Friday 2 November 2018

Say not the struggle naught availeth

David Cameron has told friends he would like to be Foreign Secretary. 

He might have been a good one, for all his faults, had he suggested it when Theresa May became Prime Minister. 

Boris Johnson meanwhile has told his friends that he knows he will never be Prime Minister, which will relieve Europeans who think Boris some terrible bugbear.

Unlike Theresa May, or anyone else in the cabinet except Michael Gove, David Cameron has great ability. Boris also has great ability in making speeches and writing, of course, but
he is not made for administration. The problem with David Cameron is that, like his hero Harold Macmillan, who was once mine too (his son was my first boss), he is not a conservative but a Whig. Or maybe a liberal. He admits that the arch-liberal revolutionary Garibaldi is his great hero. 

I gave David Cameron the benefit of the doubt for far longer than I should have done, but he is fairly hard to distinguish from Tony Blair, as is Mrs. May. 

Seeing how left-wing they both are has changed my view of Mrs Thatcher completely. 

She was never a social conservative, which is what I thought a conservative ought to be, but she was not really, as I also thought, a class warrior, fighting for the lower middle class. And at least she was not a progressive. 

She did not care less how many woman sat on boards and said feminism was poison. She was the only woman admitted to the Carlton in her day. Mr. Cameron resigned from White's because they do not admit women as members, but has now been re-elected and spends much of his time there. 

She had strong Christian principles and was a leader. She believed in freedom. What short shrift she would have made of extending anti-discrimination laws, of single sex marriage and of transgender. She loved England.

I suppose I ought to have liked Mrs Thatcher, because I met her when I was 8 and had got separated from my old dad while visiting the House of Commons. She spent twenty minutes with us showing me historic coins (my passion then) and the terrace of the House of Commons, even though she was the busy Shadow Education Secretary.

I didn't think in the 1980s or 1990s that I'd come to admire her, but the whirligig of time plays many odd tricks. I never imagined that I could ever think ill of the Pope. 

What is happening now is that the Left has taken control of political discourse and use their position to prevent a very large number of opinions being voiced. The desirability of regaining national sovereignty was unusual in being a debate that the left did not close down. 

Their most heinous project is to try to make a thought crime of 'nativism'- a word from ante-bellum U.S. history that means not wanting a country to accept more immigrants. 

This, to quote one of the left's most objectionable Bolshevik heroines, shall not pass.

This interesting article by Eric Kaufman, 'Can anything arrest the polarisation of the West?', assumes that white people will be a minority in Western Europe by 2100. He says that 
the Left-wing ideological shift from class populism to pro-minority cosmopolitanism....has successfully made any meaningful discussion of immigration and national identity taboo, with mainstream parties until recently steering clear of such topics for fear of being branded ‘racist’.
He sees this as a problem because it allows UKIP, populists and Donald Trump to flourish, rather than because he wants to preserve the national identity of European countries. 

And just as rising immigration galvanises some people, the rise of populism galvanises others – those cosmopolitan voters that David Goodhart calls the ‘Anywheres’, who are bound together by a moral worldview, rather than ethnicity....
This can take on a quasi-religious quality – what African-American writer John McWhorter terms the “religion of anti-racism”, something especially visible on elite American university campuses. The outbreaks of political correctness since 2013 speak to a reaffirmation of what I would call Left-modernism, an ideology fusing cultural egalitarianism with anti-traditionalism that emerged in the 1920s but only achieved wide penetration from the 1960s.
He is anxious that we find a way or preventing polarisation between left and right over immigration and suggests intermarriage between ethnic groups as the solution.

I agree that intermarriage is doing and is going to do a lot of good to bind together fractured countries, but I certainly do not want an end to polarisation. 

I think the more polarisation between pro and anti-immigration people the better. Bring it on. Only in this way can immigration policy be very radically changed. 

There is no doubt which group of voters is very much bigger. And as the great A.J.P. Taylor said, nothing is inevitable till it happens.


  1. There is no doubt which group of voters is very much bigger.

    The problem is that the pro-immigration voters outnumber the anti-immigration voters by at least four to one.

    1. 25% of British voters said in a poll three or four years ago that they wanted all immigrants to be expelled. 23% did not answer.

