Never let a good crisis go to waste. Covid-19 has been exploited by political leaders and the medical profession to pursue social objectives that would normally face stiff public opposition. Alcohol is a prime target. Who would have believed, earlier this year, that all pubs would be forced to close at 10pm, alongside other irksome regulations such as no standing at the bar, and mandatory masks to go to the toilet?
The night-time economy has been ravaged, with thousands of pubs and restaurants likely to perish, and possibly half a million of jobs lost. But some medical experts, senior civil servants and government ministers see an opportunity to impose a regime of healthier living. Indeed, the coronavirus pandemic has put the Nanny State on steroids. Instead of merely taxing our guilty pleasures, killjoy authorities can prohibit them through emergency legislation – which may not be rescinded. Don’t be surprised if an early bell to drink up is here to stay.
Back in the nineteenth century, after the Industrial Revolution, the establishment tried to restrict alcohol consumption in the masses. The temperance movement was led by churchmen and other do-gooders, and its political influence grew with the active involvement of doctors. However, zealots went too far in catastrophising about the ‘demon drink’. While drunkenness was undoubtedly a problem, the vast majority of the working class were social drinkers rather than ruinous alcoholics.
As Robert Tressell remarked in his quasi-autobiographical The Ragged Trousered Philanthropists, most labourers, on their meagre wages with families to support, did not drink much: –
‘There is no more cowardly, dastardly slander than is contained in the assertion that the majority or any considerable proportion of working men neglect their families through drink. It is a condemned lie. There are some who do, but they are not even a large minority. They are few and far between, and are regarded with contempt by their fellow workmen’.
The temperance movement withered after the First World War, when it would have been heartless to deprive the common people of their beer after the trauma of the trenches. The Prohibition in the USA was a futile and very costly experiment. But lessons from history are conveniently forgotten by politicians on a mission. Again, pubs, pumps and pints are being demonised as the source of society’s ills.
The 10pm curfew was not based on scientific evidence. Defending this draconian imposition, government minister Liz Truss explained that after ten o’clock customers are likely to be ‘inebriated’. She should get out more. The traditional tavern is not really a place where everyone gets pissed or paralytic. Instead, it serves a vital social function, typically the beating heart of the community.
Deputy chief scientific advisor Jonathan Van Tam wanted the curfew to be 6pm or preferably earlier. The regulars at the Rose & Crown would have been diverted to the off-licence on their way home from work. It’s worse in Scotland, where the SNP government is advised by Devi Sridhar, a social anthropologist who has written numerous academic papers on the principles and practices of alcohol control.
The Spinnaker pub near my parents’ home in the west of Scotland has recently reopened after Sturgeon’s so-called ‘circuit breaker’, but no alcohol can be served and doors are locked at 6pm. Absurdly, music is also verboten. This doesn’t only mean live music – the radio too. Locals are living in a remake of Footloose, the 1980s film depicting a puritanical Midwestern county that prohibited dancing as the work of the devil.
Yet research shows that over three quarters of infections occur at home. It would not be delving too deeply into conspiracy theory to wonder about the underlying motives for Covid-related drinking constraints. The pub is a forum for common-sense, candour and irreverence for politicians, bureaucrats and anyone who condescends to lesser mortals. Amid the coronavirus disruption, compounded by the chaotic reaction of the authorities, beer and banter may be regarded as dangerous facilitators of resistance.
To some extent the temperance movement arose through fear of working-class emancipation, as the burgeoning labour movement grew in the pubs and working men’s clubs. Pub curfews cannot stop a virus, but could be a useful weapon in the suppression of dissent.
Let’s be thankful for small mercies: from 3rd December Londoners will be allowed to finish our drinks after last orders at 10pm – wahey!
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Save yer ammo mate -Human’s comments suggest to me he/she ain’t a real problem, though yes, his/her comments do suggest delusion and ignorance, along with the nastiness that you point out.
Yer can do better than attack Guessedworker as you do below -you and he have common enemies who require putting down.
