Just to please BB I read through the most recent (2005) platform of the Dutch Labor Party (PvdA) and the “core vision” of the Socialist Party (SP) and found as the main points this:
The Labor Party:
social democracy cannot exist without a strong economy and a vital market but wants to limit these within frameworks that the market itself cannot offer: social justice, democratic accountability, public interest, cultural development and ecological sustainability
What about migration? Well, a very qualified acceptance I dare say:
Solidarity flourishes on a solid foundation of unity and a sense of having a common destiny. The increasing diversity puts this foundation under pressure. To turn that development around selective migration, the development of shared orientations on the past and future of our society and a radical struggle against a situation in which people are being put and lagging behind (are required).
What about abortion? There is absolutely nothing there.
Euthanasia? The same.
Gay rights? In a pamphlet of 8 pages only this sentence:
We are demanding:
Respect for other people’s right to believe, the acceptance of common rights for men and women, homos and heteros and the right of apostasy.
The Socialist Party:
Its “core vision” is contained in a manifesto of 17 pages in which there is no talk at all, not at all, of abortion, migration, euthanasia, gay rights etc. Its most important point is very similar to that of the Labor Party:
We do not accept that the economic laws of capitalism define the margins in which politics can operate. We will therefore fight against contemporary neoliberal tendencies.
Interestingly the SP manifesto, which dates from 1999, is entitled “The Road to Brutopia” and one of the sections is called “Alternatives to Brutopia”. Seven years later Kevin Rudd, then on the verge of becoming the leader of the Australian Labor opposition, used the same term in an essay in Monthly entitled “Howards Brutopia: the battle of ideas in Australian politics”.
Rudd defined Brutopia as a place of unchecked market forces:
There are no more corrosive agents at work today, on the so-called conservative institutions of family, community, church and country, than the unforgiving forces of neo-liberalism, materialism and consumerism, which lay waste to anything in their path.
The real battle of ideas in Australian politics today, said Rudd, is that
between free-market fundamentalism and the social-democratic belief that individual reward can be balanced with social responsibility.
For the use of the term brutopia he referred to the British conservative publicist Michael Oakeshott. That origin seems to be in doubt, though it has been found in some other scribe’s analysis of Oakeshott’s views. What is certain however is that the term was used since 1955 in … Donald Duck. This gave the then treasurer in the Howard government, Peter Costello, the chance to trivialize labor concerns, a bit in the style of BB only somewhat funnier:
He said in the House:
There has been some speculation as to what Brutopia is. I can now authoritatively inform the House that Brutopia is a fictional country which appears in several Donald Duck stories … Labor (is) drawing inspiration for its economic analysis from a Donald Duck magazine., Mr. Speaker. This is the evolutionary cycle of the Labor Party. We have now moved from Mark Latham’s roosters to Kevin Rudd’s ducks. Mr. Speaker. Managing the Australian economy, which is a $ 1 trillion economy, takes experience and commitment – and you do not get your analysis from Donald Duck comics. It is much more serious than that.
Indeed it is.