..."every shirt he has ever worn" - Surely you mean hoody? I don't think the demographic you describe would know what a shirt was.
I thoroughly disagree with this article and pretty much everything else Mr. Dalrymple says. But by god, the man knows how to write!
I remember meeting him at Oundle School when, not that long ago, I was a teenager. I always wonder what he would think of me and my political views and lifestyle. Whether I'm the perfect personification of all he seeks to oppose or a somewhat decent chap with bad ideas.
As long as Dr. Dalrymple fails to mention the very british Bullingdon Club in his diatribes about vandalism and sense of entitlement, there is no reason to take him seriously.
Which is a pity, as his points are well made.
Remember: the fish starts rotting at the head.
I suggest adding a facebook like button for the blog!
America follows anon, Mr. Dalrymple.
Did you know that a peak time for crime in the UK was during the Blitz. Did that have anything to do with the welfare state of popular culture, do you think?
I stopped reading this man's writings when he published a piece comparing Ayn Rand to Joseph Stalin, murderer of millions of people.
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Living in one of the riot afflicted areas, Greenwich, I really found some of the "reasons" trotted out to explain the rioting in my area insulting. I am actively looking for (and want to) work after finishing a journalism course last August, but it's not easy. Still, I didn't go out and loot because it would be just stupid as the excuse of being unemployed, meaning I was entitled to take what I want if I can't afford it. It's as insulting to call poverty a cause, especially to the people in the slums of Calcutta who live in true poverty and can have more dignity. If the people of Woolwich are deprived, it's of an imagination. They can't imagine what it's like for people in Somalia, a land now afflicted by drought and war because they're too spoilt and have no incentive or desire to better themselves.
Pretentious 20/20 hindsight!
'Cowardly blindness of the intelligensia' about sums it up. The UK's political and media establishment seem to exist in a cushioned sumulcrum of sentimentality with no real experience of feral British streets. Weird times ahead me thinks.
I am conservative by British standards, liberal by US standards. Having lived in the UK for a couple of years in the mid 1980s, I have to say I agree with Dalrymple. I knew many young people who were claiming the dole in three different locations, or who were forging notes from their "landlords" to say that they needed carpeting or a new oven. Of course, once they received the money, they would spend it. Most of them were actually working as well! And then they had the gall to complain that they were threatened with losing their dole money if they turned down more than three jobs! They called this "slavery" -- the idea that they might have to work to support themselves was, to them, "slavery." I felt I was the one enslaved -- I got out of bed every morning and worked to earn money so I could pay taxes to subsidize these leeches? I found that very offensive. As Dalrymple says, they felt no gratitude toward their benefactors (i.e., working taxpayers,) but whined that they weren't being given enough. They are a plague of spoiled Dudley Dursleys! Why, I wonder, is this problem -- the hooliganism, the yob mentality -- endemic to the UK? Why not Norway or Italy or Spain, all of which offer equivalent welfare opportunities? I don't pretend to know the answers, but I think they lie at least in part in the class system still poisoning British society. I was shocked at times to see the haughty and contemptuous attitudes of the "upper class," although that behavior, however unattractive, does not excuse the smoldering resentment of the "lower class." I hope the class structure differences continue to dissipate as time goes by.
This has been going on for many years. I taught in Manchester during the 1970's and nothing has changed.
I often wonder if my father was right. He used to say when young people behaved badly it was the parents that should be punished
As usual Dalrymple has hit the ten spot. I am sad to say.
Dalrymple for Prime Minister! Seriously!
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.. the only question now - when will this occur in the U.S. !?
"long experience of impunity has taught the rioters that they have nothing to fear from the law, which in England has become almost comically lax—except, that is, for the victims of crime"
Note that Richard Mannington Bowes, the Englishman beaten to death in Ealing for trying to put out a fire, had been previously arrested and convicted for "confronting youths who were urinating in his garden".
For those who claim that the unemployed youths are the results of the harmful effects of the capitalist system, I again present to you the North Korean constitution where there is not only a right to work, but also the following at Article 83:
"Work is the noble duty and honour of a citizen. Citizens shall willingly and conscientiously participate in work and strictly observe labour discipline and the working hours."
In other words, citizens not only have the right to work, but have no choice but to do so. They also get such programs as "two meals a day" - an actual anti-starvation effort in the workers paradise. Of course, the country is energy efficient, as shown by this comparison map of North and South Korea:
There are no slackers in the workers paradise!
Yet, oddly enough, this is the ultimate outcome of the end of democracy and capitalism in Britain -
Well gety over it! Western countries need an unemployed fodder class and we have been subsidising them for hundreds of years. Its part of capitalism! Of course a GFC with greed at its heart will always exacerbate the situation especially if we are seen to let those that are culpable get off scott free while the rest of us pick up the bill. Where's the justice in that?
If the west defines full employment to be around 5% unemployed then by default we will always have an underclass of uneployed. Not everyone can get a job all the time! And if they are encouraging older people to not retire when they were planning to, unemplyment will be disproportionatly concentrated in the younger and less experienced generation.
I do not blame the young unemployed for being frustrated and I certainly do not condone their behavior but I think we should have some empathy for their plight and not simply label all as dole bludgers and a smear on our more priviliaged classes. As a mature civilized society I believe we are judged by how we humanly support this permanent underclass of people.
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I'm from Australia. I've read every one of Dalrymple's books advertised here. They are spot on and well written. The riots came as no surprise.
The hard question is how to get your country back. How do you instil values in a whole generation. Welfarism can destroy in a but how do you rebuild?
Some free advice:
. Fire 90% of the BBC. Why subsidise the destroyers of your culture.
. Drop the Global Warming crap. You can't afford left wing fantasies.
. Cut the deficit to 0.
. No dole without work.
Excellent and succinct and my sentiments exactly. But if a million marchers have no influence on the decision to invade Iraq, I feel that U.K. is destined to collapse socially and econimcally as a state, one I was once proud to call my own.
2000 people rioting out of a population of 60,000,000. Of course there are always going to be people at the bottom of the food chain.
As you say, it didn't need a seer to predict the riots.
Cameron talks of the 'culture of fear' that now manifets itself on UK streets. Now? Residents of the proletarian areas have lived with a culture of fear for years but, in divided Britain, the affluent have fallen back on an "out of sight, out of mind" hopefulness. Cuts in housing benefits are designed to remove the poor from prosperous areas into the bleak ghetto estates that bore the brunt of the recent disturbances. MPs who looted their expenses and financiers who looted the national wealth talk of the 'selfishness' of rioters and demand greater 'punishment' for the guilty. It may be what the country really needs is a crash course in metaphysics.
I'd be interested to hear what Dr D would do to ameliorate the situation. The present strained atmosphere encourages rumours of a 'hidden' overclass agenda to be rid of the human garbage. Not, per se, a bad idea. But the worry is, of course, who will define which of his fellow men are 'rubbish'. He who extends condemnation of aberrant individuals to damn entire social, ethnic or cultural groupings risks, by so doing, himself becoming the rubbish.
And, yet again, the UK underclass ask who guards the guards. And not just in the Metroplotan police. When the new financial hegemony are concerned, it appears to many observers, the answer is no-one. If bankers are allowed to run riot, we shouldn't be shocked if the uneducated follow their example.
It's worth noting, too, that urban rioting, like the 'degenerate' lifestyle of Amy Winehouse, can be rather fun. Certainly, both appear attractive to the substantial minority of Brits without access to more wholesome activities. When 70% of UK prisoners serve time for drug or drug-related offences, reforms rather appear needed in that particular area. It could be argued the shooting of alleged drug gang member Mark Duggan, the spark that set off the tinderbox of disaffected inner city youth, would never happened without the crimialisation of the drug culture.
There are no easy answers. But the 'looters' only reflect the policies of self-interest and expediency that have passed for political ideology in the UK for decades. Unless some radical new thinking is employed soon, this is only the beginning. A thousand years of fabled British tolerance and common sense must not be permitted to end in either fascism or anarchy.
The recent London rioters and social revolutionaries are told by almost all that they live in complete freedom with massive economic opportunity -- two huge lies. No wonder they rage out of control in bitter hatred of their failed and miserable society!
The British rebels don't live in a proper capitalist or libertarian country but rather a ghastly, hell-hole Welfare State where start-up jobs are bizarrely hard to get and hold, and start-up housing costs are stunning high. This is totally irrational and depraved.
A social milieu of political freedom would create a world and street atmosphere almost 100% different from that of today. Until these unhappy campers can get their liberty and that resultant wealth which is implicitly promised to them, I say: Burn, baby, burn!
As usual, the Good Doctor gets it right with unerring precision. The recent mayhem came as no surprise to anyone with eyes to see.
What hope and example have the young English,when the ruling class,live off the fat of the land,make war on the world,and break every law of man and God.
Do we except these young male's whom throughout history have never been any more than cannon fodder or day labourers,to say thankyou for taking away all the apprenticeships and have feminist infested school system's and state system's telling them they are evil and useless because they are male.So if they do any work,it is on the black market,pocketing enough for their need's and withdrawing from society that deride's and hate's him.
Back in the empire days, the British ruling class had ways to get many of the yobs off the island and make life more feasible for the people who stayed behind: Put them on ships and send them to wreak havoc in other parts of the world, like the Americas, Australia, southern Africa and India. It doesn't have that option now.
Excellent insight--spot on! Mr. Dalrymple's comments need to be read--and understood--by everyone who cares about from where our modern culture has come, and the frightening prospect of where it is heading.
I would like to propose not to hold off until you get enough money to buy goods! You should just take the business loans or just financial loan and feel yourself fine
welfare parasites~idle rich...which is the real threat?
Nonsensical opinion of an idle and idiotic physician.
"Throughout history, poverty is the normal condition of man. Advances which permit this norm to be exceeded — here and there, now and then — are the work of an extremely small minority, frequently despised, often condemned, and almost always opposed by all right-thinking people. Whenever this tiny minority is kept from creating, or (as sometimes happens) is driven out of a society, the people then slip back into abject poverty.
This is known as “bad luck.”
— Robert Heilein
See also, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9pAC0YSmK0g&feature=youtu.be
Shorter Chris K at 3:58am:
"About those completely understandable and maybe slightly illegal wealth-spreading shopping sprees by innocent, oppressed yoots in the UK...
Hey, look! Over there! A squirrel!"
Hey, Chris, is that you from the VC?
"but that they did not occur sooner and did not become chronic."
Not yet, anyway. All that is lacking is time as the social and political culture shows no signs of changing..
Well its hard not to agree with this but perhaps there is more to it than simply the issues mentioned in this article. I would like to suggest that some causers lie outside of UK control such as the formation and use of Human Rights legislation as a tool to weaken society by over protecting the rights of an individual who has abused his membership of a society against the rights of the rest of society which deserves protection from anti-social behaviour.
We would also do well to think more about the meaning of individual freedom - is it an individual freedom to be allowed to live life addicted to drugs or alcohol? Surely that is an individual slavery from which society should be working to free these people?
We need a new honesty and we must start with ourselves.
A Prohibition regime teaches people to break the law every day. And yet you support it. As ye sow....
An incisive account of the the mindset induced by a social system that conflates wants with needs, elevates needs to rights and morally postures rights into entitlements thus perpetuating the toddler gimme-get syndrome.
it is badly titled. Degeneracy is a concomitant not a core factor.
I read your book Life at The Bottom. It has inspired me to study the field of Psychiatry. Politicians have always kept their eyes covered to the life of poverty as if it doesn't exist at all. I was once one of these people who smoked marijuana on a daily basis and just wanted to be an outlaw. I knew that was not going to get me far in life now I have four years enlisted in the military and I'm working on my degree. I want to help people in that environment who were just like me at one point. Most of them just need to see someone who was just like them being able to succeed in todays world. Showing them that the politicians want them to stay at that level of barbarism. What they dont want to see is those same barbarians using their intellect to stay in school learning the political system and then running for office. That would have them shaking in their moccasins!
Yes, those rioters who trash their own neighbors' homes and properties, and who give no thanks for the education and other comforts they receive from their government are bad people. No argument.
But so, too, are the millionaire and billionaire banking executives who profit from making home mortgage loans to people that they know have no chance of repaying those loans. And don't say that it is all because of liberal-minded legislators who pushed through legislation promoting home ownership and available credit for all, even to those who cannot afford it. Yes, those legislators are bad people, but so are the banking officials and their lobbyists who promote and peddle this terrible legislation.
Bad also are the millionaire and billionaire executives at companies like Halliburton, and BP, who knowingly contaminate vast stretches of drinking water and the environment during
hydraulic fracturing ("fracking") or deepwater drilling practices.
Monsanto pays off elected officials to tweak patent law so that, of all things, they can claim partial ownership of farmers' crops because pollen from their (Monsanto's) crops drifted onto the neighboring farms. Those Monsanto people are bad.
And those Enron-like people who cook their books and then rob people's retirement funds. BAD.
And then just when it looks like maybe one of these offenders is about to be punished, they
"lawyer up" and escape, or hopelessly stall any efforts to pay for their misdeeds. This also makes them bad.
Because of the immense successes of science, technology, cheap energy, automated manufacturing practices, and a world population nearing 7 billion people, there simply are not enough jobs to go around. And because of a vast supply of poor people who are anxious to work for next to nothing, the jobs that are available don't pay as well as they used to. Wealth becomes more and more concentrated into fewer and fewer hands.
