|If Gordon Brown was a Tory|
So Theresa May wants us to go “Forward, Together”. Thank you, but no.
There is no ‘togetherness’ that would make it possible for the people of this land to hasten onward to a shared vision and a common destination. We are a fractured society, a people ill at ease with one another, a nation divided from top to bottom and from side to side. The flag of St George, once an emblem of our greatness and an ensign to which we could all gather in good times and in bad, is now an illustration of the dividing lines that cut through the entire landscape of our national life.
I speak for myself, but as I do so I am conscious of what I see and hear. I know full well that I am not alone in believing that we are in a sorry mess. What makes it more tragic than it otherwise would be is that it is entirely self induced. We have not arrived at this sorry state of affairs through the antipathies or enmities of the world outside our walls. We have come to this through willful negligence and indeed, to a large degree, through the folly of our past choices and decisions. I do not blame the people for they have no direct power, but the politicians, who in their exercise of power have ignored the will of the people.
I am, for instance, told that I must grow accustomed to the stranger’s face. I am harangued each day of my life with the mantra that we live in multicultural society and that therefore I must love my neighbour, whoever he is. No. In assessing who my neighbor might be I take into account some very important factors. These weigh heavily with me because I believe that kinship exists in similarity; shared values are the bedrock upon which we rest our houses. An Englishman’s home is his castle and hitherto, however grand or humble the house we have known that the ground beneath us was a mighty mynd of great solidity and one for which we could be rightly thankful. I cannot enjoy kinship with one who does not share my history or whose security rests in sources different from my own. I am free to judge his traditions; to compare them with those that I cherish and if found wanting to reject them as unsatisfactory or if need be as objectionable. The ties that bind cannot be imposed from without; they come from within and are strengthened daily by the awareness of a common heritage; this alone can project us onward in a spirit of common endeavour.
Speaking of endeavour, I am conscious each day that I live that my wellbeing has not been achieved by accident. It has been secured through the endeavours of past generations of my kinsfolk. Through their work, their sweat and their taxes a land free and fair has been provided for me to enjoy and the heart is grateful. I in turn have sought to ensure the same benefit for my children and my children’s children. It grieves me to see that those who have made little or no contribution to the fabric that sustains us are considered equal in all respects. It offends me that they are considered worthy to receive as much and sometimes more than those who have spent a lifetime ‘investing’ in the land that bore them and for the sake of those they have borne.
There comes a time in every responsible family’s life when a decision is made that we have arrived at the maximum affordable size. Another mouth to feed would leave too little for those already here. When I was growing up we were taught that it is part of responsible citizenship to live within our means, to make sure that we did not overpopulate the planet, that resources are finite and good stewardship means balancing the claim against the availability. Even here in leafy Lytham St Annes we see the ravages of an ever burgeoning population; land is snapped up for development; housing estates proliferate; the green spaces that have provided air and freedom for our children to play are swallowed up in the quest to build new homes. Yet, not one single doctor’s surgery; not one new dentist; not one new church or school or hospital. The services we funded are to be shared ever more thinly; access made more difficult; standards lowered; the landscape pillaged to accommodate people whose accents we cannot decipher, whose languages we do not understand and in some cases whose backgrounds, creed and attitudes are disconcerting or even alarming.
Forward together. How can this happen when we have in our midst those for whom the political goal is the destruction of the Britain we love? I speak of the Left, more Marxist in its methods than ever before. Aside from the rubbishing of our traditions, the dumbing down of our education, the levelling of our ambitions there is the perennial sowing of the seeds of dissent and the active promotion of disharmony. “Our NHS is underfunded!” they cry whilst at the same time yelling the charge of “Racist!” against anyone who dares to suggest that there is an optimum number of customers that can be catered for in any service. Every non-contributing Refugee is one more claim on a straining NHS. Every immigrant family brings a further need for a square yardage of ground space, a school place, a hospital bed, a draw upon the public purse which we were falsely told would hold our contributions in trust lest one day we should fall on hard times. “They are no longer yours,” they say. “This is public money.” Well, we were that public once……….. In the face of this the Conservative Party seeks to emulate, rather than confront. It speaks of unity when what is needed is battle. It is insufficiently assertive of conservative traditions and too ready to live within the statutes of past Labour administrations. How often do we hear the word “Repeal”? Weak. Weak. Weak.
The list is extensive. I have only sufficient space here to name a few of those factors that make it impossible to take Theresa May’s invitation to a shared future with any seriousness. There is an anger, a seething torrent of contempt and disgust running beneath the surface of British life. Whether or not it bears any similarity to the infamous Tiber only time will tell. One thing I do know is this; that without a ‘strong man’ who has both the courage and the will to change the direction of this journey, we are lost. Past warnings have gone unheeded and we have paid the price. Cracks in our present experience are being papered over; truth denied; fears subsumed; portents ignored. It does not bode well.
‘And in the morning it is said, ‘It will be foul weather today, for the sky is red and lowering.’ O ye hypocrites, ye can discern the face of the sky, but can ye not discern the signs of the times?” (Jesus.)