England Passes

London 1968

A favourite mode of deviant relaxation, and relatively harmless means of indulging my on-line screen addiction, is watching scenes of London from times past. Not the flickering hand-tinted omnibuses, flower girls and street urchins of the Edwardian era, or the wailing sirens and underground shelters of the Blitz (though these too have their fascination), but people strolling down the street in the King’s Road, Carnaby Street, the Portobello Road in the 1960s – that is, within living memory.

The ‘swinging London’ fashions, hairstyles and street scenery all catch the eye. But the real fascination lies in the depiction of a nation in that never-to-be-recovered era prior to mass immigration. It’s not just, as the uncensored comments helpfully remark, that the people are nearly all white (i.e. Anglo-Saxon), but that they seem relaxed and happy, thoroughly at ease with themselves as they go about their business, which goes also for the sprinkling of Afro-Caribbean blacks.

The sense of loss breaks one’s heart. People are not eyeing each other suspiciously, wondering whether they can trust their neighbour, where the hell their neighbour comes from and what the hell they are doing here, or wondering what they are permitted to say or think without being accused of a hate crime. They can take it for granted that rich or poor, young or old, they share the same sense of identity and place, history and cultural experience – the same robust outlook and sense of humour. No harm intended, no offence taken.

There are no obvious signs that these English of yesteryear are suffering the effects of ‘a lack of diversity’ or ‘Eurocentrism’, the victims of some drab uniformity or cultural homogeneity – quite the contrary. No doubt class divisions were greater, but the bowler-hatted city gent, the cockney street trader and the young hipster rubbed along well enough. And, when push came to shove, they knew they were on the same side.

I remember from my childhood a book, circa 1962, entitled ‘London city of any dream’, a photographic portrait of London with text by Colin MacInnes. It was a London inhabited by people of widely differing classes and backgrounds – but they were all Londoners. It was their city, and its past was their past. Even though I came from the suburbs, it was also my city. As a teenager, I spent almost every weekend frequenting its galleries, museums, parks, churches, historic monuments, markets, boutiques – and later its pubs. I always felt at home.

No longer. The elite inhabitants of London’s clubs probably still feel at home, almost at ease with themselves, but they exist in a parallel world, untouched by the thronging masses that crowd the pavements below, or by the diversity quotas which are being imposed on the rest of society in order to deconstruct what remains of the old culture, and which they have not lifted a finger to oppose. Have a look in the foyer of the Athenaeum (no-one will ask any questions so long as you are dressed up) and see if you can spot a ‘BAME’ specimen among all those privileged establishment liberals. But how long do they imagine they can hold out?

How should one take the loss of one’s capital city? Some lines from H G Wells’ Tono-Bungay come to mind, describing the passage of a ship steaming down the Thames. They were quoted by Vaughan Williams to describe the epilogue of his wonderfully evocative London Symphony:

‘Out to the open we go, to windy freedom and trackless ways. Light after light goes down. England and the Kingdom, Britain and the Empire, the old prides and the old devotions, glide abeam, astern, sink down upon the horizon, pass – pass. The river passes, London passes, England passes …’

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17 Comments on England Passes

  1. Almost all my neighbours now are immigrants. Many are from the old communist bloc countries but quite a few are from Africa, the Middle East or Asia. To express the view that this is anything less than cause for the celebration of diversity may soon become a hate crime.

    I see little indication that these immigrants wish to adapt or integrate into a British way of life. That could have happended if they arrived in smaller numbers. As it is large groups are imported so adaption to the host community is not really needed.

    As the migrant-hugging activists are so fond of saying: “These people are just seeking a better life”. So true! But that “better life” is all about getting a foothold in a more economically successfu nation than the ones they left behind. As they carve out territory for themselves in Britain it does not matter whether the British people (what’s left of us) welcome them or not. We have no choice in the matter. We must celebrate diversity (or else).

  2. Dopn’t worry. Given time, the “better life” there people seek will be found in the countries they came from and off they’ll go!

    • That may be a rather long wait, I’m afraid. Corruption, over-population and environmental damage are worsening, not improving, in the continents of Africa and Asia. Their signal failure to attain a ‘better life’ is underpinned by the false but lovingly honed excuse that it is all the fault of the Europeans.

  3. So true, dear sir; every word. Ethno-cultural homogeneity, lightly dusted with a small numbers of assimilated other, under the principles of toleration, is one of the most important preconditions for sanity and happiness. No wonder the left hates it!

  4. Mass immigration is a Ponzi scheme brought about by short-sighted economists, who treat human beings in their simple models (which only stress the immediate benefits) in the same way they treat widgets: completely fungible.

    Mass immigration also inhibits integration with the host country’s people, especially if the host’s men cannot date the new arrivals’ womenfolk.

    Also, many economic migrants emigrate to avoid the people in the countries they left (because of persecution etc.). The last thing many immigrants want is to see hordes of their compatriots arrive too. This is something host country leaders fail to understand.