Because of this, some type of, or some measure of a "welfare state" is inevitable. But still, people have to be nice to one another, and not bash their neighbor over his head just because they want something their neighbor has. We have to limit population growth. And wealth has to be distributed more equitably.
The feral children and the greedy middle-class kids who robbed the stores are no different: they lack in morals, learning, empathy, self-control, honor, civility. They have chosen to behave as predatory animals rather than human beings. I hope the UK justice system throws the book at these young thugs. And I also hope that when this happens in the United States -- as it undoubtedly will -- we have the courage to fight back and reclaim our society. BTW, some of you morons who attack Dalrymple might want to read his columns and books for the past decade. You criticize one essay that you don't understand in context because YOU HAVEN'T BOTHERED TO READ DALRYMPLE until now. Rather than insult him, why don't you invest in a book and do a little learning? Find out what he says about WHY this is happening before you post a message and display your ignorance of the subject.
The enemy of society is political correctness. Those of us who allow ourselves to be ruled by political correctness will lose our freedom and be taken over and ruled by some different society that cares little for our freedoms or our stupidity in not defending our freedoms.
The prophecy of the Welfare State is the wasteland of sloth. Britain must reverse it's ill-founded philosphical and political cult think back to the days of Winston Churchill, when all Britain's shared a common sense of pride, hard work, and moral foundation that overcame the onslaught of WWII. If Britain is to survive, these common qualitites must be resurrected in the hearts and minds of all English men and women.
The same seeds are already in full bloom here in America. I wish more people were as observant and realized we've created a losr generation.
But the British are happy they've been disarmed. Not to worry, the police will be right there!
It is a correct diagnosis of the riots in London.Subjecting people to laziness, then, expecting something extraordinary from them, is purely head-in-the sand approach of an ostrich.
The truth of your article is lacking in one thing. The source is not politics or entitlements the source is greed, lust, envy and an abandoning the truth of a true and loving God! We must repent from our nations abandoning of God-not a return to an empty religion- but a return to God! We must return to the feet of Jesus Christ and learn from Him.
Well written, as usual. However, as others have pointed out the looters and rioters were not uniquely lumpenproletarian.
Ben2 says: “There is one centrist newspaper, the Guardian…” LMFAO! If “the Guardian” is viewed as a centrist paper in the UK than you really are doomed.
John writes: “The man never asks why in the first place the conditions have become what they are now.”
Yes, he has been addressing this for many years. Welfare state policies have created a culture of dependency. That is why we are in the situation we are in.
So the next question is why is this the case?
I think most liberals/progressives really do want to help the poor and disadvantaged. Yet they are unable to see how much their policies are hurting those they purport to assist. Instead they blame capitalism, inequality, etc.
You are heading in this direction when you note: “I'm saying this because in no small part the wealth and the privileges of a few are only possible because of the poverty and the exclusion from the glamorous world of a steadily increasing majority of people.”
I know you are not a communist, but the idea that wealth is derived from the exploitation of labor is classical Marxism. Perhaps I am misreading you here. The point is, your neighbor’s (or boss’s) wealth is not predicated on another person's poverty.
I remember in "View from the Bottom" when Dalrymple said that it wasn't the mere existence of the welfare state that caused decline, given that Sweden has a welfare state but no underclass. Instead, it's some sort of thinking problem.
I agree with this -- a welfare state doesn't have to be miserable, although it often is. But there has to be some incentive to behave in a civilized manner. In Sweded I'm guessing it comes from culture. In some places it comes from religion. In some places, there's a carrot, or some reward for good behavior. In other places there's a stick -- punishment for stepping out of line.
In England and the US, you have none of these. Thuggish behavior is cool, while studious or civilized behavior will get you mocked or beaten. Religion has lost its hold.
Then, you remove the carrot by giving free money to those who do nothing -- often those who do nothing receive a lot more stuff and have a higher standard of living than those who work. You also remove the stick by preventing effective policing and acting like police are uncool or whatnot.
So, you have no carrot and no stick (often you have the opposite incentives). You have no comminity or religious guidelines. Your cultural heroes are thugs. This is what is set up, and people are then surprised when some people engage in antisocial behavior.
The shocking thing is that there is any civility left at all.
Jewel is right... Our legislators need to read Exodus 21-22, amend the law accordingly and then proceed to administer Godly justice on the lawbreakers. I'm sure in doing this, there will be a few murmurs from the bleeding-heart liberals but be assured there will be no more riots in England for a looooooong time.
This is what happens when we take God out of schools and our lives!
Basically, a society cannot exist without the old moral values.
We need to get back to the Bible...
Certain 'values' are hammered into the brains of millions of people by religious, political or other types of 'leaders'.
[Children] are indoctrinated [against homosexuality] consistently by religious 'authorities' and by their parents, who fear that their children will burn eternally in hell for that mortal sin.
John, I don't doubt that your circle of friends would all nod in agreement at those wildly hyperbolic claims. Regardless, they are not only patently untrue, but reckless and irresponsible. And you're pleading for "discourse"?
Yes, most children draw their values largely from religion, school, and family, which at one time were generally aligned. I have never, ever heard a single fellow Catholic say that homosexuals are doomed to hell. And in California, the nefarious "leaders" you warn about have decreed that the public schools must soon preach the glories of gayness to first graders.
Are you so devoid of persuasive argument that you have to resort to claiming that people who don't think the way you do have had the wrong ideas "hammered" into their brains?
Well, for decades now any deviation from the liberal orthodoxy on racial matters has been met with cries of "racist" or "Nazi." So I guess it's only natural that people who don't exalt homosexuality must simply be bigoted fools indoctrinated by the fanatical "leaders" you have exposed.
Perhaps the most repulsive aspect of modern liberalism is its insistence that any and all disagreement is illegitimate. Those with contrary opinions must have arrived at them through hate, brainwashing, bigotry, ignorance, and so on. From this notion grew the political correctness that has turned American universities into islands of repression.
Your caricatures of people who don't go along with your program make me wonder whether the one who's been indoctrinated is YOU.
But you're not a Communist. Great. Congratulations.
For a bit of balance, this from
"Certainly, the so-called feral youth seem oblivious to decency and morality. But so are the venal rich and powerful – too many of our bankers, footballers, wealthy businessmen and politicians."
I don't (mis)interpret this as any excuse for the thuggery of the rioters; they should be punished to the fullest extent. But some members the latter group -- certainly here in the US and, it seems, also in the UK -- often are responsible for even greater and farther-reaching mayhem, but are treated as though they are "too big to fail", or perhaps too big to punish.
Matthew, I agree: How-To is the most difficult area.
Your criticism is appropriate, however, doesn't your criticism fall into the same trap?
Sure, opinions are only words - in the beginning at least, and usually they differ widely.
One idea how to improve things is that people (we) engage in discussions (such as these), learn from each other and one by one generate options for action together. It requires patience and mutual respect, but it can lead to appropriate action.
The 'Holy Grail' we won't come across, I'm afraid, that's the domain of fantasy.
Well, that's a nice 'I told you so'. Got any ideas on how to improve things?
I find the thoughts of this Mr. Dalrymple interesting, however, they don't exactly reflect my perception of this issue.
The man never asks why in the first place the conditions have become what they are now. Like, to what extent are political, economical and religious settings responsible for that development.
Certain 'values' are hammered into the brains of millions of people by religious, political or other types of 'leaders'. For instance, children are not born homophobic. They are indoctrinated consistently by religious 'authorities' and by their parents, who fear that their children will burn eternally in hell for that mortal sin. Public opinions are practically forced into line by the mass media, and one-track thinking has all but been established. This has turned serious, relevant debates addressing pressing issues into reaffirmations of faith in certain policies (such as 'economic growth is a must', or the mandatory provision of the stock market, and that gambling on the stock exchange is a socially accepted 'virtue').
Perhaps Mr. Dalrymple doesn't tackle those questions because he considers the political, economical and religious settings as immutable. Or in one way or other, he profits from those settings and therefore doesn't aspire for any changes that would interfere with his 'freedom' (freedom of traveling, for instance, as he says at one point, "...the large town that I live near when I’m in England").
I'm saying this because in no small part the wealth and the privileges of a few are only possible because of the poverty and the exclusion from the glamorous world of a steadily increasing majority of people. The middle classes have long stayed quiet because it wasn't them who were falling by the wayside since Reagan and Thatcher and after the fall of the Wall. They subconsciously knew, though, and feared that to step out of the anonymous mass and to raise their voice against that development could easily bring about punishment, meaning they would lose their own jobs. Obviously, that collective silence hasn't brought about the desired effect. The middle classes, too, now observe with horror how their jobs and welfare are being abolished as part of an automatism of a system called 'free market'. Their passivity only allowed the reckless protagonists of capitalism to go ahead and help themselves at the self-service store called stock market. Thousands of enterprises have been bought up at the stock market, then tattered and ruined, hundreds of thousands of jobs shed, all under the custody and the 'enlightened wisdom' of business consultancies, a line of business in which decision-makers have had unshaken faith and one of the few 'professions' that have been prospering from the crisis. Today, there are more billionaires than ever. And the Western middle class finds itself confronted with the threat of being marginalized...
Just to make this clear here: I'm not a Communist, never have been. However, since the collapse of the Eastern Block, Capitalism has been given the Carte Blanche, and it has gone rampant. Before, at least there still had been that 'other' system. Now, things have gone totally out of control, and the 'free' market has turned into a monstrosity.
It's remarkable that a little pamphlet called "Indignez-Vous!" by the now 93 years old war veteran Stephane Hessel has become something of a strategy paper for the growing, indignant, Western middle class.
Of course, it would take hours just to try to analyze the complex situation our world finds itself today, to say nothing of the possible ways of action out of this mess.
But I think it's important that we dare to discuss those matters again, transcending the fear of disagreement and the fear of being ridiculed for not being completely objective. Because that's another victim in our present society: discourse, especially public discourse.
Porcorosso writes brilliantly that "indeed, he may well have lived his entire life at others’ expense, such that every mouthful of food he has ever eaten, every shirt he has ever worn, every television he has ever watched, has been provided by others"
This, written about the average London rioter, could have been part of the resume of the President of the United Sates. Enjoy."
How true! Obama is the poster boy for entitlement, as is his wife, who resented her free ride at Princeton and doesn't even like the country. They have elevated the entitlement mentality to a whole new level!
Dalrymple has a very clear and simple explanation for most of today's ills that afflict Western societies. His "Life at the Bottom" spells it out well- welfare state policies have created a permanent, dependent, and lawless underclass in both England and America.
Dalrymple correctly points to the intellectuals as the perps--those abstract-thinking theorists who want to hold the levers of power over a society of malleable dependent sheep. It is the intelligentsia's horrid ideas and philosophies that promote hedonism and deny personal responsibility that have trickled down to what once was a law-abiding, God-fearing, hard-working populace. Not for nothing is the book "Common Genius" subtitled "How Ordinary People Create Prosperous Societies and How Intellectuals Make Them Collapse!"
A lesson of history is that degeneracy springs not from those at the bottom, but from the decadence and failed policies of those at the top. And such is the story of the rise and fall of nations, a process covered in Dalrymple's well titled book "Not With a Bang, But A Whimper.".
It is the same semi-literate blood that always looks for shortcuts and being adept with the tongue and looks that is at the ROOT of this all.
You imbecile. People aren't told they're entitled to a "high standard of consumption" by "intellectuals and the political class", they're told that by ADVERTISING.
I love reading the anachronistic THEODORE DALRYMPLE
for his ‘colonel blimpishness’ and his tendency to continually trash the country he once called home. Why have you not tried to provide at least a semblance of a solution?
Whilst I agree with the sentiments ,to say that an uncomfortably large section of the British population could be involved is an extreme exageration.
We have 65 million people in this over populated island and so far the police have identified about 2000 individuals responsible..
Once again theis problem is the down to a hard core of "hardened no hopers" who only understand hard response to their lawlessness...but it will never happen due to "Human Rights nonense"
Wow, a diatribe dripping with arrogance and vitriol. Unfortunately the only part that doesn't hold a hint of truth is the bit about Amy Winehouse, she's no more guilty of writing degenerate lyrics than The Dead Kennedys were and they were at their peak in the early eighties. The influence of pop culture can only go so far, but I do agree that British problems are deep seated and socio-cultural.
One nice observation though: looting and opportunism aren't a new cultural facet; with every breakdown in law and order there is a clueless element of the intelligentsia ready to blame the intelligentsia, pop/rock culture, comedy, cartoons and anything else "in the way".
I'd suggest that the problems are based on low aspirations, no discipline, too few positive role models and lack of opportunity breeding civil unrest.
Just a thought.
Spot on, Dr. Dalrymple. It hasn't quite happened here yet in the U.S., but we're working on it. Just check out what is happening with the idiots in Washington, DC.
Thank you, Dr Daniels, for your invigorating comments on Amy Winehouse. When she killed herself I emailed a complaint to the BBC about the amount of airtime that was being devoted to the squalid demise of this pathetic and posturing celebrity. My protest was drowned by waves of grief lashed up by the media and sweeping the country. Truly, the British have lost a role model, but never mind: there is no lack of replacements.
