In defence of Champagne Socialism

We’re all hypocrites really

champagne lenin miliband Oxbridge socialism

With recent controversy over Guardian sponsorship of the luxurious Peterhouse May Ball, it’s time to tackle the real issue: what’s your bloody problem with champagne socialism?

Not controversial

Not controversial

Is it wrong to discuss the housing crisis over a glass of Bollinger? Should we be reprimanded for musing over the welfare state in a parlour clad with paintings of wealthy white men? Is it morally reprehensible to consider the redistribution of wealth from our houses in Islington?

Moral censure directed towards those who support economic equality while coming from an economically privileged background purports the idea our political views should be determined by our lifestyle.

This contradicts everything a socialist should stand for.

Our backgrounds should never affect our opportunities. If I want to be a socialist, am I not allowed to be one? Just because someone has access to champagne, are they not allowed to wish everyone had that same access? Should only the privileged get to enjoy privilege?

Champagne for everybody, right?

Champagne for everybody, not champagne for nobody

Champagne for everybody, not champagne for nobody

As a socialist, do you really prefer the idea of champagne capitalists? Champagne fascists? What about the Strongbow Conservatives, or the Bitter UKIP supporters? It’s not the champagne that should be odious, but the political ideology – and I prefer my ideology to have top-notes of oak and vanilla.

In this age obsessed with image, we have become more concerned with the outward appearance of hypocrisy rather than the actual potential for change. Nightmare.

Being socialist and wealthy, you are labelled as a hypocrite, being less privileged you are labelled as jealous. Valuing what we appear to be over what we actually are is a dangerous path to be led down. Priorities, man.

In any case, cynically speaking, people with money tend to wield power. Would socialists not rather have these people on side?

Miliband, complete not only with an Oxford education but even with two whole kitchens can’t be taken as anything other than a champagne socialist. Should we ditch him from the cause? (Debatable, but not because of his inherent need for multiple fridges).

People with money and privilege aren’t by default incapable of entertaining socialist ideology.

As the famous story goes, when Lenin was asked why he was travelling first class he said that this wasn’t a revolution about destroying the first class, but rather a revolution about destroying the second class. Champagne for everybody, not champagne for nobody. Isn’t that nice? Like a sort of alcoholic primary school sports day.

just like sports day...

Just like sports day…

As students of Oxbridge with great resources and opportunities in our reach, anyone here who identifies with the left is by default a champagne socialist. Can these people honestly claim to have turned down the wealth of opportunities offered to us, very evidently not available to everyone, for the sake of their own political ideology?

And let us not forget about the crucial sparkling wine economy supporting the current French socialist government. We simply can’t put a stop to champagne socialism – we wouldn’t want anyone losing their jobs now, would we?

Politics is fucking painful enough as it is and I’m all in favour of a few drinks to liven things up. A team of scientists have reduced this to a simple equation;

real life science

Real life science

And in any case, would socialists not prefer the attendees of Peterhouse May Ball leave with a copy of the Guardian in hand in place of the Daily Mail?