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Is the World losing????

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  • byakimov@csc.com.au
    http://www.orthodoxengland.org.uk/ A NATION LOSES ITS TRADITIONS AND VALUES Last week was a disastrous one for the British Prime Minister. First, a family
    Message 1 of 1 , Sep 30, 2004
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      http://www.orthodoxengland.org.uk/




      A NATION LOSES ITS TRADITIONS AND VALUES



      Last week was a disastrous one for the British Prime Minister. First, a family
      friend, Lord Bragg, almost let slip to the public the details of the Blair
      family tragedy of last May, which had brought Mr Blair to the brink of
      resignation. Although the details are well-known to journalists and have been
      published all over the Internet in recent months, the public media have, quite
      properly, operated a system of self-censorship in this field.


      Then came the ridiculous protest at Buckingham Palace of a group which feels
      that the accumulated injustice against it merited yet another publicity stunt.
      The point of the juvenile protest was overshadowed by its security
      implications.


      Then came the much more serious demonstrations at the Houses of Parliament of
      those who support the freedom to hunt foxes with hounds. Many of them seem
      prepared almost for Civil War with the Blair government on what seems to many
      to be a topic without any importance.


      In an event, unprecedented since the time of Charles I, which preceded the
      English Civil War, the House of Commons was invaded by protestors, asking for
      the freedom to follow their pursuit. Many television viewers were not so much
      surprised by this event, but more by the fact that the debate was attended by
      only a handful of their paid, elected representatives. In any case, the result
      is that Ministers of the Blair government now appear to be frightened to enter
      the English countryside. A campaign of mass civil disobedience looms. As ever,
      when governments do not listen to a substantial minority of the people, the
      latter take to the streets in rebellion.


      Then, far more seriously, came the news that during the week 300 people had
      died, and hundreds of others had been maimed, in the unending war in Iraq. It
      appears that Coalition Forces now only control about 10% of Iraq, as it
      descends, like Afghanistan, into anarchy. One ironic observer suggested that
      the only person who could now bring peace to the chaos of Iraq is Saddam
      Hussein. This tragic news was followed by the statement of the UN Secretary
      General, who at last officially declared that the Invasion of Iraq had been,
      as virtually everybody knew, illegal.


      The link between all these events is that it appears that freedom in the
      United Kingdom has been set aside in favour of 'democracy'. Of course, in
      fact, the two words should mean the same thing. This is no longer the case.
      The present government, like the Major and Thatcher and most other governments
      before it, was elected by a minority. In the case of the present government,
      by only 28% of the electorate. Nevertheless, with a majority of MPs, it can
      pass almost any law it likes. The question is: Does the UK any longer have a
      democratic system, fairly representing all its people, or is it ruled by the
      decrees of a Presidential figure who no longer has a grasp of reality?


      If this is so, it would certainly explain why certain injustices, regarding
      the rights of divorced fathers to see their children, have not been remedied.
      It would explain why the British people were lied to about the possession of
      non-existent 'Weapons of Mass Destruction' by Iraq. It would explain why the
      Blair government took part in a 'pre-emptive' and very costly invasion of
      Iraq, against the wishes of the British people. It would explain why the BBC
      was censored by the government. Finally, it would explain the desire to stop a
      substantial minority from hunting foxes, angering millions and bringing them
      to open revolt. Whatever the majority thinks of their practices, the only way
      to stop them will be to imprison them all.


      In all cases, the present government appears to have lost contact with the
      realities of British life, to an even greater extent than the last Thatcher
      government. After all, it too acted in similarly dictatorial ways, when it
      attempted to impose its poll tax on an unwilling people some thirteen years
      ago.


      To some it seems that the British political scene is now changing radically
      and is about to be recast. What difference is there between the neo-Puritan
      authoritarianism of the Labour and Conservative Parties? On the one hand, the
      yesterday's men of the Conservative Party have not been forgiven by the public
      for their errors and the corruption of the 80s and 90s. On the other hand, the
      'New Labour Party' of Mr Blair (called by some the 'New Tory Party') is now
      almost totally discredited.


      Some political observers have suggested that the New Labour Party, with its
      record low membership, is about to be eclipsed by the genuinely left-wing
      Liberal Democrat Party. As for the Conservative Party, some say that it has
      now betrayed all its principles, that it is now no more than a shell, similar
      to the old Soviet Communist Party, where members clapped their leaders'
      speeches in their sleep. Not far from collapse, they say, it will be replaced
      by the genuinely conservative UK Independence Party.


      Whatever the future, as observers we are able to observe one thing. This is
      that, over the last generation, political freedom in the United Kingdom has
      come under threat, in ways which were unthinkable twenty-five years ago. Here
      it is irrelevant to speculate like the media about whether Mr Blair intends to
      resign this year. Politicians, puppets of history, come and go, and his
      resignation will not resolve the heart of the problem. The heart of the
      problem is not a question of personalities or political parties. For it is not
      only the two main political parties, Labour and Conservative, and their
      representatives, which have lost their traditions and values. It is rather
      that a whole country seems to be losing its traditions and values. And he who
      loses his traditions and values, loses his way.


      We may well ask the question: Is the United Kingdom coming to a historic
      turning-point?


      Father Andrew Phillips
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