Sorry, but I think it's a bit of a stretch to tie the music of the late Amy Winehouse to the rioters
The British welfare system has produced the amoral society predicted in "A Clockwork Orange". You reap what you sow.
Funny, I thought at least you would throw Patty Hearst up in your defense.
'just as low as the "ferals" they joined'
The problem with your argument and that of the Dr, is that its not the welfare junkie pulling themselves away from the government supplied Xbox, thats rioting.
Why should we NOT expect these riots to become chronic? The culture which incubated them has not changed, "social media" provides the new "lumpenproleteriate" ample means to organize the next outrages, and it is manifestly impossible to "harden all targets of opportunity."
Wake up America! Same thing applies to the U.S., and in epic proportions.
So Very Well Put...This is the Rodney King show of the 2000's
If you give a man a fish you feed him for a day.
Of course from then on, if you ever fail to give him his daily fish he will come to your home, burn your nets and your boat, and tell everyone he had to do it because you tried to starve his children.
When the English were English they sought to provide for the working man a basic level of economic security. Their good intentions morphed into a welfare state with all the pathologies that perverse incentives always propagate.
You go from a guarantee of food, and shelter, to riots and looters whose flat screen TV is too small to satisfy them.
I am curious about the current state of religion in this neighborhood and in the culture as a whole. What are people's moral beliefs built upon? Do not steal....do not covet. Where are the churches in this neighborhood? Have they tried to instill feelings of love, patience, kindness, gentleness, and self control. The fruits of the spirit need attention. Government can't feed the soul.
Amy Winehouse was a spoiled little scumbag----though a lot of Americans think she led a tragic life...a tragic multi-millionaire pitied by the peasant class even in the USA.
A few words of wisdom (You decide whether they are or not) Any one who has themselves as a client is a fool. Why do those who are poor feel they have the answers to their own problems which always happens to be the other person's fault.
To prove that nothing will satisfy the poor than to see the rich suffering as much as they are is to recognize that the poorest human being today probably has all the amenities the richest person had yesterday and are they happy?
In our system as sad as it might be one is rewarded by their contribution to society. Let us keep it that way.
I once paraphrased an expression which states "Profit is the reward society returns to those who put capital resources and ideas together for the benefit of mankind"
"indeed, he may well have lived his entire life at others’ expense, such that every mouthful of food he has ever eaten, every shirt he has ever worn, every television he has ever watched, has been provided by others"
This, written about the average London rioter, could have been part of the resume of the President of the United Sates. Enjoy.
What, exactly, do you consider an education to be? I like to think that I am educated, with only a high school diploma. Yet, I know that this type of behavior does not solve problems. If Western societies would address the root causes of these problems, maybe things will change. But, we know that won't happen because the root causes are so deeply ingrained in the ruling classes sense of entitlement, that all others can continue to live a life of despair and deprivation. Take a hard look in the mirror and then lie to yourself and tell yourself what you see!
I have been reading Theodore Dalrymple aka Anthony Daniels for half a dozen years, and he has NEVER been wrong. And now he is once again right. Those who effect policy and those who teach will not, of course, be persuaded until the whole damn thing we call government and that which currently passes for civilization comes crashing about their (and unfortunately OUR!) ears. It is a terrible injustice that those of us who would reign in government and welfare shall also have to suffer for the sins of the fools who have brought all this about.
Mr Dalrymple, please tell me:
- What criminality have you experienced from the english population in the last 20 years?
- What makes you think that rioting is part of british popular culture?
- What makes you think that english people feel deprived and ungrateful about their ''$80,000'' education bill?
- What makes you think that the english education system fails to equip it's people?
- What makes you think english people lack gratitude in the face of such benefits?
- What makes you think unskilled labour is carried out in england only by ''foreigners''?
- What makes you think that the late Amy Winehouse is vulgar?
- Were you in England when the riots took place?
Louis Cypher... Do you realize how confused and incoherent your writing is? I will try to respond to your confusion by asking you to read the article again and try to absorb it sentence by sentence. I know this is not Dick and Jane Go Down the Hill, but your comment that he does nit try to explain the cause of the riots either means you only read the first two paragraphs and decided to comment or you should go back to Dick and Jane. The entire article tries to explain the causes of the violence...
You remind me of Lex Luthor's line in Superman the Movie. He says, "some people can read War and Peace and come away thinking its an adventure story,while others can read the ingredients on a chewing gum wrapper and unlock the secrets of the universe". It would seem you enjoy adventure stories...
However, liberals, when confused by analytical work that challenges their simplistic views of right and wrong and their need to blame the evil rich and authoritarian statists, most often resort to childish insults, like your "conservative idiots" and "regurgitating with florid and pretentious prose". Liberals love to call conservatives names. Something most conservatives grow out of in grade school. They love to accuse conservatives of being stupid, when, like you, they cannot even read an article and come away understanding what the author was saying in the most basic terms.
To accuse Theodore of being pretentious is the worst of the kettle calling the pot black. Your use of language like "florid" combined with your poor analytical skills shows where the pretense is here.
I immediately thought of your writings when these riots broke out, though I usually read them in the New English Review. Thanks for your work.
The welfare state reduces a citizen to a client, subordinates them to a bureaucrat, and subjects them to rules that are anti-work, anti-family, anti-opportunity and anti-property … Humans forced to suffer under such anti-human rules naturally develop pathologies. The evening news is the natural result of the welfare state.
I have to suppose that all this is coming to a neighborhood near me and you.
That "long experience of impunity" to which you refer has left 333 dead in Metro police custody since 1998, with nary an officer held to account. No doubt they all deserved it, the police merely saving society the expense of a trial.
Sorry, I should have added that I modified that statement from what Calvin Coolidge--as Governor of Massachusetts in 1919--said in a telegram during a strike--"There is no right to strike, anywhere, any time, against the public safety."
Right on, Theodore! This is a terrific article and I loved the way you included Amy Winehouse in it, too! (I always called her Amy Wino!) If I would add anything, it would be what David Cameron should have done, one simple statement at the beginning, with no baloney about what was wrong with British society for trouble caused by people who haven't contributed to a system that has given them more than they deserve:"There is no right to riot anywhere, any time, for any reason, against the public safety."
KEEP UP THE GREAT WORK!!!
Brilliant. As usual. Brilliant.
Here here! But not yet here in Sacramento.
Britons should arm themselves and protect their homes.
It must be great to have such a simplistic view of life. If you are going to put condemn a generation and their parents generation perhaps you could identify why it was necessary to give them this lifestyle in the first place. Without identifying a cause all you are doing is regurgitating (in overly florid and pretentious prose) what every conservative idiot would like to hear.
TSIndiana: America is multiethnic and multiracial. That's fine. An American can be of any race or ethnicity.
But we are NOT multicultural, despite the incessant propaganda. (I'm not talking about people who have joined the predominant culture but still celebrate festivals from the old country.) Our culture is uniquely American. Shariah law, for example, is not remotely compatible with it. Groups that do not assimilate will always be on the bottom rungs of the ladder.
Multiethnic, multiracial societies can and do flourish. But multicultural societies do not. Witness the recent admitted failures of multiculturalism in Britain, France, and Germany.
I wish this site had a way to reply to specific comments, but it doesn't. The several comments where people are "blaming" the rich, the corporations and the media are useless mantra-like repetition of failed progressive thinking.
The notion that if you show an expensive thing to people and they cannot buy it means that they can steal it is on its face absurd. There is nothing inherently evil at all with corporations inventing new things that are better than old things and selling them. Without that, business grinds to a halt, people get laid off, taxes go down, and there is no more money for enslaved underclass.
That people can be so stupid and short-sighted should not be surprising. Liberals have always needed something "evil" to blame for all the wrongs in society. That's because they cannot come up with any quick fixes or any ideas at all for how to fix things.
The idea that the way to cure what ails is to force people to work even at menial jobs and that families need to again be the core that provides values, character and discipline is alien to liberals, because they believe that each individual person is sacrosanct and should not really have any constraints on what they want to do. If they want to do drugs, have children out of wedlock, rob people or beat them to take the things they haven't earned, that's okay with liberals, because they blame the obvious bad behavior on the evil rich or the state or anything else. In the liberal view no individual needs to take responsibility, because their lives are controlled entirely by the evil people and institutions in society.
Yet, like Obama here, when a radical liberal assumes power and promises hope and change, the total lack of knowledge of how to run a business or fix the economy or create jobs becomes apparent. All they can do, like Obama, is tax the rich more and blame them for all the wrongs that the people are experiencing. Its a drug of sorts that liberals take -- a religion -- and it helps them to feel comfortable that they are righteous and fighting all that is wrong. Never winning, because they are fighting the wrong fights. Always struggling, never succeeding.
PaulC notes: ". . . its front-page headline told a different story about the accused: 'Lifeguard, postman, hairdresser, teacher, millionaire's daughter, chef and schoolboy, 11.'
"The Daily Mail reported: 'While the trouble has been largely blamed on feral teenagers, many of those paraded before the courts yesterday led apparently respectable lives.'"
I for one am not surprised. Many people are capable of operating on "normal" most of the time yet still have no feeling for others and will grab any opportunity that presents itself. They know what is expected of a normal person and can act the part, but given a chance, their true nature manifests itself. The term for this personality is "sociopath," and there are many, many of them among us. (Most are fairly harmless because their fear of being caught overwhelms their greed. Others, the true psychopaths, often lose control of severe, extreme impulses.)
But the fact that some of the criminals netted are capable of putting on a human face does not mitigate the fact that they are just as low as the "ferals" they joined. They are simply more clever, better able than their fellow street rioters to con others. Being a POS does not prevent someone from getting into a good school or getting a high-paying job.
The fact that some of the mob were not oppressed, deprived people proves that at least some of the rioters were not seeking "justice."
Dan B says; "This is what happens when you force Multiculturlism upon a race. It has never worked and never will."
I hope we will consider the path forward, specifically in the US. As a white US citizen, I do not want to see a segregated society. No... I will stand up for a multi-cultural society as our US Constitution and supporting laws support.
Multi-culturalism is a worthy goal, a strength, not a weakness, if we choose to make it that way. Americans have fought hard wars to achieve a future for a multiculturial society and have brought even the poorest among us food. But we can do better.
Unfortunately I see no will to recognise that our system of justice is a foundation that is crumbling.
If we can support other countries, we can support our own and stop our public officers abuse of office and refusal, once elected, to give "honest services".
In the B. Samuel Davis post he states a desire to model our country after North Korea. I strongly disagree that a republic cannot survive and that freedoms (or lack thereof) should be modeled after N. Korea.
My blocker as an entrepreneur for 25 years is court officials that have taken sides and now assist the thieves. They will tell you I'm the bad guy as they steal my property. How do I make jobs when I can't trust the courts because they are "selling rulings". NO new business + fraud in court = failed future opportunity. US should have a BB- credit rating because of loosing truth in court.
This is why we in the USA have the Second Amendment as part of our Constitution.
I have been deeply moved by your books. I recomend them to all my university classes (business!) alnog with Orwell's jounalistic works. You write about the realities and the casues. When will you write something more perscriptive?
coming to a city near you....
I think abprosper has stated my feelings well. Then he was attacked.
Its terrible when facts get in the way of a garbage article like this.
The tabloid Sun newspaper wrote in its opinion page on Thursday of the "sick" society described by Prime Minister David Cameron: "The sickness starts on welfare-addicted estates where feckless parents let children run wild."
But its front-page headline told a different story about the accused: "Lifeguard, postman, hairdresser, teacher, millionaire's daughter, chef and schoolboy, 11."
The Daily Mail reported: "While the trouble has been largely blamed on feral teenagers, many of those paraded before the courts yesterday led apparently respectable lives."
The upmarket Daily Telegraph devoted its page three to the case of Laura Johnson, the 19-year-old daughter of a company director who pleaded not guilty to stealing £5,000 ($8,000) of electrical goods, under the headline: "Girl who has it all is accused of theft."
Couldn't have put it better myself. How he managed to omit using the word scum defeats me.
Perhaps England should change its name to Winehouse.
Renfield @1:32 p.m. has got it right: "The situation is really not all that complicated: there are people who will riot, steal, burn, rob, and rape simply because it's fun, and because they figure they can get away with it. They have no sociopolitical
motive. . . ." To which may be added: what they do lack, however, is the very modicum of moral sensibility requisite for a prosperous civil existence. Absent moral strictures nothing is forbidden, even looting and maiming for fun. Some on this board will ascribe the absence to liberal media or education system or political class, to the unbridled welfare state or broken families, maybe even to the Amy Winehouses of pop culture. Perhaps it is all these; or perhaps all of these presumed causes are themselves the fruit of Western society's chronic skcepticism of the value of the personal virtues that once informed and distinguished our societies. So might our ancestors have thought.
I commented on one of the many UK opinion pieces along these lines by saying that I have been reading Theodore Dalrymple for years, so none of this comes as a surprise to me.
We're reaping so many whirlwinds these days. Dare I hope that we actually may have learned our lessons?
Mark Triceky said, "If you . . . allow a society to become highly stratified, with individuals rigidly bound, by birth, to low status, violence will be the result."
Well, there are plenty of countries where the population is highly stratified but not in the streets rioting for "social justice." Try India or Japan.
