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Thursday, 8 August 2019

Are we raising a generation of fascists?

Some years ago I assisted in arranging a garden party for those mainly of the younger generation. We had awnings, food, booze and a string band - all, we imagined, that was needed for these bright young things to become effervescent. As I watched, they had splintered into many small pairs or trios that knew eachother, and worryingly many lone figures not interacting. A septuagenarian Chelsea Arts Club member stood with me and advised firmly "You've forgotten what it's like to be that age. They want to be organised, told what to do. Go on!" So we organised games, encouraged non-sexual physical contact and interaction but most successfully got them dancing English folk dances that were designed for just this purpose. Don't laugh. If you've never Stripped the Willow or circled the Draper's Maggot* you haven't lived. We were blessed with a skilled and enthusiastic string band who for little more than money and beer exceeded their contractual sets and it became a roaring success.

I share that anecdote by way of introduction to a report and poll that, at time of writing, are not available online but clearly will emerge soon from their embargo as the Telegraph's Camilla Tominey has penned a teaser piece. "A third of millennials want martial law and 66 per cent prefer strong leader over parliament, poll finds" reads the strapline. It will I am sure be more nuanced than that, but the spin is the thing for the originators.

'Onward' is a Cameronian soft sort of dilettante centre right remainian think tank based on the premise that what young people want is, erm, a soft Cameronian centre-right remainian politics. However, they have produced one decent report - Generation Why? -  that is worth reading. I will wait for both the Onward report and supporting Hanbury Strategy poll before commenting on the pre-release spin.

I have commented before on other research that suggests strongly that the young are far less keenly committed to democratic forms than my own generation. Of course, they've never lived through the Lord Chamberlain's censorship, the battles that TW3, the Pythons, Oz, Private Eye and the whole counterculture movement fought in the '60s and '70s. Or the Cold War, when the nation's wealth went on guns rather than butter. We didn't drink Mateus Rose because we had no taste but because the economy had little room to support frivolities such as wine.

Forgive me if once again I stress the utterly fundamental importance of free political association, universal suffrage and the secret ballot. If the anti-democrats who are so determined to erode these fundamental guarantors of freedom are making headway with the Millennials, I am worried.

*Both of which, for maximum enjoyment, should be danced slightly drunk by people who get the moves wrong


r_writes esq. said...

Here's the thing though, if it is true, we are the ones that have caused them to come out this way.

Since the Attlee government we have engendered expectations of a socialist society, where everything is a bed of roses, and the sun never sets.

But the biggest problem is all those lefties in positions of great power and influence over, what are essentially, as the Victorians might say, empty vessels. They are waiting to be moulded into an expectation of jam today, no effort required.

For instance, why bother about an education, when you can be blocking Oxford Street as you tell us thick older folk, that we are all going to frazzle next week?

The problem is one of credulousness. They believe us when we tell them that the world is different now, that everyone is a cuddly socialist and we are all in this together. Anyone can see that this is false and that what is needed is someone with more authority, that will point this truth out to those that follow the more traditional genetics.

In short, our generation have created this lot, and they are laughing at us.

Don't care, was made to care.

DeeDee99 said...

As a mother of two young adult sons, I think the younger generation is keen to be organised because that is how most of them have been brought up. Instead of a casual early childhood with mum, they're pushed into nurseries at a very young age where they get "structured learning." As they grow older, leisure time is spent at various after-school clubs or out-of-school activities, run by adults. At the weekend, they're shuttled to other clubs, special-interest lessons and activities.

Compared to earlier generations they have very little opportunity to just play; amuse themselves; get bored; go out unaccompanied by an adult, round up some mates and disappear off for the day. Their lives are organised for them. No wonder so many struggle with mental health problems when they get to university - they aren't used to organising their own time and they have no resilience.

DiscoveredJoys said...

Tried Mateus Rose recently as part of a Seventies Nostalgia Party. The wine was awful. It was too sweet, yet I used to find it acceptable.

I guess this anecdote shows that our tastes and preferences change as we age. I'd argue that we now (socially) ignore anyone who is 'old', an inversion of how it used to be up the the Sixties. The younger adults no longer 'see' the examples of older people. They are fed 'news' and opinions and attitudes of the younger set as the be all and end all of life.

There's a general trajectory for peoples' adult lives... competing for a partner, settling down, having kids, getting them married off, grandchildren. It's a stereotype and not entirely observed by all, but the 'narrative' provided a social background which is now much less obvious.

Raedwald said...

Ah, but as I recall Mateus was marginally less sweet than Blue Nun. When our village shop in Suffolk at the end of the '70s expanded its range from just the two above to include Beaujolais and Sauternes, we thought we were coming up in the world ...

wg said...

I have noticed this 'demonisation' of old people for a long time now: and it seems to me that these things don't happen without direction from political agitators.
Age UK are reporting an ever increasing number of assaults on old people (something that would be unthinkable in my youth)

On the young and democracy thing - I maintain that all this brouhaha about EU membership will not radicalise the young towards the EU, but will actually make our young people ask questions about democracy.

Unfashionable in some circles, and I hasten to add that I dislike the idea of socialism, but the quiet arguments of people like Tony Benn were a potent weapon for democracy.

