Matthew Parris is largely hidden behind the Times paywall these days, so you probably won't have seen a piece on Saturday which takes us all to task for being angry with the hated triumverate of bent politicians, criminal journos and corrupt bankers. It's really all our own fault, suggests Matthew; they're all products of our creation.
What utter tosh. Even a cursory reading of the blogs, forums, comments and responses online over the past six years or so from the politically engaged across the spectrum would reveal a whole world of warnings and dissatisfaction; the shoddiness of cheap Chinese imports, the dumbing down of broadcasting and the media, the venality of politicians, the avarice of bankers, the loss of journalistic quality and expertise, the hunting for the lowest common denominator by a new breed of editors, the dangers of moral relativism, the vacuousness of analysis, the stupidity of pretending that politics is a career path, the self-censorship, the distortion, omission and misrepresentation of the reality, the populist scaremongering, the power of the State, Labour's fiscal lunacy, the failure of the police, the loss of institutions and growth of anomie.
We didn't ask for Jordan and X-factor and celebrity ice-skating, for the thieving, peculation and greed of MPs, for brainless bimbos on Newsnight, for being robbed, fooled, conned and defrauded by the banks, for police who look like the SAS, for Cheryl Beckham's phone to be hacked, for junk mortgages on junk properties to junk borrowers, for tee-shirts at £1, for health Nazis and climate change zealots ready to lie and distort scientific fact, for fake charities, for our beloved pubs to shut in their hundreds and be replaced by bloody windmills, for lying financiers, dishonest businesses, con-artist utility companies and 16lbs a month of junk harassment from Virgin Media disguised as proper mail, for Chinese pliers that bend, and Chinese aerials that don't, for having to retune the TV every week as the watchable content reduces to just a few hours, for a retarded-looking little scarecrow of a man I'm told is my European President, for road duty on boat diesel, for not being able to have a fag in the local park, for ever more irritating mobile phones, for railways that don't work, traffic and parking restrictions that increase congestion, London daily air quality worse than the worst smoke-filled pub, for four billion of tax wasted by the BBC each year on moronic non-entities and staggering incompetence, for every greedy money-grubbing little mediocrity in the land to get their snout into the tax trough, for incomprehensible sing-song Indians in Mumbai call centres using low bandwidth VOIP to disturb my dinner, or for smug establishment columnists to tell me it's all my fault.