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Sunday, September 18, 2005

Pickled Flattery (will get you everywhere).

I am really liking the Pickled Politics blog. They introduced themselves only a few weeks ago with the following,
For too long has the voice of young, progressive British Asians been drowned out. This community, we say constantly, is too diverse to be stereotyped or thought of as one homogenous group.

We are becoming increasingly defined by our religion than our thoughts, political affiliations, ideas or for simply being British.

That suits the self-appointed religious leaders but they neither represent the younger, more progressive generations, nor the women, being typically male dominated organisations.

Pickled Politics is here to provide a new range of progressive voices that previously, we feel, were not being represented.

We want to change the way Asians are perceived and want to take our own community forward. In this aspect, we are unafraid to criticise the establishment – whether that be the political power-brokers or our own religious leaders.

I have found the blog to be funny, insightful and thought-provoking and it has quickly got onto my mental list of blogs to always click on.

My joy was complete when I saw in my referrer logs that someone had come to hippie blog from there so I went back to Pickled Politics to investigate. I grinned on discovering that hippie blog is listed in their links, with the comment, Great feminist and angry blog. (Doesn't take much to make me happy!).

In other news, the radio has for the last few days been rather pre-occupied with today's German election. As I type, a programme called Germany's Choice is on and the results will show whether Germany has their first female Chancellor.

Should that be the case (it's been a close fight) it is no real victory for feminism. A woman in the top job is good, but there have already been way too many comparisons to Margaret Thatcher for it to be anything other than frightening. And on top of that Angela Merkel, the woman concerned, leads the Christian Democrat Party, and any country run by a religion could be in a dodgy position.

Angela Merkel was in favour of the war in Iraq, and is keen on stronger German - US relations. Schroeder - the guy trying to retain his Chancellorship (?!) is not great himself. I'm not keen especially on either of them. A woman in charge could be a good thing, but it is no feminist ideal in this context, as it wasn't in 80s Britain.

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Anonymous said...

As to your thoughts on Merkel, I can only say that this seems like yet another case of feminists apparently degrading their own cause, and rather frivolously. One might think that Angela Merkel, as a successful woman, is the culmination of decades of struggle for equality. But I guess not. In which case I must conclude that feminism is a dead idea, if so poorly looked-after by its adherents, and so inseparably linked with a particular political ideal as to be indistinguishable from it.

It might also be worth pointing out that the Christian Democrat Party is about as overtly christian as france is catholic.

Anonymous said...

Regarding the first point. The election of a woman chancellor would only be good for the feminist cause if she carries forward its ideals and does more to combat the men-women inequality. Just because she's a woman doesn't automatically mean it's a good thing, as Margaret Thatcher showed. Even now, the percentage of women MPs in the UK is pitifully small and work practices in the parliament still heavily stacked against them.

So I think the point still stands regarding Merkel.

Regarding the second one - yeah the word Christian doesn't necessarily imply that the state is mixing religious dogma with its policies, but it also makes it harder for any such party to totally seperate the two - as it should be in practice.
What if the religious head told them they were going against Christian principles for being pro-choice? Then obvious conflict of interest would arise.