The truth is that support for the BNP is not really a protest vote against a racially mixed society: it is a cry of rage about the quality of life in some of the poorest areas in the country. There is not much cheerleading for the far Right in the streets of Chelsea. The BNP is exploiting a growing sense of frustration with genuine problems: the lack of affordable housing, the increase in low-level crime, the failure of inner-city schools, the loss of a sense of identity among white working-class men following the collapse of traditional industries. These failures are not really anything to do with race — although, of course, the more people come to live in an area, the more stretched local resources will be — but the BNP has diverted a general sense of grievance into a specific feeling of unfairness based on a perception that there is “us and them.”br> Of course, this isn’t to say that there isn’t an us and a them. But the “them” in this case isn’t the immigrants themselves nearly so much as it is the liberal multiculturalists in the dominant culture who want to prevent them from assimilating.
One of the grievances of the poorer sorts of Britons, mentioned above, may be the one which is most assiduously fostered by the media, namely “the growing income gap between rich and poor,” an old chestnut trotted out by the American media even more promiscuously than by the British. For example, on April 16 the New York Times told us of how “Revival in Japan Brings Widening of Economic Gap.” No need to ask what “gap” that might be! “Japan’s economy,” said the Times, “after more than a decade of fitful starts, is once again growing smartly. Instead of rejoicing, however, Japan is engaged in a nationwide bout of hand-wringing over increasing signs that the new economy is destroying one of the nation’s most cherished accomplishments: egalitarianism.” I don’t know enough about Japan to be able to say whether or not that’s true about the hand-wringing, but if it is the tender-minded Japanese are wringing their hands over a tautology. Or so it seems to me. The fabled gap that causes the media, at least, so much anguish has always struck me as being an obvious and necessary artifact of the growth that otherwise appears so desirable. Any time an economy begins to grow, the people at the top are bound to get the new money first — that is before it “trickles down” (dread words!) to those in the lower income cohorts. By the same token, the only way to bring about greater equality of incomes is for growth to be stagnant, as it was for over a decade in Japan. But, as I may have had occasion to say before, I’m not an economist and should be glad to be put right by anybody who is and who may come to read this.
A man of faith in a godless age is hitting Americans where it hurts.
Mr. and Mrs. American Spectator Reader, let P.J. O’Rourke talk sense to your kids.
In Britain, defending your property can get you life.
The debacle of this president’s administration is both a cause and a symptom of the decline of American values. Unless Congress impeaches him, that decline will go on unchecked. An eminent jurist surveys the damage and assesses the chances for the recovery of our culture.
It won’t take long for conservatives to scratch this presidential wannabe off their 2008 scorecard.
The American Christmas, like the songs that celebrate it, makes room for everybody under the rainbow. Is that why so many people seem to be hostile to it?
Was the President done in by the economy, or by the politics of the economy?