Of course liberty demands that people not be bound by birth, but this is still a novel concept in most of the world. Still, a society that truly exalts liberty will inevitably stratify. Even in the old Communist-block countries, where nobody but the leaders was doing well, the "comrades" rigidly self-divided along class lines.
And do you really think these English rioters are anything more than greedy, selfish thugs?
Dr. I'd sum up the situation a little differently I think, certainly a bit of ingratitude is in play here but its not like these people live rich in opportunities.
A life on "scraping by on the dole" while better than starving isn't good by any means.
So it seems to me if you want the working class and the poor to have middle and upper class values, you'll have to get more of those people into those classes. This is not simple when the types of jobs being created do not suit the dispositions or intellects of the people and the society has little history of social mobility.
And note its not "absolute wealth" but relative wealth that counts here, so you can't cheap out there nor can in a post Christian age count on fear of hellfire or the church to cover you.
Well I suppose you could encourage Islam, its certainly less expensive than a welfare state or real change but well I hope you like Sharia.
Long term to reverse decline and in order to fix this mess you need more social mobility. Speaking as someone from another nation (the US) with very low social mobility, its not easy to do.
Otherwise expect more of the same.
Your a bigget and a rasist!
I liked him better as a fey android.
Maybe the real cause of the unrest is extreme pomposity, patronisation and a postive glee in being completely out of touch with anyone who doesn't own a top hat? Just a thought, from someone who is apparently a degenerate.
I couldn't agree more. The one thing I would add is that the spiritual atrophy of Britain seems so complete that there is no moral culture to speak of. Anarchic rioting is indeed the apotheosis of the welfare state. It is also the unanswerable rebuttal to the idea of a polite, kind secularism in which we all sort of get along because, well, it's the right thing to do: "the loss of faith in Christianity and the consequential lack of confidence in moral and social standards have become embodied in the ideal of a materialistic, mechanized state . . . It is no longer possible . . . to accept the benefits of civilization and at the same time deny the supernatural basis upon which it rests." - Evelyn Waugh
Save this article, later just change the location to the USA and call them African-Americans and you can use it again in 2012.
Ben2: Your analysis of the British media says more about where you stand politically--so far left that you definitely see _pas d'ennemi à gauche_--than about having an understanding of it.
Do you really believe the _Guardian_ is "centrist?" Please! They have a couple of token "conservatives," or what passes for same in Great Britain, as columnists, but their editorial page is overwhelmingly leftist, and their news coverage, often hard to distinguish from its editorials, reads like Leninist agit-prop. No outrage committed by the underclass or Third World dictators--so long as they mouth the proper Marxist or anti-colonialist tropes--will go unexcused in its pages. Ditto for the _Independent_, which you seem to have forgotten about. If the _Morning Star_, which makes the CPUSA's _Daily World_ seem like _National Review_ is the only left-wing paper you can think of, your perspective has skewed so far left that chiropractic intervention is called for.
I notice you also left out the BBC, which takes every opportunity possible to undermine what's left of British tradition, mores, and respectability, and which no doubt will stridently blame Israel for causing so much nuclear fallout when Tel Aviv gets vaporized by an Islamic bomb. (The British taxpayer is forced, of course, to subsidize this tripe.)
Perspective is everything in understanding, and if you are stuck in an ideological bunker with firing slits that only open to the left, getting perspective will indeed be difficult.
The flaws in a culture will ultimately reveal, and themselves be revealed by, the flaws in the character of the people.
See: The Lord of the the Flies for an apt literary comparison.
Has it occurred to Dr Dalrymple that his comments on Amy Winehouse might be upsetting to her family, who did everything possible to help her with her addiction problems?
'2. My understanding is that in the United Kingdom the left's stranglehold on the media is even greater than here. That control has allowed the counterculture to effectively take over the "establishment", with an emphasis on personal gratification uber alles. The basic societal assumption - the newly defined reality - is that the old Anglo-Saxon view that hard work is a virtue, has been turned upside down, and now hard work is thought of as a waste of time, education the same. In fact, those who believe in hard work, family, and - gasp - religion (as long as it is Christian - other religions get a pass) are fools, hypocrites, perverts, bigots and worse.'
This is laughably out of touch with reality.
Rupert Murdoch owns 40% of the UK media.
Our second most popular daily paper supported Hitler before the war and says the same thing they said about jews then about gypsies, muslims or blacks now.
There is one centrist newspaper, the Guardian, and even that gives plenty of column space to the right wing in a bid to provide a balance of views for readers.
There is one left wing paper, the Morning Star, which is the daily paper of the British Communist Party.
You seem to have no understanding at all about the British media.
The expectation of this so called "population" to entitlements sounds a lot like the British upper class, who thrive primarily due to access to family money and position they have not earned.
If you construct, or more correctly, allow a society to become highly stratified, with individuals rigidly bound, by birth, to low status, violence will be the result.
Interesting article by a writer I may have mentioned when I visited. Note also reference to
1. Much of the rot described in this article and comments is supported/caused by an enormously powerful media news and entertainment complex - the huge role of the media is always underrated, if considered at all. Here in the United States the left's control over the media allows it to set the agenda and to resist any calls for change. It almost defines reality by conditioning the population into accepting certain beliefs - there has been little research on how this is done, and how media changes societal values. But, in the west, media is heavily controlled by leftist interests who have had the use of this tool for decades.
2. My understanding is that in the United Kingdom the left's stranglehold on the media is even greater than here. That control has allowed the counterculture to effectively take over the "establishment", with an emphasis on personal gratification uber alles. The basic societal assumption - the newly defined reality - is that the old Anglo-Saxon view that hard work is a virtue, has been turned upside down, and now hard work is thought of as a waste of time, education the same. In fact, those who believe in hard work, family, and - gasp - religion (as long as it is Christian - other religions get a pass) are fools, hypocrites, perverts, bigots and worse.
3. In the media the heroes are always portrayed as attractive, articulate people, who buck the "system" (whatever that means today), who do little or no work, don't believe in education, and these views and actions are always rewarded by lots of attention from the opposite (or the same, nowadays depending) sex. The achievers or those who believe in the old order, if they are mentioned at all, are portrayed as physically unattractive hypocrites, perverts and foils for the hero. They also lose with the opposite sex. At this point we are trained and conditioned to expect these things - it is a surprise when the opposite is shown.
4. What is the ultimate end of British society - where is it going? Here in the United State, one could say that Detroit is the epitome of the welfare state. Britain is going in the same direction. But, well before that happens in Britain, an authoritarian movement will end its republican form of government which has been managed so poorly. Media has conditioned the population to hate its government, and to look on it as a source of freebies. Once these are no longer available they will be willing to replace it with the first movement that comes along that offers to give them back what they had lost. As the saying goes - those who believe in nothing will believe in anything.
5. What do those in the third world think about all this, mired in poverty - where getting something to eat is a full time task. There is something pornographic about the comparison between the misused British welfare state and those living in grinding third poverty.
6. Sooner or later democracy will have to go - the republican form of government will not be able to survive this type of society. As to what will replace it, consider this irony, in the Democratic People's Republic of (North) Korea, the constitution provides that everyone has a right to a job. However, it also provides that all persons MUST work. It is an interesting concept. To wit:
"Work is the noble duty and honor of a citizen. Citizens shall willingly and conscientiously participate in work and strictly observe labor discipline and the working hours."
There are no slackers in the workers paradise.
Aside from pointing out that the education system did not in fact provide an education, as defined by any measurement of the three Rs, I would say this is one of the briefest but best summaries of the siutation that I have read.
Gary Novak said, "Let's hope the U.S. can understand the significance of Britain, Greece, etc., in time."
I fear it's too late. The great ship USA has already taken on too much water. Very rough seas lie ahead, if we don't sink before we reach them.
Mary Wilbur said, "Certain elements of society, given an excuse, will engage in anarchic criminal behavior."
Occam's Razor at work. Many posters are overanalyzing the motivations of these English mobs, offering variations of "poor, deprived people finally striking out against their oppressors." Of course, some people in the U.S. are claiming the recent violence by roving gangs of black youths to be the inevitable reaction to "lack of opportunity," the "injustice of slavery," and the "latent racism" that is supposedly hiding behind every blade of grass.
Intellectuals tend to seek explanations in egghead theories (usually those in line with their politics), but if we've learned one thing in the past half-century, it's that human nature doesn't lend itself well to scientific analysis. The situation is really not all that complicated: there are people who will riot, steal, burn, rob, and rape simply because it's fun, and because they figure they can get away with it. They have no sociopolitical motive (though they will welcome any excuse some intellectual offers for their behavior).
Mary also mentions that "they don't do it in their own neighborhood, because the neighbors are armed." It is true that most of the cities experiencing so-called "flash mob" riots are in states that restrict gun possession. However, if these riots continue, it is only a matter of time before an armed citizen in Philadelphia or Milwaukee kills an attacker or two in self-defense.(Wisconsin citizens with permits can carry firearms after November 1, and citizens of both WI and PA can carry openly.)
Why is it so hard to call this what it is? This is what happens when you force Multiculturlism upon a race. It has never worked and never will, why is the media so affraid to admit it?
How a gov't deals with rioting is also a sign of its health or lack thereof. Just compare how UK dealt with the violent Gordon Riots of the 1780s. They were put down efficiently (over 200 rioters shot by the army) and with the popular acclaim of British intelliigentsia, unlike today.
The country that once gave the world Shakespeare, Kipling, Dickens, Winston Churchill and the only country on the entire European continent to stand up to Hitler and his hordes has degenerated to a degraded state where a low-life degenerate like an Amy Winehouse could be publicly celebrated without shame or embarrassment. Turning itself within one generation into a Third World dumping ground only sank Britain further down into the sinkhole of history.
A sad ending to a nation and a culture (and our mother country) that was once a shining example to the entire civilized world.
A future for our children to look forward to. How terribly shocking it will be when they must, in turn, start taking care of other slackers...in other words, when the gravy stops flowing it will be a stark awakening.
Dr. Dalrymple, you have just described the world so brilliantly forseen in "A Clockwork Orange" over 40 years ago in all it's dystopian aspects; the all-knowing liberal nanny state, a feminized and feckless police force, and a class of violently nihilistic quasi-sociopathic youth.
Rule Britannia minus the "l".
Intelligent article that, as the author quickly relates, states the obvious. The problem is not that the surly malcontents want something for nothing; the problem is that authority, if that is what it is these days, demands nothing from the idle but zombie like addiction to media-created sensual satisfaction. One could hope that relgion would step forward, but strong, coherent religious authority is absent in all Western nations and has been for quite some time.
"It believes itself deprived (because it has often been told so by intellectuals and the political class), even though each member of it has received an education costing $80,000, toward which neither he nor—quite likely—any member of his family has made much of a contribution; indeed, he may well have lived his entire life at others’ expense, such that every mouthful of food he has ever eaten, every shirt he has ever worn, every television he has ever watched, has been provided by others. Even if he were to recognize this, he would not be grateful, for dependency does not promote gratitude. On the contrary, he would simply feel that the subventions were not sufficient to allow him to live as he would have liked.
"At the same time, his expensive education will have equipped him for nothing. His labor, even supposing that he were inclined to work, would not be worth its cost to any employer—partly because of the social charges necessary to keep others such as he in a state of permanent idleness, and partly because of his own characteristics."
I am sending your words with these passages highlighted to all my liberal friends here in California.
Thank you for the succinct verbal beheading of the liberal manifesto.
I have read many of the good doctor's essays on this subject. Throughout the last 10 days I've said to myself, "Dalrymple is vindicated." We have many friends in the UK who are writing and telling us, "not to worry...the police have it all under control." Dalrymple, you are vindicated!
Following Vancouver's loss of the Stanley Cup to Boston, there was a hugh riot in downtown Vancouver which caused a lot of property damage, as well as bodily injury. Although there was plenty of looting I don't recall reading that it was caused by envy but simply thuggishness. Certain elements of society, given an excuse, will engage in anarchic criminal behavior. Others, like flash mobs, are racist criminal predators from the getgo. They are black mobs who prey on non-blacks but only in cities where the right to carry a gun is illegal. They don't do it in their own neighborhood because the neighbors are armed. They aren't interested in the legal niceties. Because they know the police either won't or can't protect them.
This is an excellent article, I agree with you 100%.
I'm afraid that's right on the money. Note that this class of person also believes he is entitled to breed children without much thought to the circumstances in which they will be raised or how they will be provided for. That has to stop. The reason to father or bear a child is not to provide you a diversion.
"There are no criminals, only victims of inadequate social services."
Evelyn Waugh, "Love among the ruins."
This is coming to America sooner rather than later .
If Obama has his way .
When you pay anyone not to work they won't !
It has been proven when "YOU ' pay for your own Education you learn far more and are more successful .
When no part's of their young Lives are challenged to be better then won't be ever .
When we pay male/females to made babies they have more than normal.
When we pay a man to eat he won't till the Soil .
What Socialism creates is a totally worthless piece of nothingness that cost hard working tax payers a fortune .
Dalrymple did indeed notice the canary in the mine long ago. Let's hope the U. S. can understand the significance of Britain, Greece, etc in time. The increasing concern about fiscal discipline, school choice, and tea party themes generally is cause for optimism.
