The Self-Loathing of the British (and American) Left
August 31, 2014 23 Comments
You know, this is pretty interesting, and in truth, more and more it applies to the US as well. It’s not a pretty picture, and it’s not new either. Everytime I read this type of thing I’m reminded of senior British Labor politicians, as well as American ones like Teddy Kennedy visiting Moscow and advising the Soviets on how to work against the interests of the free world, and especially Reagan and Thatcher.
It’s often been observed that a certain type of British Lefty hates Britain – and that they reserve particularly hatred for Englishness. Back in 1941 George Orwell made this acute remark:
England is perhaps the only great country whose intellectuals are ashamed of their own nationality. In left-wing circles it is always felt that there is something slightly disgraceful in being an Englishman and that it is a duty to snigger at every English institution.
So what’s new? The difference today is that this shame and self-hatred now dominates Left-wing thought, whereas it was once balanced by the decent Left: who were proud to inherit the noble traditions of radical English patriotism.
Evidence for this disease is all around us, but shows up particularly in two red-button issues-of-the-day: the independence referendum, and the appalling revelations from Rotherham.
First, Scotland. The latest polls show that the United Kingdom is close to breaking up. This is a remarkable state of affairs when you consider that, a year ago, polls were two to one against partition. How has this occurred? Because we have allowed the British Labour party to lead the No debate.
This was a disastrous decision, given that, as Orwell noted, Labourites and Lefties revile and deride so many of the things perceived as quintessentially British. Take your pick from the monarchy, the flag, the Army, the history of rampant conquest, the biggest empire in the world, the supremacy of the English language, anyone who lives in the countryside, the national anthem, the City of London, the Royal Navy, a nuclear deterrent, the lion and the unicorn, duffing up the French, eating loads of beef – all this, for Lefties, is a source of shame. …
Must really suck to be them, I think.