The North Shropshire by-election result illustrates more than the shortcomings of Boris Johnson. It reveals the tragedy of contemporary British politics in miniature.
It was never going to be difficult to topple Boris in a by-election in the aftermath of ‘Party Gate’, but the Tory candidate did not help matters. Neil Shastri-Hurst, a barrister-doctor, had been parachuted in from Birmingham.
There was the grotesque interview Shastri-Hurst gave to journalist Michael Crick, which is now available on You Tube. Asked repeatedly whether he considered Boris Johnson to be a man of honesty and integrity, Shastri stonewalled with a succession of ‘The prime minister has been very clears’ and ‘He has ordered an inquiry into the allegations’ followed up, for good measure, with a straight-faced ‘I am absolutely confident that the prime minister is the right man to do the job’, accompanied by choreographed hand signalling to demonstrate his sincerity. Theresa May could not have done better. To be fair, Shastri’s room for manoeuvre was severely limited as he was the official part candidate, but all the same, the robotic mantras were ill-judged.
All the local girl (indigenous white, Shropshire lass, blonde and blue-eyed to boot) had to do was make some obvious observations about Boris’s evident lack of honesty and integrity, and she was in. Never mind that she was an ultra-woke liberal who had previously called Priti Patel a Nazi for trying to stop the influx of boat people across the Channel, a useful humanitarian idiot serving those who have engineered the Great Replacement, the destruction through mass immigration and the ideology of multiculturalism of the indigenous culture of England. Never mind all that. She called out Boris.
This mirrors perfectly the national political debate. The choice offered the nation is between a load of corrupt Tories, who would asset strip their own grandmother for a quick profit, and who connive in mass immigration and the destruction of our nation; and a load of woke metro-liberals, who openly espouse the deconstruction of our national culture, but are not yet tainted with the corruption of those who hold office.
As for those who would defend our national culture, they were absent. The only non-conformist party was UKIP, and they gained under 400 votes. Two factors come to mind: the lack of a charismatic leader and the lack of a genuine alternative news channel. France has both in the form of Eric Zemmour (who makes Farage sound like Angela Merkel) and CNews. We need a charismatic leader, who is prepared to say the unsayable, and a billionaire alternative media magnate.
Subscribe to the quarterly print magazine
All mainstream parties hold the people in contempt. They do because they can. There is a huge disconnect between the governing class and governed. The fact many MP’S don’t even come from the constituency they represent is just one outrage we endure.
George Orwell, socialist and patriot, made all the obvious points about national culture in ‘England Your England’, as German bombs were dropping overhead. The differences between the English and Scots, the Yorkshireman and cockney, suddenly faded away when ‘confronted by a European’. Likewise, to a Frenchman, the Breton and the Auvergnat seemed very different – and yet, ‘We speak of ‘France’ and ‘the French’, recognizing France as an entity, a single civilization, which in fact it is’. Ditto for Britain and/or England, and the ‘English characteristics’ that Orwell described with such affection.
But then Orwell loathed the Left intelligentsia of his day who sniggered at ‘the common culture of the country’. He wrote, ‘England is perhaps the only great country whose intellectuals are ashamed of their own nationality’.
I would recommend that our guardianista fans (see below) be forcibly read George Orwell.
JM, Few intellectuals in any country, even those outside England, even those in the non-West, have significant respect for the culture of their not obviously intellectual co-residents, or even for intellectuals with whom they disagree.
(Where culture is the combination of what people say they believe, say they value, and how they actually spend their time in their daily lives.)
Meanwhile, Orwell, were he here today, seeing the advanced state of collapse of the Anglosphere, would, rather than recommend reading as a force for The Good, possibly suggest that smart, relentless, and ruthless violence in pursuit of the security and maintenance of Western Civ is required, urgently.
I don’t know about culture, but any forum where somebody baldly posts “non-whites all over Earth have benefitted from the arrival of whites”, nauseates me.
As a simple counterexample, I’ve been watching the superb Surgeons at the Edge of Life, showing the absolutely fantastic work of cardiac and neurology surgeons in Cambridge. Almost without exception they are non-white. Almost without exception their patients whose lives are saved – white.
I agree. One need only compare Nelson Mandela with Hitler. The argument is a civilisational one. Cardiology represents the triumph of Western science, and Cambridge until very recently when it bought into BLM cancel culture the triumph of the Western academy.
Start with this simple fact:
All modern surgery, of the highly effective and successful variety, started in white precincts.
Since then, small proportions of certain kinds of non-whites have been able able to learn how to apply and yes extend techniques originated by the very small proportion of whites who were capable of originating such techniques.
My view is this:
People who want to help other people in need, actually help such people, need to start by observing in detail how the world works -and that requires, among many other fields and methods of learning, the use of descriptive statistics and evolutionary anthropology and evolutionary psychology.
