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Where are the Young England radicals? Britain isn't doomed — it's always like this

The search is on. Credit: Justin Tallis/AFP/ Getty


January 26, 2023   7 mins

Have things ever been so grim? Given the depressing reality of contemporary Britain — with the endless stories of sleaze and decay, decline and division — it is easy to draw that conclusion. Surely the NHS has never been this dire, the union this fragile or the country’s economic prospects this bleak? Surely we’ve never had a government, or a parliament, quite so devoid of ideas and ambition? For those, like me, who find themselves asking these questions more regularly than ever, there is a salve of sorts available: modern British history. If you think you’re living through the worst of times today, think again — it’s usually like this.

Over the past few months, researching a book on Britain’s long, troubled relationship with Europe, I have found a strange solace in the almost seasonal nature of our national life, with its endless wintery crises (usually involving the weakness of the pound and our ability to pay our way) that eventually give way to spring-like calms. Ben Pimlott’s biography of Harold Wilson, for example, is like a thunderstorm of charm and disorder, short fixes and political escapism. There was, of course, plenty of honour and achievement along the way, but as you turn the final page, you cannot help but wonder what it all amounted to. Here was a magical politician who dominated British politics for more than a decade, only to fade from national consciousness with alarming speed, his ghost barely even troubling the minds of his successors let alone haunting them. Today, Wilson is back in vogue as the man who finally ended 13 years of Tory rule, a favourite of Keir Starmer and some Sixties nostalgics, but this was a man almost broken by his own decline — and his country’s.

Wilson, though, is the rule in this regard, not the exception. A similar air of despondency hangs over almost all of Britain’s post war leaders up until 1979, each of whom fixated on the notion of British decline but were unable to escape its clutches.

And yet, here is the strange reality: despite it all, the country continued its slow, steady trudge over the fells, never veering much from the path it had been on before, the economy growing at much the same rate, only more slowly with each passing decade. Britain’s decline was largely relative, the living standards of people in Britain improving year on year.

Anyone scanning the record of British economic growth from 1949 to 2022 would be hard-pressed to spot any transformative moment. From our entry into the Common Market in 1973 to the election of Margaret Thatcher in 1979, or, indeed, the referendum to leave the EU in 2016, we continued plodding along largely as before, however transformative we convinced ourselves one set of leaders or another was at the time. To the casual observer, it is the recessions which catch the eye more than the booms, most of which blew in from abroad, largely beyond the control of our leaders, the pandemic just the latest example. For Britain, the truth is that our crises are never quite as important as we imagine — and nor are our leaders.

To illustrate the point, here’s a challenge: when was the last time a British government or prime minister pro-actively achieved something of lasting importance, addressing some great strategic threat before it became an existential challenge? The disasters are far easier to list, but not the lasting achievements. Did any of Gordon Brown, David Cameron, Theresa May, Boris Johnson or Liz Truss leave us with any lasting monument to progress? It is hard to think of one. They largely managed crises — or, more often, caused them.

Johnson took Britain out of the European Union, of course, but that hardly passes the test. The best that can be said for his Brexit negotiation is that it acted as a kind of emergency stent, unblocking the arteries of British democracy at a time when they had become fatally obstructed by the political failure to enact the result of the referendum. In itself this was no small thing, perhaps even a service to democracy, but it was an operation to deal with an emergency health crisis — not to stop one from happening in the first place. It also came at the obvious cost of creating a whole series of other crises that we are still living with today. Besides this, what else does Johnson have to show for his time in office that would not have happened without him? Ukraine has benefited from his instinctive, full-throated and continuing support, but let’s be honest, it is not British support which makes the difference in the Donbas — but American.

Johnson’s one strategic offer was his promise to use Brexit as a spur for a great national reset: “levelling up”. But what has happened since? Less than a year after he left office this policy already seems dead. Again, though, Johnson’s failure is not exceptional. In politics, turning the tide is almost impossible. Anthony Eden tried to protect Britain’s global status from the post-war reality only to reveal its decline at Suez; Harold Macmillan attempted something similar by trying to join Europe, only to be rejected by de Gaulle. Wilson’s grand plan to revolutionise the British economy with planning and science was then mugged by reality, while Ted Heath’s great corporatist alternative was similarly ended by events. All failed.

Even Margaret Thatcher, who is widely thought to have succeeded in her mission to radically reform Britain, is flattered by the narrative. A quick glance at Britain’s economic growth before and after she became prime minister suggests a far less revolutionary reality than we often imagine. Overall, Mrs Thatcher spent 11 years in power, her time defined by a period of decent but by no means extraordinary growth bookended by two deep recessions. In reality, her great success was relative. Britain grew faster than its European counterparts during her time in office, which had not been the case beforehand.

Today it is hard to look back at the premierships of those who came next and think of a single lasting endowment. Perhaps Cameron can put gay marriage on his ledger, but once again, it is hard to believe that had he not existed, gay marriage would be illegal today. As brave and principled as it was, the reform was largely a reflection of the great social change happening across the Western world. The banal truth is that our prime ministers spend most of their time surfing the zeitgeist, not making it.

I remember challenging Boris Johnson about this very point after travelling with him to Northern Ireland a couple of years ago. He’d told me he was reading James Shapiro’s 1599: A Year In The Life Of William Shakespeare (I later realised this must have been research for his biography). The book spends much of its early pages detailing the trouble Queen Elizabeth was facing that year in Ulster. And there we were, I thought, four centuries on, and the British prime minister travelling back and forward to Northern Ireland still unsure how to handle events there. “It’s very, very hard to change the fundamentals,” Johnson told me. Yet he was confident that he could. Quaint, really, and yet he is still trying to bend history to his will.

Blair is closest to Thatcher in leaving relics which continue to shape our world. And yet even his greatest legacies are now either crumbling or ambiguous. The Good Friday Agreement remains a source of almost mystic reverence — despite (or largely because of) the reality that few seem to know what it contains. But even this great covenant of peace is now barely functioning as a result of Brexit and the Northern Ireland Protocol (though the peace it helped bring about still holds). Devolution, meanwhile, that other lasting legacy of Blairite reform, has lost its halo, no longer the stabilising constitutional act it was once supposed to be, but something closer to the opposite. Regardless, however profoundly important these two achievements were — and are — they were only parts of a wider strategy to turn Britain into what he saw as a modern European state. And if we judge him on this score, he failed just like the rest of them.

When surveying our political past, then, it’s hard to avoid the sense of an undercurrent pulling us along slowly, whatever frothy chaos we endure on the surface. When we are outperforming our European counterparts, we mistake the swell for normality, only to sink back down in time. Then, when we are being outperformed, we fret about permanent submersion. Over the long term, though, we bob along, like Poohsticks in a stream, change happening to us more often than not.

All of this might seem reason enough for despondency. But in a sense, it is evidence for hope. Britain might be in a tough spot right now, but the current flows on. Prime Ministers are never quite as transformative as they seem — for good or bad. In Westminster, managerial normality is already reasserting itself after the years of Johnson. What many hoped would be a great reset in national political and economic life has proved anything but. There has been no revolution in the country’s social and economic model, no great reduction in migration, or taxation, regulation or trade — so far only the old system, but with worse trading conditions.

To my mind, Britain should fear less calamitous, irreversible decline than soul-sapping unchangeable continuity. Leaders are rarely successful in diverting the great global currents that shape our world, but they must at least offer hope that they can be managed and used to the national advantage. Right now there is a dispiriting paucity of ideas about how Britain is supposed to do this today, or even a story for us to make sense of it all. Neither Keir Starmer nor Rishi Sunak has yet to show a way through the fog ahead.

The tragi-comic figure of Liz Truss briefly tried something radical — and was quickly removed under pressure from the international markets. She may console herself that she is this country’s Barry Goldwater, the hero of the American right who lost in a landslide to Lyndon Johnson in 1964 only to inspire the conservative revolution that eventually swept all before it. All defeated leaders turn themselves into prophets in this way. Such a fate is unlikely to be Truss’s however. But still, another lesson from Britain’s post war history is that the ideas which grow to define our national story often begin their lives on the fringes, dismissed and rejected until eventually they are adapted and then adopted. This was the case with pro-Europeanism once upon a time and then much later on anti-Europeanism.

In Robert Blake’s masterful biography of Benjamin Disraeli, he tells the story of Disraeli’s early radicalism in a group of like-minded Tory ultras known as Young England who opposed free trade and the erosion of the old order. “The history of Young England has all the charm and nostalgia which attend tales of forlorn hopes and lost causes,” Blake writes. “[But] the success of such movements of protest cannot be measured by their immediate political failure. They must, rather, be regarded as symbols and examples that lend an imaginative glow to the dull course of party politics; showing that there are other ways to fame than conformism, diligence and calculation; showing that a gesture, however absurd it may seem to contemporaries, may sometimes live longer.” Is there a more uplifting message? Young England lost — and won. Disraeli became prime minister, created a new Toryism that continues to shape our political world but also accepted defeat in his opposition to free trade.

The search is on for the Young England radicals of today, the forlorn dreamers and romantics who will shape our future, alongside the diligent conformers who will manage it. The eurosceptics were once this band, but are no more — having secured almost complete victory after their years of seemingly hopeless retreat. But who will take their place today? Who will offer the country an imaginative glow to light the journey ahead? Right now, it is hard to see them emerging from either Labour or the Conservatives. But they will come. They always do.


Tom McTague is UnHerd’s Political Editor. He is the author of Betting The House: The Inside Story of the 2017 Election.

TomMcTague

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Andrew Fisher
Andrew Fisher
1 year ago

The biggest single transformation in Britain, but particularly England, since World War 2 is the enormous change in our population make up due to high and completely unprecedented levels of immigration. (It is completely untrue that Britain has ‘always’ been a land of immigration). Extraordinarily, London’s population is 40% foreign born, and white British make up only just over a third of the population.

I don’t rail about this, just find it quite amazing that out of some sort of misplaced politeness that commentators barely mention it. Of course this has created huge changes in the country, whether for good and ill and will continue to do so.

Samir Iker
Samir Iker
1 year ago
Reply to  Andrew Fisher

Even as an immigrant, I would tend to agree, and I am aghast to see so much of London essentially cleansed of its original, wonderful culture – it’s not just the extent of immigration but also the fact that large groups of immigrants have been allowed to basically form their own isolated enclaves instead of assimilation with the host culture.

But I would suggest that immigration doesn’t fully explain the story. Britain and the West faces an existential challenge due to decreasing economic clout and share of global population, and there just isn’t any appreciation of the efforts and changes in mindset required to cope. Despite what one might feel about the empire etc, I still think British culture is amazing and I would fear that “calamitous, irreversible decline” is exactly the risk here.

Not just economically but culturally. The uniquely irreverent nature of the British people and their humour, for instance, is under threat. Or for instance gay marriage (a right that few gay people actually opt for, once granted) – so much mental energy expended on this, but not much concern about the sheer number of British children born out of wedlock and not having a father’s presence.

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  Samir Iker

“Spare the rod, spoil the child”.

A S
A S
1 year ago
Reply to  Samir Iker

I wonder if the low-level self-deprication (also part of British humor) actually leads British people to not appreciate themselves and their culture as much as they should. I had a British boyfriend for a decade and have met British people while traveling in various parts of the world – I agree, British people are friendly, funny, polite and all around representative of a wonderful culture.