  5. The Scottish government’s website refers to people who are called ‘New Scots’. These people are of course immigrants. There’s no indication that immigrants could become ‘New English’.

    A Muslim neighbour once told me that he wanted to sell his house and move to somewhere that had a mosque at one end of the street and another at the other end. Names of places such as Lahore or Riyadh sprang helpfully to mind, but I don’t think he meant that.

    Nearly twenty years ago a news programme on a BBC Midlands channel featured a piece about old news reports from the 1970s and ’80s. In one a young woman was saying how she and her generation looked forward to marrying someone of ‘good English stock’. The diverse presenters of this programme mocked her comments with shrill laughter and almost had to reach for the smelling salts, or whatever substances the diverse use to revive themselves these days.

    Being fascinated with old photographs, such as the one that accompanies this article, I always wonder if the people featured in them would recognise themselves. Perhaps when Mrs May has her multicultural Brexit festival (it will have to be called just ‘Festival’) we’ll all feel included, and of course, vibrant. Brexitally vibrant. And remember, with hope, here we have no abiding city.

  6. As a cub scout in the mid-fifties, I and my fellow cubs would recite:
    “dib dib dib, dob dob dob,
    Akela,
    we promise to do our best
    to do our duty to God and The Queen”.

    It is a pity that God and The Queen didn’t do their duty to us.

  7. As an American, can i ask, how do White Britons put up with this? What keeps White Britons from organizing and storming the Houses of Parliament? I read this article nearly with tears in my eyes, because I will never be able to take my kids to their ancestral Homeland so that they can see what their forebears saw. The place is gone. How do indigenous British people put up with this??

    • As a Brit, can I ask, how do White Americans put up with what is happening to YOUR country? Your communities seem to be undergoing a similar tranformation to others in the West. People may grumble but those who object more strenuously come under swift attack from aggressive moral bullies.

      I recently visited Vienna for the first time in 17 years. That city too has begun to lose its identity. Yes, it is a massive tourist attraction, but out in the suburbs the endless tatty little stores and scruffy cafes gave me the feeling of being in an immigrant neighbourhood little different from those you find in England. No special Austrian identity was apparent. Everywhere were those people who have (as migrant huggers would say) come to the West “seeking a better life”.

      I suspect that a good proportion of the white English middle class regard lack of enthusiasm for diversity with snobbish disdain. In their eyes failure to embrace the cosmopolitan world view is a sure sign of being poorly educated and intellectually stunted. Who among the ever-so-creative, ever-so-broadminded, ever-so-intelligent metro liberals would want to tarnish their self-image by association with such backward people?

      • Well, I would say several things. One is that, out here in the West, it can be tough to differentiate between ethnic groups, whites and Hispanics being the main ones. I lived in a much whiter part if the Midwest for a few years, and upon returning to my hometown in Southern Colorado, I was rather taken with how different the people there looked. I’d never noticed growing up, but there has been a lot of intermingling over the decades, and I suspect this is the case in much of the US.
        What you say breaks my heart, as a White American. I have really been grappling with what can be done about these changes, short of extreme violence, which I am coming to suspect is the only solution, and one which no one wants.
        The feeling of the English middle class that you describe is harder to pin down here. There are sort of two middle classes here: a liberal one, and a conservative one. The conservative one voted for Trump, and tend to be more suburban. The other tends to be more urban and congregates in the large cities. There are exceptions, of course in both cases. Both of these groups view these things very differently. If you’re around the suburban conservative group, you would be completely at home criticizing immigration and speaking patriotically. You would be harrassed and probably assualted physically to do the same amongst the liberal, urban, middle class.

      • Sorry for the grammatical errors. Typing this on my phone is hell.
        I see now in re-reading your comments that you have the same problem, at least I think so. You have a metropolitan middle class that is very elitist and snobbish, and probably also have a conservative middle class in smaller cities. Is this correct?
        With regard to these things, and based on your travels around Europe, what is to be done? I ask honestly. I think we have a generation or two left to see how things turn out here. If the country can no longer assimilate people, and the US political establishment makes no course corrections, then the only answer will be some sort of shooting war. There are some large parts of the US where people do not violence at all, and are law-abiding. But these same people have no qualms about defending and fighting for their families and way of life. They are sick and tired of being demeaned by the ruling class.

        • I really do not know what can be done Daniel. What might be called the popular intellectual life of the West (ie. the world of “educated and informed opinion”) is so Left leaning that conservative views have come to seem an almost atavistic trait afflicting those who cannot cope with the modern world. Even those public figures one would expect to uphold tradition are keen to show they will not be left behind by history. The Conservative party pours out as much politically correct opinion as any liberal left organisation and is easily influenced by “the twitter mob” (why?).

          There is no chance of any popular uprising against our Left leaning cultural/political class while they hold the role of educators and moral leaders of the masses so firmly in their grip. They dominate the broadcast media. Current events and historical events are always interpreted from their chosen perspective (the better to instil correct values in the common herd).