To me, this is not a contest about which race originates good answers to human challenges and solutions to problems in the humans’ environment.
(And yes Mike Thompson, wokesim and anti-whiteism is now destroying the institutions and technical cultures that enabled the development in the West of the huge number and variety of boons and benefits by which Westerners and non-Westerners.)
This is not a contest among races. Rather it is a campaign to deal with Actual Reality of human misery.
As for Mandela Vs Hitler: By proportion, Europe has produced far, far more individuals who have greatly benefitted humankind than has black Africa.
No need to be nauseated by this -in fact, more humans of all colours and creeds will live better lives when the reasons for differences in what kinds of human characteristics are to be found in Europe and black Africa are understood and accepted, and lessons applied.
Reality ain’t easy to deal with -which is why so few humans make the best of their lives, or can help those less capable in useful ways that promote greater human flourishing.
Andrew, on your point:
There are fewer Somali doctors in Somalia and fewer Sudanese doctors in the Sudans than there are Somali and Sudanese doctors in the UK.
To me, it would be good if those doctors were to serve the peoples in their places of origin.
Of course, many highly-capable black Africans and other highly-capable non-whites come to the UK, and the West generally. They are replaced in their home precincts by well-meaning Westerners of low technical capability whose job it is to care for the low-capability non-whites in those non-white regions.
Western medicine and public health engineering, applied in non-white precincts, are producing more non-whites than can be effectively fed, medicated, housed, cared for, and organised by their remaining non-whites elites and by do-gooding, non-competent whites.
This is a human tragedy actually, caused by (fake/false/woke) goodism.
Isn’t Zemmour a big fan of Napoleon? I’ve only watched one short feature on him, I got the impression he was a relativist grifter.
As for Macron closing down mosques, I wonder if he provided a free bus service as part of the Priti Patel Express?
You have people like Nigel Warburton who comes across kind of agreeable and harmless, but they (Guardian set) recognise their Cosmopolitan Utopianism has/is utterly disastrous but they double down and assiduously promote it… all the while quoting Hannah Arendt… and patronisingly saying of Naomi Wolf (who’s desperately trying to sound the alarm re social credit score system) “I think she needs help” .
One million to start, and then four million more, proper British citizens to join their local Tory branches and learn what’s what, and do what must be done. Then having won at branch level, and bound up their wounds, they must continue to Push, Push, Push all the way to upper-most heights and to the lowest depths, and out to the fringes of the Party -and then hold their positions against all counter-attacks which will be never-ending.
Some leaders, charismatic and other varieties, and some Big Money Bags will emerge along the way.
The days when spectator democracy was good enough ended several decades ago, and here we are.
Belloc and Chesterton’s The Party System (published 1911) seems to explain why elections don’t matter much. Except for a very few anomalies, everyone is cooperating in the same agenda; and the exceptions rapidly find themselves moved backwards and out. Charismatic leaders and news magnates are part of this system. And the other Chesterton’s critiques of news papers and rich men are well known.
Exactly, nothing different except that it is worse than before WW1.
The system is rigged, and neither aristocratic nor democratic in the best sense of both adjectives. Revisit the case for an industrial franchise a national level.
Did the LibDems’ admirable (and perfectly timed) opposition to Vaccine Passports perhaps play a part?
And what about the vilification of the constituency’s former MP Owen Paterson who, despite not receiving a fair trial, has become a symbol of alleged Tory sleaze?
In any case, it’s only a by-election, and the Fake Conservatives will be pleased to see the Labourites reduced to third place. Divide et impera! Business as usual! Ding-dong merrily on the rest of us from a great height!
The stupid imagine that the Lib Dems occupy a position between the “extreme” Right and the “extreme” Left. H G Wells said it well in “The New Machiavelli”, except that the Lib Dems have absorbed wokism and the Marcusean collective categories into their Suburban and Celtic Fringe repertoire for dopey middle-class whites. What is needed is a socially conservative and anti-immigration party that believes free speech is more important than “free trade”, which has funds, access to media, respectable candidates, and freedom from the policeman’s knock that Old Winnie said was a war aim.
I remember voting regularly for the kind of party you describe. It was called UKIP. It wasn’t quite as socially conservative as I’d have liked, and it didn’t oppose immigration quite as strongly as I’d have liked, but it won EU elections, performed well in local elections, and had a couple of MPs. Apart from unreconcilable extremists, it pretty well united everybody who had conservative instincts.
But now it’s finished, abandoned by its charismatic leader and forgotten even by its enemies.
How will your putative successor to UKIP get its funds, its access to media, its respectable candidates, with the entire establishment (including Nigel Farage) against it?
It was nothing to do with race. This article completely misses the point. The Lib Dems could have put an half Asian barrister from Birmingham in and the Conservatives a local blond hair lass – and the result would have been the same.