Useful allies come in various forms.
Generalship, gentlemen, Generalship -in the context of Grand Strategy.
Excessive sentimentalising about the Good.
And insufficient coming to terms with the consequences of the Bad.
The Bad, that combination of:
-ignorance, false self-righteousness, fake virtue, power-frenzy, superstition, declining intellectual capacities from top to bottom in the populace, and the inherent conflict and barriers to human flourishing created by mixing peoples of different races and creeds, and differences in propensity to violence, educability, productivity, self-sufficiency, propensity to eat too much, unwillingness to learn and to go beyond the belief systems of one’s anti-Westernist and/ or non-Westernist origins, generosity, tolerance-
-this, the Bad, will always be with us.
As will the ever-increasing application of force in the systems of “law” and policing, and ever-increasing anti-empiricism in the education systems and in the mainstream
media all designed to demonise any and all persons who do not immediately conform with the pretence that these factors of Bad do not exist.
With this, I am only repeating what many others have said before me.
But anyway, as a last gasp before we descend fully and finally into The Abyss, I think it is worthwhile to repeat the obvious.
I’m not sure why you need a “resistance” when we have a democratically elected civilian government, much as I hold the current cabinet in contempt. Surely you can just make your views known via the democratic channel of speaking to your MP. Oh, but of course they probably know you’re just a bonkers, abusive thug. Shouted “You fucking traitor” at anybody recently, Niall? Shouted “Fuck off” in their face, and congratulated someone who threw water over them?
Democracy does not exist. We live in a managed polity where the will of the native British peoples is excluded. Voting is tolerated only within strict bounds, policed by the corporate media.
You must know this. I am wondering, therefore, why you are apparently so keen on it.
I spend as much time as I can in a particular country village pub. I can only think of one person (a wealthy bloke who drives an expensive sports car) who argues for and supports Labour, albeit with humour and goodwill. He is just an oddity and a nice person. Virtually everbody makes derogatory and indeed obscene comments about the EU, the BBC, politicians, immigrants, do-gooders, benefit-scroungers, LGBTXYZ perverts, posh people, teachers and students at universities. There are a few more categories but those are the most derided. The common characteristics of the regulars is that they all work for a living, ranging from farm-workers and labourers to people in management positions and a large amount of self-employed. I think 90% voted to Leave the EU. There are a few dissenters, mainly teachers or those employed in the public sector. The only person I know with left-wing opinions hasn’t worked for twenty years and supplements his benefit payments by growing and selling cannabis. He’s been done a few times but lately just gets fined. I don’t believe this pub is unique in the composition of it’s regulars. The only problem is that by and large they are not activists or protesters. They have to go to work for a start.
This is, in miniature, as vivid a picture of ordinary working people as Tressell was writing of in Ragged Trousered Philanthropists.
Let us distinguish two kinds of pub-talk:
The superstitious and that based on proper empiricism.
(Superstition: The attribution of fake/false causes to fake/false effects, and similar.)
It is superstitious to believe that all matters discussed, agreed upon, and elevated to truth by plain folk in pubs, and elsewhere, is based on proper empiricism -even though such is often proclaimed by persons regarded as good and proper conservatives.
I’m all for the plain folk -I’m one meself.
But let us remain empirical in our explorations and determinations -esp about how to save white Western society, at least for a few more decades.
They’re important questions, the questions of which freedom is most at risk, and which responsibility is most neglected, and which of both are also most essential for maintaining white Western Civ.
I say this:
It’s the responsibility to be properly empirical and the freedom to pursue proper empiricism.
But let’s have a convivial drink and discuss, shall we.
Do thoughtless drunken revellers spread the virus not?
Possibly, David, but why blame ordinary people for a virus being virulent? Pubs don’t close at 10pm because of flu outbreaks. Christmas celebrations and office parties aren’t curtailed in mid-flu season. Now it seems the authorities are merging flu and Covid-19, adding to suspicions that this newfound tyranny is not really about a virus.