It is encouraging to see the fundamental nature of the welfare state so challenged. Dependency does not promote character or positive societal values. The culture of consumerism that evolved from the 80's till now could only heighten the frustration and anger of those whose very dependency assured that they could not participate in the consumption that became aspirational for those who earned their money.
Welfare and statism eliminate the need to strive and to succeed. It is effectively a modern form of slavery. It has the same effect as actual enslavement and indentured servitude. The slaves of welfare feel impotent and every acceptance of money, goods, or services provided further neuters the fundamental human nature they were born with.
Liberals have always felt that it was the duty of society to provide for those less well off or suffering. Growing from an initially positive-seeming desire to provide some form of safety net, it quickly transformed into an entitlement. That is Orwellian, since they are entitled to slavery. After all, it is the relatively wealthy and successful in welfare states that pay for those on welfare.
The twist on modern welfare slavery versus traditional slavery may be that the slave owners are paying the slaves not to riot or revolt or otherwise disturb society. Certainly, welfare can provide an education that theoretically allows the slaves to break their chains, but in practice this happens all too rarely.
When welfare slaves revolt and riot, we can expect to see the slave owners eventually become reluctant to continue providing for them. That would be a good thing. The need to struggle to live and strive for success makes people a part of society. It gives them values that begin with knowing what works and what doesn't for them to succeed. They learn that being honest and doing what you say you are going to do makes success easier. Gradually values return.
This piece and many others recently are opening up the discussion challenging the failed assumptions of those whose original intentions were good in providing safety nets, as society realizes that the servitude welfare created was destructive to the recipients and to the society.
Could just as well be talking about royalty and others of upper class when talking of "living life at other's expense, access to education, every shirt he has ever worn.. provided by others."
The causes of this sickness are many and complex. But three things can be said with certainty: every one of them is the fault of the liberal intelligentsia; every one of them was instituted or exacerbated by the Labour government; and at the very heart of these problems lies the breakdown of the family.
For most of these children come from lone-mother households. And the single most crucial factor behind all this mayhem is the willed removal of the most important thing that socialises children and turns them from feral savages into civilised citizens: a father who is a fully committed member of the family unit.
Of course there are many lone parents who do a tremendous job. But we’re talking here about widespread social collapse. And there are whole areas of Britain, white as well as black, where committed fathers are a wholly unknown phenomenon.
In such areas, successive generations are being brought up only by mothers, through whose houses pass transitory males by whom these women have yet more children — and who inevitably repeat the pattern of lone and dysfunctional parenting.
The result is fatherless boys who are consumed by an existential rage and desperate emotional need, and who take out the damage done to them by lashing out from infancy at everyone around them. Such children inhabit what is effectively a different world from the rest of society. It’s a world without any boundaries or rules. A world of emotional and physical chaos.
A world where a child responds to the slightest setback or disagreement by resorting to violence. A world where the parent is unwilling or incapable of providing the loving and disciplined framework that a child needs in order to thrive.
Yet instead of lone parenthood being regarded as a tragedy for individuals, and a catastrophe for society, it has been redefined as a ‘right’.
"Nazis aren't popular in the UK, you may well be able to guess why, and when they turn up to goose step around the place it doesn't go over well with a lot of people. There are always counter protests, whether it is EDL, BNP or BPP. There is sometimes violence."
I don't believe any of the aforementioned groups go around goose stepping, displaying the hakenkreuz, etc. The problem is that you lefties decide on your own who a "Nazi" is and you excuse Communist thuggery of the present and the Communist mass murders of the past. If the BNP disappears(i.e., loses the MI5 support it has in common with Searchlight) the UKIP will be suddenly transformed into the new "Nazis".
Don't excuse me for being an exiled American who believes in freedom of speech, the right to peacefully assemble and the right to bear arms. I see the US going down the same totalitarian road as the UK. If the local authorities in the country where I live want to send me back there they'll have to shoot me first.
Whatever....You obviously have a a narrow view of the world.
Almost 40 years ago,Anthony Burgess discribed this culture in his masterpiece "Clockwork Orange." READ the book. The movie is not a good but has some fine moments.
America is becoming the same. 51% pay no federal taxes so they don't care what the people who pay have to pay. These moochers just vote for their friendly DEM pol who is glad to give him more at others expense. People are taught how to game the system. Some work full time, have a med plan for the worker who has a 2nd part time job and still gets state $ and med care for the kids. By the way she drives a new Navigator and dresses to 9's with gold and everything. She brags about how she has it made. And people wonder why some people are fed up with the moochers.
As you pointed out, the police seem to investigate crime victims more intensely than criminals. It seems that the politicians and intelligentsia are not ignoring the implications, but counting on them.
How better to return to feudalism than destroying the middle class? Doesn't history teach us that the rise of an independent middle class was the root of the Renaissance and the Enlightenment?
So, destroy property rights in the forms of taxation in the name of "fairness" and the right to protect yourself in the name of "public safety" and tell the public that serfdom is freedom, and you can be a true monarchy once again.
"...the surprising thing about the riots is not that they have occurred, but that they did not occur sooner and did not become chronic."
I'm afraid to say, Dr. Dalrymple, but I think this riotous behavior WILL become chronic, given the leeway the little heathens have been given during this spate of violence. Watching images out of London, I'm reminded all too much of "A Clockwork Orange."
Who created the culture of consumption? Corporations with goods to sell. Who sells the hedonistic, promiscous, selfish non-values that children today absorb from popular culture? The for profit media outlets. If only it was so simple as the writer suggests. Get rid of the welfare state and everyone will become virtuous. Of course rich people who aren't subsidized are all virtuous. They dont have to break windows to steal.
As a UK citizen and a police officer I can confirm that your observations are spot on. They are obvious to everyone except those in charge. The vast majority of the decent population of the UK are sick of it. Will anything change? Maybe, but I highly doubt it.
Whatever else one might think of Amy Winehouse, at least she earned her own money. The problem isn't that she in particular could be raised to the status of heroine; the problem is that any entertainer can be raised to such status. That's the larger cultural issue that bespeaks a citizenry so devoid of both values and value that it searches for such things in any kind of lyrics.
One of the most iconic images of the riots is that of the woman who jumps from a window to escape the fire and smoke:
Today I’ve read that she only recently migrated from Poland, and worked in Poundland, a low-cost shopping chain. With little knowledge of England and, presumably, the language, she is far more disadvantaged than the yobs born and bred here, and yet she found herself a job and paid her rent.
Some people here think that all benefits should be abolished, others think that they should not, as there are lots of innocent, vulnerable people who depend on them. I will not discuss this point. Regardless of our political orientation, I think we will all agree on the following policy. Those who have been found guilty of rioting should be excluded from the benefits system for the rest of their lives. If they are physically capable of rioting, they are also capable of doing a manual job. Because they have broken the “implicit contract” with the wider society which works and pays taxes, from now on they won’t receive a single penny from the rest of us. No unemployment benefit, no free housing. From now on they must pay for everything, including medical care. Should they become disabled, tough luck.
The only exception are the children, who cannot choose their parents. In that case benefits should cover the cost of food, clothing, etc, exclusively for the children, but if the callous parent diverts the money for himself he’ll lose custody and go to jail.
He has written about this for years. I like Dalrymple a lot.
"The author does not seem to have read this morning's "Times". It is very unsophisticated to attribute the ybbism to the yobs when the actual villain is "Tory cuts"."
Do you ascribe the temper tantrums of a spoiled child to the villainy of a mother denying her kid yet more ice cream?
Dr Dalrymple is absolutely correct. When a Nanny State undertakes to treat people like children too irresponsible to make their own way in the world, it should be unsurprised when those people behave childishly. The riots in Britain are just temper tantrums thrown by spoiled brats being told that, no, they can't have a bigger lollipop.
Well said, Mr. Dalrymple. Unfortunately, this will soon be coming to the shores across the Pond. I am sure that our US cities will experience this prior to the coming Nov 2012 elections. Class warfare by Liberals is already apparent and will soon spill into the Street. Although I am sure of the demise of Obama, not being reelected POTUS will cause riots and civil unrest across our nation. I try not to be pessimistic, but I am quite certain that there is going to be a Class Civil War in the US, and it will resemble the events of the past few weeks in UK. If there are riots when the Detroit Pistons won and NBA Title, there will be riots when Obama and his entitlement presidency is over. With over 18% of US citizens on the dole, receiving food stamps, and the enormous unemployment numbers, the fuel is just waiting for a spark. Much as the unrest in UK doesn't have any thing to do with the shooting death of a man by police, being a spark for the fire, we too will be held hostage by gangs and hoodlums. And the whole time, Liberals will blame Conservatives for it all.
Yeah, yeah. That's all very nice.
Now. Let's see some FRONT PAGE HEADLINES about the Blacks, IN THIS COUNTRY, doing the same G*DD*MN things?
Dr. Dalrymple sounds like a very unhappy person.
I suggest that the Left will never learn, until the recipients of their legally stolen largesse are at THEIR doors.
And even then, unlike Dr. Frankenstein, they will refuse to acknowledge the monster they created.
The author does not seem to have read this morning's "Times". It is very unsophisticated to attribute the ybbism to the yobs when the actual villain is "Tory cuts".
t wrote: "Human nature really doesn't change much."
My thought, too. And it certainly does not change as fast as the technology that can be applied to organize and implement havoc.
It is indeed surprising that such behaviour hadn't erupted sooner; the yobs have been in command of the streets for years. Law- abiding citizens, who work for a living and make an attempt to pay back to society are at a massive disadvantage. Britain is becoming a failed state, on a par with Somalia. Perhaps it is time to make that fact official and have the United Nations establish peace-keeping and nation-building agencies.
The remnent of the UK could then become a province of the future Islamic Republic of the Netherlands. Give the thugs what they want before they burn down everything.
Having recently read all of Bernard Cornwell's superb novels set in the England of Arthur and Alfred (two different series), I was struck by how similar some of the looters' behaviour today seems to that of the Saxons and Vikings in the "Dark Ages". Setting out from home on a journey, with an adequately-sized team for the task planned, they reach a place where there is wealth of some kind. Efficiently and viciously attacking, they grab everything portable that they consider valuable, rape and/or kill anyone they can catch, then leave - setting fire to the place on the way out to leave their mark in a permanent way.
On thinking it over, I feel that the similarities are indeed quite great. Human nature really doesn't change much. And in the glorious 21st century, more and more people are returning to pre-Christian forms of morality or amorality. Just like the Saxons, the Vikings and the Nazis, they believe that might is right and pity is a contemptible sign of weakness.
As so often, Mark Twain summed it all up in a one pithy remark.
"If you pick up a starving dog and make him prosperous, he will not bite you. This is the principal difference between a man and a dog".
'curri August 11, 2011 at 5:04 AM
"Since the Southern Poverty Law Centre is an American organisation and not active in Enfield I imagine they have very little to say. "
The same international left thought suppression network operates throughout the American neo-Bolshevist Empire. I think the main UK group is called "Searchlight". They also have "antifa" and "anarchist" political street thugs that I'm sure greatly outnumber any alleged neo-nazis that may still exist.'
Searchlight are an organisation that monitors Neo-nazis in the UK and Europe and puts out a magazine.
Nazis aren't popular in the UK, you may well be able to guess why, and when they turn up to goose step around the place it doesn't go over well with a lot of people. There are always counter protests, whether it is EDL, BNP or BPP. There is sometimes violence.
However criticising nazis doesn't amount to left wing thought suppression and you could really do with getting a sense of perspective here.
A Britain I am Proud of.
Your line of rhetoric is tired and a-historical. Like all right wing ideologues you can only see the things which support your world view. The Police were being applauded by ordinary people in Clapham and Hackney on Wednesday. I notice you didn't mention Operation Cup of Tea and the twitter campaign that got many ordinary Londoners onto the streets cleaning up the mess. The riots have got nothing to do with the welfare state. There are millions of people who are kept out of poverty by the welfare state in this country who were not rioting and would never consider it, many of whom are as appalled by it as their more affluent neighbours.
No mention of the 99.8% of Londoners who are absolutely horrified by what is in reality the actions of a tiny minority - nor the hundreds of volunteers who spontaeneously came out across London with brooms to clean up after the idiots. Nor the cups of tea being brought by the public to police who'd been on duty all night. Nor the huge donations being made to a fund to reimberse shopkeepers for damage done to their businesses. These are the real British, and they've always been the silent majority. It's just a shame media abroad won't see this side of what's happened.
As always a well worded, insightful analysis on the subject matter. I thouroughly enjoyed every book you wrote. Your essays are somewhat varying in impact and contextual analysis, but this one is spot on.
"Since the Southern Poverty Law Centre is an American organisation and not active in Enfield I imagine they have very little to say. "
The same international left thought suppression network operates throughout the American neo-Bolshevist Empire. I think the main UK group is called "Searchlight". They also have "antifa" and "anarchist" political street thugs that I'm sure greatly outnumber any alleged neo-nazis that may still exist.
Post-bourgeois managerial liberalism (Cultural Marxism or the Therapeutic State ) is about “the breaking of nations”. It serves the purposes of both the expanding social worker state and the neoliberals (globalists) with their project of a garbage mass consumer culture dominating the world.
