I blogged some weeks ago about what the general election told us about English communitarianism. The prevailing social attitude, at least as reflected in political announcements, corporate media, and election results, is that we are all suffering economically because Britain has too many lazy poor people, who are sponging too much money. “Lazy” and “poor” are of course synonymous adjectives, because poverty is seen to reflect moral weakness, an attitude that has prevailed in this country ever since the Protestant Reformation (and I would further argue that Proddie predeterminism is more inhumane than the Catholic concept of original sin). In any case, here’s one of the Labour leadership candidates, proving my point:
Burnham is the favourite to win, and his rivals are no different. So that’s that. Politics in England is going to be about “punching down”, or blaming poor people, for the foreseeable future. And it will take a seminal, monumentous event to change that – an earthquake that comes from outside the Westminster consensus, possibly from beyond the borders of Britain itself. Either that or complete political meltdown.
However much of society as we know it – the NHS, and the civic spirit of 1945 in general – will be left standing when the next political cycle begins is anybody’s guess. But Britain has met its biggest enemy: ourselves.
We’re doing far better at destroying the country than any Islamist terrorist. Those guys lack vision.by