This article completely misses the point.
People are sick of the sleeze, the corruption, the money (Owen Paterson), the wall paper, the lock downs, the hypocrisy – Covid parties etc.
And the general incompetence – we carry on allowing thousands of migrants and we have just given away Northern Ireland.
Nothing that comes out of this government’s mouth is to be believed – except they took a lot of money.
You say the by-election result “was nothing to do with race.” But you also say that it was something to do with the fact that “we carry on allowing thousands of migrants” into the UK. Wouldn’t it be natural for voters to think that a candidate of migrant ancestry would be reluctant to turn away migrants? So the result does have something to do with race after all.
No, no offers, because you speak for a tiny, tiny minority of frothing-at-the-mouth racists in this, the smallest echo chamber on the internet. The fact you’re so obsessed with anybody’s skin colour repulses decent British people. There is no “national culture”. We have everything from Glyndebourne to Millwall supporters, and we all coexist mostly happily despite the likes of you trying to whip up hatred where none exists.
You will never, ever, prevail in this country. Enjoy your miserable existence.
I think Glyndebourne and Millwall supporters coexist quite happily because generally they are both patriots. If an Islamist Muslim accompanied by a woman in a burka or a BLM activist turned up at the Glyndebourne dinner party or the Millwall booze up, my guess is that it would kill both occasions stone dead.
The same could be said if the Glyndebourne and Millwall people turned up at each others do’s. The point is, this “British culture” idea is a specious argument.
Go to Scotland, Wales or Ireland and tell them their culture does not exist and you will be roasted on a pyre. If you think the English and their culture do not exist, you need to talk to an American, or a Frenchman, or a German, or an Indian, or an Irishman, or a Pole, or an Aussie.
Are you really this thick or just being deliberately obtuse? The article refers to a “national culture”, which I tried to show doesn’t really exist by giving examples of what I consider diametrically opposed, and totally incompatible, cultures. My intention was to show Britain already comfortably embraces these, but as they both happen to be English you can infer the same thing for England, and I imagine Wales and Scotland too. Substitute National Eisteddfod and Cardiff fans, or whatever they do in Scotland. There is no unified “national culture” to erode by immigration. It’s bollocks.
Who are these “British people”, decent or otherwise? Anyone and everyone resident in Brtain or eager to comne here? Are the Welsh comparable to the Somalis or Japanese? No-one can help their “skin colour” but it remains a rough marker of cultural collectvity – if not, what is “Black” music, for instance. Of course, mass immigration can change a native culture, even more so than colonial rule by a foreign minority. To talk of “totally incompatible” cultures in reference to Scots and English, compared to say Hindus and Muslims, is like saying at the differences among say Sephardim and Askenazim, or Orthodox and Communist Jews in Israel, is more significant than their shared differences from Arab Palestinians. Do you think that “national cultures” do not exist anywhere, or is this country and our ancestors a special exception?
Who deserves the adjective “thick” and abuse like “bollocks” when you look at historical facts and sociological realities.
Immigration can have a similar effect as invasion and occupation. That is why we know that Immanuel Kant was not a Russian, nor Sitting Bull a Pilgrim Father.
“Mass immigration can change a native culture, even more so than colonial rule by a foreign minority.”
The irony! A tiny minority of “them” coming to live here has a bigger influence on local culture than us actually annexing their country.
Just that when it is all added up, non-whites all over Earth have benefitted from the arrival of whites.
Yes, there have been costs and casualties due to white expansion. And there are many non-whites who refuse to accept the benefits that are created by whites. Talking here about the top 50% of whites, and very esp the most practically ingenious and productive few percent of whites.
But overall, the emergence of whites in Europe -with its particular geography- and then their striving and accomplishments in all spheres of human activity have been a greater boon for all humankind than the contributions by non-whites.
(NB: There is, obviously, a percentage of whites who are violent and/or nett parasitic. And this percentage is steadily growing due to the idiocy of naive idealists and marxist-inspired Big Statists in their influence on policing, on the law, on the education systems and on the mainstream media, and most of the non-mainstream media.)
Matters described in this piece are symptoms of deeper malfunctions, decay, and corruption in the political-social-economic system. And the fix resides not first in the emergence of a charismatic political leader supported by a billionaire media owner. Though both of these personages might put themselves forward after-
-well, if, a critical mass of ordinary patriots were to give up their recreational pursuits and self-organise and self-fund a very focused campaign designed and implemented by application of strategic and tactical principles of the utterly realistic, unrelentingly ruthless, and self-sacrificing variety. Bit like what it took to defeat the Kaiser, the NAZIs and the Japs.
Expecting to be saved by charismatic leaders and wealthy benefactors rather belongs to an earlier age -an earlier stage in human history, and an earlier stage in one’s life.