Sing Daisy, GuardiHAL!
By Toby Young
There's a great example in The Guardian this morning of what Americans call "gee whiz" journalism, as in, a piece of news greeted as if it's jaw-droppingly sensational when, to the rest of us is, it's bleedin’ obvious. I'm talking about John Harris's belated discovery that "the yoof" don't share the values of the liberal, Guardian-reading metropolitan elite. Incredible as it may seem, they're not pro-immigration, pro-welfare or pro-redistributive taxation. According to Ipsos MORI, only 20 per cent of 18-34-year-olds agree with the statement "the creation of the welfare state is one of Britain's proudest achievements". How dare they?!? Most amazingly of all – to Harris, anyway – is that Generation Y don't blame the "Con-Dem cuts" for youth unemployment. Haven't they been listening to Len McCluskey?
The most telling passage in the article comes at the end, when Harris meets a 27-year-old in Warrington who's just got a job after a bout of unemployment thanks to the government's Work Programme. Harris asks him whether he thinks his joblessness was his fault.
"Yeah," he says. "I do. I think I should have applied for more. I should have picked myself up in the morning, got out, come to a place like this – tried more. When you're feeling down, you start blaming the world for your mistakes – you feel the world owes you. And it doesn't. You owe the world: you have to motivate yourself, and get out there, and try."
Harris describes this reply as – wait for it – "heartbreaking". Yes, it breaks The Guardianista's heart that this young person doesn't think the world owes him a living. Instead of becoming welfare dependent, trapped for the rest of his life in poverty and despair – as any self-respecting member of the proletariat should, doncha know – he's actually gone out and found himself a job! Oh tempora! Oh mores! What's become of the client state? It's as if 13 years of New Labour never happened.
Harris blames "Thatcherism" for the proletariat's false consciousness – and the fact that Labour hasn't been a proper socialist party since Tony Blair ditched Clause IV. The "up-by-your-boot-straps Conservatism of Norman Tebbit and Margaret Thatcher" (yah, boo, sucks) went "largely unchallenged during the New Labour years" and is now accepted by millions of young people as "a simple matter of fact". Echoes here of red daiper baby Owen Jones, whom Harris singles out (alongside public schoolgirl Laurie Penny) as a beacon of hope amidst all the gloom. Owen thinks "the rightwing media" is to blame for brainwashing the lumpen proles. If only the poor sods read The Guardian or the Independent, then they'd know THE TRUTH which is that the millionaire-Tory-Bullingdon-Boys-ruling-class have a vested interest in keeping them down.
Hmmm. Call me a capitalist running dog, but I can think of another explanation for Generation Y's lack of enthusiasm for the values of John Harris, Owen Jones and public schoolgirl Laurie Penny.
Maybe – just maybe – the reason 18-34-year-olds aren't wild about the consequences of Labour's open-door immigration policy is because they noticed that nine out of ten jobs created under the last government went to foreign-born workers.
Maybe – just maybe – the young residents of towns like Warrington aren't in lockstep with John Harris and Owen Jones and public schoolgirl Laurie Penny when it comes to state hand-outs is because they've witnessed the appalling, destructive, calamitous impact of welfare dependency with their own eyes.
Maybe – just maybe – the reason more 18-24-year-olds say they're going to vote Conservative (31 per cent) than Labour (27 per cent) is because they recognise that Britain wasn't in a great place after 13 years of the other lot in power, that we need to get the deficit under control if we're to avoid joining Ireland, Greece, Portugal, Spain, Italy and (any day now) France in the bankruptcy club and that David Cameron and George Osborne's plan for digging us out of this hole is just a teensy weensy bit more credible than Ed Miliband and Ed Balls's.
No, silly me. It's because they've all been brainwashed by The Sun.
Why Britain's Fallen Out Of Love With The Welfare State (Or, More Likely, Everyone Else's Welfare State)
We'll Keep The Red Flag Flying Here
A Fair Warning To Those Promoting Open Borders, Amnesty, & Free Immigration
The Truth At Last! Peter Mandelson Admits Labour 'Sent Out Search Parties' To Bring Migrants Here After Losing The Votes Of The Working Class
Immigration & The Town That Stopped Mincing Words
Yes, Immigration Can Bring Huge Benefits, But On This Scale And At This Speed, It's Too Much To Cope With..
The Only Relevant Issue In The Immigration Debate: What Is Good For The Country And Her Citizens?