Softened up, infantilized and left behind [3]

… or the hunt for British values. If I insert this new intro Wednesday morn, then the very a*** end round way of doing this is British in its muddling.

Part 1Part 2Part 3.

According to Ofsted, ‘fundamental British values’ are: democracy, the rule of law, individual liberty, mutual respect for and tolerance of those with different faiths and beliefs and for those without faith.

Fine, so that means, according to the list, that the 23,000 jihadis must now all be rounded up and expunged from the land, as they have broken this code.

Didn’t intend to do a third post on this but better to finish the topic here than leave it over for tomorrow.

Ahem, I appear to have offended and that’s unfortunate but as I wrote once before, we argue over ideas, not over persons – if I have a view on British values and others do not, then in my book, that’s not the end of the earth.

But looking back at my comments, they seem unappreciative, a notion I’d like to get out of the way.  What I think we have here is an expat pooh-poohing ‘British values’ as the place went so far to pot that they had to go expat.

I agree it did and that was apparent in the stark contrast between when I went away myself and after I returned.  So no argument on that score.

What  I was arguing was not that so much that but the way the left deny there ever was Britishness, except in a Jack Straw negative way.  The Cheshire police have just issued a statement threatening tweeters with two year’s imprisonment for tweeting wrong thoughts, which supports FOS’s statement about no free speech in this country for donkey’s years.

I’d agree and it’s one of the many frustrations but I think I’m going on about something else – values once aspired to, however fictional in reality.

Now an answer to dear Distant Relative.

What’s the difference, in my book, between values and characteristics?

A characteristic of the English is to be phlegmatic, a bit grumbly, a bit mad but one value held dear across the ‘Deplorable’ side of Britain is honesty.

This has come through in so many tweets, where the tweeter has been up in arms about the dishonesty – it’s the dishonesty which really upsets. It does for me too. Another of mine is to be down on shoddy scholarship. Therefore  I’m over sensitive to that.

How to determine British values – a good way is to look at what British bloggers of the Deplorable bent choose to post on, what British tweeters choose to tweet on, and it differs from the Americans who are far more into the gun solution to issues. Thus you see many American girls carrying weapons in tweets and saying things like – just you try it. I can’t see a British girl tweeter going on like that … in fact they don’t.

Here’s a British blogger below.  It matters not if he’s straight or crooked, he demands straightness in his officials, not taqiyya:

Note the adjective – slippery.  Also the notion of treachery.

Here’s another:

“The Tories are taking the p*ss”. Yes they’re taking the p*ss out of me, you, NHS, Police & UK

You see the concerns of people in this land.  We’re being robbed blind by everyone from utilities companies to govt but  what we will not stand for is overt taking of the p.  Nor the crippling of the armed forces and especially the police.

This one about the police comes out in the UKIP manifesto, in so many bloggers’ writings and this evening through Katie Hopkins.

Here’s another:

Guess whom that refers to.  There once were ethcs and pollies had at least half a brain.  When they’d been naughty and were caught out, they resigned – see Profumo et al.  But the way they publicly dressed and conducted themselves was unlike Danczuk or Bercow and wives.

Values are subtle and difficult to put in B&W, though they clearly underpin our actions, and some things are shibboleths. For example, tuition fees and pensions were a very bad move on May’s part to appear to attack. Corbyn had his own double whammy – the IRA/Hamas and saying he’d negotiate over the Falklands. Over our dead bodies for all four of those issues.

Running through all this is a sense of ‘rightness’ and ‘fairness’ – time and time again, people wrote that the Falklands never were Argentinian, they were Spanish. There’s also a sense of right and wrong – that if you’ve paid into something all your life, then for some bozo to come along and try to take it away will find him on the receiving end.

There’s the old one about the queue at the bank and a robber goes to the window and demands money. This was a true story, remember. Someone in the queue told him to bugger off to the back of the queue. The would-be robber fled. What the man in the queue was incensed about was not the robbery so much – the bank had plenty – but the unmitigated gall to jump the queue. You think that’s dead? I’ve seen it happen in London.