Dougie Undersub
Dougie Undersub
1 year ago
Reply to  Samir Iker

Yes, Samir. Instead of the dreamed of multicultural society, we have a multiplicity of monocultures.

j watson
j watson
1 year ago

Disagree. I heard multiculturalism described as a ‘Salad Bowl’ – all mixed pieces of salad in together but each bit distinctly different. That though doesn’t reflect reality. We’ve always been more of a ‘Melting Pot’. Arbitrary lines of race and religion get blurred over time. We’re a Melting Pot nation. And one of the outputs of this Melting Pot is in Number 10
Of course there are some inward looking communities that resist this, but over time it’s a real struggle for them. We could do a bit more to limit this but our culture is much stronger than we sometimes think, at least the very best bits. Which is why they get adopted.

John Sullivan
John Sullivan
1 year ago
Reply to  j watson

Lol.

One of the outputs of the globalist cabal is “in number 10”, having been installed there by no one in this country. Same for number 11.

Fixed it for you.

j watson
j watson
1 year ago
Reply to  John Sullivan

Braverman?

j watson
j watson
1 year ago
Reply to  John Sullivan

Braverman?

Davina Powell
Davina Powell
1 year ago
Reply to  j watson

One world, one love, no borders… metaphorical or otherwise.

John Sullivan
John Sullivan
1 year ago
Reply to  j watson

Lol.

One of the outputs of the globalist cabal is “in number 10”, having been installed there by no one in this country. Same for number 11.

Fixed it for you.

Davina Powell
Davina Powell
1 year ago
Reply to  j watson

One world, one love, no borders… metaphorical or otherwise.

B Emery
B Emery
1 year ago

I thought you were American?

Mike Michaels
Mike Michaels
1 year ago

And a civil war to look forward to. Especially when resources grow thin.

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago

But didn’t it take both sides to make that happen? The old English racism you yearn for helped to cause the alienation so many ethic monocultures.. if it hadn’t been so I’m sure multiculturalism would have flourished.

Richard Craven
Richard Craven
1 year ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

..

Last edited 1 year ago by Richard Craven
Richard Craven
Richard Craven
1 year ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

Old English racism is in fact something you yearn for as a woke racist.

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago
Reply to  Richard Craven

Speak for yourself.. or at least the real Woke racists.. nothing to do with me. I’m one of those people who knows the correct term is Awakened.. only illiterates are Woke.

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago
Reply to  Richard Craven

Speak for yourself.. or at least the real Woke racists.. nothing to do with me. I’m one of those people who knows the correct term is Awakened.. only illiterates are Woke.

Richard Craven
Richard Craven
1 year ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

..

Last edited 1 year ago by Richard Craven
Richard Craven
Richard Craven
1 year ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

Old English racism is in fact something you yearn for as a woke racist.

j watson
j watson
1 year ago

Disagree. I heard multiculturalism described as a ‘Salad Bowl’ – all mixed pieces of salad in together but each bit distinctly different. That though doesn’t reflect reality. We’ve always been more of a ‘Melting Pot’. Arbitrary lines of race and religion get blurred over time. We’re a Melting Pot nation. And one of the outputs of this Melting Pot is in Number 10
Of course there are some inward looking communities that resist this, but over time it’s a real struggle for them. We could do a bit more to limit this but our culture is much stronger than we sometimes think, at least the very best bits. Which is why they get adopted.

B Emery
B Emery
1 year ago

I thought you were American?

Mike Michaels
Mike Michaels
1 year ago

And a civil war to look forward to. Especially when resources grow thin.

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago

But didn’t it take both sides to make that happen? The old English racism you yearn for helped to cause the alienation so many ethic monocultures.. if it hadn’t been so I’m sure multiculturalism would have flourished.

j watson
j watson
1 year ago
Reply to  Samir Iker

Hope this is ok SI but aren’t you possibly an example that immigration isn’t some form of stasis? Folks, largely, assimilate and in time adopt much more of the prevalent culture, perhaps bringing something to it at the same time that’s beneficial. We inter-marry and really the big growing demographic is those with a mixed background.
I always sense who worry about immigration and British values lack confidence in those values. But look at who’s PM, Foreign Secretary, Home Secretary etc. Maybe not everyone’s favourite politicians but suggestive a v powerful cultural undercurrent is solid whilst also being progressive.

John Sullivan
John Sullivan
1 year ago
Reply to  j watson

Immigration is not the (main) issue; at least it hasn’t been to date.

The “powerful cultural undercurrent” you reference has all but disappeared in the face of the full-on woke assault of the culture warriors.

Too many on here – wilfully it seems – have their heads in the sand. Their children will pay.

j watson
j watson
1 year ago
Reply to  John Sullivan

Woke’s a meaningless term IMO as it can mean all and nothing. It’s emperor’s got no clothes half the time type stuff. Quite frankly there are more important things to be focusing on than trans issue or suchlike.
You imply there is a culture that is under attack. How do you define that culture in the first place? I suspect if you can. and let’s assume it’s not ridiculous racially based nonsense, I’ll be able to reassure you it’s in far better shape than you give it credit. Our culture has spread round the world and as famously said the arc is a bit bumpy but strong.

John Sullivan
John Sullivan
1 year ago
Reply to  j watson

I don’t engage with arrogant race-baiting fools.

Richard Craven
Richard Craven
1 year ago
Reply to  John Sullivan

No idea why you got all those downvotes. I think your comment was eminently reasonable.

Richard Craven
Richard Craven
1 year ago
Reply to  John Sullivan

No idea why you got all those downvotes. I think your comment was eminently reasonable.

Julian Farrows
Julian Farrows
1 year ago
Reply to  j watson

Being anti-woke does not equate to being racist. The level to which this retrograde morality has been infused into almost all our institutions cannot be understated. It is carried forward into most organizations through DEI policies that, ironically enough, merely enforce conformity of thought and silence in the face of corporate dogma, rather than increase actual diversity.

Unfortunately, its reach hasn’t been contained to just workplaces and schools. It is manifesting itself in other cultural vehicles such as hobbies and entertainment. Watching a modern series or film these days is like viewing a morality play where you already know who the good guys and bad guys are going to be based on their sex and color of their skin; even book publishers now require sensitivity readers just in case someone might take offense to their content.

And the really stupid thing is, those who protest against this ideology are labeled racist or bigoted by those who perceive differences of opinion as threats to their diversity.

j watson
j watson
1 year ago
Reply to  Julian Farrows

Can you give me a few examples? Your doing a bit what I suggested – using the Woke phrase in catch all unspecific way. It can come across as ‘woe as me’ to be honest but let me see what I can suggest if you give some real examples.

Julian Farrows
Julian Farrows
1 year ago
Reply to  j watson

Men can be women simply by coercing others to believe it to be so (Queer Theory).

The ascribing of unequal outcomes between demographic groups to a shadowy Patriarchy (Feminist Theory).

Ascribing negative qualities to others based on intersections of perceived oppression (Race Theory).

Using existing intellectual property to create a tv series using woke morality tropes then denouncing the fan base as bigots when they write negative reviews (Amazon’s Wheel of Time and Rings of Power).

Employing people based on external characteristics rather than skill, merit, or qualifications (Diversity hiring).

Stranding minority students with thousands of dollars of debt for a degree which they were unable to complete (Affirmative Action).

Unequal application of the law based on political affiliation such as the difference in treatment between BLM and January 6 protesters even though the former did far more damage (Social Justice).

Automatically believing an accuser over investigating facts (#MeToo).

Revising history to fit a contemporary ideology (1619 Project).

Political commissars earning six figure salaries in order to ensure that students and professors conform to orthodoxy (DEI officers).

Scrapping knowledge-based curricula for Critical Theory-based curricula (Decolonization of the Curriculum).

Hiring professors based on loyalty oaths (Diversity Statements). Firing / threatening people who dissent from current orthodoxy (Cancel culture).

To name a few.
What we’re seeing here are the laying of foundations for a totalitarian system, but one that uses and then turns against whatever ‘vulnerable’ group is at hand (women, LGBQT, minorities etc.) in order to disguise itself as a civil rights movement. That’s the best way I can describe it.
edited for formatting.

Last edited 1 year ago by Julian Farrows
j watson
j watson
1 year ago
Reply to  Julian Farrows

At least a list, so thanks.
Now insufficient room here to go through each. Some are certainly vaguer than others, and some are also a little ‘woe is me’ and contestable as to whether that actually is the case.
On history – there is never one version. Where I’d be anti woke is if the re-writing removed rather than added layers. I don’t think it does that in general, and sometimes the prior history hasn’t really been the full story but rather a form of comfortable propaganda. A correction was inevitable.
I also think in most instances things will self correct. There was blinkin student nonsense in my day and you and others grow out of it. Universities need to ‘grow a pair’ though and say you can have your ‘safe place’ but that does not include the lecture theatre. There are a number of Institutions now doing this and it’ll ripple.
I agree there can be a 21st century tendency towards victimhood. White victim-hood being one too. It’s about the power of differentiation. between tripe and such that has some validity. Broad brush dismissal is lazy.
I suppose my point being I’ve much more confidence our culture responds, absorbs, trims, rebalances overtime. No doubt a theme we’ll pick up in discourse after other Articles too.

Martin Bollis
Martin Bollis
1 year ago
Reply to  j watson

I’ve wanted to hear from the other side in these comment sections for awhile, so thanks for entering the debate with a well reasoned viewpoint. How do you define the culture in the first place is an excellent point.

I do think in a debating chamber Julian Farrows would win this particular exchange.. He has provided a reasonable list of phenomena we all recognise. A better response would have been a more detailed refutation of each point. I fear you’ve gone for broad brush dismissal, “which is lazy.”

I think you may be right that the threat of wokism is exaggerated but it certainly can’t be dismissed as blinking student nonsense.

Martin Bollis
Martin Bollis
1 year ago
Reply to  j watson

I’ve wanted to hear from the other side in these comment sections for awhile, so thanks for entering the debate with a well reasoned viewpoint. How do you define the culture in the first place is an excellent point.

I do think in a debating chamber Julian Farrows would win this particular exchange.. He has provided a reasonable list of phenomena we all recognise. A better response would have been a more detailed refutation of each point. I fear you’ve gone for broad brush dismissal, “which is lazy.”

I think you may be right that the threat of wokism is exaggerated but it certainly can’t be dismissed as blinking student nonsense.

j watson
j watson
1 year ago
Reply to  Julian Farrows

At least a list, so thanks.
Now insufficient room here to go through each. Some are certainly vaguer than others, and some are also a little ‘woe is me’ and contestable as to whether that actually is the case.
On history – there is never one version. Where I’d be anti woke is if the re-writing removed rather than added layers. I don’t think it does that in general, and sometimes the prior history hasn’t really been the full story but rather a form of comfortable propaganda. A correction was inevitable.
I also think in most instances things will self correct. There was blinkin student nonsense in my day and you and others grow out of it. Universities need to ‘grow a pair’ though and say you can have your ‘safe place’ but that does not include the lecture theatre. There are a number of Institutions now doing this and it’ll ripple.
I agree there can be a 21st century tendency towards victimhood. White victim-hood being one too. It’s about the power of differentiation. between tripe and such that has some validity. Broad brush dismissal is lazy.
I suppose my point being I’ve much more confidence our culture responds, absorbs, trims, rebalances overtime. No doubt a theme we’ll pick up in discourse after other Articles too.

Julian Farrows
Julian Farrows
1 year ago
Reply to  j watson

Men can be women simply by coercing others to believe it to be so (Queer Theory).

The ascribing of unequal outcomes between demographic groups to a shadowy Patriarchy (Feminist Theory).

Ascribing negative qualities to others based on intersections of perceived oppression (Race Theory).

