It possibly takes a pandemic or an environmental disaster to suddenly shine a light upon how - in our Western world - the relationship between the citizen and the institutions of governance show a different and often fractious level of synergy and understanding. The divide between the two would appear to widen as the impact of the external pressure - pandemic or environment, for example - creates priorities and urgencies that differ to the point of civil disobedience and ultimately rebellion by one party in the face of instructions and limitations imposed in good faith by the other. It's a very fine line is it not, that is drawn between the collaborative and obedient behaviour toward the national guidelines and that which pushes the citizenry that inch too far to create a push-back and resistance to institutional strategies. Maybe that is what our long fought for freedoms are essentially all about, the acceptance of governance and guidance to a point, beyond which the co-operation and dutifulness starts to whither and the push-back begins.
Does this process work in other contexts, we may ask ? Are there issues that impact upon government through minority pressure groups and lobbying influences which have directly moved the dynamic of public policy (unwittingly or wittingly we may ponder on) and about which citizen action, initially passive - for we Brits are essentially a passive breed - has begun to turn to a more concerted counter force as an expression of rejection and will by the majority ? Bristling Brock would argue that such a counter force is beginning to swell on the subjects of 'wokeness' and political correctness, initially seen as being made up of moderately fair and reasonable tenets but subsequently pushed by excessiveness and politicisation over that fine dividing line to the point where there is now a noticeable body of public opinion railed against the very concept of those two emotive name tags. Not least in this category stands a certain Mr Fox, a theatrical professional who has seen it necessary to create a political party that stands up for a sensible and measured look at our cultural heritage, our history and the logic of how we got to be where we are today as a nation. The argument is quite simple. We are who we are because of our heritage. There is no merit in denying our often bloody and turbulent background, for from those times have come the building blocks that created our peerless concepts and practises of democracy, freedom of speech, freedom of thought, tolerance and patience with those less well imbued - the French, for example. That those building blocks had to be re-arranged a few times along the way does not spoil or eradicate the process of heritage and culture becoming formed - and even within the embattled UK today, for the English, Scots, Welsh and Irish are a disparate collection of cultures in themselves, there is an underlying need and benefit from recognising and cherishing that background, history and base culture. As a nation these are vital, structural and societal values that are vital to preserve.
Wokeness or political correctness are phases of a disenchanted set of minorities who happen to have loud voices. The time to push-back against these impositions is upon us. Well done, Mr Fox.
Who do we Brits want to win the US presidential elections ? Who do we believe most, or conversely, who do we think lies the least ? It's a hard choice for a country like ours who has no say in the matter but who will be directly affected by the outcome. Some argue for Trump as being a supporter of Britain, others think Biden, the infinitely quieter of the two contestants, whilst not an overt fan of Britain will recognise the values of partnership and trade as being mutually beneficial. But, as the saying goes, nothing will be decided until the fat lady sings. Bristling Brock has never had any illusions about the one-sidedness of the so-called special relationship - for it has never really existed other than for the benefit of the US - yet in a post-Brexit Britain it will be important for us to have a broadly scoped trade arrangement with as many nations around the world as possible (I'd nevertheless most decidedly exclude Russia and China from this list). The outcome of the US election, for us, is therefore a matter of economics and commerce rather than of political unity. Let us be under no misconceptions though - whatever deals are about will only happen if Uncle Sam is perceived by Uncle Sam as the principal beneficiary. Friendship and democracy only go so far.