Seems to me that what we have here is a sense of fairness – Distant Relative felt I was harshly judgmental after what he’d contributed but I was referring more to the journey over the years.  Well OK, these things happen and I do appreciate any contribution.

Moving on, Chuckles sent a link and quote and I can’t help but feel that though it was written by an American – therefore one must be charitable over some details – the general thrust was right on:

“Long-time readers may remember my theory that England’s catastrophic losses in the 1914-1945 world war, which stripped her of two generations of her best young men, meant England as such may not survive.

The capable emigrated long ago, those who could. Look at England today. Effeminate posers, deranged Marxists, diversity enforcers, career weirdos, faggots, political correctness commissars and child molesters run the place. Which puts all hope of England’s viability in her besieged young white males. Again.

Does anyone believe the “traditional masculinity” grunts and limeys and flyboys of those bygone days, or the progeny they never had, would put up with 23,000 jihadists at large in London, much less with one as mayor?

More likely every lamppost between London and Folkstone would be decorated with them and their apologists. Then they’d raise a pint to a job well done.

Until I see the mayor and his fellow eighth-century primitives marched down the M3 to waiting barges they may also spare me the candlelight vigils. Without the will to resist they’re just another act of submission.”

Agreed in principle.

By way of comparison, the Russians have an old gag about the foreigner who observes that the country is a cesspit.

“Yes,” replies the Russian, “but it’s OUR cesspit.”

There’s a certain amount of that with us in relation to the jihadis trampling all over our land without so much as a by-your-leave.

The second is the question of being sticklers for form. I’d most certainly offended colleagues over there when taken aside and informed that my filling in of certain forms needed to be meticulous, not as I’d done it. ‘Dokument, Jeimes, Dokument!’ Meaning that this was approaching a semi-religious parchment in their eyes.

In this country, one of the best examples, apart from everyone running around seriously in hi-viz jackets for anything even half official, is the humble electrical plug which goes into the socket. Have you seen the continental variety? Mickey Mouse two pin job. Have you seen the Australian version? Just as wonky.

But the British plug – ah, that’s solid, it requires a foundry to pour molten metal into the mould or so it seems and not content with that, it even has a fuse in there, just in case.

That is clearly British values – the aspiration to solidity and safety. Again, FOS might say it’s all in my head but officials still bang on about it.

Unfortunately, this aspiration is accompanied by cowboy building standards today – wafer thin walls, poor workmanship.

There is, therefore, a certain aspiring to values which no longer exist.  Sheffield steel springs to mind, BMC, Austin Healey.

Coming back to the quote above, I know people who are so incensed by May’s u-turns that they’re even thinking of voting Corbyn and to hell with May’s arrogance.

Now what speaks volumes about British values here is that no one will take up arms, we keep getting pushed around and encourage the PTB to do it..

Here’s a last British characteristic – this was erected at Dover and turned towards the EU:

All in our minds? Let’s see how it pans out. Robert Kimbell just tweeted:

You don’t tear down monuments; you wonder why they were erected. Without a history a people are as dust.

This can be said for our values too.

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12 comments for “Softened up, infantilized and left behind [3]

  1. Wolfie
    June 7, 2017 at 07:04

    Never been British values, Christian values plus British law. Both are now of little importance to the state.

    • June 7, 2017 at 08:03

      Yes but you undercut your own bold, flat negation by mentioning British law, which is essentially English common law as defined at Union and just as the Americans constantly refer back to the Constitution, Brits of a certain education in the English part of the land refer to that common law and Magna Carta.

      Not going to be drawn on MC of course and have already agreed that the rest has all been lost but there were many statutes over the centuries underpinning law pre-EEC and they were based on modes of behaviour which were, in turn, based on Christian precepts [or rather Church].

      Innocent until proven guilty was part of all that, plus the adversarial system of conducting court cases.

      If in saying ‘no British law’, you refer to English law – yes, that must be conceded but at the time of joining England, Scotland and Wales, there were copious things written about the effect on law and the society. All three lands were officially Christian.