Using existing intellectual property to create a tv series using woke morality tropes then denouncing the fan base as bigots when they write negative reviews (Amazon’s Wheel of Time and Rings of Power).

Employing people based on external characteristics rather than skill, merit, or qualifications (Diversity hiring).

Stranding minority students with thousands of dollars of debt for a degree which they were unable to complete (Affirmative Action).

Unequal application of the law based on political affiliation such as the difference in treatment between BLM and January 6 protesters even though the former did far more damage (Social Justice).

Automatically believing an accuser over investigating facts (#MeToo).

Revising history to fit a contemporary ideology (1619 Project).

Political commissars earning six figure salaries in order to ensure that students and professors conform to orthodoxy (DEI officers).

Scrapping knowledge-based curricula for Critical Theory-based curricula (Decolonization of the Curriculum).

Hiring professors based on loyalty oaths (Diversity Statements). Firing / threatening people who dissent from current orthodoxy (Cancel culture).

To name a few.
What we’re seeing here are the laying of foundations for a totalitarian system, but one that uses and then turns against whatever ‘vulnerable’ group is at hand (women, LGBQT, minorities etc.) in order to disguise itself as a civil rights movement. That’s the best way I can describe it.
edited for formatting.

Last edited 1 year ago by Julian Farrows
Richard Craven
Richard Craven
1 year ago
Reply to  Julian Farrows

“Being anti-woke does not equate to being racist.”
I hope you won’t mind my suggesting that the above needs to be put more strongly. Being anti-woke equates to not being racist (not “anti-racist”, because that would be racist, of course).
Apart from the above minor solecism, the rest of your comment is excellent.

j watson
j watson
1 year ago
Reply to  Julian Farrows

Can you give me a few examples? Your doing a bit what I suggested – using the Woke phrase in catch all unspecific way. It can come across as ‘woe as me’ to be honest but let me see what I can suggest if you give some real examples.

Richard Craven
Richard Craven
1 year ago
Reply to  Julian Farrows

“Being anti-woke does not equate to being racist.”
I hope you won’t mind my suggesting that the above needs to be put more strongly. Being anti-woke equates to not being racist (not “anti-racist”, because that would be racist, of course).
Apart from the above minor solecism, the rest of your comment is excellent.

Davina Powell
Davina Powell
1 year ago
Reply to  j watson

I live in Wales and can barely speak my mother tongue (albeit due to a heavy hand from those dastardly Sasenach across the river Severn!) and even my surname is an Anglicisation of apHywel but thems the breaks and no use crying over spilt milk. But when my Gambian friend was bemoaning English colonialism of his country I did reply “what do you think it’s been like for us here in Wales, we live *next door* to the f@@@ers” … lol… So when a peoples have been all over this planet telling everyone how fantastic and superior they are for generations, one shouldn’t be surprised that people believe them and want to come here and live it for themselves. I think that’s fair enough and English ‘natives’ are in no position to complain… it’s not like the country as a whole never benefited from the exploitation…
I expect that there are plenty of “Young England” political radicals, it’s just that they don’t get a very loud voice… mainly because ‘Westminster’ has a vested interest in not giving oxygen to anyone who considers their mode of capitalist democracy wildly obsolete… they ALL like their jobs and their power base too much… considering that that top down government form of democracy has had since Ancient Greece and before to perfect its system and it’s still pretty shitty… I mean, c’mon… What did Einstein say about the definition of insanity again?
As for Harold Wilson? Remember the Aberfan disaster? People from all over the planet donated millions to help the families and he took it to spend on cleaning up the mess made by the mines instead. It was only given back not that long ago… without interest, of course… such a shining example of a “Young England radicals” POLITICIAN… to hell with the lot of them, of every stripe, and the belief system they sailed in on. They’re not the only game in town, although they’d have you believe otherwise.
I hope you don’t mind me writing on the article as a reply to you J Watson, but I don’t have a paid subscription so can only comment as a response and you seemed the kindest!

ben arnulfssen
ben arnulfssen
1 year ago
Reply to  Davina Powell

Be fair, though. The English have to live with the Scots and Welsh as neighbours.. .

ben arnulfssen
ben arnulfssen
1 year ago
Reply to  Davina Powell

Be fair, though. The English have to live with the Scots and Welsh as neighbours.. .

Richard Craven
Richard Craven
1 year ago
Reply to  j watson

I define woke as the authoritarian pseudo-progressive usurpation of authority, and culture as the exercise of spare brain capacity.

John Sullivan
John Sullivan
1 year ago
Reply to  j watson

I don’t engage with arrogant race-baiting fools.

Julian Farrows
Julian Farrows
1 year ago
Reply to  j watson

Being anti-woke does not equate to being racist. The level to which this retrograde morality has been infused into almost all our institutions cannot be understated. It is carried forward into most organizations through DEI policies that, ironically enough, merely enforce conformity of thought and silence in the face of corporate dogma, rather than increase actual diversity.

Unfortunately, its reach hasn’t been contained to just workplaces and schools. It is manifesting itself in other cultural vehicles such as hobbies and entertainment. Watching a modern series or film these days is like viewing a morality play where you already know who the good guys and bad guys are going to be based on their sex and color of their skin; even book publishers now require sensitivity readers just in case someone might take offense to their content.

And the really stupid thing is, those who protest against this ideology are labeled racist or bigoted by those who perceive differences of opinion as threats to their diversity.

Davina Powell
Davina Powell
1 year ago
Reply to  j watson

I live in Wales and can barely speak my mother tongue (albeit due to a heavy hand from those dastardly Sasenach across the river Severn!) and even my surname is an Anglicisation of apHywel but thems the breaks and no use crying over spilt milk. But when my Gambian friend was bemoaning English colonialism of his country I did reply “what do you think it’s been like for us here in Wales, we live *next door* to the f@@@ers” … lol… So when a peoples have been all over this planet telling everyone how fantastic and superior they are for generations, one shouldn’t be surprised that people believe them and want to come here and live it for themselves. I think that’s fair enough and English ‘natives’ are in no position to complain… it’s not like the country as a whole never benefited from the exploitation…
I expect that there are plenty of “Young England” political radicals, it’s just that they don’t get a very loud voice… mainly because ‘Westminster’ has a vested interest in not giving oxygen to anyone who considers their mode of capitalist democracy wildly obsolete… they ALL like their jobs and their power base too much… considering that that top down government form of democracy has had since Ancient Greece and before to perfect its system and it’s still pretty shitty… I mean, c’mon… What did Einstein say about the definition of insanity again?
As for Harold Wilson? Remember the Aberfan disaster? People from all over the planet donated millions to help the families and he took it to spend on cleaning up the mess made by the mines instead. It was only given back not that long ago… without interest, of course… such a shining example of a “Young England radicals” POLITICIAN… to hell with the lot of them, of every stripe, and the belief system they sailed in on. They’re not the only game in town, although they’d have you believe otherwise.
I hope you don’t mind me writing on the article as a reply to you J Watson, but I don’t have a paid subscription so can only comment as a response and you seemed the kindest!

Richard Craven
Richard Craven
1 year ago
Reply to  j watson

I define woke as the authoritarian pseudo-progressive usurpation of authority, and culture as the exercise of spare brain capacity.

j watson
j watson
1 year ago
Reply to  John Sullivan

Woke’s a meaningless term IMO as it can mean all and nothing. It’s emperor’s got no clothes half the time type stuff. Quite frankly there are more important things to be focusing on than trans issue or suchlike.
You imply there is a culture that is under attack. How do you define that culture in the first place? I suspect if you can. and let’s assume it’s not ridiculous racially based nonsense, I’ll be able to reassure you it’s in far better shape than you give it credit. Our culture has spread round the world and as famously said the arc is a bit bumpy but strong.

Richard Craven
Richard Craven
1 year ago
Reply to  j watson

“I always sense who worry about immigration and British values lack confidence in those values.”
I worry about continuous mass immigration because it’s (i) turning the UK’s housing crisis into an emergency; (ii) overwhelming public services; (iii) exerting downward pressure on C2DE wages.
And no, I’m not against immigration per se. The UK will always need immigrants, but not in these numbers. I am also myself an immigrant and the son of a refugee.

John Sullivan
John Sullivan
1 year ago
Reply to  j watson

Immigration is not the (main) issue; at least it hasn’t been to date.

The “powerful cultural undercurrent” you reference has all but disappeared in the face of the full-on woke assault of the culture warriors.

Too many on here – wilfully it seems – have their heads in the sand. Their children will pay.

Richard Craven
Richard Craven
1 year ago
Reply to  j watson

“I always sense who worry about immigration and British values lack confidence in those values.”
I worry about continuous mass immigration because it’s (i) turning the UK’s housing crisis into an emergency; (ii) overwhelming public services; (iii) exerting downward pressure on C2DE wages.
And no, I’m not against immigration per se. The UK will always need immigrants, but not in these numbers. I am also myself an immigrant and the son of a refugee.

B Emery
B Emery
1 year ago
Reply to  Samir Iker

, I would tend to agree, and I am aghast to see so much of London essentially cleansed of its original, wonderful culture –

Are you. You come across as about 12. Are you sure you’ve been around for long enough?
London has always been a melting pot where different cultures rub along nicely, it’s part of what makes it a great city.

‘Or for instance gay marriage (a right that few gay people actually opt for, once granted) – so much mental energy expended on this, but not much concern about the sheer number of British children born out of wedlock and not having a father’s presence.’

Just wtf. There’s so much wrong with your comment. What are you saying british people should be forcing people into ‘wedlock’ before they have children?

Toby B
Toby B
1 year ago
Reply to  B Emery

“London has always been a melting pot where different cultures rub along nicely.”
London has gone from 80% white British to less than 40% white British in the last 40 years. Anyone who chooses to obscure this huge, unprecedented change by saying “it’s always been a melting pot” is either deluded or dishonest.

Ethniciodo Rodenydo
Ethniciodo Rodenydo
1 year ago
Reply to  Toby B

Quite

B Emery
B Emery
1 year ago
Reply to  Toby B

Oooooook.
If London is like that, it’s like it. We have to try and deal with what we have. All this ‘integration’ bollax is getting very American style social engineering. We’ve got Samir up top ‘as an immigrant’ with the audacity to say he wishes London were like the old days, basically deriding the cultural diversity his own people have bought with them. Disgusting.
This is the kind of talk that dragged the brexit debate into the sewer.
Your facts are great but London has always had a higher migrant population than the rest of the country, so basically yes it has always been a melting pot and those stats are unique to London. EVERY other region its over 70%, up to 90% in other areas.

https://www.ethnicity-facts-figures.service.gov.uk/uk-population-by-ethnicity/national-and-regional-populations/regional-ethnic-diversity/latest#:~:text=2021%20Census%20data%20for%20England,17.0%25%20with%20white%20ethnic%20minorities

https://migrationobservatory.ox.ac.uk/resources/briefings/migrants-in-the-uk-an-overview/

Last edited 1 year ago by B Emery
Ethniciodo Rodenydo
Ethniciodo Rodenydo
1 year ago
Reply to  Toby B

Quite

B Emery
B Emery
1 year ago
Reply to  Toby B

Oooooook.
If London is like that, it’s like it. We have to try and deal with what we have. All this ‘integration’ bollax is getting very American style social engineering. We’ve got Samir up top ‘as an immigrant’ with the audacity to say he wishes London were like the old days, basically deriding the cultural diversity his own people have bought with them. Disgusting.
This is the kind of talk that dragged the brexit debate into the sewer.
Your facts are great but London has always had a higher migrant population than the rest of the country, so basically yes it has always been a melting pot and those stats are unique to London. EVERY other region its over 70%, up to 90% in other areas.

https://www.ethnicity-facts-figures.service.gov.uk/uk-population-by-ethnicity/national-and-regional-populations/regional-ethnic-diversity/latest#:~:text=2021%20Census%20data%20for%20England,17.0%25%20with%20white%20ethnic%20minorities

https://migrationobservatory.ox.ac.uk/resources/briefings/migrants-in-the-uk-an-overview/

Last edited 1 year ago by B Emery
Mike Michaels
Mike Michaels
1 year ago
Reply to  B Emery

Steady on old chap.

