As I write, those who demand a second referendum on the European Union seem ever more likely to have their way. Their argument is: that it is now two years since we were asked to vote on leaving; that no one expected the process of leaving to end in the present shambles; that we should be asked what we now think of leaving. These calls are an obvious fraud on the electorate. Since the Danes rejected the Maastricht Treaty in 1992, the custom in Europe has been for any unfavourable referendum result to be followed by another vote, in which the preferred result is given. This was done to the French, the Dutch and the Irish. It is now being done to us. Read more
I am presently sat in a Turkish hotel, brooding over the e-mails I keep receiving from my Conservative friends. If some of them want Boris Johnson to replace her, and others Jacob Rees-Mogg, they all agree that Theresa May must go, and that this will somehow improve our departure from the European Union. I have no doubt she would make a better pole dancer than Prime Minister. But I am astonished that anyone with half a brain could want change from our existing state of affairs. It is not, I grant, the best possible state of affairs. It is, even so, the best available. Read more
Seen from my point of view, on the libertarian right, there are at least three ways of looking at the alleged or real anti-semitism of Jeremy Corbyn. The first is that it is very, very funny. Since the 1970s, he and his friends have been whining about the horrors of racial prejudice. Now, every time he opens his mouth, he says something that upsets Jews – and that may legitimately be of concern to them. You tell me it is uncharitable if I fail to keep a straight face. The second is that the scandal is a distraction from the real issue in British politics. Next March, we are supposed to leave the European Union. Whether we shall or ought to leave with some kind of agreement is arguably more important than with whom Mr Corbyn shared a platform at the Conway Hall in 1987. These first two being noted, I will focus on the third, which is what impact he will have on the so far arrested realignment of English politics. Read more
Well, I suppose I always knew that it was logically possible for England to become a tyrannical third world socialist tinpot dictatorship. However, it’s still been emotionally quite a blow to realise that we’ve now officially sunk down to the same ignominious level as North Korea.
When I grew up, we entertained the generally accepted idea that to be born an Englishman was to be handed a life-long Willy Wonka golden ticket in life’s mysteriously complicated lottery.
Yes, it rains here a lot. Yes, our main culinary condiment is ‘Brown Sauce’. And yes, the rapid decline of our Empire took a huge amount of wind out of our previously billowing sails.
But there still remained something about this England, this glorious England, that felt special.
I may have fellow countrymen who cannot identify these words. If so, I have yet to meet them. The words are from the speech that Enoch Powell (1912-98) gave on the 20th April 1968 to the West Midlands Area Conservative Political Centre – a work best known as “The Rivers of Blood Speech.” It is, beyond any doubt, the most notable political speech given in England during my lifetime. It may be the most notable of the twentieth century. It made its author both the most loved and the most hated politician in the country. Shortly after the speech, dockworkers marched in his support through the centre of London. Thirty years later, at his memorial service in Westminster Abbey, the space outside was filled with a great crowd of those who had come to pay their respects. Read more
The Puritan Hypothesis and Charlie Elphicke Sean Gabb 5th November 2017
Sean Gabb with Charlie Elphicke 2017 07 01
Charlie Elphicke is the Conservative Member of Parliament for Dover and Deal. This makes him my Member of Parliament. On Friday the 3rd November 2017, he discovered – via the media, he says, not from any official notification – that he was suspended from the Conservative Party, and that the Police had been asked to investigate him. No reason for this was given. However, Mr Elphicke’s name was on a confidential list, compiled by Central Office, and immediately leaked on social media, of politicians said to be unable to keep their hands to themselves. Read more
Yesterday, Dr Sean Gabb spoke on the Stephen Nolan show, on BBC Radio 5, about a joke made by Michael Gove on BBC Radio 4’s ‘Today’ programme.
Below, we have excerpted all of Dr Gabb’s comments made in that interview. If you would like to listen to them, please click on the audio file link below.
(The interviewer spent quite some time speaking to another guest, Shelagh Fogarty, both before and after Dr Gabb’s comments. If you would like to listen to the full interview, please click on this link and go to about 1:56:45.)