      The only context in which ‘no British values’ makes any sense, particularly as I’ve listed a few of them in the post, is to say they’re not British, they’re English.

      But then someone like Dearieme comes in and says there’s no England, hasn’t been for centuries.

      And the very dilemma, plus the flat denial of ‘British values’ is in itself very British – this whole debate is British, as distinct from American, French, Chinese, Ugandan.

      The Spanish have their own parallel dilemma, what with Catalan, the Basque region and the Moorish past but there are Spanish values we see Spaniards having, even if Spaniards won’t even concede that they’re Spanish.

      In a lighter vein, you know the word Shibboleth:

      … and how it was used as a code for those truly of the land and language – well I propose this question be put at the customs gate: ‘Do you abide by British values?’

      ‘Oh yes,’ say a group of hopefuls. ‘We velly British.’

      ‘Nope,’ says the official, ‘you’re foreign. Next.’

      Up comes a bedraggled specimen and has the same question put.

      ‘What sort of damned fool question is that, of course I don’t, it’s a trick question,’ he retorts.

      ‘Right, through you go then,’ says the official.

      • Wolfie
        June 7, 2017 at 13:15

        Of course English Common Law, imposed on unruly kingdoms at union.

  2. fos
    June 7, 2017 at 09:24

    James, I know you won’t believe me, but I feel your pain. You have to live there.
    I on the other hand am completely detached. Completely. The country of my passport is about to elect a petty, small-minded authoritarian to rule over them. Not my problem, mate.

    I avoid the terms ‘British Values’ or ‘British Characteristics’ because they lead nowhere. In the Wittgensteinian sense they cannot be used in legitimate questions because there is no valid answer that can be given to them.

    They are scatterplots created by Jackson Pollock – wherever you stick your pin into them there are enough outliers to invalidate that position. That’s why all the people who mock concepts such as ‘British Values’ or ‘obscene’ (e.g. Lady Chatterley’s Lover trial) find it so easy. I’m not one of them.

    I don’t mock them – I just don’t use them.

    Your quote is a good example of this: ‘According to Ofsted, “fundamental British values” are: democracy, the rule of law, individual liberty, mutual respect for and tolerance of those with different faiths and beliefs and for those without faith.’ This applies to every European country I have ever lived in. Switzerland especially so. How come Ofsted calls these things over which there is no discussion ‘fundamental British values’? I have never come across a person in any of the countries in which I have lived musing over their ‘fundamental values’.

    You only do it when you don’t have them anymore – i.e. in Britain. And you certainly don’t have them in Britain at the moment.

    Here’s an example of the Swiss tolerance for free speech, even when it’s Neo-Nazis:

    I prefer to start at the other end with the concept of ‘identity’: do you feel part of the community/society in which you live? If you don’t you are suffering from ‘anomie’, which probably sums up the mental state of most of us here, particularly mine. Doing it this way round means that you don’t have to consider all the rest of the dots in the scatterplot, just your own.

    The cause that dare not speak its name here is mass immigration. It is a cultural battering ram. I gave an account of this from a personal point of view here:

    I can write about my own personal experiences with impunity (I hope), but as soon as you pick up the broader brush your are in trouble. Once you have imported enough diversity, all cultural cohesion is lost. The scatterplot is all over the place.

    I left Britain almost 40 years ago. I went back on business trips quite a bit in the 90s. My last visit was ten years ago. The places where I found myself were dumps. Really depressing, shoddy dumps. I’m not even sure that I really share a mother-tongue with this lot anymore. I would be interested to hear what the others on this site who have lived or are living abroad think of my opinion.

  3. Distant Relative
    June 7, 2017 at 10:20

    TVM for taking the time to respond.

    First of all, pardon my French but needs must, Bugger Ofsted. Typically the make the rules and don’t follow them. If you want compliant robots as an end product – call Ofsted.

    As English, we left UK so we could be English or les Anglais. Whether England is a figment of my imagination I care not one jot!