B Emery
B Emery
1 year ago
Reply to  Mike Michaels

Awaiting approval on my expletives.

B Emery
B Emery
1 year ago
Reply to  Mike Michaels

Awaiting approval on my expletives.

R Wright
R Wright
1 year ago
Reply to  B Emery

“London has always been a melting pot where different cultures rub along nicely”
This is a myth. Before 1945 London was 95% white English. Most of the other 5% was Irish with the odd Latvian or Pole thrown in for good measure.

j watson
j watson
1 year ago
Reply to  R Wright

You show your cards there RW. You link it all to colour.
In fact Aliens Act in 05 and 20 were introduced because of considerable east European immigration – persecution and pogroms. Then again in the 30s from Spain and Germany. And vast majority settled in London. You will have heard about the Battle of Cable street I’m sure.
The volume of immigration was less for sure, in part because the world was less interconnected and travel more difficult.
Of course in 850AD London was largely Viking but hey things move on.

B Emery
B Emery
1 year ago
Reply to  j watson

Thanks Watson.

B Emery
B Emery
1 year ago
Reply to  j watson

Thanks Watson.

B Emery
B Emery
1 year ago
Reply to  R Wright

So what are you suggesting? You got a source for that?

Last edited 1 year ago by B Emery
j watson
j watson
1 year ago
Reply to  R Wright

You show your cards there RW. You link it all to colour.
In fact Aliens Act in 05 and 20 were introduced because of considerable east European immigration – persecution and pogroms. Then again in the 30s from Spain and Germany. And vast majority settled in London. You will have heard about the Battle of Cable street I’m sure.
The volume of immigration was less for sure, in part because the world was less interconnected and travel more difficult.
Of course in 850AD London was largely Viking but hey things move on.

B Emery
B Emery
1 year ago
Reply to  R Wright

So what are you suggesting? You got a source for that?

Last edited 1 year ago by B Emery
Richard Craven
Richard Craven
1 year ago
Reply to  B Emery

You’re the one coming across as about 12, woke boy.

B Emery
B Emery
1 year ago
Reply to  Richard Craven

That makes a change from ‘woke scum’ your usual go to.

B Emery
B Emery
1 year ago
Reply to  Richard Craven

That makes a change from ‘woke scum’ your usual go to.

Toby B
Toby B
1 year ago
Reply to  B Emery

“London has always been a melting pot where different cultures rub along nicely.”
London has gone from 80% white British to less than 40% white British in the last 40 years. Anyone who chooses to obscure this huge, unprecedented change by saying “it’s always been a melting pot” is either deluded or dishonest.

Mike Michaels
Mike Michaels
1 year ago
Reply to  B Emery

Steady on old chap.

R Wright
R Wright
1 year ago
Reply to  B Emery

“London has always been a melting pot where different cultures rub along nicely”
This is a myth. Before 1945 London was 95% white English. Most of the other 5% was Irish with the odd Latvian or Pole thrown in for good measure.

Richard Craven
Richard Craven
1 year ago
Reply to  B Emery

You’re the one coming across as about 12, woke boy.

Chris W
Chris W
1 year ago
Reply to  Samir Iker

Your reply is popular because you confess to being an immigrant but you love ‘British culture’. The article is more about economic growth than anything else.

I do not know what ‘growth’ means. If we manufactured t-shirts, shoes and engineering parts, we could claim that growth was important – but other people are better than us now; they have cheap labour and don’t care about their living environment. So growth, in the old sense, is irrelevant. We need to earn money and our history and culture gives us bragging rights with tourism.

So you are correct. Our culture is the important thing if only to earn money. To be ashamed of our culture is giving away this resource as well. I would suggest that any Prime Minister who keeps the UK together and stable, who encourages the appreciation of Shakespeare, who is not ashamed of our royals, who is proud of our seafaring history, who sees our ex-colonies as overall positive achievements…..will help with our growth.

Martha Halford
Martha Halford
1 year ago
Reply to  Samir Iker

Personally, I would blame this decline on British society’s staggering ignorance (the levels of illiteracy in this country are among the highest in Europe) rather than immigrants. Often (but not always) immigrants add cultural depth to our society. Lastly, it’s down to the Brits to get newcomers to adopt the key tenets of their culture such as tolerance, respect for women etc.

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  Martha Halford

‘Comprehensive Education’! Britain at its very best!

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  Martha Halford

‘Comprehensive Education’! Britain at its very best!

Mike Michaels
Mike Michaels
1 year ago
Reply to  Samir Iker

When making Bechamel sauce one must add the flour to the butter very slowly or you end up with a big glob of gunge that is no use to anybody.

Steve Hoffman
Steve Hoffman
1 year ago
Reply to  Samir Iker

Also an immigrant, I must comment on your statement, “large groups of immigrants have been allowed to basically form their own isolated enclaves”.
This has always happened everywhere and is perfectly natural and understandable. In my native US, waves of immigrants successively took over neighbourhoods of New York City and elsewhere. People naturally gravitate to their own sort who have customs, skin colour, religion and language in common. As a young newspaper reporter in central Massachusetts in the late 1950’s I covered a town that was largely French Canadian, a nearby old mill town was largely Finnish-speaking. This actually provides a feeling of comfort and stability to society. 
Also it’s not a matter of being “allowed” for form enclaves. It’s not up to government or anyone else to “allow” or to prohibit this from happening. We are free to settle wherever we want to – if we can afford it – and that’s something to be applauded. It’s called freedom. 

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago
Reply to  Steve Hoffman

I take your point but it isn’t that simple is it? Similarly ethnic communities form also for at least four other reasons.
1. Members of the ethnic minority may be fearful of living in a white / different community due to racist attacks / remarks?
2. Existing communities may make it clear they are unhappy with accepting others into their community for fear of reducing house prices or even being displaced.
3. Indeed, existing (white?) communities may take fright when they perceive their community being “overrun” by a minority and so rush to sell up before prices drop further?
4. Ethnic communities may likewise make it clear that they see their new communities as being not for others.
In all cases fear, xenophobia and racism (both ways) seem to hold sway over the values of welcoming the stranger and helping them to settle in, ie assimilate, despising difference instead of celebrating it – all caused through ignorance and bigotry and the horrible notion of exceptionalism. We are all the same species fgs! ..all brothers and sisters. Love is the answer..

B Emery
B Emery
1 year ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

Mr Mahony I was starting to take you a bit more seriously, I appreciate your fish and chips comment but I think you’ve gone far too far there.

B Emery
B Emery
1 year ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

Mr Mahony I was starting to take you a bit more seriously, I appreciate your fish and chips comment but I think you’ve gone far too far there.

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago
Reply to  Steve Hoffman

I take your point but it isn’t that simple is it? Similarly ethnic communities form also for at least four other reasons.
1. Members of the ethnic minority may be fearful of living in a white / different community due to racist attacks / remarks?
2. Existing communities may make it clear they are unhappy with accepting others into their community for fear of reducing house prices or even being displaced.
3. Indeed, existing (white?) communities may take fright when they perceive their community being “overrun” by a minority and so rush to sell up before prices drop further?
4. Ethnic communities may likewise make it clear that they see their new communities as being not for others.
In all cases fear, xenophobia and racism (both ways) seem to hold sway over the values of welcoming the stranger and helping them to settle in, ie assimilate, despising difference instead of celebrating it – all caused through ignorance and bigotry and the horrible notion of exceptionalism. We are all the same species fgs! ..all brothers and sisters. Love is the answer..

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago
Reply to  Samir Iker

In my opinion London’s culture is now far better than it ever was when it had nothing but fish and chips and the occasional street party. And don’t forget all your wonderful Irish pubs!

B Emery
B Emery
1 year ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

I agree. Jellied eels are very old school london….. No one wants them back.

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago
Reply to  B Emery

.
I seem to remember pickled eggs as well. Yes, definitely better off without those too!

Last edited 1 year ago by Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago
Reply to  B Emery

.
I seem to remember pickled eggs as well. Yes, definitely better off without those too!

Last edited 1 year ago by Liam O'Mahony
B Emery
B Emery
1 year ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

I agree. Jellied eels are very old school london….. No one wants them back.

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  Samir Iker

“Spare the rod, spoil the child”.

A S
A S
1 year ago
Reply to  Samir Iker

I wonder if the low-level self-deprication (also part of British humor) actually leads British people to not appreciate themselves and their culture as much as they should. I had a British boyfriend for a decade and have met British people while traveling in various parts of the world – I agree, British people are friendly, funny, polite and all around representative of a wonderful culture.

Dougie Undersub
Dougie Undersub
1 year ago
Reply to  Samir Iker

Yes, Samir. Instead of the dreamed of multicultural society, we have a multiplicity of monocultures.

j watson
j watson
1 year ago
Reply to  Samir Iker

Hope this is ok SI but aren’t you possibly an example that immigration isn’t some form of stasis? Folks, largely, assimilate and in time adopt much more of the prevalent culture, perhaps bringing something to it at the same time that’s beneficial. We inter-marry and really the big growing demographic is those with a mixed background.
I always sense who worry about immigration and British values lack confidence in those values. But look at who’s PM, Foreign Secretary, Home Secretary etc. Maybe not everyone’s favourite politicians but suggestive a v powerful cultural undercurrent is solid whilst also being progressive.

B Emery
B Emery
1 year ago
Reply to  Samir Iker

, I would tend to agree, and I am aghast to see so much of London essentially cleansed of its original, wonderful culture –

Are you. You come across as about 12. Are you sure you’ve been around for long enough?
London has always been a melting pot where different cultures rub along nicely, it’s part of what makes it a great city.

‘Or for instance gay marriage (a right that few gay people actually opt for, once granted) – so much mental energy expended on this, but not much concern about the sheer number of British children born out of wedlock and not having a father’s presence.’

Just wtf. There’s so much wrong with your comment. What are you saying british people should be forcing people into ‘wedlock’ before they have children?

Chris W
Chris W
1 year ago
Reply to  Samir Iker

Your reply is popular because you confess to being an immigrant but you love ‘British culture’. The article is more about economic growth than anything else.

I do not know what ‘growth’ means. If we manufactured t-shirts, shoes and engineering parts, we could claim that growth was important – but other people are better than us now; they have cheap labour and don’t care about their living environment. So growth, in the old sense, is irrelevant. We need to earn money and our history and culture gives us bragging rights with tourism.

So you are correct. Our culture is the important thing if only to earn money. To be ashamed of our culture is giving away this resource as well. I would suggest that any Prime Minister who keeps the UK together and stable, who encourages the appreciation of Shakespeare, who is not ashamed of our royals, who is proud of our seafaring history, who sees our ex-colonies as overall positive achievements…..will help with our growth.

Martha Halford
Martha Halford
1 year ago
Reply to  Samir Iker

Personally, I would blame this decline on British society’s staggering ignorance (the levels of illiteracy in this country are among the highest in Europe) rather than immigrants. Often (but not always) immigrants add cultural depth to our society. Lastly, it’s down to the Brits to get newcomers to adopt the key tenets of their culture such as tolerance, respect for women etc.

