB(ML) came to mind today while thinking about the New National Service, which was the raising of a People’s Militia. (As members of the RCPGB(ML) we wouldn’t have been in it ourselves, you understand, because we were the vanguard of the proletarian revolution, and much too precious to spend in military campaigns).
The thinking was that nobody would dare to invade if everybody had some military training. This might sound dotty, but it’s served Switzerland well enough for the last 600 years. That and the mountains. A People’s Militia would obviate the need for nuclear deterrents, or so we used to argue back in the good old days before Tiananmen Square and my slow drift towards the right. And although I believe that we should unilaterally disarm whether or not we start conscripting every 16 and 17 year old, I still can’t help feeling that we would be better off taking responsibility for our own defence, rather than contracting it out to America via the hateful, useless and hugely expensive Trident system.
So come on Mr. Cameron! Be bold! Scrap Trident! And call up all the young people, take away their stupid hats and their mobile telephones and give ’em proper military training.
Just so long as I don’t have to do it myself, obviously.