What a great mixture: a small overpopulated island with a complex of territory and tribalism mixed with lunky liberal policies the end goals of which were to break the society of its complex. It wouldn’t make sense to throw chaos into the life of a schizophrenic in order to cure him, would it?
I hope that Dr Dalrymple knows about the grateful appreciation of his writings in Czech republic.The long experience of impunity of the semi-criminal types has been devastating as well as the deliberate encouragement of the dependent culture.
Alena Hromádkova, Prague
From another blog:
"They went too far regarding their generous welfare for single mothers. I think they get something ridiculous in the order of a couple grand a month if they are on welfare and have kids"
"Yes, the UK doesn’t have the welfare term limits that the US has on certain benefits (like TANF). Also, you can draw unemployment in the UK much easier even if you’re a layabout who has never held or even applied for a job. In the US you have to actually work for 5 quarters (15 months) before you’re eligible to draw unemployment."
Sound about right?
I'm an American who's lived in 3 different European countries over 16 years. Having browsed several of the comments, I can confirm some of them.
1. Europe is full of white trash. Indeed, that's where white trash originated, and the Bell Curve describes natural forces that no state can resist.
2. Europe's political, chattering, and intellectual classes are at fault for the social rot observable everywhere because they've provided the moral, intellectual and economic conditions cultivating it. Indeed, and they'll continue doing so until murdered by the feral mobs they've created.
3. Europeans remain tribal, bellicose and bloodthirsty, so much so that peace in Europe will not continue in perpetuity. Indeed, the EU is just a few more sovereign defaults away from crumbling, leaving a vacuum that a balkanized Europe may fill.
4. On average, Europeans are not smarter, better educated, more cultured, or more moral than Americans. Indeed. Last time I was on Mallorca, it was crawling with hordes of drunken, obese, hairy, tattooed and sunburned creatures grunting, clicking and squawking a primitive version of my native language. The spectacle left me wondering whether I'd ended up on the island of Dr. Moreau instead of Mallorca.
Europe's a very different place than my countrymen are wont to believe. That's why the UK riots came as no surprise to me, other than I wonder what kept them.
I am shocked that so many of these commenters managed to find a doctor to implant reptilian brains in this day and age. Of course the riots are terrible and need to be stopped but do people really believe that depriving poor people is going to solve the problem? When you grow up in a society that treats you like a street animal, are you surprised when the animal decides to bite back?
"A riot is the language of the unheard." - Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
'curri August 11, 2011 at 3:57 AM
"Don't worry, there were neo-nazis out causing the police additional problems last night by attacking random non-white people."
The SPLC speaks-absolutely no proof necessary. But then I thought the police couldn't be bothered-they were just standing around and watching the looting as "boiled cabbage" says at 3:45 AM 8-11-11.'
Since the Southern Poverty Law Centre is an American organisation and not active in Enfield I imagine they have very little to say.
I'm referring to TV pictures last night of skin heads attacking a bus because there were three black passengers and police arresting them.
I respect this view and it probaly holds a large part of the explanation people now seek. BUT what needs to be mentioned as well is that this feeling of entitlement and this taking from society without giving anything mirrors only what can be seen on the top layers of society. Why should the precariate work for a minimum wage when bankers living like the sultans of ancient times equally subsidized by society and taxpayers money? They believe to have witnessed the complete and utter corruption of politics, the media the police so why should they respect the law? The rich have retreated to their private schools and what good is an $80000 education in a disfunctional school? You can not leave away this part of the equation. Virtue needs to spring from somewhere and the upper classes display only greed and emptiness for the lower classes to emulate.
Let's commit suicide by bringing the UK welfare state to America! It'll create a generation of feral children who will turn on us and destroy us all.
Yes, this is just the kind of fundamental transformation America needs! Why didn't Obama think of this? What's that? He has - and this is what fundamental transformation means to him? Oh. OK.
"Don't worry, there were neo-nazis out causing the police additional problems last night by attacking random non-white people."
The SPLC speaks-absolutely no proof necessary. But then I thought the police couldn't be bothered-they were just standing around and watching the looting as "boiled cabbage" says at 3:45 AM 8-11-11.
For the first two days of the riots, the Police were ordered to "stand and observe" looting but to take no action. Their befuddled leaders, up to their necks in Political Correctness, are one of the causes of these riots.
'Dean August 11, 2011 at 1:32 AM
Having read most of Mr. Dalrymple's writing I am left thinking two things:
1. This probably pains him more than most as he has been sounding the alarm for a long time.
2. Thank God Churchill didn't live to see this. I don't think he saved the nation 60+ years ago so that it could decay into what it is now.'
I think Dalrymple has used it to link to an irrelevant attack on the welfare state and Amy Winehouse. There have previously been investigations into why riots happen which he has not referred to. I understand this was a very short article but not referring to or explaining why the riots happened at this time.
2. It wouldn't have surprised Churchill at all. He took part in street fighting against gangs in 1911 at the battle of Stepney.
These riots spread quickly because of social media and the media coverage. It does not mean that these riots where a new one off event.
If these events had happened even fifteen years ago they would probably have been limited to London.
Gangs and criminality are an issue in this country. Our Prime Minister and the mayor of london were previously in a gang that smashed up businesses and broke shop windows in the Oxford area. Like them, many of the rioters will escape the consequences of this.
Brilliant. It is no surprise that Mr Dalrymple is rarely seen on British TV. He says the wrong things. It is no surprise that left wing correspondents here dismiss him immediately. It is no surprise that left wing chums of mine will dismiss him and go back to paying their Ukrainian maid.
If necessity is the mother of invention, then a welfare state which provides all necessities free of effort - kills invention.
'stormfront.org August 11, 2011 at 1:41 AM
a worthless article that fails to mention immigration or race,the majority of looters are non white.'
Don't worry, there were neo-nazis out causing the police additional problems last night by attacking random non-white people.
'AK August 10, 2011 at 11:37 PM
Ben2, what absolute twaddle--to the point that I think you must be pulling our leg. What. Absolute. Twaddle.'
Given I take the time to explain the situation and post links to things like the Scarman report, there were many points you could take the time to rebut.
Could you detail anything I've said that you disagree with and give reasons why?
"The riots are the apotheosis of the welfare state and popular culture in their British form. A population thinks (because it has often been told so by intellectuals and the political class) that it is entitled to a high standard of consumption, irrespective of its personal efforts; and therefore it regards the fact that it does not receive that high standard"
Substitute French, Greek, Spanish, American for British in the first sentence. Each country has nurtured the same class and now is struggling to solve the dilemma created by the welfare state
Great Britain refers to England, Scotland & Wales. Given that there were no riots in Scotland or Wales, this article should have been titled English Degeneracy on Parade!
'peterike August 10, 2011 at 8:40 PM
I wonder, Ben2, if you are an academic or a government worker in the welfare department, because it would be hard for anyone else to be so grimly determined to avoid reality.
To sum up all your endless crackpot blather: "it's never the fault of the criminals." That's it, right?'
I think you've completely failed to understand anything I've written. And a nice ad hominem attack to go with it.
Someone who explains why a volcano erupts isn't condoning volcanic eruptions.
People denying and ignoring the root causes of this mean we'll be back in exactly the same situation in a few years time. If we tackle alienation and gangs and the postcode wars then we might not be back in exactly the same place again.
Thank you Doc.
The relationship you explained between welfare, a sense of increasing entitlement, and riot violence has been enlightening to me. Thanks again.
The water cannons and plastic bullets are about 3 days too late. These anarchists deserve no mercy, and those who think rioting and destruction are "just good fun" need to feel the pain they are causing the decent hard working people of England.
a worthless article that fails to mention immigration or race,the majority of looters are non white.
Many Americans who have never traveled to Europe hold Europeans to be more sophisticated, educated and refined. This is probably thanks to the movies. The truth is, Europe is absolutely crawling with white trash. Just hang out at any train station over there to see my point. I just want to extend my thanks to the rioters for helping to dispel yet another Hollywood myth.
And while we are on the subject, I'd like to remind my fellow Americans that Europe is the bloodiest continent in all of human history. They've only just starting pretending to be peaceful and benevolent in the last 66 years. In reality they are fiercely tribal and bellicose. It's in their blood. Don't discount pan-European hostilities in our lifetimes.
Having read most of Mr. Dalrymple's writing I am left thinking two things:
1. This probably pains him more than most as he has been sounding the alarm for a long time.
2. Thank God Churchill didn't live to see this. I don't think he saved the nation 60+ years ago so that it could decay into what it is now.
I personally find it amusing that in so many comment sections on so many articles, here and elsewhere, people list off previous upheavals and riotous periods going back three hundred odd years. Its as if what is happening is some kind of geological fault, like London and its surrounding hamlets are a riot earthquake zone.
These riots are not some periodic phenomenon, they are the nexus of modern technology in the form of social networking tools and the desire to commit pointless crimes by the shiftless for their amusement. Normally any handful of these people wouldn't work themselves up to this level of chaos but as part of a larger mob, particularly if you are "summoned" by some other chav on your blackberry, they are able to generate great spectacles of destruction.
What you are seeing is the diffusion of responsibility and the abandonment of reason as a function of crowd size. The more the merrier, the higher the fire. Who knew these intoxicating heights of mindless nihilism, theft and vandalism could be reached? Isn't technology a wonderful thing?
In the same way that Egypt used twitter and facebook etc. to overthrow a government (along with Tunisia and others in progress) The yobs are using these tools for the destruction of their own neighborhoods. Having seen not the ennobling and liberating power of the tools but the brutal multiplicative force of them the lesson has been half-learned. What was perceived in London and also in places like Philadelphia (and other "flash-rob" hot spots in the US) is that whole armies of chavs could be summoned for a game of smash and grab.
The foreshadowing came when, early on, a few poor netizens accidentally invited friends to a house party that became an invitation to the world. Houses were utterly trashed as strangers ran amok secure in their numbers. All you are seeing now is the super-sizing of that concept as it moves from "beta" to full deployment.
The difference I see between this expansion of internet fueled chaos in the UK and its counterpart in the US is the reaction of the police.
The US police would have filled not just the local jails but the local Emergency wards. US citizens would have protected their property in some cases with lethal force as well. The knowledge of these two truths by our yobs would greatly tamp down this kind of mass wilding.
Of course we always have places like D.C. or Detroit where the police disfunction and gun laws make those cities as defenseless as London but overall we are quite a bit less likely to see this kind of thing here.
I'll leave it to the incredibly wise Mr. Dalrymple to explain the root causes but I did want to leave a my take on the immediate "tactical" aspects of modern yobbery.
"Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world". Again.
Piece of crap written by some right wing loon. Ignore him.
You know, if such hooligans tried this kind of stuff here in Texas, they would be shot by property owners possessing weapons. Maybe the UK could take a lesson.
Nothing worse than those commoners getting all uppity, eh Theodore?
There is no classified criminal anymore.Sadly but inevitably,it's just one jump away for any of us , surprising perhaps the perpetrator more than anyone else, and once the deed is done , the deed is done. There is no going back except to teeter between remorse and a sense of uneasy fulfillment that seeks justification.
I am sorry your life appears to be so miserable. The article was bad enough - until you took the baseball bat to Amy Winehouse. When your perfection receives its first blemish, please let me know.
Brilliant truthful analysis. Seeing things as they are, not as others want them to be. Bravo.
Why are the Danes so industrious when their range of benefits exceeds that of England's? Have they no lower class (apart from some immigrants whom they want to leave and prevent others from entering the country)?
I spent most of 1980 studying and working in England, when youth culture was in anti-Thatcher reactionary upheaval.
I was shocked at the extent of the welfare system. I had a roommate whose father drove a Jag and had a flat in Madrid as well as a large house in Kent. She told me she would be able to collect dole money at 18 if she didn't take "a Saturday job" -- or if she hadn't taken the "working holiday" we both saw advertised in the Evening Standard.
That job in itself was a union-buster -- the painting, decorating, carpentering, roofing and yard-work would have cost ten times as much if done by standard wage workers.
On the other hand, I also worked with genuinely poor boys from the inner city who badly wanted to work at anything, even sweeping floors, and told me they'd never held a job till this one, and that they hadn't been able to get dole.
There seemed to be many vagaries to the system, and a current British friend pointed out that as the upper middle-class girls father's paid high tax bills, it was only fair that the state give their kids pocket money.
I lived with a girl who decided she didn't like her job in a betting shop and not only collected dole at will, but the state took over the utilities bill in the nice, centrally located flat her parents had leased for her tenure at university.
My British friends were shocked when I told them I had to pay for my own university education, that the state subsidized nothing, as I was middle class, and my parents could contribute little, so I'd be saddled with loans I could ill afford in my twenties. I would have loved to have their easier path, but I observed it made even the well-situated lethargic.
I returned for a brief visit in 1981, between sending out resume ready and applying for entry level, frankly meinal jobs in New York. I found my London friends had sunk into a stupor. The most rebellious, a disenfranchised miner's son (mines were being shut down)had sunk into heroine use.
I have no idea how easy or hard it truly was for anyone to find work. I do know they took to heart the Smith's lyrics, England is mine and it owes me a living, no matter if the author meant them ironically.
For years I was a working, downtrodden young poor person in New York, but I at least had the pride of self-sufficiency to temper the esteem-deflating wealth all around me.
It's a tragedy that it had to come to this, and I agree that the chattering classes did no one of favor by encouraging them to identify as victims.
