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Posted by on Apr 10, 2007 in At TMV | 34 comments

“Britain is Dead”

A short, but passionate and angry article at National Review Online by John Derbyshire. He writes:

I am at the point with this business about the British hostages where I really can’t trust myself to post any more, I’m so mad. Toby Harnden indeed says much of what needs saying, but I think he is too kind to the enlisted men. They are saps and worms, insults to the Queen’s uniform. I’d better change track right here—see what I mean?
I’ve told this story before, so I hope I’ll be forgiven for telling it again. My Mum, Esther Alice Knowles (1912-98), eleventh child of a pick’n’shovel coal miner, in one of the last conversations I had with her, said: “I know I’m dying, but I don’t mind. At least I knew England when she was England.”

It’s all gone now, “dead as mutton,” as English people used to say. Now there is nothing there but a flock of whimpering Eloi, giggling over their gadgets, whining for their handouts, crying for their Mummies, playing at soldiering for reasons they can no longer understand, from lingering habit. Lower the corpse down slowly, shovel in the earth. England is dead.

I am less pessimistic.

I think that Britain can still get her soul back.

The sad reality is that Britain serves as an example of Europe as a whole right now: it is not just Britain that has lost her soul, it is Western Europe as a whole. We, Europeans, have become, I would not call it “appeasers”, but apathetic. We do not care about our respective countries any longer, nor about morality. We care about, living peaceful, easy, relaxed lives. “Don’t disturb” is a sign that should hang on every door of every home in Europe. “Whatever happens, don’t disturb. If Iran develops nukes – terrible, but please don’t disturb us too much.”

When something terrible happens, we shrug our shoulders and move on, the only thing that is able to get us ‘warm’ again, instead of our constant state of being lukewarm, is America, and then in a bad way. When something goes wrong in the world, it is America’s fault (but hey, nothing we can do about it) to begin with. And if it is not America’s fault, well, it is probably our fault and we should apologize for whatever it is our ancestors might have done wrong once. A long time ago, who cares, it is still our fault.

The irony is that it is our fault in a way, just not the way most people think: it is our fault in so far that we do not stand up for ourselves anymore, that we do not care about our past anymore, that we despise using the words ‘right’ or ‘wrong’ because, well, there’s no such thing as ‘right’ or ‘wrong’, it’s all a matter of perspective and so on.

H/t Shaun Mullen for e-mailing me the link to the article at NRO.