Mike Michaels
Mike Michaels
1 year ago
Reply to  Samir Iker

When making Bechamel sauce one must add the flour to the butter very slowly or you end up with a big glob of gunge that is no use to anybody.

Steve Hoffman
Steve Hoffman
1 year ago
Reply to  Samir Iker

Also an immigrant, I must comment on your statement, “large groups of immigrants have been allowed to basically form their own isolated enclaves”.
This has always happened everywhere and is perfectly natural and understandable. In my native US, waves of immigrants successively took over neighbourhoods of New York City and elsewhere. People naturally gravitate to their own sort who have customs, skin colour, religion and language in common. As a young newspaper reporter in central Massachusetts in the late 1950’s I covered a town that was largely French Canadian, a nearby old mill town was largely Finnish-speaking. This actually provides a feeling of comfort and stability to society. 
Also it’s not a matter of being “allowed” for form enclaves. It’s not up to government or anyone else to “allow” or to prohibit this from happening. We are free to settle wherever we want to – if we can afford it – and that’s something to be applauded. It’s called freedom. 

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago
Reply to  Samir Iker

In my opinion London’s culture is now far better than it ever was when it had nothing but fish and chips and the occasional street party. And don’t forget all your wonderful Irish pubs!

Peter B
Peter B
1 year ago
Reply to  Andrew Fisher

A very important point. And I agree that it had brought many benefits as well as some costs and problems. What is so disappointing is that we are making so little effort to have an immigration and integration policy that maximises the benefits and minimises the costs.

Matt M
Matt M
1 year ago
Reply to  Peter B

I agree Peter.
Such a policy should:
1.limit overall annual immigrant numbers to something manageable in terms of house building, public service and infrastructure (say 100k per year – it could even be tapered over a parliament)
2.ensure that all immigrants come through official channels with the right checks
3.focus our HE/FE training on areas where we are over-reliant on imported labour and incentivise young people to take those paths
4.give incentives to businesses to automate away low-value manual tasks which is currently done by foreign workers
5.promote integration of immigrants and the fostering of a shared identity based on Britain’s history, traditions and culture
This would be electoral dynamite and would actually help alleviate a number of difficult problems (unlike so many policies).
It should be bread-and-butter to the Tories but if they cannot manage it, maybe Starmer will (almost like a Clause 4 moment but taking on Labour’s Open Borders/woke fringes).

Last edited 1 year ago by Matt M
Samir Iker
Samir Iker
1 year ago
Reply to  Matt M

All good, sensible, and obvious, but none of the politicians seem to grasp it.

Peter B
Peter B
1 year ago
Reply to  Matt M

Excellent. Not every day I can agree with everything you say !

Matt M
Matt M
1 year ago
Reply to  Peter B

Thanks Peter. I’m not sure I even agree with everything I say 🙂

Last edited 1 year ago by Matt M
Matt M
Matt M
1 year ago
Reply to  Peter B

Thanks Peter. I’m not sure I even agree with everything I say 🙂

Last edited 1 year ago by Matt M
Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago
Reply to  Matt M

Sounds good but a few clarifications:
1. Immigrants also work in housebuilding and services. Indeed disproportionately so. Being young, fit and keen they use far fewer services than the general population.
2. The official channels are effectively cut off so illegal immigration is the only viable option.
3. Indigenous people are increasingly too lazy, too posh, too weak, too sick or simply not botheted to work in low paid jobs. Those with HE qualifications are fleeing the NHS and other UK employers because of terrible working conditions thanks to Tory cuts.
4. Automated fruit picking and animal slaughtering is difficult and expensive and is probably already nearly their practicable limit. Automated nursing, caring, cooking and hospitality is well nigh impossible and/or unacceptable to the customers.
5. Assimilation is desirable of course though I’d drop the History bit if I were you as the immigrants’ (grand)parents may well have suffered atrocities under colonialism!
To achieve integration you will need to respect and welcome immigrants and to celibate not scorn difference; and your yobos will need to lose their xenophobia, bigotry and racism.

B Emery
B Emery
1 year ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

3. Indigenous people are increasingly too lazy, too posh, too weak, too sick or simply not botheted to work in low paid jobs

Thanks, I’ve actually worked in a warehouse. Did a late Saturday night shift when my kid was a baby, fit round my partner. There are as many working class british people in these places as there are immigrants. So matt up top if you could not automate away their jobs that would be great. I made friends with Albanians, Ethiopians, Eastern Europeans, my neighbours are Romanian. And lovely. So that bigotry and racism Mr Mahony by and large is not typical of working class british people. If it was, these workplaces would be war zones, they are not. Thank you.

B Emery
B Emery
1 year ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

3. Indigenous people are increasingly too lazy, too posh, too weak, too sick or simply not botheted to work in low paid jobs

Thanks, I’ve actually worked in a warehouse. Did a late Saturday night shift when my kid was a baby, fit round my partner. There are as many working class british people in these places as there are immigrants. So matt up top if you could not automate away their jobs that would be great. I made friends with Albanians, Ethiopians, Eastern Europeans, my neighbours are Romanian. And lovely. So that bigotry and racism Mr Mahony by and large is not typical of working class british people. If it was, these workplaces would be war zones, they are not. Thank you.

Samir Iker
Samir Iker
1 year ago
Reply to  Matt M

All good, sensible, and obvious, but none of the politicians seem to grasp it.

Peter B
Peter B
1 year ago
Reply to  Matt M

Excellent. Not every day I can agree with everything you say !

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago
Reply to  Matt M

Sounds good but a few clarifications:
1. Immigrants also work in housebuilding and services. Indeed disproportionately so. Being young, fit and keen they use far fewer services than the general population.
2. The official channels are effectively cut off so illegal immigration is the only viable option.
3. Indigenous people are increasingly too lazy, too posh, too weak, too sick or simply not botheted to work in low paid jobs. Those with HE qualifications are fleeing the NHS and other UK employers because of terrible working conditions thanks to Tory cuts.
4. Automated fruit picking and animal slaughtering is difficult and expensive and is probably already nearly their practicable limit. Automated nursing, caring, cooking and hospitality is well nigh impossible and/or unacceptable to the customers.
5. Assimilation is desirable of course though I’d drop the History bit if I were you as the immigrants’ (grand)parents may well have suffered atrocities under colonialism!
To achieve integration you will need to respect and welcome immigrants and to celibate not scorn difference; and your yobos will need to lose their xenophobia, bigotry and racism.

Matt M
Matt M
1 year ago
Reply to  Peter B

I agree Peter.
Such a policy should:
1.limit overall annual immigrant numbers to something manageable in terms of house building, public service and infrastructure (say 100k per year – it could even be tapered over a parliament)
2.ensure that all immigrants come through official channels with the right checks
3.focus our HE/FE training on areas where we are over-reliant on imported labour and incentivise young people to take those paths
4.give incentives to businesses to automate away low-value manual tasks which is currently done by foreign workers
5.promote integration of immigrants and the fostering of a shared identity based on Britain’s history, traditions and culture
This would be electoral dynamite and would actually help alleviate a number of difficult problems (unlike so many policies).
It should be bread-and-butter to the Tories but if they cannot manage it, maybe Starmer will (almost like a Clause 4 moment but taking on Labour’s Open Borders/woke fringes).

Last edited 1 year ago by Matt M
CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  Andrew Fisher

I must disagree.
In my particular rural county things are much as they were in 1945. A bit of agricultural modernisation, some decrease in bird numbers, more cars and fewer trains, but otherwise much the same. Certainly no influx of ‘strangers’.

Surely London has always been a city apart, and a city of mass immigration?

Linda Hutchinson
Linda Hutchinson
1 year ago

You’re correct about London, it’s been different from the rest of England (and the UK) for a very long time. Even in the time of King Alfred the number of foreign born people living there was remarked upon – people from Scandinavia, Francia, Rome – it was a centre of trade, a place for employment, and, although it is now a financial centre, this has not changed much.

Amanda Whittaker
Amanda Whittaker
1 year ago

Unfortunately London’s influential ‘industries’ (finance, media, TV, politics, advertising) seem to think London’s demographic reflects the country as a whole. A example being having to sit through endless TV ads that imply the whole country is full of black, Asian, or mixed race families. Even (unaskedfor) fashion/banking/holiday brochures that pop through the door make me wonder if I’m really living in a country village with a very different demographic.

j watson
j watson
1 year ago

Why does it matter what the folks in the adverts look like? It’s a product being advertised not the person.

Roger Sponge
Roger Sponge
1 year ago
Reply to  j watson

Which begs the question of why – suddenly – black, mixed race and the occasional south east Asian families are constantly appearing.

j watson
j watson
1 year ago
Reply to  Roger Sponge

You obviously notice these things more RS and get wound up by them. Many more are not in anyway fazed. And one assumes the profit maximisation of the advertisers means they are merely reflecting back to us what we increasingly look like and thus who they need to sell to.

j watson
j watson
1 year ago
Reply to  Roger Sponge

You obviously notice these things more RS and get wound up by them. Many more are not in anyway fazed. And one assumes the profit maximisation of the advertisers means they are merely reflecting back to us what we increasingly look like and thus who they need to sell to.

John Sullivan
John Sullivan
1 year ago
Reply to  j watson

Dream on.

What’s being advertised is a Neo-Marxist globalist ideology.

j watson
j watson
1 year ago
Reply to  John Sullivan

One has to see the funny side here JS. I am assuming you are satirist. Marxists have taken over the advertising and marketing industry is a new one for sure. You’ve travelled along way in your understanding of Marxist ideology.
But maybe it’s just a lack of descriptive powers, which is often the problem with anti-wokers (is it wokers or wokiests? anyway another day). They’ve just run out of command of the language and need a catch all phrase.

j watson
j watson
1 year ago
Reply to  John Sullivan

One has to see the funny side here JS. I am assuming you are satirist. Marxists have taken over the advertising and marketing industry is a new one for sure. You’ve travelled along way in your understanding of Marxist ideology.
But maybe it’s just a lack of descriptive powers, which is often the problem with anti-wokers (is it wokers or wokiests? anyway another day). They’ve just run out of command of the language and need a catch all phrase.

Roger Sponge
Roger Sponge
1 year ago
Reply to  j watson

Which begs the question of why – suddenly – black, mixed race and the occasional south east Asian families are constantly appearing.

John Sullivan
John Sullivan
1 year ago
Reply to  j watson

Dream on.

What’s being advertised is a Neo-Marxist globalist ideology.

j watson
j watson
1 year ago

Why does it matter what the folks in the adverts look like? It’s a product being advertised not the person.

j watson
j watson
1 year ago

The centre of many big cities is actually increasingly hollowed out and gentrified. Immigrant labour tending to go into the centre to do all the manual tasks but not live there.
But the trend is they move out once they or their kids prosper. Most of us live in suburbs and outside metropolitan centres. These are becoming more ethnically diverse too. And as but one example we see the rural town has an immigrant presence because the rural economy needs them and can’t survive otherwise. Sometimes they come and go with the seasons, but inevitable some stay, assimilate add to the Melting Pot. Whereas the centre of the Metropolis is wealthy and thus for now, whiter in so far as who can afford to live there. Few industries are building factories etc in the centre of cities. Look at the explosion in warehouse logistics operations too. The workforce will thus shift too.

John Sullivan
John Sullivan
1 year ago
Reply to  j watson

None of this is relevant. Most of it isn’t even correct.

