There’s an interesting article in the Mail today which illustrates the divide in the UK:
It is clear after yesterday that a dangerous split runs through the heart of [our] country. In place of unity, we are now two nations. Vast swathes of Wales, the North of England and almost the whole of Scotland are rocksolid Labour territory, political fiefdoms where the Tory brand is regarded with a tribal hatred.
In direct contrast, most of England, particularly in the South and the Midlands, has turned blue. The South and Midlands of England are the areas that generate the wealth on which our nation depends. The majority of voters in these regions work in the private sector. Employment is high and welfare dependency low.
Pretty controversial statement, particularly in the welfare and sick-benefits vistas north and west. Those vistas would hotly dispute that they are a drag on the rest of the nation; they’d claim that when Scargill and other unionists held the nation to ransom and shut down heavy industry, coal mines, ship building, steel works and car and motor bike manufacturing, that in fact it was Thatcher who did it.
That’s not the point of this post.
The point is that the nation is divided and even this blog’s [UK] commenters’ two hues show out in the rhetoric and concerns, in the interpretation of events, in the constructs … and ne’er the twain shall meet. One tribe gets apoplectic when southerners speak of letting the north and west go their own way and the southerners get apoplectic about “carrying” the ungrateful, benefits-taking drain on their taxes who still have the temerity to demand a voice in southerners’ affairs.
Annoying little facts that much of the far north and west is, in fact, Lib Dem, that Scotland itself is SNP and that even in the “blue” south and south-east, many voted Labour – such factoids are not as attractive as reading a map and seeing pretty blue areas and pretty red and yellow areas.
We like our politics simple and in primary colours.
Is there a divide? Yes. Along which lines? Haves and have-nots, as it’s always been.