Monday, 30 December 2013

The Ken Livingstone Principle

Ken Livingstone has managed to create an entire phenomenon by himself. It is not a new one, quite the opposite, but his operation was so clear and perfect I hope his name will be associated with it for ever more.

When given powers as Mayor of London he created a congestion charge for all traffic in the centre, and said he wouldn't extend it or increase the price. He did both soon after, and in an interview when asked why he broke his promises, simply replied 'Because I could'.

Now anyone brought up properly will know both the opportunity to do wrong without penalty or the chance of a penalty but doing it anyway hoping you won't get caught is the operation of a bad person. Yes, you can get away with whatever is legal, like treading on ants, lying to your heart's content and letting people down, but whatever happens to your victims your character goes backwards. You will get the equivalent of black marks each time you take advantage of the principle, and judgement day or not, whatever else you will know the day you die what you did and will be sorry for it. Then of course it will be too late.

If you view life as a test, these are traps set for free will. Yes, Ken knew perfectly well nothing would happen to him as having read the small print knew the list of tricks he could pull as Mayor, and exploited them to the full with no conscience. Yes, in practice he got away with it, but when he dies, what will be said about him at his funeral, and who will be sorry? Not me for one, he is dead to me already and all like him, as they should be to everyone.

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