All the older members of society can do is to try and quietly explain issues of democratic accountability and tell the stories of the 'real' rights that have been fought for over centuries.

Of course, that should have been down to education, but we now have the foxes in charge of the henhouses.

JPM said...

All of ours are in their twenties, and I don't really detect these tendencies in them or in their friends.

What I do see is perhaps a generalised detachment from politics, but that's maybe repeated through the generations anyway.

If so, that would allow minorities who are not to get much further than they otherwise would, maybe, but I'm not sure how representative my own experiences would be.

Bill Quango MP said...

Don't worry. A strong man is here.

Uncle Beria has told the world that if Boris Johnson fails a confidence vote, IRA Jhonny will despatch the Great Grandpa to The Palace, to demand The Queen appoints him dictator.

Then elections will be made 'optional.' And the revolution will be complete.

Span Ows said...

Anyone who DOESN'T "prefer strong leader over parliament" after Treason Mayhem hasn't been paying attention do say Raedwald...not quite whimsy? :-)

"A third of millennials want martial law and 66 per cent prefer strong leader over parliament" that martial law one is truly astounding and yes, I think 'we' are to blame. the riduclous creep of CP/PC nonsense through Judiciay, Church, Police, Parliament, Charities, Education etc has long passed the point of being plain fucking stupid and thank God the youngsters are waking up to it. The snowflakes will be the last of the truly brainwashed and those the gebneration following them are already seeing sense...HOWEVER, failure to guide that change won't end well, especially for oldies.

Sackerson said...

Do computer games and other vividly violent fictions - plus sensationalised news - condition the young to think society is about to collapse and needs "strong government"?

Anonymous said...

The boomers abandoned the intermediate institutions of this society to radicals and destructive state centralisation. Now only the state survives, what are millennials supposed to identify with? They're on the bottom rung of this low wage/high credit Ponzi scheme, if they can't opt or vote out then what happens next?

Bucko said...

"Stripped the Willow"

I'd almost forgot...

Adolf Painter said...

Come 1 Nov, it appears that the PM will be able to declare a state of emergency and rule by executive order, bypassing Parliament. Can any constitutional experts confirm?

Sackerson said...

@"Adolf" - on the Royal Prerogative:

I read that Ted Heath used his power under the Royal Prerogative to get us into the Common Market, in advance of ratification by Parliament.

The Executive's use of power is, I think, a major issue for out time, as it was in 1780 - ""the influence of the crown has increased, is increasing, and ought to be diminished" -,_1st_Baron_Ashburton

JPM said...

Sackerson, but it is precisely Alexander Johnson's intention to render Parliament irrelevant re relations with the European Union from November the first.

Or perhaps he has been "advised" to declare that as his intention, by his unelected "adviser"?

I wonder what "they" have on him?

Unknown said...

I have three twenty somethings - all straight A First class degree people - so not stupid (even accepting that educational standards have lowered dramatically in the past 40 years). They genuinely do not understand the connection between the kind of government they have and the kind of society they live in. Two don't bother to vote. Our free(ish) market, free(ish) speech sort-of-democracy is taken for granted - they were born into a post-Thatcher era of plenty which is light years away from my youth (born 3 years after rationing finished).

Whilst they have been pickled from birth in cultural marxism, my generation grew up with the divide of the Iron Curtain across Europe and tales of deprivation and oppression on the the side. We also had wall-to-wall coverage via films and tales from our parents and grandparents of the horrors of totalitarianism and fascism, fought against at great cost.

Until those who educate our children are no longer overwhelmingly socialist (foxes are indeed in charge of the henhouses) they will not realise that no dictators are ever benevolent and that unless they fight for democracy, they will certainly get their wish because power always fills a vacuum.

Sackerson said...

@JPM: that seems a little disingenuous to me. As I've said elsewhere:

"Parliament voted to repeal ECA 1972.

Parliament voted to trigger Article 50.

Parliament rejected the dWA a record 3 times in the same session (a breach of established protocol that we can only hope will never be repeated.)

If the EU fails to offer an acceptable revised deal, how can there be anything more to say?"

It needs someone to cut the Gordian knot of MPs' double-dealing with the electorate.

JPM said...

Sackerson the European Union is in no position to offer anything "better" - worse, that is, in my view.

It is a guarantor to the Good Friday Agreement.

It is bound to protect the other twenty-seven signatory countries to the Lisbon Treaty, by not breaking it.

So just like the US, with its beef deal with the European Union, the UK's products would have to meet Single Market standards. That means obeying EU rules.

There is, literally, no other way, unless the UK agreed to membership of a Customs Union and/or Single Market, which have always been eminently sensible.

Mr Ecks said...

JPM--or whatever--blah,blah remainiac blah.

If the treasonous shite in the HoTraitors have to be by-passed that is their own doing. If it was up to me the remainaics in there would be on treason charges.

But if you don't like that--lets have a civil war instead. After three years of middle class traitors slinging their evil and deceitful gobs --when they are not wrapped around the EU's dick--any decent person can see clearly the enemies within that threaten this country.

JPM said...

Thanks Ecky, I needed a good old laugh-out-loud moment tonight, and you have proved as reliable as ever.

Treason means betrayal to a mortal enemy, not reciprocating with friends.