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Have yourself a leftie little Christmas


3:14 pm - December 13th 2007

by DonaldS    


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It’s common knowledge on the left that Christmas is a pernicious racist-imperialist construct, an unholy alliance of Catholicism, Coca Cola and capitalism whose only function is the exploitation and repression of the international working classes. Well, bollocks to that. Christmas is a right laugh, a time for family, friends and frolicking whether you do the God thing or not.

But if we want those doey-eyed little ones looking up at us to have a future free from acid rain, hurricanes and summer floods, it’s time for a festive fightback. No, I don’t mean making common cause with the fundies, but what better day than the feast of Santa Lucia to publish a cut-out-and-keep guide to an enlightened Winterval.

Here are fifteen ideas to get us started; feel free to add your own below.

1. Shop local, eat seasonal. There’s a reason why mange tout and kiwi fruit compote isn’t part of the traditional lunch. Christmas shop by bus, to your local high street; not by car to an out-of-town mall. And so on.

2. Buy from John Lewis. It’s a wholly-owned workers’ co-op. Plus you get an extra year on your electronics guarantees. And free delivery.

3. Watch out for truly minging ‘charity’ Christmas cards, that give a tiny fraction of their cover price to good causes. The Charities Advisory Trust’s 6th annual shit list is here (pdf); you won’t believe who won this year’s Scrooge Award (or maybe you will). The UK’s first 100% charity card, benefiting the Make A Wish Foundation, was launched this year.

4. Make a contribution to local education by shopping for the kids at Yellow Moon. Up to 25% of every purchase kicks-back to your chosen school.

5. Promote neighbourhood harmony by sending the whole street a (charity) Christmas card. Despite what you read in the Express, no one is likely to respond by calling for you to be beheaded outside Primark.

6. Cut down on the airmiles of your festive bubbly by buying British: Nyetimber is a match for any Champagne at the price.

7. Promote one of the few remaining examples of cooperative capitalism: buy book tokens. Way easier to track down than a Wii.

8. Take the reply-paid envelope from every seasonal loan offer that drops on the doormat, seal it and stick it back in the mail. It costs the bottom-feeders money every time.

9. Protest the onward creep of capitalist Christmas by boycotting the shops on Boxing Day. The Poseidon Adventure‘s probably on, anyway.

10. Put up some lights, build a crib, fly the flag of St George if you want. Nobody’s going to arrest you, not even your ZaNuLabour multicultural police taskforce. Just don’t bloody whinge about it.

11. Support a small business run by treehuggers. Now in its 10th year, Little Green Earthlets sells organic clothes and skincare products, sustainable and Fairtrade stocking fillers and even Clive Litchfield’s Organic Directory 2008.

12. For a sustainable fish course, make the smoked salmon organic, the prawns North Atlantic, or best of all go for the trusty mussel, reared with the kindest form of aquaculture. There’s even a festive recipe here.

13. Like Charlie said, or was it Jesus: don’t forget to think of others. Development charity World Vision publish a list of their most needed alternative Christmas gifts here. The price of a Leapster buys 10 mosquito nets in Zambia; or reunite a Cambodian child with his family for less than a good bottle of Puligny-Montrachet. Alternatively, become a festive volunteer at the Crisis Open Christmas here.

14. Recycle or compost everything – from trees to the turkey carcass. Choose a sustainable tree.

15. Protest your right to protest by candlelight, with anti-carols. Details here.

And remember, don’t blow a gasket when the little people ask you ‘Is he coming yet?’. Point them here on Christmas Eve, where they’ll find Santa’s flight plan mapped out on t’Interweb, put your feet up and get stuck into the mulled wine before it turns to vinegar.

Merry Christmas.

Also published here.

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About the author
Donald is a regular contributor to Liberal Conspiracy. He is a travel journalist, editor, author and copywriter. In the wake of the 2005 General Election, he co-founded and edited The Sharpener for a couple of years. He writes the occasional book or newspaper article for money, as well as sharing his thoughts here for free. Also at: hackneye donaldstrachan.com
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Story Filed Under: Events ,Humour

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Reader comments


Putting up lights isn’t very eco friendly.

Neither is sending Christmas cards to everyone in your street….

send everyone an e-card…

I’m also giving people presents in gift bags this year on the premise that they get passed on and re-used or given back to me to re-use if the recipient prefers.

Nice suggestions.

Though Nyetimber is overpriced rubbish IMO.

OT funniest seasonal cartoon was I think last week in the Times.
A boy in bed catching dad filling the stocking, with dad saying “Santa prefers to donate through a third party”.

PS – though of course I shall rather be having a *liberal* little Christmas!

“of course I shall rather be having a *liberal* little Christmas!”

Me too. And I already do the ethical shopping thing. My local little organic shop gave me my milk for free today to say Merry Humbug 😀

#1
>Putting up lights isn’t very eco friendly.
#2
>Neither is sending Christmas cards to everyone in your street

Grinches, the pair of you.

#3
>Nyetimber is overpriced rubbish

No more so than Champagne, though.

Put up some lights, build a crib, fly the flag of St George if you want. Nobody’s going to arrest you, not even your ZaNuLabour multicultural police taskforce. Just don’t bloody whinge about it.

Damn straight!

Good list Donald… though I’m doing the e-card business too… and sending everyone christmas messages (through facebook, hehe).

Irony often gets lost on this site. I couldn’t care less about the environment.

>Irony often gets lost on this site

As does gentle humour amongst some of our commenters, clearly.

Look forward to the new year – join the greens as there are lots of decent people there that used to be in the labour party! You can escape the ET Evangelical Tendancy ..You are NOT born again of new labour ?…It is liberating. You can oppose their crazy policies like privatising military training and selling it of to arms dealers like Raytheon of cluster bomb fame and other coporate rotters like EPS – qinetiq, serco…(americanisation) Use you hols to think of a list of top 20 worst policies to oppose…privating military training to arms dealers, id cards, asbos, massive jails, 42 days, war, Iraq, protest. environment, transport ….Then plan to get out there and DO something..PROTEST…if you live in Cardiff join us at the Senedd .Welsh Assembly Jan 17 13:00 no2St athan Military Academy

Good list.

RE point 8.

It’s not festive but I recommend signing up to the mail preference service:

http://www.mpsonline.org.uk/mpsr/

Doesn’t work 100% but cuts down the junk mail coming through your door enormously.


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  1. James Governor

    ten top tips for sustainable shopping at christmas http://tinyurl.com/5pszyz





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