Is it that the vote to leave the E.U. in Britain and the election of Donald Trump in America gave the smug elite an unexpected jolt to their presumed power over us and that this virus has handed them a golden opportunity to reassert that power and give the unwashed rabble a rap over their nose like a recalcitrant dog? Neil Oliver gave me a jolt this morning on talk-radio in his regular interview with Mike Graham when he posited that we had been living under an illusion that were free in our society and the measures taken to take away those freedoms has now illustrated that illusion. Where is the voice of Stentor in parliament to resist this virtual coup-de-tat? Gone decades ago and we are saddled with a craven parliament stuffed with statist sycophants who – unlike Enoch Powell – are only interested in expanding state power to further their personal political career.
You make a good and valid point on legal firearms ownership Harry. The 21st century corporate state demands complete subjugation and conformity and wants only its agents to have real power. The latest measure in Britain is to ban air-guns from those under the age of 18 unless supervised by an adult on the evidence of a few accidental deaths over the last 15 years! How many under 18 year-olds have died riding bicycles or swimming? Some years ago, the small son of a French minister drowned in a swimming pool. He subsequently was responsible for legislation that all swimming pools must be fenced off; there are millions of ponds, rivers, and lakes in France without fences! Personal responsibility is what a free people enjoy not restrictions imposed on us all from someone’s personal, agenda, negligence, or misfortune.
The British working class must be punished. The war against it continues….
Not only the British -white strivers generally, esp Anglosphere.
Someone must pay for the guilt felt by Western elites -by way of loss of freedoms, necessary reparations, just desserts, and that sort of thing.
And the payers will not be the elites -certainly not those who hold office in the civil services, in the mainstream media, in the arts/entertainment/non-education sector, or in the legal profession and related, and not in big business either.
Your thoughts on what social anthropologists, health psychcologists, and other ascendent pseudo-scientists have in store for us next, have a troubling truth about them.
Your reasoning that a convival snug bar is a great place for pointing out The Emperor is stark naked, is dead on target.
The smug, priggish, global corporatists cannot stand being ridiculed, and if it comes to active suberversion, a bar is a much better place to think and talk through one’s thoughts than the internet.
A bar is also a better place to boost morale and remove the fear that one is alone in believing that the globalist cabal are insane with their lust for power, and whilst the globalists may not achieve their goals, they will do the ordinary Briton no good whatsoever in their attempts to achieve them.
All very well but, NHS getting a extra £3 billion care if COVID-19. Help to recover from coronavirus. Oh really. Pull the other one then!
Look around the place, and notice:
Certain kinds of politicians and all kinds of civil servants always seek to control the movements, and thoughts, of law-abiding, non-violent citizens.
Why try to control anyone in other categories.
Years ago in Australia, after an awful massacre of scores of good people, incl many children, by an obviously, erm, violent person, a nominally non-leftist government demonised gun-ownership and confiscated firearms owned by law-abiding folk, including farmers.
And did zip to remove from the streets persons with, erm, obvious propensity to violence.
To add that the confiscation of guns held by good people did nothing to reduce gun-ownership among violent criminals and violent terrorists is perhaps necessary.
It is not just governments that want to regulate and prohibit – it is a growing proportion of the public .
Someone dies falling off a bike : the grieving parents say ‘something must be done’.
Dog bites man: Dogs, dog owners and dog walkers must all be regulated, licences and trained – to appease the something must be done brigade .
Legions of bureaucrats push through more and more rules.
Meanwhile out on the streets people die of Fentanyl abuse in ever growing numbers .
Few realise that personal responsibility is what is needed – for that leads to real freedom .
Hi Catherine, some allies and myself are seeking out rebellious conservatives and dissidents of all kinds, including nationalists, to operate as a discrete group working, over time, to interpose our values, our dissident critique and our questions in the body of mainstream political opinion. We need articulate, knowledgeable men and women from all dissenting political persuasions. It is not a frivolous initiative. I think you might be interested. If so I would be keen to open lines of communication with you. My email address, of course, is supplied on the comment form. If it is not accessible please reply to this comment and I will, in turn, respond.
