Everyone is self deluded to a certain extent, just to keep going in life, but the severely myopic fantasist can be an irritating companion and sometimes dangerous. In government there seem to be a lot of people who cling to extreme fantasy, even in the face of extremist violence.
This Sunday, 18th January, we had Home Secretary Teresa May telling a meeting of Britain’s increasingly beleaguered Jews: ‘Without its Jews, Britain would not be Britain, just as without its Muslims, Britain would not be Britain – without its Sikhs, Hindus, Christians and people of other faiths, Britain would not be Britain.’
Who is she kidding I wonder? How many of us wouldn’t wish to return to a peaceful Britain of Christians and Jews where religion was never ever mentioned as a political issue. On the BBC Today Programme the day after she spoke, we heard Tariq Ahmad, Baron Ahmad of Wimbledon no less, declare, ‘Islam is a religion of peace.’
The presenter suggested that despite that there were a strange lot of ‘haters out there.’ Ahmad replied that the haters would easily melt away in the face of, ‘education and coming together.’
In the UK of course most of us know, if only secretly, that we don’t have much of either of those things, in many places none at all. The Baron Ahmad is upset because Eric Pickles has recently sent a letter to the Muslim Council of Britain actually calling for a lot more togetherness. The Council are annoyed because they say the Muslim community is already integrated quite enough. As Ahmad put it, ‘The Muslim community is no different from any other community in the UK.’
So that’s alright then, we all share everything including our values, everything is fine and dandy. Nothing to worry about at all, no one is causing any problems or making any trouble for anyone else. Mr Hollande of France has suddenly risen in his people’s popular vote from somewhere below our Ed Milliband to somewhere above General De Gaul. There is no known reason for that, as recent events in Paris just didn’t happen.