Monday, March 06, 2023

Lord Bonkers 30 years ago: Bring back National Service

As I forgot to post Lord Bonkers' observations from January 1993 until February, it's already time to see what he was saying in Liberator in March of that year. And it seems that, though John Major's 'Back to Basics' speech was not made until the Conservative conference that autumn, such ideas were already in the air and in need of satirising. 

Incidentally, I am not sure that the old boy is right here. I have never been able to establish whether he was defeated in 1910 - and, if so, at which of that year's general elections - or inherited is father's title that year and so took a seat in the Lords.


To me, as to all Liberals, the idea of compulsion is anathema. Had Asquith has the foresight to appoint me to his cabinet (and had I succeeded in holding Rutland South West in the 1910 elections), I should certainly have resigned from it with John Morley in 1915 over the introduction of conscription.

Yet even I am forced to concede that our country has come to such a pass that some form of National Service must be brought in without delay. There are far too many amongst us who contribute nothing to the welfare of their fellow citizens yet expect to enjoy today's affluent way of life.

This must be stopped. All these middle-aged accountants, estate agents and marketing consultants must be put to useful work without delay.

Lord Bonkers was Liberal MP for Rutland South West 1906-10.

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