ironic in the sense that I don’t think there was a golden age in which society was whole.
we have to look at the problems we have. Every age looks at the problems it has, and what I’ve found in England is a refusal to face the problems: they’re just too uncomfortable.
Dalrymple says it is, to a degree, a
as to why Britain has become more degraded than all other comparable countries. But he points to
a gestalt switch: what was regarded as good is regarded as bad, and vice-versa. Emotional constipation, once a characteristic of the British, has become emotional incontinence. People regard it as a good thing to express themselves, irrespective of whether they’ve anything to express.
For reasons of hormonal disaffection, young people are disposed to throw themselves into ideological causes. They are susceptible to ideological rot, as they are to criminality,
which is a young man’s game.
With regard to English anti-social life, Dalrymple says:
If you go to entertainment areas, there is always an element of threat in Britain.
He recounts an experience he had in Manchester, where he was staying at an hotel.
There was laughing and screaming outside at 1.30 in the morning. When I went out the next morning, I found that someone had been nearly murdered — he was in hospital, in a coma. You can’t tell the difference in England between people enjoying themselves and someone being murdered.