    The British values post on Monday set up an ongoing dialogue chez nous trying to define our perceptions of same. The dictionary was sought to clarify value/s, characteristics and culture. Once those were in the noddle we called out what we ex-pats thought complied with the categories. Some of these will be thought of as old fashioned nowadays but that’s because we iz old (bar one but majority rule and all that ;)! So, fwiw:-

    Value: the regard that something is held to deserve; importance, worth or usefulness. Values embodied in order to assess significance.

    Traditional British values: standing up against injustice, supporting the underdog, fair play, “cricket” as opposed to “not cricket”, doing the right thing, pulling together, everything above board, being honourable, the Dunkirk spirit, keeping calm and carrying on, not letting the buggers get you down. Following the rules. Doing the best one can. All of which are worthy of becoming tradition. Good manners are are not exclusive to Britain though we lay claim to them.

    Characteristics: from the Greek kharaktēr a stamping tool, a feature or quality belonging typically to a person, place or thing serving to identify them.

    British characteristics: arrogance – especially when abroad and expecting others to speak or at least understand English! Stiff upper lip, opening conversations with the state of the weather, apologising when it’s not our fault, queuing, paddling in the sea despite rain and winds because we are on holiday and we will enjoy ourselves come what may! Laughing at ourselves.

    Culture: ideas, customs and social behaviour of a particular people or society. From Latin ‘cultura’, growing cultivation. The social behaviour and norms found in human societies.

    British culture: fish’n’chips was the first one everyone agreed on, followed by wet Bank Holidays. Afternoon tea, bangers and mash, Marks and Spencer, Fortnum and Mason, Agatha Christie, Lord Peter Wimsey, genteel murder mysteries, street parties, Pimms, Royal family (like ‘em or not!), prom concerts, Ascot, Wimbledon, Henley Regatta, cricket, bowls, chicken tikka masala , haggis, neeps’n’tatties, Cornish pasties, clotted cream, barbecues in the rain ….. Food figures quite a lot because it was coming up to dinner time…

    ALL OF THEM WORTH KEEPING, IMO!!!! 😛 😀 Oh, and before anyone remarks that we are expats out of the country etc etc we are coming home !!!!!

  4. June 7, 2017 at 11:08

    I really do appreciate these comments, boys – the only important thing is that we have this range of views and readers can make up their own minds which bits fly and which bits sink. The crucial thing is that they have these in black and white here, rather than not have them.

    Oh, and before anyone remarks that we are expats out of the country etc etc we are coming home !!!!!

    What to though?

    And FOS – I do believe you.

    • Distant Relative
      June 7, 2017 at 11:20

      PS. I wrote most of that last evening before you added to it. You are right about the plugs 😀

      And what are we coming back to? Whatever we chose to make of it! 😉 🙂 Have you heard of Macron???????????

      • Distant Relative
        June 7, 2017 at 11:40


      • fos
        June 7, 2017 at 14:52

        1-Did you enjoy your time in France?
        2-Can Macron make things any worse (we’ll see what the parliamentary elections turn up)

        • Distant Relative
          June 7, 2017 at 19:00

          I wanted the experience of living in a foreign country so now I understand what immigrants trying to integrate face. France imo, in neither better or worse overall just different and yes I have enjoyed the experience. Reasons for going home are mainly personal. 🙂

          Can Macron make things any worse? Dunno. It is unlikely that he will make things better! His latest billet-doux exhorting us peasants to vote for his new hastily cobbled together party in the upcoming local elections is full of the usual hot-air that politicians seem to get away with over here. Unless he does something drastic like cut corporation tax and makes radical changes in employment law, things will continue much the same. 25% of the working population are civil servants who cannot be sacked no matter how bad they are so it’s a job for life and a guaranteed pension. It is difficult to sack people in the private sector too. Macron’s idea is to bring in more immigrants for their cheap labour and he says that will force the French to take pay-cuts. Not going to happen. Expect truck loads of manure being dumped at the Élysée Palace and council offices countrywide before he realises that!

          • fos
            June 7, 2017 at 19:33

            Thanks, DR.

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