I guess he he has hit the nail on the head!
Ben2, what absolute twaddle--to the point that I think you must be pulling our leg. What. Absolute. Twaddle.
Dalrymple is absolutely correct. Our society's biggest problem is drugs - not heroin, cocaine or marijuana, but the most ubiquitous drug of dependency called state welfare.Only those people who are physically or mentally unable to work should receive welfare. Others who profit from it are leeches who sponge off their neighbours. The lesson is simple: those who choose to not work do not deserve to eat. Let the starve.
The diagreement Ben2 and I have is not so much over the facts, but the evaluation of them and at a fundamental level over moral values. I may agree that it is the relative deprivation of the looters, that he calls alienation that leads to their bad behavior. I simply have a different name for it: I call it envy. It is at the core of human nature, it is why Cain slew Abel and is the only sin in the decalouge that is attitudinal not behavioral.
The difference between the right and the left is normative. To the left looting emerging from alienation is unfortnate but understandable and close to justifiable in a society where "Wealth is displayed by possession of certain items, almost like a uniform. To be seen as poor is to be seen as a lesser being." Absent changing human nature or somehow making humans less materialistic the only solution is to the alienation problem is to ensure that displays of possession are equalized by redistribution.
To the right the looting is unfortunate, perhaps understandable but absolutely unjustified criminal behavior. Frankly the looters have access to Smith's "linen shirt" and even if they don't envy is never a morally justifiable reason for theft and destruction. Envy, which is the problem not alienation, is kept in check in a free society by neither endless egalitarianism or by a strict class system but by a functitoning system of justice which punishes criminal acts and perhaps more important by a self-reliant people who have gratitude for what they have and ascribe to a moral code of decency.
I am convinced the freedom Western Civilization has enjoyed is in the long run threatened by the entitlement mentality spawned by well meaning but misguided theorists who buy into the alienation hypothesis as a moral narrative and design social policies that reflect those assumptions.
the history of England shows periodic violence from below, in the 14th C, and later; each outbreak savage, if different in cause and nature, not to mention the early 19th. Shakespeare has a couple of bad riots, as we many recall.
As for welfare, try New York in the Civil War years and after, Detroit, Harlem, etc. Not that the current horrors are negligible, when their football stadia erupt yearly.
The same thing will happen again and we will find that politicians and the so-called inteligentsia will have learned nothing useful from these riots.
Sounds like Enoch Powell circa 1968.
What is the solution? Let the achievers achieve and let the lazy sink. Take care of those who truly cannot fend for themselves. Not every thoroughbred is a winner, not every wolf will rise to alpha status, and so it is with human beings as well. What is truly unfair is hoding back the ambitious because, well, some people chose not to compete in a capitalist society, some are too foolish to be competitive. And, in order for them to have a higher sense of worth or more self esteem, we need to make everyone conform to the standards of the lowest common denominator. Punishing achievement, innovation, hard work, or even dumb luck will result in a society that is ever in decline. That is prcisely what has happened to Brittain, a once mighty economic powerhouse that is now flat on it's back and now the United States is well along the same path. The industrial revolution was born in your country for god's sake! Look at you now, a pathetic shell of your greatness. It does not have to be that way. Dig that sonofabitch, Marx, up and get him out of your country. His ideas and philosophy are your downfall. Accept that all of us cannot occupy the highest tiers of society or all be rich, but make the playing field fair so those who can, do! Unfettered greed is a sin, but so is ENVY. Being jealous of those who have accumulated wealth is not an excuse to confiscate it and redistribute it to the lazy and stupid among us, sanctioning politicos to do so is no better than sanctioning the robbing of a bank. Both are theft and both are wrong! Besides, the altruism of the ruling class tends to be a false one, a plastic facade of compassion over the framework of power and greed. Deceivers of the weak-minded is all they are. The west is in decline, not because it has to be but because we have abandoned the things that led to our ascension and pursued a Utopian society that is unachievable. We have abandoned our principles, loosened our morals to the point where they don't exist any more. Everything is relative but nothing is wrong. I am fighting like hell to hold on to what made my country great and it is high time that you Brits do the same. Your country did not rise to it's once-great stature by embracing Marxist, socialist, redistributive, or welfare state claptrap. But, by embracing it, you have sunk it!
Feed a man a fish and you've fed him for a day. Tomorrow, he'll be rioting for free fish. And Ipods. Thus is the moral bankruptcy of the modern welfare state.
Dalrymple is a real treat to read. Wish he would lighten up a little sometimes though. Life goes on.
The question for me is not why Britain is bankrupt, but why it took so long.
If our great capitalist system can't provide jobs then why are we surprised when binge drinking becomes a habit and the generational spiral takes over -- and the result is FASD. And Dalrymple calls himself a Doctor!
Defending the Indefensible
Driven by the Declaration's inexorable logic that "that all men are created equal," pressure rose for the defenders of the slave system to explain their continued participation in the peculiar institution. John C. Calhoun, in 1838, noted that the defense of slavery had changed:
"This agitation [from abolitionists] has produced one happy effect; it has compelled us . . . to look into the nature and character of this great institution, and to correct many false impressions . . . Many . . . once believed that [slavery] was a moral and political evil; that folly and delusion are gone; we now see it in its true light . . . as the most safe and stable basis for free institutions in the world [emphasis ours].
Calhoun espoused the labor theory of value - the backbone of Marxist economic thinking - and in this he was joined by George Fitzhugh, Virginia's leading proslavery intellectual and proponent of socialism. Fitzhugh exposed slavery as the non-market, anti-capitalist construct that it was by arguing that not only should all blacks be slaves, but so should most whites. "We are all cannibals." Fitzhugh intoned, "Cannibals all!" Slaves Without Masters, the subtitle of his book Cannibals All! (1854), offered a shockingly accurate expose of the realities of socialism - or slavery, for to Fitzhugh they were one and the same.
from: A Patriots History of the United States
It is not just the intellectuals and the political class that have given the British underclass its over exaggerated sense of entitlement.
Blame also, and maybe even more so, the pathetic religious leaders (clergy & bishops), who have perverted the term 'social justice' to mean socialism and radical egalitarianism.
I've been waiting all week for Dalrymple's take on the riots to be printed. Thank you City Journal!
The sense of entitlement manifested by the minority underclass is apparently the same in Britain as it is the US.
Lower-income people who never lifted a finger to work or help themselves believe that the hard-working taxpayers should support them and give them everything they want. This attitude was directly caused by the "limousine liberals" who told minotities they deserved everything, no matter how they lived their lives.
The liberals like to play philanthropist with Other People's Money, but they have about as much understanding of human behavior and the underclasss as a society matron at a charity ball.
There is truth to assertion that multiculturalism doesn't work.
It'll have to get a lot worse before anything changes.
Really? Is David Cameron intentionally trying to restrict your oil drilling industry through onerous regulation and the syrupy slow approval of permits? Is he saddling your coal industry with impossible-to-achieve air quality standards via the unelected sycophants in the Environmental Protection Agency? Does he give a subtle nod to another bunch of unelected thugs in the National Labor Relations Board to harass Boeing from building an additional plant in another state, all as Obama is doing?
If this is what your Prime Minister looks to for inspiration, then he has much more fodder to consider than he realizes. All this time, I was under the impression that Obama is trying to turn the U.S. into a socialist society like yours, not the other way around.
I agree entirely. Modern politics is all about getting more than your fair share, at the expense of other - more productive - people. We are no longer individuals seeking to do our best, both for ourselves and for society at large, but blocs of economics interests eager to loot from any other group who is less well organised or that is weaker politically than ourselves.
Granted, but what are the remedies?
I was with you up to the Amy Winehouse remark. She was an amazing & unique musician - in spite of herself -, not a life-style model, at least not for any of her admirers that I've known.
Okay. You're surprised this didn't happen sooner. Diagnosis is easy. What, if anything do you have to say about the likely prognosis for this sclerotic welfare state from which you have exited?
When the yobs get together to attempt, however ineptly, to save what is left of their England, you sneer at them. Sneering seems to be your default mode.
But you're careful to sneer-from-a-distance. We didn't fail to observe that you collect a pension from this failed state and you spend the money elsewhere. How convenient...for you.
Your education and training no doubt took place over the bodies, souls and minds of these people you disdain. If they hadn't been in place, what would you have done, Doctor? Practiced on the wealthy?
So they're yobs and you're a mandarin. Can't have one without the other now can you?
I wonder, Ben2, if you are an academic or a government worker in the welfare department, because it would be hard for anyone else to be so grimly determined to avoid reality.
To sum up all your endless crackpot blather: "it's never the fault of the criminals." That's it, right?
Let a thousand excuses bloom.
The sad thing is you will go to your grave -- very possibly ushered there early by one of the vile thugs you spend your life making excuses for -- without having the slightest clue that you are not the shining moral avatar you consider yourself to be (really Ben, ALL your ranting is just another way of saying "look at how superior I am"). In truth, you're just a really stupid rube that bought a bucket of frozen piss because some Marxist told you it was ice cream.
You airbrained twit. Amy Winehouse was a musical genius who worked hard, harder than a psychiatrist who lounges in his comfy chair pontificating. She had a terrible self-destructive addictive personality. How dare you compare a talented hard-worker (but highly disturbed) person to welafre louts.
No doubt Billie Holiday, Chet Baker, Robert Johnson, and many other great jazz and blue artists don't fit your fantastic fantasy of heroine who protects against bad behavior, What singer does? And how is that their job? Blues and jazz artists must also be hero and heroines? Where do they sign on for that responsibility?
By your idiosyncratic logic the Van Gogh and Gaugin should have been stable role models for the poor youth, who of course, look to artists for their role models.
Grow up, Doctor.
"...for dependency does not promote gratitude.
Also, as you describe, the police situation is, for someone sitting here in the States, completely befuddling. We have our share of 'over exuberant' police in some situations and I'm not one to revel in them 'busting heads' but I cannot fathom them here putting up with this nonsense.
I see the thugs' apologists are coming out of the woodwork.
Poverty does not cause crime. Period. A terrible childhood does not fatalistically make one a sociopath. Period. Lack of opportunity in A, B, and C does not forever preclude someone from finding avenues to success in D, E, and F.
I could win the childhood horror story contest over 99% of the readership of this publication. So spare me. Either I've been through it or my siblings have, and I know the truth.
Anyone who has ever grown up with brutal trauma and suffering and has overcome it to become a better, stronger person -- and guess what, there are plenty of us -- will never, ever mouth sick excuses for sociopaths and barbarians. Because we know it isn't circumstance, it isn't money or lack thereof, it isn't education and it isn't even your parents or your family that ultimately determine who you become. It is YOU -- you, the individual, taking a long hard look at yourself and making a decision about how you will respond to the crap sandwich that life has dealt you. And realizing that, yeah, you DO have a choice how to respond.
If life were simple determinism, the millions who have suffered and overcome would not exist.
The apologists, by their bitter condemnation of "society" and "injustice" in the effort to paint thugs and barbarians as victims, reveal that they themselves know precious little about either true hardship or genuine good character.
From today's WS JOURNAL:
If there's a mystery here, it's that the recent violence is itself such an extraordinary happening. As writer and former prison doctor Theodore Dalrymple recently told this newspaper, "the question in Britain is not why there are so many burglars, but why there are so few."
He explained that "only about one in 12 domestic burglaries is cleared up by the police," and that "of the burglars who are convicted, only about one in 12 or 13 is sent to prison."
Morality is passé.
Who needs religion?
The Brits that I run into in the U.S. are not street punks, but a lot of them have been obnoxious, boorish drunks.
My heritage is English, Scot, and German. I'm about to disinherit the British part.
On the other hand, these scum could be useful if the UK ever decides to restore Normandy to the Crown. Perhaps it is time to kick out the evil French occupying force.
Absolutely the BEST article I have read this year. Should be required reading for every thinking person.
On the other hand, these scum could be useful if the UK ever decides to restore Normandy to the Crown. Perhaps it is time to kick out the evil French occupying force.
The surprising thing about the riots is that they did not occur sooner and have not yet become chronic.
It's a nit to pick, but still....
Dr. D. is a brilliant man, and I'm sorry indeed to see that his home is suffering like this. I hope the Brits and the Americans finally take his message to heart.
Gee sounds like Philadelphia.
An article with very little to disagree with. A sense of entitlement seems to be part and parcel of the "young". It's hard to blame it on them; many of their parents are that way too. It's possible to have rigorous standards and expectations and still have compassion for them. Too often have I heard, "well we don't do it that way now." However, I think there is a place for "This is the way I want it done, because.... and I say so."
'AK August 10, 2011 at 6:07 PM
"If anything these riots are the product of British society becoming more like American society."
And you apparently can't resist becoming more like us, despite the fact that you are all, of course, so much more intelligent, cultured, peaceable, and sane than we are, as any one of you will point out given half a second.'
We have a corrupt ruling class who push Americanisation as a means to solidify their power and put themselves in the position to hand out fat contracts to people who will reward them. All three of our political parties are at it and no one will break the consensus and take action against corruption.
Personal gain lies at the heart of the 'reform' agenda we currently have.
Trickle down economics has almost buried the US economy in the last 30 years but has increased the share of the national wealth held by the top 3% of the population. Neo-liberalism in the UK has done the same.