John Sullivan
John Sullivan
1 year ago
Reply to  j watson

None of this is relevant. Most of it isn’t even correct.

Amanda Whittaker
Amanda Whittaker
1 year ago

Unfortunately London’s influential ‘industries’ (finance, media, TV, politics, advertising) seem to think London’s demographic reflects the country as a whole. A example being having to sit through endless TV ads that imply the whole country is full of black, Asian, or mixed race families. Even (unaskedfor) fashion/banking/holiday brochures that pop through the door make me wonder if I’m really living in a country village with a very different demographic.

j watson
j watson
1 year ago

The centre of many big cities is actually increasingly hollowed out and gentrified. Immigrant labour tending to go into the centre to do all the manual tasks but not live there.
But the trend is they move out once they or their kids prosper. Most of us live in suburbs and outside metropolitan centres. These are becoming more ethnically diverse too. And as but one example we see the rural town has an immigrant presence because the rural economy needs them and can’t survive otherwise. Sometimes they come and go with the seasons, but inevitable some stay, assimilate add to the Melting Pot. Whereas the centre of the Metropolis is wealthy and thus for now, whiter in so far as who can afford to live there. Few industries are building factories etc in the centre of cities. Look at the explosion in warehouse logistics operations too. The workforce will thus shift too.

John Sullivan
John Sullivan
1 year ago

No. Until Blair, you’d have had a point – though many in Leicester, Birmingham and elsewhere would have told a different story.

Now, it is *only* “rural county” backwaters which give the illusion of stability. But, as I’ve said elsewhere, immigration isn’t really the issue.

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  John Sullivan

We have 23 Medieval Great Churches left in this country out of an original corpus of about 60.
Almost without exception those 23 are to be found in delightful cities, and ‘country towns’, albeit none are very large, however to describe them as “backwaters“ is inaccurate.

I suspect that many of the circa 50% who voted for Brexit and also believed that C-19 was the greatest scam since the Resurrection came from such towns and cities.

They form a unique English urban landscape and as yet have NOT been devastated by immigration or woke ‘culture bunnies’ and their pernicious ilk, although if they happen to also host a so called ‘University’ there maybe a problem in the future.

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  John Sullivan

We have 23 Medieval Great Churches left in this country out of an original corpus of about 60.
Almost without exception those 23 are to be found in delightful cities, and ‘country towns’, albeit none are very large, however to describe them as “backwaters“ is inaccurate.

I suspect that many of the circa 50% who voted for Brexit and also believed that C-19 was the greatest scam since the Resurrection came from such towns and cities.

They form a unique English urban landscape and as yet have NOT been devastated by immigration or woke ‘culture bunnies’ and their pernicious ilk, although if they happen to also host a so called ‘University’ there maybe a problem in the future.

Linda Hutchinson
Linda Hutchinson
1 year ago

You’re correct about London, it’s been different from the rest of England (and the UK) for a very long time. Even in the time of King Alfred the number of foreign born people living there was remarked upon – people from Scandinavia, Francia, Rome – it was a centre of trade, a place for employment, and, although it is now a financial centre, this has not changed much.

John Sullivan
John Sullivan
1 year ago

No. Until Blair, you’d have had a point – though many in Leicester, Birmingham and elsewhere would have told a different story.

Now, it is *only* “rural county” backwaters which give the illusion of stability. But, as I’ve said elsewhere, immigration isn’t really the issue.

Frank McCusker
Frank McCusker
1 year ago
Reply to  Andrew Fisher

Largely a London thing. Most immigrants who come to London become Londoners – I know I did. But even in the 1990s, I remember young Muslim lads in a passing car, shouting angry abuse at my then girlfriend as we walked home late one Summer night – I had stopped to breathe heavily on a sports car showroom window somewhere in W2, and, bored with my car nonsense, my ex walked on and this car load of very angry young men drove past, yelling hatred at her. The sped off when I came running around the corner, fists out the window, screaming hatred at us. This was not sexual harassment at all, it was genuine cultural-religious rage – they were appalled that, as they initially thought, a woman was out walking by herself. I remember being staggered at their arrogance – here we all were in the greatest city on earth (in my view), a tolerant modern place, and these guys felt they had a right to impose their medieval culture. Mind you, they were the exceptions – all the other immigrants I met, from all over, de facto became Londoners very quickly. Live and let live. And most Moslems are fine – I have Moslem friends still who send me Christmas cards. But yes, sadly, even then, there was a minority who had no intention of integrating. I recall feeling angry, and thinking – if you don’t like this city, and how people live their lives here, why don’t you eff off to somewhere more suited to your tastes? Nobody’s forcing you to stay.      

Dominic A
Dominic A
1 year ago
Reply to  Frank McCusker

Both my current and ex girlfriends had similar experiences in London, but in both cases it was sexualised abuse – a gang of young goons bullying a single woman. I’m fairly sure that both their parents, and their Imam would have whipped their asses – but maybe that’s part of the problem, a cycle of abuse.

Mike Michaels
Mike Michaels
1 year ago
Reply to  Dominic A

The Iman was driving.

Mike Michaels
Mike Michaels
1 year ago
Reply to  Dominic A

The Iman was driving.

Dominic A
Dominic A
1 year ago
Reply to  Frank McCusker

Both my current and ex girlfriends had similar experiences in London, but in both cases it was sexualised abuse – a gang of young goons bullying a single woman. I’m fairly sure that both their parents, and their Imam would have whipped their asses – but maybe that’s part of the problem, a cycle of abuse.

Ethniciodo Rodenydo
Ethniciodo Rodenydo
1 year ago
Reply to  Andrew Fisher

Well I rail against it

John Sullivan
John Sullivan
1 year ago

As do many others, whose voices have been ruthlessly silenced. And you have every right.

Even so, I don’t believe immigration generally comes even close to being the main threat we now face. See my other comments here.

John Sullivan
John Sullivan
1 year ago

As do many others, whose voices have been ruthlessly silenced. And you have every right.

Even so, I don’t believe immigration generally comes even close to being the main threat we now face. See my other comments here.

James Kirk
James Kirk
1 year ago
Reply to  Andrew Fisher

I hope you mean a third of London’s population. Doesn’t this reflect “white flight” though? London is not the only spoiled city, Washington, Toronto, Paris for example. Perhaps one day they will realise we haven’t invented a new mousetrap and the flow will reverse once Geo.W and Blair’s disastrous policies settle down.

Ben P
Ben P
1 year ago
Reply to  Andrew Fisher

I quite agree, although I also rail against it! 10 million more and rising since 2000.

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago
Reply to  Andrew Fisher

Your contribution, although immensely popular is in fact racist. In the same sentence you state 40% of London’s population is foreign born (you avoided calling them ‘Londoners’) and then suggest that only whites are British! Sure you didn’t say exactly that but the message us clear enough.. excluded are people like Rishi Sunak and half the Tory parliamentary party! Have you no shame?

Samir Iker
Samir Iker
1 year ago
Reply to  Andrew Fisher

Even as an immigrant, I would tend to agree, and I am aghast to see so much of London essentially cleansed of its original, wonderful culture – it’s not just the extent of immigration but also the fact that large groups of immigrants have been allowed to basically form their own isolated enclaves instead of assimilation with the host culture.

But I would suggest that immigration doesn’t fully explain the story. Britain and the West faces an existential challenge due to decreasing economic clout and share of global population, and there just isn’t any appreciation of the efforts and changes in mindset required to cope. Despite what one might feel about the empire etc, I still think British culture is amazing and I would fear that “calamitous, irreversible decline” is exactly the risk here.

Not just economically but culturally. The uniquely irreverent nature of the British people and their humour, for instance, is under threat. Or for instance gay marriage (a right that few gay people actually opt for, once granted) – so much mental energy expended on this, but not much concern about the sheer number of British children born out of wedlock and not having a father’s presence.

Peter B
Peter B
1 year ago
Reply to  Andrew Fisher

A very important point. And I agree that it had brought many benefits as well as some costs and problems. What is so disappointing is that we are making so little effort to have an immigration and integration policy that maximises the benefits and minimises the costs.

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  Andrew Fisher

I must disagree.
In my particular rural county things are much as they were in 1945. A bit of agricultural modernisation, some decrease in bird numbers, more cars and fewer trains, but otherwise much the same. Certainly no influx of ‘strangers’.

Surely London has always been a city apart, and a city of mass immigration?

Frank McCusker
Frank McCusker
1 year ago
Reply to  Andrew Fisher

Largely a London thing. Most immigrants who come to London become Londoners – I know I did. But even in the 1990s, I remember young Muslim lads in a passing car, shouting angry abuse at my then girlfriend as we walked home late one Summer night – I had stopped to breathe heavily on a sports car showroom window somewhere in W2, and, bored with my car nonsense, my ex walked on and this car load of very angry young men drove past, yelling hatred at her. The sped off when I came running around the corner, fists out the window, screaming hatred at us. This was not sexual harassment at all, it was genuine cultural-religious rage – they were appalled that, as they initially thought, a woman was out walking by herself. I remember being staggered at their arrogance – here we all were in the greatest city on earth (in my view), a tolerant modern place, and these guys felt they had a right to impose their medieval culture. Mind you, they were the exceptions – all the other immigrants I met, from all over, de facto became Londoners very quickly. Live and let live. And most Moslems are fine – I have Moslem friends still who send me Christmas cards. But yes, sadly, even then, there was a minority who had no intention of integrating. I recall feeling angry, and thinking – if you don’t like this city, and how people live their lives here, why don’t you eff off to somewhere more suited to your tastes? Nobody’s forcing you to stay.      

Ethniciodo Rodenydo
Ethniciodo Rodenydo
1 year ago
Reply to  Andrew Fisher

Well I rail against it

James Kirk
James Kirk
1 year ago
Reply to  Andrew Fisher

I hope you mean a third of London’s population. Doesn’t this reflect “white flight” though? London is not the only spoiled city, Washington, Toronto, Paris for example. Perhaps one day they will realise we haven’t invented a new mousetrap and the flow will reverse once Geo.W and Blair’s disastrous policies settle down.

Ben P
Ben P
1 year ago
Reply to  Andrew Fisher

I quite agree, although I also rail against it! 10 million more and rising since 2000.

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago
Reply to  Andrew Fisher

Your contribution, although immensely popular is in fact racist. In the same sentence you state 40% of London’s population is foreign born (you avoided calling them ‘Londoners’) and then suggest that only whites are British! Sure you didn’t say exactly that but the message us clear enough.. excluded are people like Rishi Sunak and half the Tory parliamentary party! Have you no shame?

Andrew Fisher
Andrew Fisher
1 year ago

The biggest single transformation in Britain, but particularly England, since World War 2 is the enormous change in our population make up due to high and completely unprecedented levels of immigration. (It is completely untrue that Britain has ‘always’ been a land of immigration). Extraordinarily, London’s population is 40% foreign born, and white British make up only just over a third of the population.

I don’t rail about this, just find it quite amazing that out of some sort of misplaced politeness that commentators barely mention it. Of course this has created huge changes in the country, whether for good and ill and will continue to do so.

Andrew Horsman
Andrew Horsman
1 year ago

It’s less a “transformation” that is needed, more of a restoration of basic English liberties, decency, and sensibilities.

A simple, easy to articulate and understand, flagship policy of any radically restorative programme would be “Leave the WHO”. It’s run by communists and corporate cronies collaborating with each other to put in place a global system of tyrannical top down control. People won’t stand for it, and like all multi-national empires, once it is established it will collapse under the weight of its own contradictions, most likely with the violence, bloodshed and misery that attends the collapse of any empire. It is just question of when, not if, this will happen.