It’s a good idea. We need a conservative march through the institutions!
More than a march actually.
It’d be more like the Dardenelles and the Western Front combined -with similar levels of sacrifice required.
That’s why only small numbers have volunteered so far.
Our idea is not a Gramscian march through the institutions but something more subtle – a programmatic approach to influence those who are influencers themselves. Catherine and , indeed any competent critic of the current dispensation, is most welcome to click on my posting name and leave any comment at the site with a valid email address in the comment form.
Yes Guessedworker, excellent.
I’d add that rather than competent critics of the enemy, a successful fight-back will require the efforts of persons of strategic heft, rat-cunning, utter ruthlessness, and willingness to sacrifice their livelihoods and their lives in the campaign to rescue Western Civ from the marxist people and their legions of clients.
Well, Harry, you know what you are talking about, as do a number of the SR commentariat. The invitation is there. Click on my handle, leave a comment.
Guessedworker, I have just now acquainted myself with some of your products there at the website.
My full respect to you -and admiration- for your great work.
Excuse me, I did not know of it until now.
All best of strength to you, and to your colleagues and allies, Harry.
Cheers Harry. And you keep working at this thing. Time is racing on. There is a growing awareness (witness Delingpole’s recent and sudden discovery of globalism). But the time is very, very late, and there is not nearly sufficient urgency yet. Much is to be done, hence this new project I and others are seeking to realise.
Why do you need to have a “discrete group” to do that? Surely that’s what you’re doing here isn’t it. As I recall, guessedworker is the bonkers fascist whom even the editor thinks is a deluded extremist. Good luck with that.
You seem to be anti-human. Shall we debate that?
KIndly explain why you are against asserting the will of the native population by discrete means when overt means are filtered out of the polity.
This is an excellent idea. The only problem is that it’s already been done, and its excellent work is seen in a quarterly magazine called The Salisbury Review.
PJR, yes, SR is excellent in itself.
Only thing is, unlike in the movies, the public exposure of the Bad does not result in immediate eradication of the Bad, nor the rising of the Good.
Much research, in a wide variety of fields, has investigated how it can be that the presentation of actual facts and truths does not necessarily cause people immediately to drop the Bad/Delusion and act in accord with the Good/Reality.
Facts and Truths are not decisive in causing human beings to do what they do.
SR is a journal. We are talking about a discrete activist group employing direct contact strategy.
You only need contact me through my website and I will explain.
Gastarbeiter: Why would either Catherine Blaiklock or anybody else want to contact somebody who can type such phrases as “discrete activist group” and “direct contact strategy” without finding them comical?
You may think that you’re opposed to the left, but you speak the language of Momentum and The Guardian.
Well, laughing boy, obviously this is not the place to explain details, hence the employment of circumspect language. Why the difficulty in accepting that, in the concluding words of Catherine’s previous piece, “how to conserve the English people” requires entry to the political dialogue of the very idea of an English people, among many other seminal ideas. It is, as they say, a no-brainer! But it can’t be done through the passive medium of writing articles and hoping someone within access to the charmed circle of politics will be convinced. It can only be done by engaging directly with such people.
So whatever it is that causes your hostility to me put a sock in it, there’s a good chap. It really means you are hostile to us Englishmen and women doing what we must to secure the life and rights of our kind.
You really are insane aren’t you? It’s to be hoped the anti-terrorism unit get you before you do anything too extreme.
Mind you, as I suspect you’re all fart and no turd maybe you’ll just get bored as nobody will ever respond to you.
Why do you hate the life and right to this land of my English people? Do you hate these in every native people or only the English? Do you even understand that every native people has a right in Nature to defend its existence on its own soil? Are you so sick that you thick that defence is “racist”?
Answer these questions, hater, before you address me again.