I write currently sandwiched between Białowieża, one of Europe’s last primeval forests, and the Biebrza marshes, one of Europe’s most important wetlands.
A wonderful sanctuary for wildlife, the area hosts wild bison, lynx, wolves and other exotic creatures.
I am in north eastern Poland. These two national parks are just about the only places left where Europe’s original landscape and wildlife can be seen. My highlight so far was watching three Eagles swoop for food in a Lake.
I am often attacked by socialists who inform me that “socialism has never been attempted” and that I should stop saying it is a failed dogma.
I beg to differ: Poland’s succession of socialist governments, following World War 2, was so completely and utterly incompetent that they failed to develop these forest and wetlands, allowing them to remain a wilderness.
This spectacular lack of management is an extraordinary success for the forest’s biodiversity.
Socialism was not all ironic good news, however: socialist managers had been allowed to reach industrial production quotas without regard to cost or safety.
This led to pollution in socialist Poland being far the worst in Europe. Alarm about sickness ballooned, yet socialist party bosses attempted to subdue the protests, deeming ecological concerns a ploy of the capitalist West to weaken socialism. Never attempted indeed!
Brighton and Hove is clearly not socialist Poland but is starting to look a bit “shabby” from the very thorough ineptitude of the current Labour administration.
The real danger, however, is that some real socialist experimentation, from a Momentum-backed Labour Party, starts us, after the next local elections, along the path of a real socialist disaster.
If you, like me, care about providing a future that is fair for all, and fearful of a crumbling of civil society, you will be looking forward to the next local elections.
Not wishing to gamble with the future, I hope you will agree that the prosperity of Brighton and Hove rests upon the Conservatives bringing forward some sensible policies that drive balanced economic growth.
Now is surely not the time for us to “give socialism a chance”.
Councillor Tony Janio is the leader of the Conservative opposition on Brighton and Hove City Council.