So there’s golden opportunity now for ambitious young liberally-minded and genuinely progressive political leaders to start making the case for this and have an enormous impact on UK politics. And more than that, by making sure that the pandemic treaty plans are effectively dead on arrival by forcing the UK to withdraw its support for them, to give the world the gift of avoiding the enormous suffering and pain to which a disorderly collapse of an established empire would give rise.

There are plenty of floating voters who don’t like communism, corporatism, or globalism and the huge inequalities to which they give rise, but would never support Continuity UKIP or their populist ilk. The mainstream parties are all ideologically captured in a silent prison of fear that they themselves helped to build. People are crying out for a credible, radically centrist, alternative. So the space is free. Golden opportunity both to make a political career and a real difference in the world.

John Macleod
John Macleod
1 year ago
Reply to  Andrew Horsman

Flagship policy: leave the World Health Organisation?

Graham Thorpe
Graham Thorpe
1 year ago
Reply to  Andrew Horsman

You want a “radically centrist alternative” with the “golden opportunity to make a real difference”? Spend a few moments looking up William Clouston’s SDP.

Ian McKinney
Ian McKinney
1 year ago
Reply to  Graham Thorpe

Another one here who cannot believe that the one party with policies reflecting an easy majority of the population doesn’t get more coverage.

Oh yes, it’s because the media reflect their own priorities and not those of the public.

Graham Thorpe
Graham Thorpe
1 year ago
Reply to  Ian McKinney

Correct. I am sure your “easy majority” suggestion is fact. There is a total disconnect between what people really think and how they end up voting. Bizarre.

Graham Thorpe
Graham Thorpe
1 year ago
Reply to  Ian McKinney

Correct. I am sure your “easy majority” suggestion is fact. There is a total disconnect between what people really think and how they end up voting. Bizarre.

Ian McKinney
Ian McKinney
1 year ago
Reply to  Graham Thorpe

Another one here who cannot believe that the one party with policies reflecting an easy majority of the population doesn’t get more coverage.

Oh yes, it’s because the media reflect their own priorities and not those of the public.

John Sullivan
John Sullivan
1 year ago
Reply to  Andrew Horsman

Not just the WHO – the corrupt UN in its entirety. The IPCC is the greater threat to our future, but people have been blinded by the deliberate chaos of the past 3 years.

Then there’s the ECHR, NATO and others to deal with, and the WEF to be declared as a terrorist organisation – I exaggerate, but barely.

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  John Sullivan

In my mad way I always liken the IPCC and its ‘message’ to the ‘early’ Christian Church, chipping away at the glorious Pax Romana.

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  John Sullivan

In my mad way I always liken the IPCC and its ‘message’ to the ‘early’ Christian Church, chipping away at the glorious Pax Romana.

John Macleod
John Macleod
1 year ago
Reply to  Andrew Horsman

Flagship policy: leave the World Health Organisation?

Graham Thorpe
Graham Thorpe
1 year ago
Reply to  Andrew Horsman

You want a “radically centrist alternative” with the “golden opportunity to make a real difference”? Spend a few moments looking up William Clouston’s SDP.

John Sullivan
John Sullivan
1 year ago
Reply to  Andrew Horsman

Not just the WHO – the corrupt UN in its entirety. The IPCC is the greater threat to our future, but people have been blinded by the deliberate chaos of the past 3 years.

Then there’s the ECHR, NATO and others to deal with, and the WEF to be declared as a terrorist organisation – I exaggerate, but barely.

Andrew Horsman
Andrew Horsman
1 year ago

It’s less a “transformation” that is needed, more of a restoration of basic English liberties, decency, and sensibilities.

A simple, easy to articulate and understand, flagship policy of any radically restorative programme would be “Leave the WHO”. It’s run by communists and corporate cronies collaborating with each other to put in place a global system of tyrannical top down control. People won’t stand for it, and like all multi-national empires, once it is established it will collapse under the weight of its own contradictions, most likely with the violence, bloodshed and misery that attends the collapse of any empire. It is just question of when, not if, this will happen.

So there’s golden opportunity now for ambitious young liberally-minded and genuinely progressive political leaders to start making the case for this and have an enormous impact on UK politics. And more than that, by making sure that the pandemic treaty plans are effectively dead on arrival by forcing the UK to withdraw its support for them, to give the world the gift of avoiding the enormous suffering and pain to which a disorderly collapse of an established empire would give rise.

There are plenty of floating voters who don’t like communism, corporatism, or globalism and the huge inequalities to which they give rise, but would never support Continuity UKIP or their populist ilk. The mainstream parties are all ideologically captured in a silent prison of fear that they themselves helped to build. People are crying out for a credible, radically centrist, alternative. So the space is free. Golden opportunity both to make a political career and a real difference in the world.

Nicky Samengo-Turner
Nicky Samengo-Turner
1 year ago

The biggest decline, that affects our everyday lives, is the erosion of freedom and free speech, and the interference of Government in every facet of our living existence. Then comes the internet and ‘ on line’ to de- personalise human contact and relationship, and allow a ” cannot be done” as opposed to a ” can do society”: with that had become the exponential decline in people making decisions and wanting to take responsibility, for fear of losing their jobs. This has been swiftly followed by the ‘ liability culture’ from the US, whereby fear of being sued creates restrictions and again avoidance of decision making.
The nanny state, not least during Covid now invokes DDR like fear into any form of ” non compliance’ in exchange for an illusion and delusion of ” safety” enforced by an ever more unaccountable, low grade police force dressed like paramilitaries from a Latin American dictatorship. Finally, the National Socialist ‘ nu britn’ In Honnicher and Ceaucescu mode persecutes those who do not comply with Orwellian non legal diktats on worshipping the fascist trident of LGBTQ / racism/ global warming, to criminal proceedings, unemployability, and public ridicule.

Even our military have been subject to so called ” diverse and inclusive” dogma and mantra, that is literally dissolving its discipline like a giant acid bath.

Britain, and arguably the whole world, has never been a more oppressive, and totalitarian place to live in, ever….. and the sad thing is that no politician, or any other group of people have the guts, courage and backbone to stand up and fight…. with the possible exception of Jeremy Clarkson.

B Emery
B Emery
1 year ago

Clarkson for PM!! Get him to stand for reform?

All that crap is from America. Anyone trying would be trying to stand up to an enormous American woke propaganda machine….

Last edited 1 year ago by B Emery
CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  B Emery

Good idea, and Mr Frank McCusker (above) for Home Secretary, assuming he turns down NortherN Ireland.

B Emery
B Emery
1 year ago

Yeah no. Sorry Mr mcCuskers anecdotes are unhelpful in my opinion. I have my own experience of working inner city (Leeds where the London terrorist plots were planned) Muslim communities, much of the serious distrust came from Americas war on terror. I worked street cabs for virgin media, around the streets in Leeds where they arrested the guys that were linked to it, they thought they were having their phones tapped etc. They used to come out and hassle the blokes, the guys said it was fine until 9/11. Then it got much, much worse after 7/7 when the police made multiple raids in the area. Eventually they had to take multiple vans, for safety, got bottled etc. That was around 2006/2009 we did that. That’s what I know from my experience. And I know it was a sham American war with heavy propaganda. Now this isn’t to say that we don’t have problems within some parts of the Muslim community, but alienating them even further with anecdotes like Mr mc cuskers is foolish on many levels. America once again really didn’t help matters. In my humble opinion. He reckons they were Muslim which he managed to identify as they drove by in the car? I feel like you are unserious Mr Stanhope.

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  B Emery

Your are quite correct Ms Emery.

In fact I was rather surprised by Mc Cusker’s somewhat hypocritical remarks, given the outraged “Plastic Paddy’” role he normally adopts when discussing Northern Ireland.

However I am not entirely blameless and sometimes I just cannot resist ‘winding Mc Custer up’. I should know better and so should he, at circa 57. Still that’s what’s meant by Freedom of Speech and long may it remain so, for the alternative is FAR, FAR worse!

B Emery
B Emery
1 year ago

Jolly good. I suspected you were winding me up. I agree. Tbh all the crap they heaped on the Muslim community was where all this stop ‘hate speech’ business started in the first place.
Yep, freedom of speech. Very important. I left Mr mc custer to it in favour of Mr Iker today.

B Emery
B Emery
1 year ago

Jolly good. I suspected you were winding me up. I agree. Tbh all the crap they heaped on the Muslim community was where all this stop ‘hate speech’ business started in the first place.
Yep, freedom of speech. Very important. I left Mr mc custer to it in favour of Mr Iker today.

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  B Emery

Your are quite correct Ms Emery.

In fact I was rather surprised by Mc Cusker’s somewhat hypocritical remarks, given the outraged “Plastic Paddy’” role he normally adopts when discussing Northern Ireland.

However I am not entirely blameless and sometimes I just cannot resist ‘winding Mc Custer up’. I should know better and so should he, at circa 57. Still that’s what’s meant by Freedom of Speech and long may it remain so, for the alternative is FAR, FAR worse!

B Emery
B Emery
1 year ago

Yeah no. Sorry Mr mcCuskers anecdotes are unhelpful in my opinion. I have my own experience of working inner city (Leeds where the London terrorist plots were planned) Muslim communities, much of the serious distrust came from Americas war on terror. I worked street cabs for virgin media, around the streets in Leeds where they arrested the guys that were linked to it, they thought they were having their phones tapped etc. They used to come out and hassle the blokes, the guys said it was fine until 9/11. Then it got much, much worse after 7/7 when the police made multiple raids in the area. Eventually they had to take multiple vans, for safety, got bottled etc. That was around 2006/2009 we did that. That’s what I know from my experience. And I know it was a sham American war with heavy propaganda. Now this isn’t to say that we don’t have problems within some parts of the Muslim community, but alienating them even further with anecdotes like Mr mc cuskers is foolish on many levels. America once again really didn’t help matters. In my humble opinion. He reckons they were Muslim which he managed to identify as they drove by in the car? I feel like you are unserious Mr Stanhope.

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  B Emery

Good idea, and Mr Frank McCusker (above) for Home Secretary, assuming he turns down NortherN Ireland.

Graeme McNeil
Graeme McNeil
1 year ago

Jeremy Clarkson?!?!? The epitome of the English pub bore with his beer belly, bald patch and extravagantly stupid opinions! His guts and courage consist entirely of making hideous comments about a young American lady who he has decided that he doesn’t like.
Yes, I can see why you people would like him…

B Emery
B Emery
1 year ago
Reply to  Graeme McNeil

Yeah sometimes you have to shake it up. He would do that if nothing else. Times are desperate. At least it would give old starmer and sunak something to think about. He can’t make the country look any more stupid than the current set have managed too anyway. And it would be entertaining.

Graeme McNeil
Graeme McNeil
1 year ago
Reply to  B Emery

Entertaining for those who enjoy the casual racism and misogyny of the schoolyard bully perhaps. We know how to deal with oafs like that where I come from.

B Emery
B Emery
1 year ago
Reply to  Graeme McNeil

Yeah you have a point. He has made plenty of edgy remarks. But he’s from entertainment, not politics so his job is partly making (sometimes bad) jokes. I wasn’t entirely serious. Im not sure he should be in charge of a nato type conflict for instance. That would be interesting.