          More optimistically, there may come a time when the general public will grow weary of the relentless outpouring of do-gooder, egalitarian propaganda with its cringe-worthy parade of “victims of injustice” using guilt to solicit our reverence. There has to be a limit to how many phony rebels you can put up with – especially when you are cast in the role of oppressor.

          The public may even develop a thirst for real historical truth. We can always hope.

  8. Mana and Daniel: You have to understand something about the United States: It is not a white country, it is a “Proposition Nation”. It derives its essential character not from the ethnic makeup of the Founders but from the political foundation of the Declaration of Independence and The Constitution and the various amendments thereof. It is not an ethnic state, never could have been and never was.
    In my neighborhood we have Koreans, Chinese, Mexicans and whites (European descended Americans), we get on just fine.
    Britain, or more particularly England, was an ethnic state, it had no particular political identity except that the ruling class ruled.
    That ethnicity has been deliberately and malevolently destroyed by the political elite. They thought that they could achieve that and establish a new serfdom, but in reality they have sown the seeds of their own destruction. The British political system is completely dysfunctional.
    What is existent now is a complete political mess up. There is no consensus in either major party about the way forward. Chaos and dystopia is just around the corner. Currently unimaginable social misery is imminent.
    Thusly are nations and empires destroyed.

    • RogerinFlorida I get that, I’m an American, I’ve lived here my whole life. I think my initial point spoke to the reality you mention, in that ethnicity is a tricky thing here, because there have been so many people from around the world that have come here, that to even call a person a “white person” can be very nebulous and non-descriptive. I come from an industrial city that saw people from all over the world come, and as a result, the population is not quickly or easily describable.

    • But I also agree with your description of England as a place OF a particular ethnicity, that is, the English, and how that is different from the US. That’s what I was trying to say to Mana, that the US is under different pressures, because it’s nature is so different. What I want to understand is how native English can somehow reassert some sort of claim over their native land. What is the future of Great Britain, given the cultural firebombing that it has experienced and that you have described? Will the native peoples of the UK ever fight back in some fashion against this madness?

      • Daniel: I apologize if I came across as lecturing you about the US, I did not intend that. I only intended to emphasize that England and the US are completely different societies at their most fundamental levels.
        It is important to understand how riven with class English society is: The working class despises the lower working class, the upper working class despises the working class but fawns over the lower middle class. this nonsense goes on all the way to the top, The Queen, who shall not be touched, spoken to or approached in any unapproved manner.
        The political opposition is balkanised. Ex EDL or BNP members cannot join UKIP, although Gerald Baten is trying to change this, it is a leftover from the UKIP of the public school snob and City slicker, Nigel Farage.
        This division allows the State to pick off the opposition individually. I recommend Tommy Robinson’s book “Enemy of the State” for a detailed look into the MO of the establishment in its suppression of political opposition.
        You ask why don’t the people rise up? Well class is the key.
        If we look at the USA in the 90s the Federal govt. committed a number of attacks against the American people; particularly we remember Ruby Ridge and Waco. In response to these and other provocations we had the Oklahoma City bombing. The US political elite was shaken, it became aware that there were significant forces in the US civilian population who would respond to Govt. provocations with extreme violence.
        Is there an English patriot group ready to light off a 5 ton truck bomb in Whitehall at 9.00am on a workday? No there isn’t, the reason I can be so sure is that if there were indeed such a group the bomb would have gone off already.
        The English people have suffered 60 years of replacement, a policy always unpopular with the vast majority of the English people, but imposed on us anyway. England now is just an address, a place where economic units live and are exploited. Charitable giving, volunteerism, community and meaningful political activism are all just about extinct.
        The institution that may have saved the nation,the Church of England, in the way that synagogues protect Jewish identity and promote Jewish cohesion, has withered to complete irrelevance.
        The answer to your question: ” Will the native peoples of the UK ever fight back in some fashion against this madness?” Is no, they will not, however economic catastrophe such as faces England now, may, and probably will, result in widespread civil disruption.

    • In my neighbourhood (since 2004) we have growing numbers of Hungarians, Czechs, Romanians, Poles. Those people came in when Britain opened its doors to migrants from the old Soviet Bloc. For much longer than that we have had Turks, Pakistanis, Indians, Sri Lankans, Ghanains, Nigerians, Jamaicans, Trinidadians, Australians, New Zealanders, Chinese, various Middle Eastern countries – the list as they say goes on. There is also a small community of Japanese workers brought in and housed by financial companies based in the City of London. And this is just my neighbourhood.

      For good measure my local authority boasts that it is home to the largest Jewish community between Tel Aviv and New York.

      While we are not at each other’s throats it would be a lie to say that “we get along just fine”. In spite of the image of multicultural harmony and integration peddled by the authorities these small communities are large enough that they don’t need to intermingle very much – the can and do, keep to their own. Some have not even bothered to learn English. The main attraction of England is financial.

      Particularly problematic are those long term immigrant communities which have not done well in terms of education and financial success. There, a sense of grievance is being stoked up by the Left. There is increasing talk of “white privilege”. I believe you are experiencing similar problems in the USA.

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