Monday, June 27, 2016

Boston, Lincolngrad: I saw the seething resentment. Now it is time to finish the revolution

'Remainers refused to be aware of the quiet seething resentment about mass migration that I found in Boston four summers ago. The established parties ignored this, and the liberal thought police tried to claim it was bigotry'
'Remainers refused to be aware of the quiet seething resentment about mass migration that I found in Boston four summers ago. The established parties ignored this, and the liberal thought police tried to claim it was bigotry'

They shouldn’t have tried to scare us. It is a sign of how little the Remainers understand or know about Britain, and above all about England, that they thought that would work.

I do sometimes wonder if these odd denatured shiny types, who actively prefer foreign rule to their own, ever visit their own country. Confined to glossy multicultural London neighbourhoods for most of the year, they then hurry abroad.

Most of them are more familiar with Florence or Barcelona than they are with the equal glory of Lincoln Cathedral, whose history, beauties and significance are alike unknown to them.

Well, they should have tried harder to visit Britain. They might also have learned to like it, its unspectacular difference from anywhere else in the world (I know, I’ve visited 57 other countries), its gruff reserve that masks much deeper feelings, and its ancient dislike of being pushed around.

The Remainers’ snobbery was their undoing. They believed they were superior to their fellow countrymen and women, when they were just luckier and richer. Judging from their response to the referendum result, many of them still do.

For instance, they refused to be aware of the quiet seething resentment about mass migration that I found in Boston four summers ago. The established parties ignored this, and the liberal thought police tried to claim it was bigotry.

But it was real, and this was reflected on Thursday night in a 77.27 per cent turnout and a 75.5 per cent vote to leave in that town. I do not see how these people could be clearer about their discontent over the enforced transformation of their lives. I am amazed at their patience. I strongly advise against ignoring them any longer.

Of course, it’s not just about immigration. A wonderful alliance, which I have long hoped for, has been forged in this campaign.

It has brought together two groups who had never really met before. The first group are the social and moral conservatives, whose views the Blairised Tory Party despised, while it still relied on their money and their votes. The second are the working-class families whose votes the Blairised Labour Party relied on, while it dismissed and ignored their concerns.

It is not just mass migration that worries them. They are also distressed about the decline in their standard of living, the pressure to get into debt, the way good state schools are reserved for the rich and cunning, the shrivelling of opportunities for the young, the unchecked spread of crime and disorder, the ridiculous cost of housing, and the general overcrowding of everything from roads to hospitals.
If it weren’t for old tribal party labels, these two groups would long ago have realised they were friends and allies.

They would have combined in a mutiny against the PR men and hedge-fund types who lounge arrogantly on the upper deck of politics, claiming that none of these problems exist – because they don’t experience them themselves.

For instance I, and millions of Tory voters, have far more in common with excellent Labour MPs such as Kate Hoey or Frank Field than I do with David Cameron and the weird, obedient, meaningless quacking robots with which he has filled the Cabinet Room and the Tory benches in the House of Commons.
But the ossified party system kept them apart until now. They could not and did not combine to defeat their common enemy. And so at Election after Election, those who merely wanted to live their lives much as they had always lived them, and were baffled and pained by the unending changes imposed on them, had nowhere to turn.

The parties they thought of as their own were in fact in an alliance against them. Blair became Cameron and Cameron became Blair, and after a while it was impossible to tell which was which.

It’s not just me saying this. As Janan Ganesh, a writer in the Financial Times, recently noted: ‘Conservatives and moderate adherents to the Labour cause share more with each other than with the rest of their own parties… Against them in this referendum is a party in all but name… drawn from the Tory Right and the Labour Left and incubated in the Leave campaign. These politicians are conservative and anti-establishment at the same time.’

Noting that people such as Labour’s Ed Balls and Chancellor George Osborne have much more in common than they like to pretend, Mr Ganesh says: ‘These politicians have the same basic orientation.’
He believes it would be ‘myopic’ for them to ‘remain separate out of fealty to a party system that was forged in the industrial age for an empire nation’. And he adds: ‘I hear the Tory and Labour moderates newly mingling in the Remain offices rather get on.’

I bet they do. That is why I don’t care who fills David Cameron’s place at the head of a Tory Party that long ago outlived its usefulness. There shouldn’t be any more David Camerons, thanks very much. In future, people like him should stand openly as what they are, globalist pro-migration Blairite liberals, and not call themselves Conservatives. So the important thing is that we do not miss this great moment when the people have joined together against a discredited and failed elite.

What we need is for the Tory Party and the Labour Party to collapse and split and be replaced by two new parties that properly reflect the real divisions in the country.
Since both the old parties are empty and decrepit, with few active members and reliant on state support and dodgy billionaires, the collapsing and splitting bit should not be too hard. The replacement is up to us, the British people, who have now demonstrated our power if we unite.

But it can only happen if the next stage is a General Election, which is much more urgent than a Tory (or Labour) leadership contest.

Thursday’s vote shows that the House of Commons is hopelessly unrepresentative. The concerns and hopes of those who voted to leave the EU – 51.9 per cent of the highest poll since 1992 – are reliably supported by fewer than a quarter of MPs, if that. Ludicrously, neither of the big parties agrees with a proven majority of the electorate – and neither shows any sign of changing its policies as a result.
If we do nothing about this scandal, for it is a scandal, then how can we be sure we will get out of the EU at all? The elite is rallying and whimpering that the minority must be treated ‘with respect’– more than they would have done had they won.

Parliament is pro-EU. The Civil Service is pro-EU, the judiciary is pro-EU, the BBC is pro-EU and is now returning to its old bad habits after an admittedly creditable attempt at balance. Its 6am radio news bulletin on Friday said, falsely and dangerously, that the pound had ‘collapsed’ following the result and there will be a lot more of this foolish panic-mongering in days to come.

We have had only half a revolution. If we do not now complete it, we will have missed an unequalled opportunity to reclaim what is and always was ours.

More from Peter Hitchens for The Mail on Sunday...

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