Graeme McNeil
Graeme McNeil
1 year ago
Reply to  B Emery

There’s nothing edgy about Clarkson – he’s your garden variety middle England bore with a taste for racism, misogyny and classism. I suspect he’d get pretty short shrift if he said what he does in public but he hides behind the pages of the Sun – he doesn’t even have the decency to have his awful column in a decent paper.
He certainly wouldn’t try it around where I grew up – even he isn’t that dim witted.

B Emery
B Emery
1 year ago
Reply to  Graeme McNeil

Sorry it was a half arsed answer tbh. Let me be crystal clear. I entertained your point nicely the first time about misogyny etc. Respected the fact you are probably American, you seem to like biden and so getting into some kind of misogyny battle if you ardently believe he is, is pointless on my behalf. If you think he’s like that. That’s fine.
However. I do not think he is actually racist, misogynist or whatever other stupid labels we have to stick in people. He’s an entertainer. He makes jokes. People have a right to be offended by those by jokes. If they are, they won’t watch him. He would be unpopular. Thankfully Britain likes a joke, and knows how to take one. Britain believes in freedom, we shouldn’t be cancelling people and preventing freedom of speech, regardless of whether its offensive or not. It’s starts a very slippery slope all that business. Also top gear has toured the world, I’ve never seen him be really racist to anyone, the specials were brilliant.
So, I like Clarkson, I can see why wall flowers like your good self might get all offended sometimes. But the majority, myself included, just find him very entertaining. He would stand up for what he believes in I think, I would vote for him.

B Emery
B Emery
1 year ago
Reply to  Graeme McNeil

Sorry it was a half arsed answer tbh. Let me be crystal clear. I entertained your point nicely the first time about misogyny etc. Respected the fact you are probably American, you seem to like biden and so getting into some kind of misogyny battle if you ardently believe he is, is pointless on my behalf. If you think he’s like that. That’s fine.
However. I do not think he is actually racist, misogynist or whatever other stupid labels we have to stick in people. He’s an entertainer. He makes jokes. People have a right to be offended by those by jokes. If they are, they won’t watch him. He would be unpopular. Thankfully Britain likes a joke, and knows how to take one. Britain believes in freedom, we shouldn’t be cancelling people and preventing freedom of speech, regardless of whether its offensive or not. It’s starts a very slippery slope all that business. Also top gear has toured the world, I’ve never seen him be really racist to anyone, the specials were brilliant.
So, I like Clarkson, I can see why wall flowers like your good self might get all offended sometimes. But the majority, myself included, just find him very entertaining. He would stand up for what he believes in I think, I would vote for him.

Graeme McNeil
Graeme McNeil
1 year ago
Reply to  B Emery

There’s nothing edgy about Clarkson – he’s your garden variety middle England bore with a taste for racism, misogyny and classism. I suspect he’d get pretty short shrift if he said what he does in public but he hides behind the pages of the Sun – he doesn’t even have the decency to have his awful column in a decent paper.
He certainly wouldn’t try it around where I grew up – even he isn’t that dim witted.

B Emery
B Emery
1 year ago
Reply to  Graeme McNeil

Yeah you have a point. He has made plenty of edgy remarks. But he’s from entertainment, not politics so his job is partly making (sometimes bad) jokes. I wasn’t entirely serious. Im not sure he should be in charge of a nato type conflict for instance. That would be interesting.

Graeme McNeil
Graeme McNeil
1 year ago
Reply to  B Emery

Entertaining for those who enjoy the casual racism and misogyny of the schoolyard bully perhaps. We know how to deal with oafs like that where I come from.

B Emery
B Emery
1 year ago
Reply to  Graeme McNeil

Yeah sometimes you have to shake it up. He would do that if nothing else. Times are desperate. At least it would give old starmer and sunak something to think about. He can’t make the country look any more stupid than the current set have managed too anyway. And it would be entertaining.

Graeme McNeil
Graeme McNeil
1 year ago

“Britain, and arguably the whole world, has never been a more oppressive, and totalitarian place to live in, ever”
Whenever I think you people have plumbed the absolute depths of stupidity you come up with something even more ludicrous. Well done!

Last edited 1 year ago by Graeme McNeil
Nicky Samengo-Turner
Nicky Samengo-Turner
1 year ago
Reply to  Graeme McNeil

Back to the gun room or stables McNeil and get cleaning my tack and cartridge bag…

Graeme McNeil
Graeme McNeil
1 year ago

More fantasy from our unhinged chum!

B Emery
B Emery
1 year ago
Reply to  Graeme McNeil

You need to up your game. If your going to troll, at least be good at it.

Last edited 1 year ago by B Emery
B Emery
B Emery
1 year ago
Reply to  Graeme McNeil

You need to up your game. If your going to troll, at least be good at it.

Last edited 1 year ago by B Emery
Graeme McNeil
Graeme McNeil
1 year ago

More fantasy from our unhinged chum!

Nicky Samengo-Turner
Nicky Samengo-Turner
1 year ago
Reply to  Graeme McNeil

Back to the gun room or stables McNeil and get cleaning my tack and cartridge bag…

B Emery
B Emery
1 year ago

Clarkson for PM!! Get him to stand for reform?

All that crap is from America. Anyone trying would be trying to stand up to an enormous American woke propaganda machine….

Last edited 1 year ago by B Emery
Graeme McNeil
Graeme McNeil
1 year ago

Jeremy Clarkson?!?!? The epitome of the English pub bore with his beer belly, bald patch and extravagantly stupid opinions! His guts and courage consist entirely of making hideous comments about a young American lady who he has decided that he doesn’t like.
Yes, I can see why you people would like him…

Graeme McNeil
Graeme McNeil
1 year ago

“Britain, and arguably the whole world, has never been a more oppressive, and totalitarian place to live in, ever”
Whenever I think you people have plumbed the absolute depths of stupidity you come up with something even more ludicrous. Well done!

Last edited 1 year ago by Graeme McNeil
Nicky Samengo-Turner
Nicky Samengo-Turner
1 year ago

The biggest decline, that affects our everyday lives, is the erosion of freedom and free speech, and the interference of Government in every facet of our living existence. Then comes the internet and ‘ on line’ to de- personalise human contact and relationship, and allow a ” cannot be done” as opposed to a ” can do society”: with that had become the exponential decline in people making decisions and wanting to take responsibility, for fear of losing their jobs. This has been swiftly followed by the ‘ liability culture’ from the US, whereby fear of being sued creates restrictions and again avoidance of decision making.
The nanny state, not least during Covid now invokes DDR like fear into any form of ” non compliance’ in exchange for an illusion and delusion of ” safety” enforced by an ever more unaccountable, low grade police force dressed like paramilitaries from a Latin American dictatorship. Finally, the National Socialist ‘ nu britn’ In Honnicher and Ceaucescu mode persecutes those who do not comply with Orwellian non legal diktats on worshipping the fascist trident of LGBTQ / racism/ global warming, to criminal proceedings, unemployability, and public ridicule.

Even our military have been subject to so called ” diverse and inclusive” dogma and mantra, that is literally dissolving its discipline like a giant acid bath.

Britain, and arguably the whole world, has never been a more oppressive, and totalitarian place to live in, ever….. and the sad thing is that no politician, or any other group of people have the guts, courage and backbone to stand up and fight…. with the possible exception of Jeremy Clarkson.

Walter Marvell
Walter Marvell
1 year ago

It is good to see a more upbeat outlook. And of course every generation perceives decline. Alas I fear this essay ignores the most profound irreversible changes brought about by 40 years as as EU province and the corrosive decline caused by 20 years of the progressive revolution of Blair and Brown. The pyramid of governance has tipped over. The vast unelected former base of public sector, civil service, lawyers and regulatory technocracy now sits at the top, above the tiny Executive, embedded and sustained by 20 years of social justice/ human rights laws and precautionary principle legislation. The levers of power do not sit in Number 10 or the neuteured Parliament, hence their utter paralysis on Brexit on open borders on tax policy, wokism, NHS etc. And worse, at no time before the 90s did the British State openly commit to and serve a new set of dangerously warped ideologies- a cult of equality/welfarism, divisive identitarianism and now a fanatical Net Zero policy designed to arrest economic growth and to punish the poor. It is this combination of catastrophic revolution in the functioning of the State and the surrender to cult ideologies of ALL political parties and State technocracy that means we will not – cannot – escape this doom loop of decline until the whole show folds. No ‘young ones’ have the levers to fight this de facto One Party State, its laws, its media protectors. We are closer to the corrupt communist model of goverment in the 1980s than the bygone era of national democracy before 1994.

Walter Marvell
Walter Marvell
1 year ago

It is good to see a more upbeat outlook. And of course every generation perceives decline. Alas I fear this essay ignores the most profound irreversible changes brought about by 40 years as as EU province and the corrosive decline caused by 20 years of the progressive revolution of Blair and Brown. The pyramid of governance has tipped over. The vast unelected former base of public sector, civil service, lawyers and regulatory technocracy now sits at the top, above the tiny Executive, embedded and sustained by 20 years of social justice/ human rights laws and precautionary principle legislation. The levers of power do not sit in Number 10 or the neuteured Parliament, hence their utter paralysis on Brexit on open borders on tax policy, wokism, NHS etc. And worse, at no time before the 90s did the British State openly commit to and serve a new set of dangerously warped ideologies- a cult of equality/welfarism, divisive identitarianism and now a fanatical Net Zero policy designed to arrest economic growth and to punish the poor. It is this combination of catastrophic revolution in the functioning of the State and the surrender to cult ideologies of ALL political parties and State technocracy that means we will not – cannot – escape this doom loop of decline until the whole show folds. No ‘young ones’ have the levers to fight this de facto One Party State, its laws, its media protectors. We are closer to the corrupt communist model of goverment in the 1980s than the bygone era of national democracy before 1994.

Dougie Undersub
Dougie Undersub
1 year ago

My beef is that that our current political class are simply not serious people. Po-faced, yes, but not serious.
There is no deep analysis of the problems we face at home and abroad. And therefore no attempt to generate policies to address them. Just constant jostling for position in readiness for the next election, after which the winners will impose their particular choice of trivial lunacy (gender recognition, I’m looking at you) while ignoring the many elephants fighting to get in the room.

Nicky Samengo-Turner
Nicky Samengo-Turner
1 year ago

they are pond life…

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago

That is an insult to Newts!

They are lower than that, the phrase ‘scum’ and ‘earth’ springs to mind.

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago

That is an insult to Newts!

They are lower than that, the phrase ‘scum’ and ‘earth’ springs to mind.

Nicky Samengo-Turner
Nicky Samengo-Turner
1 year ago

they are pond life…

Dougie Undersub
Dougie Undersub
1 year ago

My beef is that that our current political class are simply not serious people. Po-faced, yes, but not serious.
There is no deep analysis of the problems we face at home and abroad. And therefore no attempt to generate policies to address them. Just constant jostling for position in readiness for the next election, after which the winners will impose their particular choice of trivial lunacy (gender recognition, I’m looking at you) while ignoring the many elephants fighting to get in the room.

Andrew Roman
Andrew Roman
1 year ago

I wonder whether what has been written about the decline here would not also apply to several other countries with similar political systems: Australia, Canada our the USA.

Matt M
Matt M
1 year ago
Reply to  Andrew Roman

And even to those with different systems – France, Germany, Japan.

The main difference with Britain and the other countries is that which Orwell spotted back in the 30s:

“England is perhaps the only great country whose intellectuals 
are ashamed of their own nationality.”

(Though having just read an article in The Spectator about woke Aussies sucking the joy out of Australia Day, maybe this English intellectual attitude is now sweeping the world. Who says we don’t export anything anymore?)

Last edited 1 year ago by Matt M