Some people see that as a good thing, which is why tax cuts for the rich are pushed as encouraging 'growth' when they are the least efficient form of stimulus to encourage growth and the post WWII golden age had significantly higher taxation to the point where Richard Nixon would be to the left of Obama economically now.
Even if the US is now doomed in terms of its role as global leader, and there are enough people in the US political class actively working to bring it down to make this pretty likely, then for the sake of the rest of the world we need to carefully pace it's decline to avoid the sort of damage that happened when the stalinist USSR collapsed and there was no coherent reform plan.
However as the current big player the US has set the economic agenda across the world and our governments of the last 30 years have unfortunately followed yours rather than mapping their own course.
Read the longer post where I refer to the inquiry into the 1981 Brixton riots which started under the same circumstances, providing a link to the Scarman report and a link to the Unicef report slating our society for raising a generation in poverty with no stake in our society.
I'll deal with each of your points in turn.
1. The looters are young and from poorer neighborhoods.
This is generally true. The youngest offender processed by the courts so far was 11.
However there is an element of criminal organisation in the riots, as we have an established gang culture cemented during the postcode wars, where the police and state failed to tackle the domination of some areas by gangs.
To give you a flavour of this here is an article.
Gang culture in the UK predates WWII and dates further back than the 'penny mobs' who's exploits were covered in the 'penny' papers and penny dreadfuls (the American equivalent would be pulp novels) of the late 19th century.
The postcode wars combined with poverty means that gangs offer a career path to acquire the goods in a consumerist society that hard work doesn't. Many gangs have youth wings of children below 16 who are used as footsoldiers, and in the riots and looting as those who break into and enter shops while older gang members co-ordinate it.
There were numerous anti-gang groups run by local communities, many of whom are now facing funding cuts.
'2. The looters have grown up in welfare state though not as generous as other European nations provides them with adequate food (none seem emaciated) clothing (they dress rather stylishly) and cell phones used to help facilitate the looting--
no real deprivation by any sane international or historical standard'
This gets into the far more complicated definition of poverty.
Adam Smith's examination of poverty in Wealth of Nations
'A linen shirt, for example, is, strictly speaking, not a necessary of life. The Greeks and Romans lived, I suppose, very comfortably, though they had no linen. But in the present times, through the greater part of Europe, a creditable day-labourer would be ashamed to appear in public without a linen shirt, the want of which would be supposed to denote that disgraceful degree of poverty, which, it is presumed, nobody can well fall into without extreme bad conduct.'
Smith is talking about the aspect of poverty that prevents individuals taking part in their society.
Americans tend to talk about absolute poverty, whereas Western democracies tend to talk about poverty with aspects of alienation from society. In both cases the ability to feed and cloth oneself and have adequate shelter is the core of it, but the ability to function in society and be socially mobile is a regarded as important in European societies.
In Norway for example your parents earnings have virtually no effect on what level your earnings would be. You succeed or fail on your own merits.
In America or the UK now then the most important factor in what your earnings will be is your parents earnings. Earnings are a crude indicator of class, but in an analysis of populations as a whole ignoring special cases (for example athletes or lottery winners) the class structure in a country like America is far more rigid than a country like Germany.
Also cell phones are pretty cheap. You can get a new cell phone on a contract for 10 pounds per month, roughly equivalent to 15 of your dollars, and cell phones are now seen as necessities, particularly if you are looking for work or spend a reasonable amount of time outside the house.
Taking ownership of a single electronic item as an indicator of wealth when said item is not particularly expensive and is regarded as a necessity is misleading. You could argue someone isn't poor as they have a microwave by the same standard.
We both live in societies where wealth is regarded as of paramount importance. Wealth is displayed by possession of certain items, almost like a uniform. To be seen as poor is to be seen as a lesser being, something which is the opinion of a lot of commentators on both sides of the Atlantic. People set out to obtain the possessions which mark them as a valid member of society.
'3. Most of the looters are chronically unemployed although many Eastern European kids do a lot of menial jobs in the UK that these kids could do.'
Many of the looters are under 16 and too young to work.
There are over 2 million unemployed people in the UK at the moment and less than 500,000 vacant positions. The figure of 500,000 is misleading as these are not necessarily full time positions. I've seen jobs advertised which give 4 hours a week, each on separate days. People will not take such jobs because the amount of income they generate is usually less than transport and marginal costs.
Eastern European migrant workers are an issue, in the same way as British migrant workers in France and Spain are an issue. The free movement of labour to prevent labour shortages causing increases in wages is a key part of the EU along with free movement of capital.
While the UK government were unwise not to place any conditions in terms of numbers who could migrate, UK employers value workers without families (and the costs they incur), with marginal housing costs (living 7-8 to a house in some cases) and no stake in the society in which they work (and hence willing to break tax and labour laws).
Full unemployment is not an aim of our government, or any government of ours in the last thirty years.
However during the current financial crisis youth unemployment has ballooned, and programs and training designed to get young people into work have been cut. Before you say 'Why don't they read a book in the library about x,y or z and educate themselves in a trade?' our government are currently closing libraries.
The issue is far more complicated than the article gives credit for.
There is also a report written regarding the 1981 Brixton riots, and I recommend you at least look at the wikipedia page.
The issue of civil unrest is not tied to the welfare state, or we would not have seen in previous to WWII, in the 20s, 30s, 1900s, 19th century, 18th century, etc etc.
The general pattern is that a single inciting incident causes unrest arising out of existing social conditions. In this case a shooting, in 1981 the death of a middle aged woman, in the United States the verdict in the Rodney King trial for example.
There is a long history of the bottom of our society rising up and wrecking stuff that long predates the welfare state. Here is a quote regarding the first poll tax revolt (not to be confused with the one in the 1990s).
'To speak the straight truth, the outrages and other things which the poor commons have suffered of late, and have suffered in common to a degree not before known... was the cause that moved them to do the riot and mischief that they did.'
- Sir Richard Waldegrave, 1381
This is a special level of stupidity.
Regarding people wanting high levels of consumption: Actually there's rampant poverty http://bit.ly/qBAuvd http://bit.ly/prAvgy Do you think not wanting to live in poverty could be as much, or more, of a motivator than becoming rich?
Regarding them wanting high consumption levels irrespective of their personal efforts: Actually, people's ability to get a decent lifestyle is incredibly linked to the wealth they start out in life with http://bit.ly/pizU3Y It's not completely correct to say that poor people will continue to be poor REGARDLESS of their personal effort, but it's far more accurate than what you're saying.
Regarding the perceived injustice of people being stuck in poverty: It's actually quantified injustice. We have reams of statistics showing that people in this country have all the odds stacked against them. Just look at the last link I posted and compare the ease of going from poorness to prosperity in the UK to Denmark. The Macpherson and Scarman reports are good places to start.
People not being deprived: This is pure stupidity, not based on a lack of knowledge or viewing things in a particular way, but because it is really dumb. Deprivation refers to a severe lack personal or material needs. It does not mean that someone is a hermit who owns nothing and has none of their needs met, nor does it refer to how their needs are met (for instance by benefits paid for by taxes). Stating that people have had an $80,000 education (which is less likely to be useful if they're poor http://bit.ly/nmrO7S) does not mean that someone cannot be deprived as they are two completely separate things.
That the endemic feeling amongst poor people just that they just want to be looked after to a high level without working: Not even justified or reasoned in anyway. Nothing but a filthy chunk of prejudice.
Long experiences of impunity from the law: Macpherson and Scarman reports again. See such things as organisational racism. Also note the chequered history of the IPCC and it's predecessor organisations.
All in all a load of spurious tosh typed out without a moment of reflection or insight.
This article has hit the nail right on the head. We are seeing the same results of liberal social engineering in every corner of Western society! We have seen these actions in Greece, Spain, Wisconsin, etc. The root cause is always the same, an attitude of entitlement and dissatisfaction with the reality that, left unchecked, the parasite will kill the host. This is also the result of reckless politicians promising far more than could be sustained for their own political advantage and never caring what would happen in the end because they would be long out of office when the other shoe dropped. It is raining shoes now everywhere. We are on the verge of global financial collapse! The road ahead will be arduous and painful. What sort of world emerges at the end is unclear.
Well said. We have created a generation of monsters who are so completely selfish, they have no problem spitting in the face of those who provided their lack of ambition. It's like the parent of the spoiled child who can't believe his child turned out to be an ungrateful brat.
"If anything these riots are the product of British society becoming more like American society."
And you apparently can't resist becoming more like us, despite the fact that you are all, of course, so much more intelligent, cultured, peaceable, and sane than we are, as any one of you will point out given half a second.
Ben 2 The two short versions you refer to as "evidence" to back your arguments provide scant "evidence"--just another set take on the facts on par with Dalrymple's.
Here are the facts I observe as an American about the UK disturbances. 1. The looters are young and from poorer neighborhoods. 2. The looters have grown up in welfare state though not as generous as other European nations provides them with adequate food (none seem emaciated) clothing (they dress rather stylishly) and cell phones used to help facilitate the looting--
no real deprivation by any sane international or historical standard
3. Most of the looters are chronically unemployed although many Eastern European kids do a lot of menial jobs in the UK that these kids could do.
If any of these facts are wrong, I'd like to know, because it seems to me the rest is based on one's take on the facts. Your take: the rioters are despondent and angry becasue of discrimination and a lack of opportunity--they are not at fault is society that is at fault becasue they haven't been given enough. Theodore's take:the rioters are low class criminals and they are that because they have never had to take any responsibility for anything by anyone.
As shallow instant analysis goes I take Theodore's over yours.
'mickeymat August 10, 2011 at 5:02 PM
Worse still is that what we now see in Britain is Obama's vision for America. Spread the wealth around means work so we can take your money from you and give it to those who have less than you do. Cheers.'
This is ridiculously out of touch with reality. How is Obama doing this? An emphasis on tea over coffee? Mandating everyone develop a highly evolved sense of irony?
If anything these riots are the product of British society becoming more like American society.
Our Prime Minister looks to America for inspiration and is actively trying to make out society more like yours.
Reducing social mobility and making education less available by increasing the cost are two examples of concrete steps being taken to make Britain less European and more American.
Worse still is that what we now see in Britain is Obama's vision for America. Spread the wealth around means work so we can take your money from you and give it to those who have less than you do. Cheers.
Thank you and well said. It's nice to hear some speak some sense at last
Given you lived in Birmingham for a time you should probably recall it is in fact a city.
The Scarman report into the similar Brixton riots in 1981 identified the root causes of this, I recommend you give it a reading.
Link to the pdf of the report is at the bottom.
You also fail to explain why the country with the second least generous welfare state in the West falling into disorder as the underclass vent their frustration and misanthropy is the fault of the welfare state when many other countries with more generous welfare states are not seeing this sort of disorder.
The 2007 UNICEF report gives an explanation as to where these rioters have come from.
An article looking at the report.
The report itself.
A key quote from one of the authors:
'Professor Jonathan Bradshaw, from York University, one of the report's authors, put the UK's poor ratings down to long term under-investment and a "dog-eat-dog" society.
"In a society which is very unequal, with high levels of poverty, it leads on to what children think about themselves and their lives. That's really what's at the heart of this," he said.'
British politicians and the intelligentsia have been told time and again what the problem is and have ignored it, you are right to say that.
However you've done the same in order to blame the welfare state.
R U describing Obama? If not the description matches him perfectly.
The making of a depend subculture, has been the lefts goal since the late fifties, early sixties. The education system has promoted it because the statists have taken over the system. This will be a long and hard u-turn , the responsible black community has taken 40 years to see that these 'gifts' of government were just another form of a nicer financial slavery ,given by a benevolent, ruling class, liberals, that decieved them...america is the only country that doesn't care what you are..if you want to work and create a business you can.. europe with all its pomp and fanfare won't, and can't because of its socalistic base.everyone is equally poor
Excellently stated. Concise, to the point and no bloviation (like me). The United States will soon discover these facts, but the politburo members will promise more and more. Since we are on the verge of collapse and these types of peoples are incapable of thinking beyond their next government check will not realize the collapse they cause out of their laziness will result in their getting nothing. These fools are not born every minute, they are born every second.
Broad and shallow. Lacking detail, and simultaneously lacking depth of analysis. A scatter-gun right-wing rant, spattering easy stereotypes about, whilst pretending not to be what he most despises; an intellectual member of the political class.
Dull, dull, dull.
Don't you have any clever, articulate, substantial right-wing thinkers (of the Malcolm Muggeridge Peregrine Worsthorne tradition) with whom we can actually engage? Or would such people be too 'intellectual'.?
I agree and I blame it on group-polarization, which is a little less ad-hominem. http://constructiverecollection.blogspot.com/2011/05/how-necessary-are-independent-rejection.html
Brilliant, as usual. Why don't political idealogues look at the results of their entitlement policies? If they truly consider themselves as social architects why can't they look at the 'big' picture?
pacificism brought to extremes weakens the country'a ability to defend itself.
when a country depends upon a police force to keep order, and then does not allow them to keep order, because policing is by consent, there is something erroneous in the political climate, is there not?
The usage of deadly forces by rioting populaces must be responded to by deadly force usage as necessary to protect the policing forces.
Heavens, can society change. What would the Britons who relieved Lucknow think of these folk?