    2. 25% of British people asked in an extensive survey in 2014 conducted for British Future agreed with the statement “The government
      should insist that all immigrants should return to the countries they came from, whether they’re here legally or illegally.”
      See page 16 of the survey here:
      The authors of the report comment: "It is, of course, shocking that a quarter of people agree with the extreme ‘send them back’ proposition. These views need to be challenged and confronted at grassroots level: there is no gain in trying to appease those who hold such views, as they are unlikely to engage with any immigration proposal that could secure majority support. Yet they are and will remain a minority. While many have concerns about immigration, for most people their issue is with the system, not the migrants."
      British Future describes itself in the same report as "an independent, non-partisan thinktank engaging
      people’s hopes and fears about integration and migration, opportunity and identity, so that we share a confident and welcoming Britain, inclusive and fair to all."

  2. She had strong Christian principles and was a leader. She believed in freedom. What short shrift she would have made of extending anti-discrimination laws, of single sex marriage and of transgender. She loved England.

    Lots of "conservatives" who claim to have strong Christian principles have caved in to every demand by the feminist and homosexual lobbies. Thatcher is exactly the kind of "conservative" who is most likely to surrender on culture war issues. She's the sort of conservative who thought the culture war was an irrelevant waste of time. So much less exciting than economic issues. Money is much more important than society, which doesn't even exist. They're the conservatives who have destroyed our civilisation.

    Social conservatives need to realise that Thatcher and Reagan were not on our side.

    1. She was not a social Conservative. What I disliked about her was that while liberalising the economy she did nothing conservative, like for example giving tax incentives to mothers to stay at home. (She did want to abolish the sex discrimination quango when she took office in 1979 but was persuades by officials not to do so.) On the other hand, she was not a progressive, unlike the present incumbent or Messrs. Cameron and Osborne. She is closer to Donald Trump than Theresa May.

    2. She is closer to Donald Trump than Theresa May.

      And while Donald Trump may be preferable to Theresa May, he is not the answer to the problems facing the U.S. and the West. Trump's presidency represented one last chance to stave off final defeat in the culture war. Unfortunately it's a chance that has been blown.

      Trump, like Thatcher, is part of the problem rather than part of the solution.

    3. Why social conservatives always lose:

      1. Race-blindness/Race-avoidance: imagining you can have cultural continuity under conditions of genetic discontinuity which is pure idiocy. Withdrawing from the field and allowing the left to progressively shut down all reality-based discussion.

      2. Anti-intellectualism. Not identifying the sources of the changes that are besetting them and instead attack the symptoms of it. This is manifested in their extreme fear of talking about Jews even though they are the most powerful group that has a rational interest in disrupting settled societies.

      3. Personality type. Natural bias is towards adjusting rather than changing so they were always at the whim of radicals. Conservatism tends towards quietism.

      4. “Muh principles” and "playing by the rules", E.g. Eisenhower sending in the National Guard to enforce the Supreme Court’s decision to kill Freedom of Association, even though he knew it was wrong. Conservatives have a blank respect for the law even when the law comes from those ignoring the law. The Left on the other hand play to win. So there's no contest.

      5. Christian ethics - make the type of society Conservatives want to live in basically impossible. The only reason it didn't destroy us centuries ago is that its most poisonous tenets were ignored and international travel was restricted. Also it dog trains people to think everyone is basically well intentioned.

      Most of these could be grouped under the term of "moral and intellectual cowardice".

    4. If an anon can comment, I think DfDs first point is that Thatcher talked social conservative, but acted anything but - releasing restraints on credit (there were only a couple of credit cards in 1979 UK, and they were for the rich, and mortgages were tightly restricted) which raised house prices and thus forced more women into the labour force, neutering the Sunday trading laws (also sporting events on Sundays), continuing the abolition of the grammar schools started by Labour in the 1960s - Peter Hitchens has a whole list.

      And his second point is that, just as social conservatives loved Thatcher, so do they love Trump in the States. But his actions since election include yet another tax cut for the rich, sanctions on Iran, embassy to Jerusalem, continuation of military in Syria and Afghanistan. None of these things are good for the American worker or American social conservatives.

      THERE IS NO WALL, and migration to the US is at Obama-era levels.

      The only silver lining (and it's a big one) is that he is not Hillary.

    5. Margaret Thatcher did little that was conservative apart from in the economic sphere and was talked out of getting rid of sex discrimination body. Although she always voted to bring back hanging the papers said she did not want it to happen in 1983 when it might have been brought back after her election victory that year.

    6. During her rule apart from in the economic sphere society moved a very long way to the left and so did the education system. Please leave a name next time.