POPULISM, we are repeatedly warned by our masters, is a threat to civilised society.
An uneducated class, stirred from their apathy by demagogues such as Nigel Farage, has been turning up at polling booths and putting crosses in the wrong boxes.
How can the ‘great unwashed’ understand the complexities of government? They think too simplistically, with their petty tabloid-driven demands for cutting foreign aid or jailing jihadists. And they complain if taxes are raised on awful lower-class snack food, fizzy drinks, beer and tabs.
Well, that’s the view from the heady heights of the political and cultural establishment. The Conservative Party has proved as willing to fleece the ordinary folk as ‘nanny state’ Labour.
Matron May, aided by her snivelling accountant Phil Hammond, has a proclivity for taxing the poor. Now they want us to cough up for higher health spending, but despite the cherished status of the NHS, this policy has not been warmly welcomed.
Why not divert funds from wasteful management, or tackle the fraud of health tourism, or abandon the unwanted HS2 rail project? If we are so short of money, why are we offering a £40 billion leaving gift to the
EU (effectively, foreign aid to Germany).
The government no longer seems to be working for the common man or woman. A pint at the pub, largely due to excise duty, now costs over £4 – and nearer £5 in London and other major cities.
Don’t be surprised if the May regime decides against the current plan to raise taxes at the petrol pump is dropped in favour of squeezing more out of drinkers. The pub and its clientele are easy targets, but this is not justifiable.
In the temperance ideology of Chief Medical Officer Sally Davies, all alcohol is bad for you.Nonsense. Reams of scientific papers confirm that drinking in moderation is protective against cardiovascular diseases and dementia. For the young and old, regularly going to the pub has all kinds of benefits: physical exercise of the walk, social activity and relieving stress, sharing a joke, and maintaining a community spirit.
Pub-goers seem happier than those who never leave home, although sadly in the internet era it is the latter who are becoming more numerous.
The great British institution of the pub, like much of our disrespected heritage, is in serious decline.
How can landlords survive against the supermarkets, who sell beer for a third of the price at the bar?
This unfair competition has been allowed because few politicians care about this struggling trade: the Red Lion can go to the dogs and they won’t bat an eyelid.
Swaths of cities are now deserts, as every tavern has become an Indian restaurant, Tesco Express or a block of flats.
Wherever last orders are called, another community asset is lost forever. And yet there is still hope. The beginning of a patriotic revival is in the air, and the pub should be at the heart of our renewed national and local identity.
Increasingly, citizens are resisting greedy developers who grease the palms of uncaring councils to steal our social capital.
Mired in class snobbery, the government seems deaf to the hoi polloi. But to continue its neglect and exploitation of the working class risks revisiting the strife of the Corn Laws in the nineteenth century, when leaders underestimated the power of the people.
CAMRA has been a tireless campaigner for the pub, but it needs more political support. Let’s not tinker around the edges – we should demand a pound off a pint. While the Lib-Lab-Con focus on the fashionable causes of identity politics, perhaps the new libertarian celebrities of UKIP could take this forward.
Come on Paul Joseph Watson, Sargon of Akkad, Milo and Count Dankula – fight for cheaper beer, and your political dalliance will be remembered.